Past Tense

Dunwoody Preservation Trust makes it its mission to preserve the history and heritage of Dunwoody and to share this history with the community. Apple Cider Days events of October provide opportunities to learn history, as well as opportunities to share and preserve your own history.

Twilight Tour at the historic Stephen Martin Cemetery takes place Oct. 6 from 6 p.m. until 7 p.m. This family cemetery is located behind Marshall’s on Hammond Drive. Park in the back of the parking lot and follow the signs to the cemetery. More than 70 pioneers of Dunwoody and Cross Keys (Brookhaven) are laid to rest in this small cemetery. Examples of various types of graves are within the cemetery, including early stone cairn graves.

The oldest graves are those of Stephen Martin, his wife Elizabeth Garrett, and second wife Sarah Crowley. Elizabeth Garrett’s 1847 burial was the first in the cemetery. Stephen and Elizabeth Martin’s daughter Naomi Ann “Omie” married Thomas Franklin Spruill and sister Sophia Caroline married Joseph Thomas Spruill. It was Thomas Franklin Spruill’s parents, James and Millie Spruill, who first came from Sandy Springs and built a home along what is now Ashford Dunwoody Road.

The Reeves family at the cemetery are Moses Barto and Margaret Spruill Reeves. Margaret was the daughter of Naomi and Thomas Franklin Spruill.

World War I veteran John Hardigree is buried at Stephen Martin Cemetery. He began his service at Camp Gordon training camp in Chamblee and later served as a Prisoner of War escort. His family lived along what is now Lake Hearn Drive in Cross Keys.

On Oct. 13, Villagefest Fun on the Farm will be a day of music, food, and fun for all ages from 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., it is also a time to share your Dunwoody photos and memories with the DPT archives. DPT has been collecting family history, memories, and photographs for more than 20 years and is constantly working to expand that collection.

DPT volunteers will be at the Donaldson-Bannister Farm to scan your photos. There is a limit of five photographs per family and all photos need to include an event or place in Dunwoody. You can also record a five-minute video of your favorite Dunwoody memories.

On Oct. 20, a HistoryAlive! event, “Family History 101: For True Beginners,” will be presented at the Donaldson-Bannister Farm. Gin Shaw has been putting together family histories for over 25 years. She will demonstrate how to get your family tree started, begin research, obtain historical proof, find historical documents and more. This event is free, but registration is required. Send your registration request to and visit for more information about all events.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.