The Brighton Village Cemetery began as a burial ground for the family of William A. Clark, D.D., an Episcopal minister from New York City, who settled with his family in Brighton Township in 1837. Clark acquired many acres of land, which he farmed. He owned and operated several sawmills. In his will, he donated approximately four acres of land to the village for a cemetery and set aside one acre for church, on which St. Paul's Episcopal Church was built.
The earliest burial in the Brighton Village Cemetery was that of Truman Worden, who died in 1837. Among the prominent citizens buried here are Michigan Governor Kinsley Bingham. In addition, merchants, physicians, attorneys, carpenters, educators, and 30 Civil War veterans are interred in the cemetery. Of the 571 graves, representing 154 families, 99 are for children under 10, a reminder of the hardships faced by early Michiganians.