The Lexington Cemetery reflects the social and economic changes that have taken place in Lexington-Fayette County. Within its gates lie people of different political, economic and social standing, race, and religion. Below are names of many individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the betterment of their community.
Click on the names to learn about the many notable people interred at the Lexington Cemetery.
Alford, Mitchell Cary (1855-1914)
Section H, Lot 44
A graduate from the Kentucky University (now Transylvania University) Law School in 1880, Mitchell Cary Alford served as master commissioner, judge of the Recorder’s Court, and state senator before being elected lieutenant governor in the administration of the first Governor John Young Brown. For many years, he was treasurer of the Phoenix Hotel.
Allen, James Lane (1849-1925)
Section D, Lot 91
A renowned 19th Century novelist, James Lane Allen taught school for several years after his graduation from Transylvania University and prior to becoming an author. Allen moved to New York, where he was devoted full time to the writing of his stories based on actual occurrences. His most popular work was Flute and Violin and Other Kentucky Tales and Romances, published in 1891. In this book was the story, “King Solomon of Kentucky.” Structured from the King Solomon legend, Allen greatly embellished it. Allen bequeathed a fountain to the youth of Lexington which was placed in Gratz Park, then dedicated in 1933
Barlow, Milton (1818-1891)
Section G, Lot 34
In cooperation with his father, Thomas, Milton Barlow invented and built the first planetarium in Milton’s silversmith shop. Originally, Thomas simply wanted to illustrate the movements of the planets for his grandchildren, but the process became a three year effort of careful meshing of cog-wheeled gears to produce the minute fractional revolutions of the planets. In 1844, the father and son sold their planetarium to Girard College. They continued to build planetariums for ten years, selling them for $2,000 each and exhibiting one at the 1851 New York World’s Fair. Milton’s tombstone reads “Kentucky’s two greatest inventors.” In addition to being an inventor, Milton was chief of ordnance to Confederate Generals Abraham Buford and John H. Morgan.
Beard, Joseph (1812-1858)
Section F, Lot 12
As the Lexington city marshal in 1858, Joseph Beard died in the line of duty when he was stabbed by William Barker, a man he arrested for brawling in the middle of town. When Barker was jailed the townspeople angrily gathered outside yelling “Hang him, hang him.” The mob broke into the jail and dragged Barker to the courthouse across the street. A beam was placed through a second story window to which a noose was tied. Baker was forced to stand at the window while the noose was placed over his head, then he was pushed out of the window. The rope broke and Barker fell head first onto the brick walk below. The angry crowd forced him up and to the window again, where he was hanged until dead. William Barker was unceremoniously buried in a potter’s field.
Marshal Beard was buried with a great ceremony in The Lexington Cemetery. His monument reads, “A Victim of Violence whilst in the Discharge of his Duty as Marshal of the City of Lexington.
Beauchamp, Frances E. (1857-1923)
Section I-1, Lot 67
The wife to a Lexington attorney, Frances E. Beauchamp was a state and national crusader for temperance, prohibition, and women’s suffrage, as well as an advocate of prison reform. Beauchamp was a founder of the Hidman Settlement School.
Beck, James Burnie (1822-1890)
Section K, Lot 9
Having moved to America from Scotland in 1838, then to Lexington in 1843, James Burnie Beck graduated from Transylvania University and began to practice law. He was a Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1867 to 1875, and the Senate from 1877 to 1890. In 1848, he married Jane Thronton, a stepdaughter of Kentucky Governor James Clark.
Breckinridge, Colonel William Cabell Preston (1837-1904)
Section O, Lot 126
He was a lawyer, soldier, editor, and statesman, known as the “silver-tongued orator of Kentucky.” His downfall was the publicity he received from a breach of promise suit brought in 1894 by Madeline Pollard against him. It was front- page news nationwide for six weeks. The court awarded Pollard $15,000 in damages, then Colonel Breckinridge announced his candidacy for a sixth consecutive term in Congress immediately thereafter.
The Suffragettes were aroused and publicly opposed him. The National Christian League for the Promotion of Social Purity sent a letter to Congress in protest. They also sent a letter to Col. Breckinridge’s wife asking her, in the name of womanhood, to renounce her husband and refuse to live with him. When he arrived in Lexington to campaign in May, 1894, Laura Clay had organized an “anti- Breckinridge” rally at the Opera House. It was attended by the “best people in Fayette County” and among them were 1,000 women who loudly made their feelings known. Breckinridge lost the election and his political career was over. Without the ability to cast a single vote, the women defeated him.
Breckinridge, Dr. Robert (1800-1871)
Section O, Lot 151
One of the 25 founders of The Lexington Cemetery Corporation, Dr. Robert Breckinridge was educated at Princeton, Yale and Union College. He practiced law in Lexington, served in the Kentucky Legislature, and became state superintendent of public instruction. That position earned him the title “founder of the public school system in Kentucky.” At the age of 28, he retired from political life and devoted himself to theology. Ordained a Presbyterian minister, he served in Baltimore and at the First Presbyterian Church in Lexington. He was opposed to slavery, and at the beginning of the Civil War, he and others established the Danville Review, which strongly supported the Union. During the war, Breckinridge was Lincoln’s advisor in Kentucky.
