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Publication numberUS1134719 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 6, 1915
Filing dateOct 28, 1914
Priority dateOct 28, 1914
Publication numberUS 1134719 A, US 1134719A, US-A-1134719, US1134719 A, US1134719A
InventorsAlfred B Benzing
Original AssigneeSt Louis Coffin Company
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
US 1134719 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)




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it- 6? Q M Patented Apr. 6, 1915.


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Specification of Letters Patent. 7

Patented Apr. 6, 1915.

Application filed 0ctober 28, 1914. Serial No..869,082.

To all whom it may concern Be it known that I, ALFRED B. Bnnzmo, a citizen of the United States, residing at the city of St. Louis, State of Missouri, have invented certain new and useful Improvements in Coffins, of which the following is a' ing a glazed opening through which the corpse may be viewed, said cover having a lid for the opening; a second cover is provided and has an opening registering with the opening in the first cover and is provided with a lid to close such opening; and with this and other objects in View my inventionconsists of the parts and the combination of parts as will be hereinafter pointed out.

. In the accompanying drawings forming part of this specification, in which like numbers of reference denote like parts wherever they occur, Figure 1 is a top plan view of a cofiin embodying the present invention with a portion of the outer cover broken away thereby disclosing a portion of the inner cover and associated parts; Fig. 2 is a side view of the'coflin partly in plan elevation and partly in section; Fig. 3 is a sectional view .transverselyacross the width of the head end of the coflin; Fig. 4 is a fragmentary top view, partly in plan and partly in section, looking down upon the head end of the cofiin, the outer cover and the lid of the inner cover having been removed, showing a form of member for strengthenin the corners of the receptacle and a form 0 construction for slidably supporting the frame of the screen upon adjacent portions of the outer cover; Fig. 5 is a fragmentary sectional view on an enlarged scale on the line 6-6, Fig. 1; Fig. 6 is an end plan view in elevation showing the lid of the outer cover and the lid of the inner cover of the cofiin open.

A metallic coilin of this invention comprises preferably a receptacle 1, an inner cover 2, and an outer cover 3, all metallic structures made of any suitable material,

such, for instance, as drawn steel.

Referring now for the purpose of illustration to structures made of drawn steel to construct ametalliccoflin whose general outline is the rectangular shape, best seen in Figs. 1 and 2,"receptacle 1 is preferably made by drawing into the desired shape, two similarly shaped side pieces 4, two similarly shaped end pieces 5, and a bottom piece 6, each of which side pieces 4 and end pieces 5 bears an inwardly turned flange 7- at its upper edge and an inwardly turned flange 8 at its lower edge, said flange 7 being adapted to overlap adjacent portions of a member 13 (hereinafter described) and flange 8 being adapted to overlap adjacent portions of bottom piece 6. .Each of said side pieces and each of said end pieces preferably bear a shoulder 9 provided at an appropriate distance from, and substantially parallel to said flange 7. Sidepieces .4 and endpieces 5 may bear molding-shaped adoruments or the like, such, for instance as the molding-shaped adornments 10 best seen in Figs. 2, 3, and 6, said adornmen'ts serving, also, to stiffen or strengthen the parts bearing same, and bottom piece 6 is preferably provided near its outer edge with a groove 11 (Figs. 2 and 3), which groove is adapted to serve as a hand hold or con- 'venient grasping means for carrying and handling a coffin in its finished or unfinished state, said groove 11, as well as said adornments 10, said shoulder 9, said flanges 7 and 8, and the like being preferably formed upon their respective parts in the process of manufacturing said parts.

Side pieces 4, end pieces 5, and bottom 6 assembled and set up form receptacle 1, as above described, and the joints of the various parts are preferably soldered or otherwise hermetically sealed, or they may be made air-tight in any other suitable manner. Strengthening 1nembers'12 may be provided at the corners as shown in Fi 4:, or else where on said receptacle 1, said strengthening members preferably extending from flange 7 downward to bottom 6 and followng, in a general way, the contour of the adsaid mouth, the upper surface ofthe upperv ledge of said member being adjacent to the under surface of flange 7 and being preferably soldered thereto to form a hermetically sealed joint therewith, or is otherwise secured thereto in an air-tight joint. The lower ledge of said member with its depending flange is adapted to form a lip about the mouth of receptacle 1, and a member 15 (preferably a flat steel bar) is borne by the under side of said lower ledge of lipmember 13 adjacent depending nange 14, said member being preferably soldered to said lip-member, the principal purpose of said member 15. being to provide thickness of material for a plurality of screw-threaded holes adapted to receive the screws 16 as hereinafter more particularly described.

