Thank you to everyone who contributed to “A Headstone for Miss Eva.” Our beloved Miss Eva’s marker is now beside that of her husband, World War I veteran Emmanuel. A dedication ceremony will be scheduled for spring.



The cemetery now known as Forest Grove was established as a cemetery in 1854. It was deeded from the City of Lexington to the “trustees for the colored people of Lexington, Missouri” on October 28, 1890. Many of those first buried at Forest Grove were born into slavery there, but as free people the scope of their labors has mirrored the times. Military veterans of domestic and foreign engagements are laid to rest among the coal miners, horsemen, smiths, farm hands, civic leaders, merchants, musicians, morticians, athletes, carpenters, cooks, domestics, barbers, educators and construction workers who made their homes in this historic river town.

The cemetery has fallen into disrepair over the last fifty or so years—overgrown with brush, headstones knocked down by vandals, a fence in desperate need of replacement….but good people around the city and beyond are acting to spruce things up at Forest Grove so it can again shine as part of our historic narrative. You can help, too!

We have already raised money for and installed a new fence and gate. But we’re not finished! We will repair and reset the damaged headstones, as well as include a memorial area complete with a flag and pieces of the old fence. Ongoing maintenance is also critical.

Here are some before an after pictures.

As you can see from the photo at the top of this section, we have procured a military headstone for our Civil War veteran, Israel Burles. It has been set and we are planning a dedication. Date tbd. Future plans include repairing and resetting damaged headstones, creating a memorial area with new flagpole, upgrading the road, and planting flowers across the front of the fence (as it was in the past). We have reached our goal in raising money to purchase a headstone for Miss Eva Saunders. It has been ordered and will be dedicated in the spring.

Stay tuned for upcoming work days–November and May.

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Floyd was born January 29, 1898 in Lexington, Missouri, the son of Tommy and Lula Boldridge. He was the grandson of Matt Boldridge, founder of the Gem Barber Shop on 11th street. He married Virginia “Virgie” Johnson. From Lexington Advertiser News; July 5, 1979 “Some 200 friends and acquaintances of Floyd Boldridge, lifelong Lexingtonian and … Continue reading FLOYD BOLDRIDGE


SHIRLEY JEAN TAYLOR was born October 21, 1952, in Lexington, Missouri, the daughter of Matthew and Doris Jean Taylor. Her grandparents were Fred and Helen Taylor, and her siblings were Eddie Lee, Matthew and Jeffrey Taylor, and Brenda Taylor and Donna Taylor Jackson. Shirley was a member of the LHS class of 1970. She died … Continue reading TAYLOR SHIRLEY


CORDELIA KIDD was born December 28, 1895, in Lexington, Missouri. Her parents were Edward and Eliza Colley Hayden. She was a cousin to Eva Saunders. On April 9, 1925, she married Reverend Thomas Kidd in Jackson, Missouri. Thomas was the pastor at Zion A.M.E. Church, and a clergyman for Methodist Radio. The couple had four … Continue reading CORDELIA KIDD

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