Breckinridge, Dr. Sophonisba Preston (1866-1948)
Section O, Lot 126
Daughter of William Cabell Preston Breckinridge, Sophonisba Preston Breckinridge studied law at the University of Kentucky and became the first woman admitted to the Kentucky Bar Association. She was also the first woman to be awarded a Doctor of Philosophy in political science from the University of Chicago, where she became Dean of the School of Social Administration. Concerned for the political and economic equality of women, she associated with the Woman’s Trade Union League where she helped organize garment workers’ strikes in 1911 and 1915. Working with the Clay sisters, she was vice-president of the National American Woman’s Suffrage Association in 1911. She was one of the first women to join the N.A.A.C.P. A representative to many international conferences, she was the first woman delegate to the Pan-American Conference in Montevideo where she advocated legally extending women’s rights for equality in every nation.
Breckinridge, General John Cabell (1821-1875)
Section G, Lot 1
General Breckinridge could be considered one of the tragic heroes of the Civil War. This brilliant southern gentleman graduated from Centre College in Danville, Kentucky in 1839 and studied law at Transylvania. After serving as a major of the Third Regiment in the Mexican War, he served in the Kentucky Legislature and the U.S. Senate. At age 35, he was Vice President of the United States under James Buchanan. In 1860, he was nominated for President. As a senator during the term of President Abraham Lincoln, Breckinridge worked for compromise measures, but in 1861 he resigned for the Southern cause. He quickly rose through the ranks of military leadership to Secretary of War for the Confederate States. After the defeat of the South, he spent four years in exile in Europe. When he finally felt physically safe, he returned to Lexington. A broken-hearted man, he kept a low profile, refusing even to comment about politics. His statue stands in Cheapside Park.
Breckinridge, John (1760-1806)
Section O, Lot 134
As a lawyer, John Breckinridge helped frame the Kentucky Constitution. He served as attorney general of the United States under Jefferson and was president of the Democratic Society. Having moved to Kentucky in the late 1780’s, Breckinridge set a precedent for a long-standing leadership role taken by the Breckinridge family.
Breckinridge, John Bayne (1913-1979)
Section O, Lot 133
A graduate of the University of Kentucky, John Bayne Breckinridge attained the rank of colonel in World War II, worked with the Justice Department in Washington, and practiced law in Lexington before he entered the political arena. After two terms in the Kentucky House of Representatives, he was twice elected attorney general (in 1959 and 1967) and then became the sixth Kentucky Breckinridge to sit in the U.S. Congress (1973-1979).
Breckinridge, Mary (1881-1965)
Section G, Lot 1
After graduating from New York’s School of Nursing at St. Luke’s Hospital, Mary Breckinridge became a certified midwife in a London, England hospital. She worked with the Visiting Nurse Service in France during World War I. She returned to the remote counties in the mountains of Kentucky and started the Kentucky Commission for Mothers and Babies which became the Frontier Nursing Service in 1925. Until this time, “catching the baby” by the father or a neighbor while the mother delivered it from a squatting position or seated in a chair without a bottom had been the standard birthing procedure. The “horseback angels” traveled within 700 square miles around their Hyden hospital in Leslie County. In the first 50 years of service, they delivered 12,262 babies with a maternal death rate of 9.1 per thousand, while the national mortality rate for white women in childbirth was 34 per thousand. Understanding the pride of the mountain people, Mary Breckinridge allowed them to pay for their medical care at a minimum of $2 per year and $50 per birth. Payment was in money, guns, eggs, or whatever the mountain people had.
Bruce, Benjamin Gratz (1827-1891)
Section D, Lot 88
To join his brother in funding the journal Turf, Field and Farm in 1865, Benjamin Gratz Bruce gave up the practice of medicine and a prosperous grocery business. He compiled the first two volumes of the American Stud Book and then established The Livestock Record in Lexington. An authority on thoroughbred bloodlines and performances and an officer of numerous racing organizations, he was called “the best informed man in the United States on topics of the thoroughbred.”
Buford, Abraham (1820-1884)
Section P, Lot 57
A graduate of West Point and veteran of the Mexican War, Abraham Buford was commissioned brigadier general of cavalry in the Confederate Army. After the war he returned to his Woodford County farm, Bosque Bonita, where he gained a high reputation as a turfman. A government marker was dedicated at his grave by the United Daughters of the Confederacy in 1977.
Burrows, Nathan (1774-1841)
Section F, Lot 28
The early settlers came to “Kentucke” because they wanted land to grow crops. In 1796, Nathan Burrows invented a machine for cleaning hemp, a native Kentucky plant. It quickly became the most important crop in the area bringing in an estimated half million dollars a year in the early 1800’s. Hemp was needed for bagging cotton and making baling rope. By 1810, between 60 and 100 slaves were working the hemp in long, narrow buildings. The buildings were called rope walks because the slaves walked back and forth from spindles, twisting the hemp fiber into rope as they walked. With the importation of sisal from the Philippines after the Spanish American War, the hemp industry died. Burrows was resourceful and discovered a process for manufacturing mustard which also grew wild in Kentucky fields. His product won a premium at the World’s Fair in London in 1882.
Bush, Joseph H. (1794-1865)
Section P, Lot 74
One of the most popular early Kentucky portraitists was Joseph H. Bush, who studied with Thomas Sully in Philadelphia. After returning to his native state, Bush advertised in the newspaper and charged $150 per portrait. The fact that he was commissioned by some of the most prominent men of his time attests to his skill as a painter. Henry Clay, Dr. Benjamin Dudley, and even Zachary Taylor were his subjects. Like many other artists, he traveled south in the winter, often painting an entire family while he lived on his plantation in Mississippi or Louisiana.
Carty, Sr., John (1764-1845)
Section C, Lot 25
A New Jersey native, John Carty, Sr. fought in the Revolutionary War prior to moving to Lexington. He served under Anthony Wayne in the Indian campaign of 1794 and, according to G.W. Ranck’s History of Lexington, he and Waldemard Mentelle “introduced into Kentucky the manufacture of earthen ware.”