lnner cover 2 is adapted to close the opening formed by the mouth of receptacle 1 and bears a flange 17 supported upon a gasket 18, which gasket 18 rests upon the upper surface of the lower ledge of member 13 and is adapted to form an air-tight joint between said upper ledge and said ilange 17 said gasket being made of any material, preferably asbestos, suitable for making said joint air-tight. Flange 17 supports a member 19, preferably a flat steel bar, and is preferably constructed, as best seen in Fig. 3, by looping a portion of the material of inner cover 2 about said member intimately following the outline of said member and the end of said loop may be soldered to adjacent inner portions of said inner cover, the purpose of said member 19 being to provide a strong flange of greater thickness of material than that of the portions of the inner-cover adjacent to said flange so that screws 16 inserted through appropriate holes in said flange and passing through gasket 18 may be screwed in place in screw-threaded holes in the lower ledge of member 13 and in member 15 borne by said member 13. By screwing said screws 16 home, an air-tight joint is formed by means of gasket 18 between flange 17 and the lower ledge of member 13 about the mouth of receptacle 1, and inner cover 2 is thus held firmly in place. The structure of said inner cover 2 rises from flange 17 preferably in a graceful dome-shaped curve and an opening 20 at the top of said inner cover is provided with a lid 21, and, a plate of glass is provided for said opening, supported to cover same as hereinafter described. Opening 20 preferably extends from a portion of said inner cover near the head end of the coffin to a point above the waist line of a corpse resting in the receptacle of said coflin and may be of any desired width so that the features and upper portion of the body of said corpse may be conveniently viewed through said plate of glass when said corpse is lying in state as hereinafter described. Theedge about the mouth of said opening 20 bears a depending flange 23, best seen in Fig. 5, and upon the under side of said inner .cover a member 24 is soldered to said under side and surrounds said depending flange 23 at a slight distance therefrom, said member being preferably made of soft lead and adapted to form a hanger or bracket for supporting said plate of glass 22, said member 24 having preferably an approximate Z-shaped form in cross-section When same is in place as best seen in Fig. 5. In order to form an air-tight joint between said plate of glass and depending flange 23 about the mouth of opening 20, the space between said flange 23 and said member 24 is filled to the full depth of said flange with cement 25 or other binding means of any composition suitable for making an air-tight joint, the inner cover, for convenience of working, preferably having'been inverted and the glass supporting flange of soft lead member 21 having been bent straight or substantially perpendicular to the supporting inner sur face of the inner cover 2, and said plate of glass 22 is placed upon the edge of said depending flange with the portion of said plate of glass adjacent to its edges extending over said cement and with the edge of said plate of glass abutting the side of member 24 adjacent thereto, the end portion of said member 24 extending beyond the inner surface of said plate of glass being bent in the form of a flange over upon the portion of said plate of glass adjacent to the edge of same. When cement 25 has set, the desired air-tight joint will have formed, said cement binding parts adjacent" thereto in a sealed joint, the flange on'member 24: bent over upon the inner surface adjacent the edge of said plate of glass being adapted to assist in supporting said plate of glass in place.

Lid 21 is preferablyswung open and shut upon a device 26 (Fig. 5) or a plurality of such devices depending from a flange 27 borne by said lid, said flange being formed by bending the material of said lid around itsedge inwardly, said depending member being secured to said flange by solder or by any other suitable means and said depending member 26 protruding inwardly throughan appropriate opening in said inner cover, so that said lid may be swung open and shut by means of said depending member operating in said opening. Depending member 26 and the hole in inner cover 2 associated therewith are so constructed that said member may be removed from said hole and said lid bearing said member removed entirely from said lid. Pocket 28 is provided upon the inside of said cover 2, said pocket being supported at the edge of its month by the inner surface of said cover and joined thereto to form a red hermetically sealed joint therewith preferably by means of solder, said pocket being adapted to cover said opening and being so constructed as-to house the part of depending member 26 protruding below inner cover 2.

Lid 21 may be provided with a suitably located snap-latch 29 of any well-known construction, latching through an appropriate opening in inner cover 2 upon an adjacent portion of the inner surface of said cover, said latch being provided with a lifting lever 30 extending through an appropriate opening in said lid 21 to permit said latch to be operated conveniently to disengage same from looking relation with said lid and said cover when it is desired to raise said lid.

