Freewill Baptist Cemetery
Established c. 1835 - Main Street
Many South Berwick citizens of the 1800s and early 1900s have been laid to rest in this beautiful historic cemetery located right in the heart of South Berwick Village. The 1835 South Berwick Free Baptist Church, containing the 1890 South Berwick town clock and shown at left on Main Street, is part of the interesting story of Maine Baptists and the temperance movement of the early 1800s.
The earliest grave recorded here is that of Eliza J. Earl, a two-day-old infant who died in 1813, indicating the cemetery may have begun as a family burial plot on an Earl family farm. World War I Veteran Chester Guy Earl (1893-1957), Pvt Company G, 36th Infantry, was buried here much later.
A few of the other South Berwick residents whose graves are among those in this cemetery:
William L. Hanscom, Company B, 27th Maine Infantry, Civil War veteran, and his family
Alfred W. Hart (1843-1863), who died in the Civil War. The family grave is marked, "Our first born – He gave his life for his country.” Alfred's parents were Simon Hart (1817-1882) and Mary Ann Wentworth Hart (1820-1891). According to family records, Mary Ann was a graduate of Berwick Academy and a Freewill Baptist preacher. Their home, the Wentworth-Hart-Butler House, still stands nearby across Main street.
Capt. Samuel Wentworth, Alfred's grandfather, who died in 1851. Read more about the Wentworth-Hart family.
Charles T. Goodwin, 1828-1832, 2 years and 10 months old.
Lucius Quintius Cincinnatus Nason (1791-1872) and his wife, Sarah Garland Nason (1794-1884). Dr. Theodore H. Jewett, the father of author Sarah Orne Jewett, found the old couple destitute at the end of their lives and helped them obtain financial support through the Society of the Cincinnati, according to historian Annie Wentworth Baer.
Spanish American War veteran John L. Sink, (1880-1946).
War of 1812 veteran John Spencer, age 76.
Capt. Elijah Ricker, born about 1786, who died at sea in 1826.
(This summary by Wendy Pirsig from archives in the Counting House Museum. Updated 2020.)