Clay, Henry (1777-1852)
Perhaps Kentucky’s most famous man was Henry Clay, who was actually born in Virginia. His father died when Clay was five. He did manual labor and worked in a drug store to help support his mother and family. At 16, he found a mentor, a Virginia lawyer who took him to Richmond to study.
Arriving in Lexington in 1797, Clay was seeking his fortune as a lawyer in a place known for many land disputes. His success in the courtroom propelled him into politics where he spent 43 years as a public figure, 27 years of which he was a U.S.Congressman and Senator. Among his accomplishments were the acquisition for the United States of Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida, the admission of Missouri to the Union, and the annexation of the Republic of Texas. Clay served four years as Secretary of State. He is also remembered for his three unsuccessful quests for the presidency.
Following his death in Washington, his remains were returned to Lexington by train, carriage and barge. All along the 1,200 mile route, people gathered to salute “The Great Compromiser.” In Lexington, Clay lay in state at his home, Ashland, and it is said that when his funeral cortege was entering The Lexington Cemetery gates, the end of the procession of mourners was just leaving Ashland, more than two miles away.
Clay, James B. (1817-1864)
Section I, Lot 55
The son of Henry and Lucretia Hart Clay, James B. Clay practiced law in Lexington with his father. He was charged d’affaires to Portugal in 1849-1850, served one term in Congress, and was a member of the peace convention which met in Washington in 1861 in a futile effort to avert war. A Confederate sympathizer, he found refuge in Canada, where he died.
Clay, Laura (1849-1941)
Section J, Lot 6
Daughter of Cassius and Mary Jane Warfield Clay, Laura fought for woman’s suffrage and was elected first President of the Equal Rights Association organized in 1888 in New York City. She founded the Fayette County Democratic Club and was one of eight delegates to the 1920 National Convention in San Francisco, where her name was placed in nomination for President of the United States, a first for a woman.
Clay, Mary Barr (1839 – 1924)
Section J, Lot 6
Daughter of Cassius and Mary Jane Warfield Clay, Mary Barr attended the 10th anniversary meeting of the National Woman Suffrage Association in St. Louis in 1879 as a self-appointed delegate. There she arranged to bring Susan B. Anthony to Kentucky, where Anthony gave her “Bread, Not the Ballot” speech which emphasized that the ballot was necessary for the economic protection women needed. In 1883, Mary Barr Clay was elected president of the American Women Suffrage Association. It is thought by many that Mary Bar Clay’s greatest contribution to the women’s movement was her introduction of her sister, Laura Clay, to the cause.
Clay, Mary Jane Warfield (1815-1900)
Section J, Lot 6
Women from the Bluegrass State were important national figures in the beginning of the women’s rights movement.
Mary Jane Warfield Clay was the wife of hot-headed abolitionist Cassius Marcellus Clay, Ambassador to Russia. Born into a wealthy Lexington family, Mrs. Clay, like so many of the women of her time, did not live a life of idle luxury. Like most prominent public figures, her husband was away from home most of their married life. Mrs. Clay raised their large family, paid for the education of six children, managed her husband’s farm, enlarged his mansion White Hall, and paid his debts. During the Civil War, one source of her income was raising and selling mules to the Union Army. “I have had upwards of a thousand mules on the farm, eight hundred and fifty are gone now,” she wrote. When her husband returned from almost nine years in Russia, he brought with him the scandal of his philandering abroad and ultimately proof of his adultery: an illegitimate son.
The Clays divorced in 1878, and their daughters learned the realities of women’s legal rights. Although their mother had not only maintained his property but improved their father’s financial situation, she was not legally entitled to any recompense, nor did she have any legal right to the custody of the children.
Clifford, John D. (1778-1820)
Section I, Lot 14
A native Philadelphian of wealth and culture, John D. Clifford contributed greatly to Lexington’s reputation as the “Athens of the West.” He was a supporter of Translyvania University, the Lexington Athanaeum, and the Episcopal Church; and was keenly interested in geology and other natural sciences. He and his wife, Mary Morton, a daughter of “Lord” William Mortan, lie in unmarked graves.
Combs, General Leslie (1793-1881)
Section E, Lot 3
A hero known as the “boy-captain of 1812,” at the age of 19 Leslie Combs rode 100 miles through snow, water and wilderness to deliver a war dispatch. Later he was taken prisoner by the Indians and was forced to run the gauntlet at Fort Miami. After the War of 1812, he settled in Lexington to practice law. As a lawyer, trustee of Transylvania, member of the Kentucky House of Representatives, railroad pioneer, and state auditor, General Combs contributed much to the early development of Lexington.
Cooper, Thomas Poe (1881-1958)
Section 46, Lot 4
Born in Illinois, Thomas Poe Cooper devoted his life to agricultural education and to improving the quality of agriculture. He was dean of the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture from 1918 to 1951, a period in which the enrollment of the college grew from 200 to 1,000, and its facilities and services increased many fold. He was acting president of the university in 1940 to 1941, and served in many state and national organizations.
DeSha, Mary (1850-1911)
Section D, Lot 18
Born and educated in Lexington, Mary DeSha taught at Dudley School for ten years and became an early advocate for enfranchisement of women. In 1890, in Washington, she was one of the four founders of the Daughters of the American Revolution. A monument bearing the DAR seal was dedicated at her grave on December 16, 1915.
Dudley, Dr. Benjamin Winslow (1785-1870)
Section G, Lot 10
Someone wrote about Dr. Benjamin Winslow, who was considered by many a hero of the 1833 cholera epidemic, “Our physicians are either dead or broken down, Dr. Dudley alone I believe has stood it through, and is still on the alert.”
