For Kentucky there are tombstone transcriptions dating from the early 1800s. They may give the deceased’s birth and death dates, age at death, spouse’s names, and maiden name if applicable. Less often they contain the birthplaces. Tombstones may have symbols or insignias indicating military service and social or religious affiliations. Family members may be buried nearby.
Since 1977 the Kentucky Historical Society has been computerizing all of the state’s existing cemetery records. This index will have genealogical information from an estimated seven million tombstones when it is completed. The society also collects pre-1911 funeral records.
The Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) collection contains tombstone inscriptions from many Kentucky cemeteries. The DAR collection is described in the "Genealogy" section of this outline. Five volumes of DAR cemetery records have been published separately:
Daughters of the American Revolution (Kentucky). Kentucky Cemetery Records. 5 vols. Lexington, KY: KSDAR, 1960–. (Family History Library film 873712). Each volume is indexed.
Many transcriptions are found in:
Cemetery Records of Kentucky. 2 vols. N.p., 1962,1968. (Family History Library film 873713). Additional volumes of this collection are listed in the Locality Search of the Family History Library Catalog under individual counties. These volumes are arranged by county and include abstracts of cemetery records from 15 counties.
Burials in 241 Kentucky cemeteries along the old Wilderness Road are recorded in:
Johnson, Robert Foster. Wilderness Road Cemeteries in Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia. Owensboro, Kentucky: McDowell Publications, 1981. The Wilderness Road led from Virginia through northern Tennessee and into Kentucky. The book includes a surname index.
A 1988 county-by-county list of cemetery record transcripts available at the Family History Library is:
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Family History Library. Index to United States Cemeteries. Salt Lake City, Utah: Genealogical Society of Utah, 1988. (Family History Library films 1206468–94.) Film 1206474 contains a listing of the cemetery records in Kentucky that are at the library.
Internet Tombstone Transcripts and Index
Genealogical society members often copy and publish tombstone inscriptions. The USGenWeb Archives has records from hundreds of cemeteries representing more than half of the counties of Kentucky. Partial transcriptions have been made of other cemeteries listed on its Internet site at:
"The Kentucky Tombstone Transcription Project." In USGenWeb Archives Digital Library [Internet site]. N.p.: USGenWeb Archives, 17 February 1999 [cited 20 October 1999]. Available at www.rootsweb.com/~cemetery/kentucky/kentucky.html. This is a county-by-county list of cemeteries. The highlighted cemetery include tombstone abstracts. Abstracted cemeteries are indexed in:
Many periodicals publish cemetery records. These are referenced in the "Families" section of the PERiodical Source Index (PERSI), described in the "Periodicals" section.
The Place Search of the Family History Library Catalog lists more of these records under:
KENTUCKY - CEMETERIES
KENTUCKY, [COUNTY] - CEMETERIES
KENTUCKY, [COUNTY], [TOWN] - CEMETERIES