Dr. Elizur & Esther Butler: Missionaries to the Cherokees

Dr. Elizur & Esther Butler: Missionaries to the Cherokees

Year Erected: 1957

Marker Text: Buried in the grave sixty feet south of this point is Esther Post Butler. Born in Connecticut on September 15, 1798, Esther Post married Dr. Elizur Butler, physician and minister, In October 1820. The Butlers were sent by the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions to Brainerd and then to Creek Path, before arriving at the Haweis Mission, near Rome, in 1826. Mrs. Butler died in 1829 after eight years of service to the Cherokees.

Two years later Dr. Butler was arrested for residing in the Cherokee Nation without taking an oath of allegiance to the State of Georgia and obtaining a license from the Governor. Sentenced, with Samuel Worcester, to four years of hard labor in the State penitentiary at Milledgeville, he was pardoned by Governor Wilson Lumpkin in 1833, almost a year after the United States Supreme Court nullified the law under which missionaries were arrested.

Upon his release, Dr. Butler returned to the Mission at Haweis, but was forced to move the following year. In addition to attending the Cherokees during the Removal, Dr. Butler served the missions at Red Clay, Park Hill, and Fairfield and the Cherokee Female Seminary prior to his death in Arkansas in 1857.

Tips for Finding This Marker: On Ga Hwy 20, near intersection with Ga Hwy 100 near Rome