Receiving his early education Lexington, he graduated from the University of Pennsylvania medical department at the age of 19. In returning to Lexington, he was offered the Chair of the Anatomy and Physiology Department at Transylvania University. Dudley performed over 200 lithotomies, an operation for the removal of bladder-stones, with only six fatalities, and was among the first neurosurgeons in the United States to work in trephining. This surgery involved making a circular incision in the skull to release pressure, which was believed to cause epilepsy. Dr. Dudley has an international reputation for his successful operations for bladder stone, and was a pioneer in cataract and brain surgery.
Duke, Basil Wilson (1838-1916)
Section C, Lot 17
Born in Scott County, Basil Wilson Duke practiced law in St. Louis. In 1861, he married Henrietta Morgan, a sister of John Hunt Morgan. During most of the Civil War he was Morgan’s second in command, and after the latter’s death he became a commanding general of a cavalry brigade. He was author of a History of Morgan’s Cavalry and a volume of Reminiscences. He served in the Kentucky House of Representatives and had a distinguished legal career.
Duncan, George Brand (1861-1950)
Section D, Lot 120
A native of Lexington, George Brand Duncan graduated from the U.S. Military Academy in 1886. He served in the Spanish-American War in Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines. In World War I, he was sent to France, where he won promotions from colonel to major general and headed the 77th and 82nd divisions. He commanded troops in several important offensives and was awarded French, British, and American decorations. He retired in 1925.
Duncan, Henry T. (1800-1880)
Section A, Lot 41 and 42
Born in Paris, Henry T. Duncan practiced law with the noted Thomas A. Marshall, and accumulated a fortune by manufacturing hemp and raising livestock. Later a resident of Fayette County, he was a founder of The Lexington Cemetery and president of the Clay Monument Association. In 1826, he married Eliza Dunster Pyke. Among their children was Henry Timberlake Duncan, Jr, who became an attorney, newspaper editor and twice mayor of Lexington.
Ficklin, Joseph (1775-1859)
Section D, Lot 106
During the Indian siege of 1782, Joseph Ficklin was with his family at Bryan Station. He was postmaster at Russellville. In 1814, he was appointed U.S. Counsul to St. Bartholomews, then in 1821 became editor of the Kentucky Gazette. From 1822 to 1841 and 1843 to 1850, Mr. Ficklin was postmaster of Lexington. In addition, he was a trustee of Transylvania University. A friend described him as “a very large man who was always followed by a small dog.”
Frazer, Oliver (1808-1864)
Section I, Lot 53
Born in Fayette County, Oliver Frazer studied portraiture under Matthew Harris Jouett in Lexington and Thomas Sully in Philadelphia, then continued his education in Great Britain and Europe. Returning to Lexington, he was popular and busy as a portraitist until his eyesight began to fail about 1850.
Gibson, Randall Lee (1832-1892)
Section K, Lot 7
A native of Woodford County, Randall Lee Gibson became a planter in Louisiana and entered the Confederate Army in the state as a private, rising to the rank of major general. After the war he practiced law, served in both houses of Congress, and was a promoter of Tulane University.
Granger, Gordon (1822-1876)
Section P, Lot 66
A veteran of the Mexican War, Gordon Granger served with distinction in the Civil War, rising from the rank of colonel of the Second Michigan Cavalry to major general commanding the Fourth Army Corps. For a time he was stationed in Lexington with headquarters at the Bodley House. After the war he married Maria Letcher of Lexington. He died at Santa Fe while commanding the District of New Mexico.
Gratz, Benjamin (1792-1884)
Section D, Lot 121
A contemporary of Colonel James Morrison, Benjamin Gratz was a wealthy business and civic leader, and for sixty-five years was one of Lexington’s most astute and valuable citizens. His home, Mount Hope, is still standing beside the park named for him. A partner with Colonel Morrison in hemp manufacturing, Gratz was also involved in many businesses in the city. Like Colonel Morrison, Gratz was a trustee of Transylvania. He was a curator for Kentucky University. Additionally, he was the first president of the Kentucky Agricultural and Mechanical Association. Gratz helped promote construction of the Maysville- Lexington road and the Lexington and Ohio Railroad. As a member of the city council, Gratz was instrumental in establishing Lexington’s public library, the first in the West. During the Civil War, Gratz was a Unionist, and he turned his home into a commissary and a cookhouse for the companies of Federal soldiers encamped on the lawn of Transylvania.
Gray, J. Archer (1878-1946)
Section 32, Lot 13
As founder, and for nineteen years the pastor of the nondenominational Everybody’s Church, J. Archer Gray was a “minister at large” and counselor to Lexington’s and central Kentucky’s needy and unfortunate people. He was fatally injured in a traffic mishap.
Haggin II, Louis Lee (1913-1980)
Section 16, Lot 34
A past president of Keeneland Race Course in 1940 and the Keeneland Association in 1956, Louis Lee Haggin II was also the chairman of the board of the association from 1970 to his death in 1980. In addition to operating his own horse farm, he was an officer of the Thoroughbred Racing Association, Jockey Club, Thoroughbred Breeders of Kentucky, National Museum of Racing, and Grayson Foundation for Equine Research. In 1971, he was chosen the Jockey Club’s “Man of the Year.” He was a great-grandson of James Ben Ali Haggin of Elmendorf Farm.
