Funeral Industry Facts: Where Did Funeral Homes Come From?

History of the Modern American Funeral Home

What we in America call a Funeral Home can be traced back to the Civil War and the birth of Embalming. Deceased soldiers were embalmed so that their bodies could be shipped long distances home for a viewing and burial.

President Abraham Lincoln’s embalmed body went on a whistle stop train tour which helped publicize embalming. The public like the idea of attractive “lifelike” corpses and thus, the birth of the modern funeral home.

What is Embalming? It is a toxic cocktail of formaldehyde, methanol, phenol & pink dye that acts as a temporary preservative for a few days so a body can be viewed.

Why does a Funeral Home exist? For two reasons:

  1. To embalm a body
  2. To sell you a casket

Funeral Bill is the 3rd largest expense of your life:

  1. House
  2. Automobile
  3. Death (funeral/memorial)

Average American Funeral Costs $8,000 – $10,000

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Mark Noonan, Founder – Farewell Project
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