Oak Grove Cemetery

Oak Grove CemeteryOak grove graphic
1613 Park Avenue
Paducah, KY 42001

Oak Grove Cemetery is managed by the Paducah Parks & Recreation Department.  The cemetery has an estimated 35,278 platted lots with more than 33,000 sold. The cemetery is divided into four additions: Old, New, Mausoleum, and Rushing.  Oak Grove Cemetery offers a free Wireless Hotspot location. Call to set up appointments or tours or to inquire about services.

Parks & Recreation Department
1400 H.C. Mathis Drive
P.O. Box 7265
Paducah, Kentucky  42002
270-444-8508

Enhanced Maintenance Plan and Updated Guidelines

The Paducah Parks & Recreation Department is working to improve maintenance and the community’s safety at Oak Grove Cemetery by providing clearer guidelines and expectations (see above link).  As part of the maintenance schedule, staff will be reviewing the cemetery twice annually.  During each sweep, Parks & Recreation crews will remove and discard banned items.  The decorations will be removed to secure the safety of staff and visitors, prevent damage to maintenance equipment, and increase the efficiency in grounds maintenance. 

The following forms of decoration are approved at burial plots:

  • Fresh or artificial flowers in a cemetery-approved vase that is permanently mounted on the monument or memorial.  Vases that are made of glass, porcelain, or plastic cannot be placed at a grave since they can be damaged during maintenance operations.
  • Flowers in a hanging basket or a hanging solar lantern on an iron or steel, single hook shepherd’s hook that is 48 inches in length.
  • Monument benches placed by a monument company and set as the headstone.

Items that are not permitted at burial plots include toys, ornaments, borders, plantings, ground covers (such as stones, gravel, mulch, etc.) candles, unsecured garden benches, or fragile items such as glass. 

If a family or organization would like to provide maintenance on family plots, contact the Parks & Recreation Department at 270-444-8508 for coordination.

Maps, Burial Records, and Resources

Oak Grove Cemetery General Map    

Detailed Hand-Drawn Map

Burial Records  (allows searching through burials sorted by last names) 

Visit the McCracken County Public Library online or in person in downtown Paducah to find a wealth of information about local history and genealogy. The Kentucky Historical Society has a large database online that contains information about thousands of cemeteries throughout the State of Kentucky.  Look under Research & Genealogy and Online Resources.  Visit Cemetery Preservation Digital Collection for a direct link to the Kentucky Historical Society's digital database.

History

Oak Grove Cemetery was established in 1847 with the purchase of 36 acres (it's currently 50 acres) by the town's trustees for the price of $3.00 an acre. Paducah's first burial site was located where City Hall now stands. The City's early growth made it necessary to seek a new location for its cemetery. The site chosen would become Oak Grove Cemetery.

The community fathers, hoping to create a gracious and serene sanctuary, sent to Scotland for John Porteous, a master landscaper, to design the cemetery grounds.  Mr. Porteous became so enamored with the United States that he sent word back to Scotland requesting his wife and children to join him in Paducah.  The town, honoring Mr. Porteous' dedication, made him the first sextant and built his family a cottage where the gatehouse stands today.

Some deaths were recorded in 1852, but the Civil War put a stop to this.  There are only scattered records from 1861-1911.  In 1911, Kentucky passed a law that required all deaths to be recorded.  Oak Grove Cemetery has internment books dating back to 1909.  Mary Haley (1795-1841) is the oldest legible headstone found in Oak Grove.  She is believed to have been buried at the City Hall location and reinterred in Oak Grove. 

For more cemetery history and obituaries of prominent Paducah residents, read the documents below: 

Cemetery History and a Few of the Interesting People Buried There
Robert H. Noble, 1855-1937
Charles Reed, 1842-1908

Family Stories 

The following people are profiled in the Family Stories document.

Samuel Ulrich Beyer
Rosa Adcock Fruit
Harry Atwood Gish
James Christopher Gish
Wylie F. McCormick
Col. Edward Dumas (E.D.) Nix
John Adolph "Babe" Vasseur
Craig Evesta White
Virginia Fruit White

Mausoleum

The mausoleum in Oak Grove Cemetery is known as the West Kentucky Mausoleum.  It was built in 1914 by the Southern Mausoleum Company of Nashville, Tennessee.  The mausoleum is built to house 300 with slightly more than half of the crypts sold. 

The Ohio Valley Monument Company started renovating the mausoleum in November 2007.  On November 12, 2008, a rededication ceremony was held inside the newly renovated mausoleum.  Click News Release for more information.  The roof has been repaired, marble has been replaced and repaired, electrical outlets have been added, and the ceilings and walls have been sanded and painted. 

The monument at the entrance of the mausoleum was unveiled at the dedication ceremony.  It reads: West Kentucky Mausoleum; Dedicated to the Memory of Those Who Rest Within; Built 1914 The Southern Mausoleum Co. Nashville, Tennessee; Renovated 2008 Ohio Valley Monument Co. Paducah, KY; City of Paducah-Mayor Bill Paxton, Commissioners-Robert Coleman, Gayle Kaler, Buz Smith, Gerald Watkins; City Manager-Jim Zumwalt; Public Works Director-Earnie Via.    

 Burial Records

The documents below are listed in alphabetical order based on the last name.  There are two sets of documents: burials before the year 2000 and burials starting in the year 2000 until the present.  The files were last updated September 21, 2021.  The Oak Grove Cemetery Map is a general map showing the four additions (Old Addition, New Addition, Mausoleum, and Rushing Addition) and section numbers.  The Detailed Oak Grove Map is a hand-drawn map that shows details of each of the four additions. 

BURIALS 1800-1999 BURIALS 2000-PRESENT
A Names 1800-1999  A Names 2000-Present 
B Names 1800-1999 B Names 2000-Present
C Names 1800-1999 C Names 2000-Present
D Names 1800-1999 D Names 2000-Present
E Names 1800-1999 E Names 2000-Present
F Names 1800-1999 F Names 2000-Present
G Names 1800-1999 G Names 2000-Present
H Names 1800-1999 H Names 2000-Present
I Names 1800-1999 I Names 2000-Present
J Names 1800-1999 J Names 2000-Present
K Names 1800-1999 K Names 2000-Present
L Names 1800-1999 L Names 2000-Present
M Names 1800-1999 M Names 2000-Present
(Mc grouped with M 1800-1999) Mc Names 2000-Present
N Names 1800-1999 N Names 2000-Present
O Names 1800-1999 O Names 2000-Present
P Names 1800-1999 P Names 2000-Present
Q Names 1800-1999 Q Names 2000-Present
R Names 1800-1999 R Names 2000-Present
S Names 1800-1999 S Names 2000-Present
T Names 1800-1999 T Names 2000-Present
U Names 1800-1999 U Names 2000-Present
V Names 1800-1999 V Names 2000-Present
W Names 1800-1999 W Names 2000-Present
XYZ Names 1800-1999 XYZ Names 2000-Present
AttachmentSize
PDF icon Oak Grove Cemetery Guidelines FINAL.pdf153.06 KB