Haggin, Ben Ali (1882-1951)
Section 16, Lot 20
Although he never was a resident of Lexington, Ben Ali Haggin was noted in the Lexington community as a painter of society women and thoroughbred horses, as well as a designer of theatrical sets and tableaux in New York. He was a grandson of the fabulous James Ben Ali Haggin, founder of Elmendorf Farm and builder of Green Hills Mansion.
Hamilton, Holman (1910-1980)
Section 14, Lot 12
An Indiana newspaperman, Holman Hamilton became a distinguished and popular member of the University of Kentucky history faculty. As the author of seven authoritative books and many articles on American history, he was often a visiting lecturer at other universities and was active in historical societies and historic preservation.
Hanson, Colonel Roger Weightman (1827-1863)
Section G, Lot 26
In September, 1861, when President Abraham Lincoln sent troops into Lexington and the Union flag was raised, the Confederate troop was led by Colonel Roger Weightman Hanson. The presence of Union troops in Lexington forced the First Kentucky Brigade to leave the Bluegrass. With no home, they were to be known as the Orphan’s Brigade. Under the leadership of Colonel Hanson, they fought at Shiloh, Vickburg, Chicamauga, Kennesaw Mountain, and in the defense of Atlanta.
Headley, Hal Price (1888-1962)
Section J, Lot 52
As the owner of the 2,500-acre Beaumont Farm in Fayette County and a 10,000-acre plantation in Georgia, Hal Price Headley was one of the 20th Century’s most successful thoroughbred horsemen. He was chairman of the organizing committee of the Keeneland racetrack, first president of the Keeneland Association, leading owner at the first race meeting in 1936, and a founder of the Keeneland horse sales. He died at Keeneland while supervising the training of his horses.
Helm, Katherine (1857-1937)
Section F, Lot 36
A talented artist and author, Katherine Helm was a daughter of Confederate General Ben Hardin Helm and Emilie Todd Helm, a half-sister to Mary Todd Lincoln. Katherine’s portrait of Mrs. Lincoln hangs in the White House. She maintained a studio in New York for a number of years, but from 1912 until her death she lived and painted at Helm Place on Bowman’s Mill Road.
Huguelet, Guy A. (1891-1955)
Having become involved with intercity motorbus transportation in its infancy in the early 1920s, Guy A. Huguelet was instrumental in transforming the primitive, short-haul companies into the Southeastern Geyhound Lines, of which he was president. An attorney, he was active in many civic organizations, president of Keeneland Association, and chairman of the executive committee of the University of Kentucky.
Hunt, Charlton (1801-1836)
Section D, Lot 105
When Lexington was incorporated in 1832, Charlton Hunt was named mayor. The new government was composed of 12 councilman, two of whom were Robert S. Todd and Benjamin Gratz. Under Hunt’s direction, the first public school was established and opened with 107 students enrolled.
Hunt, John Wesley (1773-1849)
Section C, Lot 17
Considered to be the first millionaire west of the Alleghenies, the family of John Wesley Hunt was one of Lexington’s most prominent families. He is the father of Charlton Hunt, who became the first mayor of Lexington. Coming to Lexington in 1795, John Wesley Hunt became a merchant, horsebreeder, hemp manufacturer, and banker. He was appointed postmaster by President John Adams in 1799. As postmaster, Mr. Hunt established a mail route from Lexington to Washington, D.C. That pony express route took two weeks to complete.
John Wesley Hunt built Hopemont (today known as The Hunt-Morgan House). The house is believed to be haunted by the old Negro nurse, Bouviette, who was called “Aunt Betty” by the Morgan Children. After “her” boys went to war, she would appear on Main Street whenever she thought any Southern troops were coming through town. She often waited for hours to give a drink of lemonade to one of “her” boys. Four of the six boys she nursed lived to carry her remains to the family lot in The Lexington Cemetery where a little stone has this simple inscription, “Bouvieete James Col. Ever Faithful.”
Ingels, Margaret (1892-1971)
Section C, Lot 23
A native of Paris, Kentucky, Margaret Ingels was the first American woman to receive a degree in mechanical engineering. She earned her bachelor’s degree in engineering in 1916 and a master’s in 1920 from the University of Kentucky. A specialist in air conditioning, she worked in the field for thirty-two years, retiring from the Carrier Corporation in 1952.
Johnson, John Telemachus (1788-1856)
Section I, Lot 45
A brother to Vice President Richard Mentor Johnson and a graduate of Transylvania University, John Telemachus Johnson was an aid to General William Henry Harrison in the War of 1812, and served in the Kentucky and U.S. House of Representatives. He became a minister in the Christian Church, an editor of religious publications, and founder of Bacon College at Georgetown.
Kaufman, Moses (1843-1924)
Section E-1, Lot 28
Born in Bavaria, Moses Kaufman came to Lexington in 1869, and was founder of the firm which became Kaufman Clothing Company. For seventeen years he was a member of the City Council, served in the Kentucky House of Representatives, and was postmaster from 1914 to 1923. He generously supported many charitable and civic causes and was an organizer of Temple Adath Israel. His obituary in the Lexington Herald-Leader stated that he had “held an exalted place in the esteem of Lexington’s citizenry.
King, Gilbert Hinds (1839-1884)
Section G, Lot 4
A New Yorker who moved to Lexington in the early 1870s, Gilbert Hinds King has been given much of the credit for persuading the City Council, the legislature, and the people of Lexington that a waterworks system was a necessity. He was an organizer of the Lexington Hydraulic and Manufacturing Company in 1882. His company completed the first reservoir in 1884 and laid water pipes below city streets. Mr. King died shortly before the system began operation.