For the purpose of symmetrical appearance in aninner cover 2 whose lid 21 is con structed, as described and as best seen in Figs. 1 and 2, to cover an opening 20 extending only partially the length of said inner cover 2, there is preferably provided a raised portion 32 extending from a portion adjacent the foot of the coflin toward the middle portion to simulate the appearance given to the lid bearing portion of said inner cover, and, also, a design in relief, such as the elliptical-shaped design 33, Figs. 1 and 2, may be provided over the middle portion of said cover. It will be understood that said designs in relief, 32, and 33, are merely ornamental and may be made integral with said cover in the process of manufacture and may be varied as to shape and design in any desired manner, or may be omitted entirely, or they may be separately made, as shown in Fig. 2, and adapted to cover openings 34 and 35 under each, respectively, in which case the joints formed by the edges of said covering designs 32 and 33, respectively, with adjacent portions of said cover 2 are hermetically sealed, preferably by means of solder, or otherwise made airtight.

Outer cover 3 is adapted to cover inner cover 2 and is provided with an inwardly turned flange 36 borne by the base of said outer cover 3, which flange is adapted to rest on the upper surface of inwardly turned flange 7 of the upper edge of receptacle 1. Flange 36 may be provided with a strengthening member 37 of any suitable material, preferably a wooden bar, said member being preferably supported by said flange by means of an extension of the material of said flange being bent around adjacent portions of said member, the end portion of said extension being bent against adiacent portionsof the inner surface of said outer cover 3 and said end portion may be soldered or otherwise secured to said inner surface, or it may be merely pressed up against said inner-surface. By this com a pin 46 borne by when lid 40 has been swung to open po-- 'cover in place upon. said flange 7 and said locking device may consist of sets of female members being adapted to engage in locking relation, forwardly or backwardly turned male members (not shown) depending from flange 36. I

An opening 39 is provided in the top of said outer cover, the edge of'said opening .being preferably finished by turning a portion .of the material adjacent to said opening upon itself as best seen in Fig. 3, said opening being adapted to permit lid 21 of inner cover 2 to be swung open therethrough as-best seen in Fig. 6. A lid 40 is provided for said opening 39, said lid being preferably swingingly to open and close over said opening.

Lid 40 may be provided with a supporting bar 44 (Fig. 6) having oneend in swiveled attachment with said lid and having a notch 45 at'its free end adapted to engage the edge of opening 39 sition, shown in Fig. 6, thus holding said lid in said open position. To close lid 40, notch 45 is lifted out of engagement with pin 46, whereupon bar 44 swinging on its swiveled end will slide along pin 46 as lid 40 is dropped to closed position. If desired, a number of notches such as notch 45 may be provided adapted to engage pin 46 andsupport lid 40 open inotherpositions than the upright position shown in Fig. 6. An open lid supporting device 47 similar to that just described may, also, be provided for lid 21, as shown in dotted outline in Fig. 6. Moreover, any well-known means may be substituted for that described for supported lids 40 and 21 in any desired open position.

A pair of gi'oove bearing members 51 may be provided, each of said members being borne by the inside of outer cover 3 adjacent to opposite sides of opening 39 and may extend from the portion adjacent to the head end of the coflin toward the foot end as far beyond the end of opening 39 as may be convenient for the purpose hereinafter mentioned. Groovebearing members 51 are adapted to support frame 52 of framed screen 53, each member 51 supporting an adjacent side of said frame in slidable engagement, said screen being adapted to protect plate of glass 22 from fly-specks or frombeing soiled by, the touch of hands or the like when said screen is slid in said groove-bearing members'to a position over said glass. When desired, said frame may be slid toward the foot of the coflin away from opening 39, thus uncovering said pane of glass, said groove-bearing members 51 being extended sufliciently in the direction of the foot of the coflin to permit this, as shown in Fig. 2.

For the purpose of providing an unbroken line in profile along the top of'a coffin closed with outer cover 3 thereon, spacing members 5st and 55 may be provided borne by adjacent portions of lid 40 and outer cover 3, respectively, said spacing members being adapted to maintain the profile line of the top or outer cover 3 in even alinement where the continuity of said line is broken by lid i0 and opening 39.

trips of wood 56 may be provided borne in any suitable manner by appropriate parts and surfaces of the inside of the coliin, such, for instance, as the insideof bottom 6 adjacent to side pieces i and end pieces 5, and the inside of outer cover 3, said strips being adapted to serve as convenient supporting means for attaching thereto, hanging, draping or otherwise disposing thereon the cloth lining, drapery, and the like, with which it may be desired to adorn the interior of said cofin.

