A Historic Pioneer Cemetery

Welcome to Luper Pioneer 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.

The maintenance and preservation of Luper Cemetery is done by a volunteer organization that established a 501(c)(3) Non-Profit Public Benefit Corporation in 2009. We are supported solely by donations and grants. Please help us continue our work by making a tax-deductible contribution to the Luper Cemetery Support Fund or the Luper Cemetery Legacy Fund. You can donate by mail or through the "Donate" buttons at the bottom of any page on this website that will take you to PayPal. There you have the option of using your PayPal account, a debit or credit card. Checks can be mailed to: P.O. Box 2588, Eugene OR 97402. The Support Fund helps with current expenses for maintenance and preservation. The Legacy Fund is set aside for future care of the cemetery. If contributing by check please specify what Fund(s) to direct your donation to. Thank you for helping us preserve the historic Luper Pioneer Cemetery!

Two grave markers in the cemetery broke during this winter. Although marble or granite markers may seem sturdy, they can be very fragile. They are not impervious and can suffer from stress cracks during freezing weather causing them to break. Due to age, weathering and corrosion they can become brittle and susceptible to damage. Improper cleaning or frequency can cause irreparable wear. The two broken markers will be repaired using approved materials and techniques in dryer and warmer weather. Visitors are reminded to be careful not to bump markers or allow pets to run loose. Do not attempt any cleaning, moving, rubbings or touching of the markers!

On October 6, 2020 Bushnell University's basketball team and faculty members participated in their annual "Embrace the Community Day" at the cemetery. They spread chips on paths, cleared brush and refinished benches working together following safety guidelines. Other groups from the university worked on beneficial projects throughout the community and are all due a big thank you!

Northwest Christian University changed its name to Bushnell University. In 1895 James A. Bushnell co-founded the Eugene Divinity School that went on to become Northwest Christian University. He was the first chairman of the university's board of trustees. He started several churches in the area, started the area's first chamber of commerce, had businesses, was president of the Lane County Evangelistic Board and held other titles. James Bushnell and many of his family members are interred at Luper Cemetery.

Luper Cemetery has been awarded a grant from the Lane County Historical Society for 2020 to organize, categorize and preserve the Luper Cemetery historical documents and records. Luper Cemetery, Inc. thanks the Historical Society for all of their support!

Cameron Koch, a member of Boy Scout Troop 428, chose Luper Cemetery for his Eagle Scout Project. Cameron planned the project, organized the crew and arranged the materials needed. The work done in late October consisted of spreading chips on the paths, trimming trees and removing the hawthorn hedge that was growing through the west fence line. The tools and extra funds from his project were donated to Luper Cemetery. Thank you to Cameron, his crew and Mike Rose from M.R. Tree Service. Mike provided the chips and his expert help and equipment for the project.

The gate to Luper Cemetery is normally locked on West Beacon Drive except for Memorial Day and Veterans Day activities. On other days visitors are always welcome to walk to the cemetery from dawn to dusk or arrangements can usually be made to unlock the gate by email to one of our "Contacts".

A journal of the August through September 1858 gold prospecting tour in search of the "Blue Bucket Mine" that Andrew McClure participated in has been added to the Information page. It was transcribed from the original by Nancy Wilson. Thank you to Daniel Owen for contributing the article. It can be directly accessed here.

The Board of Directors  thanks the Lane County Historical Society for the  grant to purchase a used John Deere riding mower and small trailer for transporting it. It has helped immensely in maintaining the cemetery.

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.

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.

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 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.


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.

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

Santa Clara Fire Station #62 

3939 River Rd, Eugene, OR 97404

The meeting location can vary. If you plan to attend please call or email people on the Contacts page to confirm that the meeting and location for that month has not been changed or cancelled. 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 the buttons below that will take you to PayPal where you have the option of using your PayPal account, debit or credit card. You can also donate by check mailed to:

 P.O. Box 2588, Eugene OR 97402

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