Kirwan, Albert D. (1904-1971)
Section 45, Lot 64
Having spent much of his life on the University of Kentucky campus, Albert D. Kirwan’s activities ranged from student-athlete in the 1920s to president from 1968 to 1969. Kirwan was football coach, history professor, dean of men, dean of students, and dean of the graduate school. He held the position of interim president with such distinction that the board of trustees designated him the seventh president of the university.
Markey, Lucille Parker Wright (1896-1982)
Section 45, Lot 754
After inheriting Calumet Farm from her first husband, Warren Wright, Lucille Parker Wright Markey continued its operation as a leading thoroughbred establishment. In 1952, she married Rear Admiral Gene Markey, a veteran of both world wars, author and Hollywood producer. Mrs. Markey donated $4.6 million to the Ephraim McDowell Cancer Research Foundation at the University of Kentucky for a research and treatment center that has been named in her honor.
Masterson, James (1752-1838)
Section K, Lot 6
Lexington was named for the first site of the battle of the Revolutionary War by settlers who came here in 1775. These first settlers left, but others followed. One of the settlers was James Masterson, for whom Masterson’s Station was named. In the spring of 1779, he helped build the first blockhouse on the corner of what is today Main and Mill Streets.
Masterson loved the woods and prided himself on his strength and skill. As Lexington grew and became a sophisticated city, Masterson kept the old stories of Indian dangers and buffalo and deer kills alive with his tales of the early days of the settlement. One of his favorite stories was how he brought the early settlers their salt. Masterson bragged that he had walked to the Falls of the Ohio River, in what is today Louisville, secured the salt, and returned “in a day or so,” and, in fact, he did just that.
McChord, James (1785-1820)
Section D, Lot 116
Moving to Lexington from Baltimore with his parents at the age of five, James McChord was educated at Transylvania, studied law with Henry Clay, and attended theological seminary in New York. Returning to Lexington, he preached, taught astronomy at Transylvania, and became a member of its board of trustees. In 1815, a group of influential citizens provided for him a new house of worship on Market Street, known at the time as the McChord Church, and now the Second Presbyterian Church.
McCullough, Samuel D. (1803-1873)
Section F, Lot 28
A relative of Nathan Burrows, the inventor of a machine that cleaned hemp, Samuel D. McCullough operated a mustard factory in Lexington. He shipped his mustard all over the world, claiming Queen Victoria was one of his customers.
McKee, Lt. Hugh (1844-1871)
Section P, Lot 71
Lt. McKee is immortalized by a majestic monument composed of a white marble column on a massive granite base, topped with an urn draped with the American flag. With reliefs of ships and eagles, the monument traces the career of the young officer. Lt. McKee was killed in 1871 after being the first man to reach a fort in Korea where the U.S., England, France, and Germany were fighting China for trade agreements. The fort was captured and named Fort McKee in his honor. On May 22, 1872, the Treaty of Peace, Amity, Commerce and Navigation was signed establishing diplomatic and trade relations between the United States and Korea.
McLain, Raymond F. (1905-1981)
Section D, Lot 3
As president of Transylvania University from 1939 to 1951, Raymond F. McLain strengthened the institution both academically and financially and increased ties between the campus and the town. He was the first president of the Henry Clay Memorial Foundation and was active in community affairs. After leaving Lexington, he served successfully as general director of the Committee on Higher Education of the National Council of Churches, president of American University in Cairo, Egypt, and a vice-president and dean of the University of Alabama.
McMurtry, John (1813-1890)
Section I, Lot 63
As one of Lexington’s most prolific architects and builders, John McMurtry was trained locally as an apprentice. Rather than any one style, McMurtry’s work provided a cross-section of 19th century architecture. Floral Hall near the Red Mile, the courthouse in Winchester, Kentucky, and the chapel in the old Episcopal Cemetery on East Third Street are examples on his various designs. Never without his black stovepipe hat and umbrella, he built and supervised construction of hundreds of homes in Fayette County. He did not design, but built Christ Church Episcopal and the Loudoun House.
McVey, Frances Jewell (1889-1945)
Section W, Lot 2
Before her marriage to Dr. Frank McVey in 1923, Frances Jewell McVey was dean of women at the University of Kentucky, and she was a gracious first lady at Maxwell Place until her husband’s retirement from the presidency. An active participant in campus affairs, she was a trustee of Vassar College, a member of the Lexington Board of Education, the National YWCA board, the Frontier Nursing Service, and a charter member of the Lexington Junior League and the Business and Professional Women’s Club.
McVey, Frank LeRond (1869-1953)
Section 16, Lot 15
After serving eight years as head of the University of North Dakota, Frank McVey became president of the University of Kentucky in 1917 and served the university until his retirement in 1940. Distinguished as an administrator and scholar, he was elected president of numerous state, regional, and national education associations and was active in local affairs. He was the author of ten books.
Morgan, General John Hunt (1825-1864)
Section C, Lot 17
When General John Hunt Morgan, known as the “Thunderbolt of the Confederacy,” enlisted in the Southern Army his property was confiscated under the so-called “catch-the-rebel attachment law,” so he lived at Hopemont with his mother, John Wesley Hunt’s daughter. He and his Raiders caused havoc with their unorthodox methods of fighting, causing an estimated $10 million in property damage to the Union. Morgan escaped from a Federal prison in Ohio by tunneling out, only to be shot and killed during another daring raid in Tennessee.
Morrison, Colonel James (1755-1823)
Section D, Lot 116
After serving six years in the Revolutionary War, Colonel James Morrison came to Kentucky to establish himself as a merchant and a landholder. Upon his arrival, he quickly became involved in civic affairs. He was land commissioner, state representative, and supervisor to the state representative, and supervisor of the revenue under President John Adams. Later he acquired immense wealth and became one of Lexington’s leading philanthropists. Colonel Morrison bequeathed $40,000 to build the massive Greek-revival building at Transylvania University, which today is known as “Old Morrison.”
