LUPER CEMETERY A Historic Pioneer Cemetery

      Welcome to Luper Cemetery
 To view a slideshow on the
History and Restoration of Luper Cemetery
click here or download a PDF version here.

The PDF slideshow can take a few minutes to download. It is best viewed in full screen. Press the right arrow to scroll through the slides.

Luper Cemetery will be open 9 am to 4 pm May 26, 27, 28 so people can walk the grounds and take a self-guided tour. During Memorial Day weekend special presentations will be made by:

Northwest Christian University (NCU) President, Dr. Joseph Womack and Executive Assistant Jennifer Box at 10 am on Saturday, May 26, presenting The Story of James A. Bushnell: In His Own Words. J. A. Bushnell is buried at Luper Cemetery with many members of his family. Author Linda VanOrden on Sunday May 27 from Noon to 4 pm and on Memorial Day, Monday, May 28 from 9 am to 4 pm to answer questions and sign copies of her recent publication: Junction City, Oregon – Memories of the 20th Century. This easy-to-read, 380-page book tells many stories of growing up in a 1900s, Willamette Valley agriculture community. Photographs really bring the stories to life. Also, the story of The Lost Rescue written by Daniel Owen about the wagon train rescue party, will be on sale to benefit Luper Cemetery, Inc., the non-profit organization that helps take care of this Oregon historic site. Over 160 people are buried at Luper Cemetery, 18 of who came to Lane County on the 1853 wagon train.

Increased security and reporting measures are being used to address vandalism and unauthorized night visits. All incidents (damage, fires, candles, suspicious debris or activity) are reported to the Lane County Sheriffs office.

A workday was held at the cemetery on Saturday, April 21, 2018. The Board of Directors were able to buy a used John Deere riding mower and small trailer for transporting it thanks to a grant from the Lane County Historical Society. The crew cleared brush piles and reset several footstones. Workdays are tentatively scheduled for the third Saturday of the the coming months at 10am. Volunteers are welcome! The next workday is planned for Saturday, May 19th.

Early in January it was discovered that Luper Cemetery was the victim of vandalism. At least two markers were broken and footstones were stolen. The footstones have been recovered thanks to caring friends that help look out for the neighborhood. Repairs were began on the two broken markers in May and the repaired joints will be mortared in June. Also, repair was begun on the Martha Jennings marker. A new technique was used because of the severe deterioration of the soft marble this marker is made of. The pieces were epoxied to a ceramic backboard. The joints on this marker will also be mortared in June. The mortar seals the joints and voids from water that could freeze and cause fractures. Previous acts of vandalism resulted in criminal convictions and restitution was paid to help repair the damage. These acts of vandalism desecrates the memorials for those that have passed and disrespects their relatives, our community, and our history. Please report any vandalism to the cemetery through the "Contacts" tab on this website.

The Adkins Family Organization's Gravestone Project placed a new marker for Elizabeth Crawley Adkins Bushnell. A dedication ceremony was held on Saturday November 11, 2017. This marker is in keeping with historical aspects of the pioneer cemetery and has been approved by the Board of Directors. The marker dedication and biography of Elizabeth can be read on our Information page.

The Metropolitan Wastewater Management Commision provided "No Dumping" signs for the parking area on Beacon Drive. They also delivered rock and used their road grader to improve parking areas. Boy Scout Troop #182 will also do touch up work with the gravel and other maintenance projects at the cemetery. Sincere gratitude is owed to everybody involved in these efforts.

The Lost Rescue, Parallel Diaries of the Advance Party from the Lost Wagon Train of 1853 written by Daniel Owen, a descendant of members from the Lost Wagon Train, is available through Luper Cemetery, Inc. for $15 plus shipping when necessary. Proceeds from sales of the book will be used to maintain the cemetery. The book contains the diaries of Andrew Samuel McClure and Benjamin Franklin Owen and history of the Lost wagon Trains of 1845 and 1853. There are 18 members from the 1853 train interred at Luper Cemetery. Please contact Secretary / Treasurer Merilee Boulton for more information about how to order your copy: 953-7602.  

Luper Cemetery is one of the oldest pioneer cemeteries in the southern Willamette Valley dating to the mid 1800's. There are dozens of early pioneer families represented in the cemetery with over 160 people interred. The cemetery may be accessed every day from dawn until dusk by walking or biking the half-mile gravel road from the West Beacon Drive entrance to the cemetery. The main vehicle gate is opened on special occasions or by request, including Veterans Day and Memorial Day.

The Interments page has pictures of individual headstones and information on the inscriptions by clicking on the last names in the Alphabetical List of Luper Cemetery Names and Plot Numbers. Visit the Information page and scroll down for many links to historical diaries, journals and genealogy records. The Gallery page has various views of past conditions in the cemetery and the process of repairs. The work done by Ben Stinnett for his Masters Degree at the University of Oregon is on the Information page. It is a large file and slow to load but is worth waiting for as it includes extensive information and pictures.

Luper Cemetery is excited to have been awarded a grant from the Oregon Commission on Historic Cemeteries to place a memorial stone for the people known to be interred at the cemetery that no longer have headstones in place. The dedicated volunteers and support of the community made this grant and other awards possible. We also want to thank the Oregon Country Fair for a grant that helped fund the kiosk construction and provided for native plants. Luper Cemetery, Inc is proud to have been awarded both the Heritage Excellence Award in 2011 presented by the Oregon Commission on Historic Cemeteries and the Oakley Certificate of Merit awarded in 2013 by the Association of Gravestone Studies.

Mission Statement: The mission of Luper Cemetery, Inc. is to: preserve the pioneer cemetery, the history of the people who lived in the Irving area, engage local residents in the history of Luper, honor the people buried at Luper, and to maintain the site in a historically correct way.

Donations and volunteers have made it possible to get much of the site restored and to complete such improvements as the kiosk, memorial monument, native plantings, the removal of undesired trees, improvement of pathways, signage and parking. We have established a Legacy Fund account to insure the future of the historical Luper Cemetery. Please visit the Donations page to help fund the cemetery. You might consider splitting your contribution between the Support Fund and the Legacy Fund. Thank you for all your help!

 Meetings are scheduled for 5:30 pm on the second Wednesday of each month at:

Santa Clara Fire Station #62 

3939 River Rd, Eugene, OR 97404 although the meeting location can vary. Weather permitting summer meetings will be at the cemetery.


Please check out our:

Luper Newsletter
Donations can be made to the 
Luper Cemetery Support Fund or the Luper Cemetery Legacy Fund through PayPal or by credit card on our Donations page or by check mailed to:

 P.O. Box 2588, Eugene OR 97402


Your contributions to Support Luper Cemetery finance restoration and maintenance work at the cemetery. The Luper Cemetery Legacy Fund has been established to provide a process that will insure future preservation and maintenance. Thank you!

Luper Cemetery, Inc. is a 501(c)3 Non-Profit Public Benefit Corporation established for the purpose of maintaining, improving and protecting Luper Cemetery. Donations are tax deductible.

Copyright ©2010