The Salt Creek Nature Sanctuary

St. Francis and the Wolf of Gubio at Salt Creek Nature Sanctuary

Forty-five minutes southwest of Oxford, Ohio, in southeastern Indiana’s Franklin County, lies the Salt Creek Nature Sanctuary. Formerly a hill farm, the land has not been cultivated since Don and Patricia Kaufman purchased it in 1983. In the ensuing decades, the old farm has reverted to a wild, natural state, and the Sanctuary is now a 280-acre tapestry of mature woodlands and healthy fields. A pond, small creeks, and numerous vernal pools grace its gently rolling hills, sheltered valleys, and rugged ravines.

In 2007, the Kaufmans gave Salt Creek Nature Sanctuary to The Oxford Society (TOS) to manage it in perpetuity. They also established an endowment to provide TOS with management funds. The Board of Trustees of TOS makes all decisions concerning the management of the Sanctuary.

Audubon group visits Salt Creek Sanctuary

TOS works with youth groups and volunteers to improve and restore Salt Creek’s natural habitats. Twice each year, Brother Dan Klco of the University of Dayton brings his Environmental Biology students to the Sanctuary to help maintain trails, remove invasive species (such as the autumn olive shown here), and learn about the ecology of the area. If you are interested in volunteering at Salt Creek Nature Sanctuary, please contact us at

Currently, two related projects are underway at the Salt Creek Nature Sanctuary. First, in 2014, the Board decided that the Sanctuary should serve as a final resting place for those seeking an alternative to traditional—and often costly—methods of burial. Click here to learn more about the Sanctuary as A Natural Resting Place.

Second, beginning in 2016, TOS will host a Celebration of Life. at the Sanctuary each fall on the third weekend of September. The Celebration will honor loved ones who have passed on but who never truly leave us. Follow the link above to learn more about this annual event and how you can participate!

Long-range plans for Salt Creek Nature Sanctuary include the establishment of an environmental education center. Once complete, the center will host children in grades K-8, youth groups, elementary school teachers, and the general public.

A Natural Resting Place

Salt Creek Sanctuary's Memorial Garden

Funerals and burials can be costly today. Individuals seeking an alternative to traditional arrangements may request that their loved one's ashes be placed in the Memorial Garden at the sanctuary—or elsewhere on the private grounds. Loved ones whose ashes are spread at the sanctuary may have a plaque placed on the Memorial Garden wall. For more information including pricing or to schedule a visit, contact Don Kaufman, Executive Director, The Oxford Society, at or (513) 523-3356.

Please Join Us

We invite you to a Celebration of Life at Salt Creek Nature Sanctuary. A new event, the Celebration of Life is an adaptation of Mexico's Day of the Dead. With activities centered in the Memorial Garden, it is a festive occasion designed to honor loved ones who have passed on, but who never truly leave us. Celebration of Life is held annually on the third weekend of September, to coincide with the passage of the monarch butterflies and ruby-throated hummingbirds as they journey southward.

Don and Pat Kaufman

Don and Pat Kaufman stand under the Portrait Tree at Salt Creek Nature Sanctuary.

Interpretive Guide to Salt Creek Nature Sanctuary

Interpretive Guide
to Salt Creek Nature Sanctuary

Visits arranged by appointment only.
Please contact us at
(513) 523-3356

Salt Creek Nature Sanctuary

Photo Tour
of Salt Creek Nature Sanctuary

Salt Creek Nature Sanctuary Expansion

Salt Creek Nature Sanctuary