love museums: Those places where objects of historical, scientific or cultural
importance are preserved and exhibited. There are over 35,000 in the U.S. with
the world’s largest museum, the Smithsonian, home to
19 museums, located in Washington, D.C. Worldwide there are an estimated 55,000 museums.
in that number, there are several museums that deal with death and the death-care
industry. This week we’ll take a look at museums dealing directly with death;
some are located, quite fittingly, in funeral homes.
|Horse-drawn Funeral Carriage|
|Ferguson Funeral Home|
Ferguson Funeral Home Museum www.scottdalefuneralmuseum.com/FuneralMuseum/collection.htm will mark its 135th
anniversary next year, making it the oldest business in Scottsdale, Pennsylvania.
The museum is located in the funeral home and houses a 19th century
horse-drawn hearse along with several examples of American Folk Art. The museum
is open Monday through Friday during normal business hours.
|Herr Funeral Home|
|Fisk Child's Casket|
museum of death can be found at the Herr Funeral Home’s Funeral Service Memorabilia
Museum www.herrfuneral.com/Museum_498035.html in Collinsville, Illinois. The museum has a 1918 Sayers
and Scoville hearse, antique burial shroud, mourning jewelry and ribbons, and a
child’s Fisk casket. The casket is made of cast-iron, and was claimed to be airtight. It was
designed like an ancient Egyptian sarcophagus with a viewing window at the top, making it easy to see the body inside and deterring grave
robbers. For tour information, contact the funeral home.
Funeral Home and Museum
|Redinger Funeral Home|
www.redingerfuneralhome.com/museum.htm in Seiling, Oklahoma has been in business for 100
years. The museum has several displays of funeral memorabilia and houses a
horse-drawn hearse. Tours are offered by appointment and are usually given by
Ron Redinger, the grandson of Sam Redinger who started a hardware store in
town, and found himself in the funeral business …
|A Sampling of the Hearse Collection|
located in Marietta, Ohio and is part of an operating funeral home. The museum
is named for Bill Peoples who owns the collection. Displays include hearses,
caskets and funeral memorabilia from the early 1900s displayed tastefully in a
building behind the chapel. There is no admission charged but scheduling a tour
|Lafferty Funeral Home|
|Part of the Lafferty Carriage Collection|
William Lafferty Memorial Funeral and Carriage Collection www.adamscountytravel.org/history.html
is located in West Union, Ohio and has a nice collection of memorabilia that
dates back to 1848. If it’s hearses you want to see; this is the place, which only makes sense when you consider that the Buckeye State was one of the
largest producers of hearses in the country. The museum collection is dedicated
to James William Lafferty, the fourth generation of the family to work in the
funeral industry. Lafferty preserved artifacts that his family had used in the
funeral business and purchased other items to create a sizable collection of
|Toland-Herzig Funeral Home|
Toland-Herzig Funeral Home www.tolandherzig.com/_mgxroot/page_10793.php
in Dover, Ohio you will find the Famous Endings Museum. The museum has over
1,500 pieces of funeral ephemera
(the largest known collection), which include photos, folders and documents
from celebrities, presidents, sports figures and other famous people. The
museum also has audio recordings from the funerals of famous people and photos
of celebrity gravesides. The museum is open Monday through Friday during normal
business hours with no admission charged.
|Head of Henri Desire Landru|
of Death www.museumofdeath.net is exactly
what it says: a museum that focuses on death and related topics with graphic, sometime
grisly actual items and footage on display. (This is best for mature audiences.)
The museum offers a 45-minute
self-guided tour through a world of coffins, body bags, execution devices, and letters
and artwork from murderers and serial killers; you can even view the head of
Henri Desire Landru, the Bluebeard of France, who killed over 200 women in the
early 20th century. The museum has themed rooms: the
California Death Room focuses on famous deaths that have occurred in the state
like that of the Black Dahlia and the Charles Manson murders. The museum is
located in Hollywood, California and is open daily. Admission is charged.
|Hearses on Display|
mother of all funeral museums is located in Houston Texas. The National Museum
of Funeral History www.nmfh.org houses the
largest collection of funeral artifacts in the country. From 19th
Century Mourning Customs, to Coffins and Caskets of the Past, Historical Hearses,
and the History of Embalming, the museum offers 12 historic and informative displays,
and continually keeps things fresh with changing funeral industry exhibits. The
museum is open seven days a week and admission is charged.
we lament the passing of one funeral museum –
|Replica of Lincoln's Coffin|
Museum of Funeral Customs was located in Springfield, Illinois for several
years before closing in 2009. Adjacent to Oak Ridge Cemetery, the site of
President Abraham Lincoln’s Tomb, the museum had a collection of coffins,
funeral carriages, and a re-crated 1920s embalming room. Sadly the museum’s
trust fund was mismanaged and closure was imminent. After the museum’s closing,
its contents were transferred to the Kibbe Hancock Heritage Museum in Carthage
Illinois in February 2011 where a Funeral Customs exhibit is on permanent display.
|Caskets on Display|
is a new museum expected to open later this year: The Simpson Funeral Museum
http://funeralmuseum.com will be located in Chatham, Virginia. Displays
will include an 1876 Horse-drawn hearse and a 1941 Packard hearse, along with
replicas of caskets for President John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan. Other
celebrity casket replicas include one for John Wayne and Elvis Presley.
|National Funeral Museum in London|
|Vienna Funeral Museum|
are also numerous museums of death scattered around the world. A few to check
out are the Vienna Funeral Museum in Vienna, Austria; the National Funeral
Museum in London, England; the Museum of Piety located in Budapest, Hungary;
the Museum for Sepulchral Culture in Kassel, Germany; the Museum of Hearses in
Barcelona, Spain; the Dutch Funeral Museum in Amsterdam, Netherlands. There are
also two cemetery museums in Europe to visit, Hoernli Cemetery near Basel,
Switzerland, and the Museum of Ohlsdorf Cemetery in Hamburg, Germany.
week, we’ll take a look at museums dealing more with the medical-side of death.
As they say at the National Museum of Funeral History, "Any day above ground is a good one."
Very efficiently written information. It will be beneficial to anybody who utilizes it, including me. Keep up the good work. For sure i will check out more posts. This site seems to get a good amount of visitors. Seniorenbetreuung HamburgReplyDelete
Thanks for sharing such a great useful informationReplyDelete
home care in Pennsylvania