Neville, Linda (1873-1961)
Section H-1, Lot 1 and 2
Individually and through the Mountain Fund for Blindness, which she founded, Linda Neville aided thousands of persons and achieved international acclaim. Devoting more than a half century of her life to the prevention and cure of eye diseases among the people of eastern Kentucky, she was awarded the Leslie Dana gold medal of the National Society for the Prevention of Blindness, the University of Kentucky’s Sullivan Medallion, the Lexington Optimist Cup and other honors.
Noe, James Thomas Cotton (1864-1953)
Section 13, Lot
A native of Washington County, James Thomas Cotton Noe was Kentucky’s first poet laureate. He came to the University of Kentucky in 1906 as an instructor in the old normal school and advanced to head of the College of Education. Retiring in 1934, he moved to California. Noe was the author of seven volumes of verse and many contributions to periodicals. He was designated poet laureate of Kentucky by the legislature in 1926. His Tip Sams is still in print after sixty-three years.
Patterson, James K. (1833-1922)
A native of Scotland, Patterson moved to Indiana with his family when he was nine years old. A graduate of Hanover College, he was principal of Transylvania High School during the Civil War years and then taught at Kentucky (Transylvania) University until 1869, when he was named president of the Agricultural and Mechanical College. In 1878, it became an independent state institution that evolved into the University of Kentucky, and he remained as president until his resignation in 1910.
Piatt, Thomas (1877-1965)
Section 26, Lot 38 and 39
The first president of the Thoroughbred Club of America, Thomas Piatt was a noted breeder of thoroughbreds at his Brookdale Farm on Spur Road, which he expanded from 210 acres in 1898 to more than 1,200 acres. One of his greatest horses was Alsab, outstanding two-year-old and three-year-old in 1941 and 1942, winner of the American Derby, and victor over Requested and Whirlaway in match races. He was president of the Breeders Sales Company and a director of Keeneland Association; and in 1949 he was recognized by the Thoroughbred Club at its annual testimonial dinner for his kindliness, sportsmanship, and character.
Postlethwait, John (1769-1833)
Section 13, Lot 9
Having moved to Lexington from Carlisle, Pennsylvania in 1790, John Postlethwait soon married a daughter of Governor Scott. He was a town trustee in 1794, and in 1827 was chairman of the Board of Trustees. In 1797, John and his brother Samuel bought a large brick school building at Main and Limestone streets and converted it into a tavern, said to have been the finest in Kentucky. He operated it off and on for the next thirty-six years until his death in the great cholera epidemic. The hotel gained the name Phoenix when it was rebuilt after a fire in 1820.
Ranck, George (1841-1901)
Section G, Lot 1
In 1872, George Ranck published the History of Lexington, Kentucky, which is still the most romantic history of the area. He perpetuated the claims of the eccentric Transylvania scientist Rafinesque that Lexington was built on the site of pre-Columbian ruins of a walled city. Historians refuted this idea but still refer to his book for information about early life in Lexington.
Rupp, Coach Adolph (1901-1977)
Section 45, Lot 677
As coach of the University of Kentucky basketball team for forty-two years, Coach Adolph Rupp led the Wildcats to four NCAA titles. Additionally, he coached the 1948 U.S. Olympic champions and was elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame. He was a raconteur and public speaker of rare ability, a shrewd businessman and a staunch supporter of the Shrine Hospital for Cripple Children.
Sayre, David Austin (1793- 1870)
Section O, Lot 136
David Austin Sayre is one of Lexington’s best examples of a poor boy who found fame and fortune. Walking barefoot from Maysville, Sayre arrived in Lexington in 1811 with no money. After working as a silversmith for 12 years, he joined a broker’s office. Eventually Sayre became a banker and earned his fortune. He is remembered for his philanthropy, including the donation in 1854 of the building and grounds for Sayre Female Institution, which is a preparatory school today.
Scott, Matthew T. (1786-1862)
Section H, Lot 4
A native of Pennsylvania, Matthew T. Scott originally moved to Frankfort, Kentucky as a boy. He studied law but in 1808 became a clerk in the Bank of Kentucky. Two years later, he moved to Lexington, where he spent the remainder of his life in the banking profession. From 1835 until his death he was an officer of the Northern Bank of Kentucky, serving the last six years as president. He was one of the four men who raised the money to establish The Lexington Cemetery, and was its first treasurer.
Solomon, William King (1775-1854)
Section A, Lot
In the summer of 1833, a cholera epidemic killed 500 Lexingtonians in two months, and half the population fled the city in fear. William “King” Solomon remained to dig the graves, an act which earned him the lasting respect of the town.
Migrating to Lexington from Virginia, “King” Solomon was the town drunk who now and then did odd jobs such as digging ditches. Finally his public drunkenness earned him a vagrancy charge. He was sentenced to be auctioned as an indentured servant to the highest bidder. Aunt Charlotte, a free Negro vendor of homemade cakes and pies, purchased him for 18 cents. When the plague broke out, Aunt Charlotte pled with Solomon to leave the city. Solomon was not afraid of contracting the plague, and he remained. For two months, he labored every day burying the dead and sleeping in the pioneer graveyard at night.
On the first day of the court session in the fall of 1833, Solomon was lounging in the back of the courtroom when the judge spotted him. Without a word, the judge stepped from the bench and walked back to the vagrant. The judge shook his hand, and everyone in the room stood, walked to the gravedigger and did the same. “King” Solomon had become a hero.
