Old Bethel Cemetery recognized with historical marker

Published: Thursday, November 21, 2013 at 05:07 PM.

Griffith Ferry — established around 1850 to transport goods, people and the stagecoach over the Yellow River, about a half-mile from the cemetery — was critical to the commerce route.

Austinville, the town in which the cemetery once stood, was a stagecoach stop and one of the first post offices in the area, Spann said.

Spann said local oral history describes a mass grave of Confederate soldiers buried within a circle of field stones in the cemetery's oldest section.

University of West Florida archeologists — even using ground-penetrating radar — couldn't find evidence of bodies below the markers, she said.

Contact News Bulletin Staff Writer Brian Hughes at 850-682-6524 or brianh@crestviewbulletin.com. Follow him on Twitter @cnbBrian.

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