Monday, December 09, 2013

The Indianapolis Crematory

One of the earliest funeral directing companies in the US to support cremation and to build the necessary facilities to offer its service was the firm of Flanner & Buchanan in Indianapolis, Indiana. In 1905, the firm completed a cremation chamber in the basement of their funeral home at 320 North Illinois Street. Their firm was active in the promotion of cremation as a viable means of preparation for final disposition and took a major role in educating other funeral directors about cremation and acceptance of the rite. Owners Charles Buchanan and Frank Bates Flanner were both early members of the Cremation Association of America, and Mr. Buchanan represented the company at the Association's first meeting in 1913.

An exterior view of the Flanner & Buchanan Funeral Home
at 420 North Illinois Street in Indianapolis

The chapel in the funeral home of Flanner & Buchanan
The cremation apparatus in the funeral home's basement.
Frank Bates Flanner
(from the John Crerar Library, Chicago)
The company operated at this location until the firm built a new facility at 25 West Fall Creek Blvd. Cremation facilites were continued at this location and a columbarium was constructed for perpetual care and memorialization of cremated remains.
The "Shrine of Light" - the Indianapolis Crematory's
family comfort area.
The Flanner & Buchanan Columbarium

(Photos from the Cincinnati Cremation Company collection in the care of the author)

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