In screwing inner cover in place upon receptacle 1 by means of screws 16, it may occur that a screw 16 is omitted, or it may occur that a threaded hole in the lower ledge of member 13 and member 15 supported thereby has been imperfectly made, or a screw 16 may be defective, or the like, thus allowing air to pass into the compartment formed by said inner cover and said receptacle, thus destroying the airtight feature of said compartment. To provide against this, a plate 57, preferably made of steel, mav be furnished, said plate being adapted to extend around the inside of receptacle 1 preferably supported in a diagonal position in its width between shoulder 9 and the angle or shoulder formed by the under surface of member 15 and the outer surface of the portion of depending flange let extending below said member 15. All joints or seams at the edges of said member being hermetically sealed, preferably by being soldered, or being otherwise made air-tight. As shown in Fig. 8, plate 57 set in as described with air-tight joints will form an air-tight barrier against leakage of air through holes for screws 16 or the like, thus insuring the air-tight feature of the coinpartment occupied by a corpse in the COlilH embodying the present invention. Member 57 serves, also,'to strengthen and brace the parts with which it is associated.

The metallic coilin herein described is preferably used in the following manner: Outer cover 1 and inner cover 2 being removed from receptacle 1, the corpse is placed within receptacle 1 and inner cover placed partment. Outer cover 3 is placed in position resting with flange 36 upon flange 7 and is held locked in that position by means of a locking device, part of which locking device is shownat 38 on Fig. 1. To permit the corpse to be viewed as it lies in state in said air-tight compartment, it will be necessary merely to raise lid 40,:1nd, if desired, remove same, then raise lid 21 through opening 39 of outer cover 3, screen 53 having been slid beyond said opening toward the foot end of the COffiIl to permit said lid 21 to be raised, and, if desired, lid 21 may, also, be removed entirely from the cofiin. Ehus the features and upper portion of the body of the corpse will be in view through plate of glass 22, but may not be touched. Should it be desired temporarily to screen the view of said corpse, this may be conveniently and quickly done by sliding screen 53 in place over plate of glass 22 whereby said view will not only be screened but, also, plate of glass 22 will be protected from fiy-specks or from being soiled by the touch of hands or otherwise. A great advantage of the coffin of this invention is that there is no long and tedious delay required to close same when it is desired to remove the coffin with the corpse therein from the chapel, residence, or other place where it has lain in state to be viewed by friends and relatives, the operation of closing same being quickly and simply accomplished without causing any disturbance in the following manner: Screen 53 having been slid out of the way toward thefoot of the coiiin, lid 21 of inner cover 2 is closed over opening 20 and locked with snap-latch 29, whereupon lid 40 of outer cover 3 is closed over opening 39 and locked with snap-latch 13.

It is, of course, understood that a cofiin embodying the present invention may have any desired shape.

Many changes in the details of construction and arrangement of parts may be made without departing from the nature and spirit of the present invention.

1 claim:

1. A colfin comprising a body having an open top, a cover adapted to close said body substantially air tight, a second cover adapt ed to cover the first named cover, said first named cover having a glazed opening, a lid for said opening removably hinged to the first named cover, said second cover having an opening to permit the said lid to be swung open therethrough, and a lid for the opening in the second named cover.

2. A metallic coflin comprising a body por tion the upper marginal edge portion of Which is bent inwardly to form a flange, an approximately Z-shaped lip member secured to the flange of the body portion and extending around the mouth of the body portion, an inner cover adapted to close the mouthof the body portion, a marginal flange integral with said cover and secured to the lip member with an air tight joint, said cover also having a glazed opening, pockets depending from the under face of the inner cover open only at the top, a lid having inturned marginal edge portions, hinge members secured to and depending'from said flange of the body portion, and a lid carried by said outer cover over the lid of the inner cover.

In testimony whereof I hereunto aflix my signature in the presence of two witnesses. ALFRED B. BENZING. Witnesses:


Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US5901862 *Jan 24, 1997May 11, 1999The York Group, Inc.Death care merchandise display unit
US5960966 *May 8, 1997Oct 5, 1999The York Group, Inc.Modular walls for death care merchandise display unit
US6105793 *Oct 22, 1998Aug 22, 2000The York Group, Inc.Death care merchandise display unit
US6343701Dec 18, 2000Feb 5, 2002The York Group, Inc.Death care merchandise display unit
U.S. Classification27/6, D99/1
Cooperative ClassificationA61G17/00