Willingham Cemetery and Willingham Spring Baptist Church

Organized in 1911 with the aid of Brother Cullam, the pastor of Prairie Dell Methodist Church, the small wooden Baptist Church was built between 1911 and 1914. Local farmer Wilson Willingham deeded property on this site. Oral history relates that Hanna Elizabeth “Grandma” Kidd Myers drove the first nail in the new church building. Area farmers Jim and Bennie Brooks, John and Zola Kidd Lankford, Mart and Minnie Brinegar Van Dyke, H. L. and Clemie Kidd Thomas, and Author and Eula Housewright helped build the structure, which was completed in 1914 and also served as a community schoolhouse until 1937. The church was closed in 1941, but was revitalized in the early 1950s and again in the 1990s. Registered Texas Historic Landmark in 1998.

 Willingham Cemetery received its Historic Texas Cemetery designation in 2003. Willingham family members were original settlers at Salado Springs (Salado) in the early 1850s. They eventually moved a few miles west and established a successful stock farm operation. Patriarch Archibald Willingham (1786-1857), a Georgian by birth and a veteran of the war of 1812, was the first to be buried in the family cemetery on their land. His wife, Ellener (Belcher), and their son, Sterling Andrew Jackson Willingham, are also buried in the cemetery.  The cemetery is also known as Three Chimneys after the family home that was nearby. Willingham family members still live in Salado and maintain the cemetery.


FM 2843, Salado, TX 76571


(254) 947-9248