Stoll, John George (1878-1959)
Section S, Lot
Newspaperman John George Stoll, editor and publisher of the Lexington Leader beginning in 1914 purchased the Lexington Herald in 1937 and left it editorially free. The newspaper was the Democratic opponent of Stoll’s Republican paper. As a member of Kentucky’s House of Representative, Stoll was a strong Republican and a generous contributor to his party, but he was a businessman first. Knowing that the Bluegrass was predominately Democratic, he maintained the freedom of the Herald to promote the Democratic point of view. In 1953, he created the Lexington Herald-Leader Co., of which he was president. Stoll was president of the Lexington Water Company from 1907 to 1926 and of the Phoenix Hotel Company and First National Bank. He was later vice president of the First and City National Bank and a director of the Security Trust Company.
Sweeney, Mary E. (1879-1968)
Section P, Lot 129
A native of Lexington, Mary E. Sweeney became known internationally as an authority on home economics and child care. In World War I, she was chairman of home economics in the U.S. Food Administration, headed by Herbert Hoover, and she was in demand as a lecturer and consultant in Europe, India, and China as well as America. She had degrees from Transylvania, the University of Kentucky, and Columbia University, and for twenty years was affiliated with a school for child development and family life in Detroit.
Swope, King (1893-1961)
Section 45, Lot 21
A graduate of Centre College and the University of Kentucky law school, as well as a captain in World War I, King Swope was elected to Congress in 1919, serving one term. From 1931 to 1940 he presided over Fayette Circuit Court. A leader in Republican politics, he was twice a nominee for governor. His wife, Mary Richards Swope, also active in Republican affairs, was vice-chairman of the board of the Public Health Center and an officer in numerous patriotic and genealogical societies.
Todd, Levi (1756-1807)
Section F, Lot 26
When the Lexington settlers signed a “citizens compact” on January 25, 1807, Levi Todd became a landholder. This specified that the town was to be defined “in lots” of one-half acres each for farming and “out lots” of five acres each for farming. Every man and widow over 21 years of age who had resided in Lexington for six months or who had raised a crop of corn by the following year was entitled to one “in lot” and one “out lot.”
Levi Todd helped defend Harrodsburg against the Indians, survived the Battle of Blue Licks, and became a major general in the Kentucky Militia.
In 1781, the citizens of Fayette County elected the first Board of Trustees of five men. One was Levi Todd. He was elected the first Clerk of Fayette County, an office he held for 25 years. In 1784, Kentuckians wanted to establish themselves as a state independent of Virginia. They met repeatedly in Danville framing and reframing Kentucky’s constitution. Levi Todd and John Breckinridge were delegates to the Constitutional Convention in Danville, Kentucky.
Todd, Robert S. (1790-1849)
Section F, Lot 26
A Kentucky senator from Fayette County, Robert S. Todd was the father of Mary Todd Lincoln, wife of Abraham Lincoln.
Townsend, William H. (1890-1964)
Section 45, Lot 512
A prominent corporate and trial lawyer, William H. Townsend was a nationally recognized authority and writer on Abraham Lincoln and collector of Lincolniana. A reconteur of rare talent, his recorded speech on Cassius M. Clay is regarded as a classic. He was a founder of the Kentucky Civil War Round Table in 1953 and its president until his death, chairman of the Kentucky Lincoln Sesquicentennial Commission and member of the national commission, a trustee of Lincoln Memorial University, and a long-time director of the Lexington Public Library.
Underwood, Thomas R. (1898-1956)
Section 32, Lot 44
Having spent his entire newspaper career on the Lexington Herald, Thomas R. Underwood started as a reporter in 1917 and served as editor from 1935 until his death. Active in Democratic politics, he became chairman of the party’s State Central Committee, a United States representative in 1949 to 1951, and a senator from 1951 to 1952. He was secretary of the Kentucky Racing Commission for fourteen years, was a founder and secretary of the National Association of State Racing Commissioners, and was a leader in many civic organizations.
Varney, James (Jim) Albert Jr. (1949-2000)
James Albert Varney, Jr. (Jim Varney), an American actor and comedian, was born in Lexington, Kentucky, to Nancy Louise (Howard) and James Albert Varney, Sr. He became interested in theater as a teenager, winning state titles in drama competitions while a student at Lafayette High School in Lexington, Kentucky. Jim Varney is best known for his broadly comedic role as Ernest P. Worrell, appearing in numerous television commercial advertising campaigns and films and for which he won a Daytime Emmy Award. He played Jed Clampett in a film adaptation of The Beverly Hillbillies and performed the voice of Slinky Dog in Toy Story and Toy Story 2. He died of lung cancer at the age of 50 on February 10, 2000.
Williams, General Roger D. (1856-1925)
Section O, Lot 136
A prospector in the west, Roger D. Williams was founder and president of the Lexington Engine and Boiler Works. He served for thirty years in the Kentucky National Guard and commanded the troops in Frankfort after the shooting of Governor Goebel. He served in France during World War I and retired in 1919 with the rank of brigadier general. An enthusiastic sportsman, he was an organizer of the National Fox Hunters Association. General Williams was married to Mary Lyle Sayre, a daughter to Ephraim Sayre.
Withers, William Temple (1825-1889)
Section F-1, Lot 9
A native of Harrison County, William Temple Withers became a lawyer and planter in Mississippi and Louisiana. He served in the Mexican War and as a colonel in the Confederate Army. He moved to Lexington in 1871 and soon established Fairlawn Farm at the north end of Broadway, which became a leading thoroughbred and harness horse establishment.