Article in Today's New York Times About Houdini's Grave

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Postby Richard Kaufman » 10/31/08 12:20 PM

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Postby Dustin Stinett » 10/31/08 12:45 PM

Interesting. The cemetery owner is showing some serious chutzpa isnt he?

Sadly, on History.coms site, Russ Mitchell says 1922 for the year of Houdinis death. Fortunately the print version has the correct year.

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Postby Ray T. Stott » 10/31/08 09:54 PM

Interesting. The cemetery owner is showing some serious chutzpa isnt he?

[size:11pt]Having worked in the funeral industry in my youth and on an off while in colleges, the owner's reaction is typical of the breed.

Once a cemetery approaches capacity, and the potential for additional sales of "space and bronze" peters out, the old time owners who were grandfathered out of later legal requirements to escrow perpetual care monies, simply pocketed it, often just before they leave town.

The cemetery industry is rife with jokes, anecdotes and even cartoons in their trade journals, about owners of cemeteries and memorial parks absconding with the perpetual care fund.

You can read an article on these financial ghouls right here.

The S.A.M. chapter is to be commended for their efforts in maintaining the great man's final resting place.

Between the funeral and cemetery industries, a dead man doesn't stand a chance.

I could embalm a human body for 40 cents and an elephant for $1.50.
W. W. Chambers, large D.C. funeral director, testifying before the 1947 Congressional investigation of the funeral industry.

An outfit that I was employed by at their Chapin Street NW location during my academic stint at Georgetown University.
They had a large red illuminated sign on the top of their building that read, [color:#FF0000]W. W. Chambers World's Largest Undertaker[/color]

I could tell you some real Halloween stories about that place.
It's not about the magic; it's about the daily box office gross.
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