US 3423864 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Jan. 28, 1969 c. L. WILSON I 3,423,864
GRAVE MARKER Filed March a, 1966 a 4 3 ,mmg; G
United States Patent 6 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE The grave marker disclosed herein employs a metal base which may be decorated but which is devoid of name and date indicia. A separate metal plate carrying name indicia is attached, by hidden fastening means, over an opening in the base. The opening has a length and breadth which are slightly smaller than the length and breedth respectively of the name plate so that the name plate overlaps the entire periphery of the opening. Thus, the division between the name plate and the base is substantially hidden and no debris collecting recesses are formed. The completed marker gives the desired appearance of being integrally formed.
This invention relates to grave markers, parts of which can be mass produced and stocked by a retailer instead of custom building each individual marker.
Among the several objects of the invention may be noted the provision of a grave marker in which the marker, except for indicia relating to a specific grave, can be mass produced, and the provision of such a marker including a separately manufactured portion bearing in dicia relating to the specific grave to be marked; the provision of a grave marker which can be purchased in quantitles by a retailer to obtain quantity discounts; the provision of a grave marker construction which permits simplified ordering of the marker from the manufacturer and thus reduces order errors and the number of resulting defective markers; the provision of a grave marker which can be sold on either a pre-need or immediate use basis and which can be repossessed without total loss of its value to the retailer; and the provision of a metal grave marker which can be economically manufactured and may be repaired at low cost. Other objects and features will be in part apparent and in part pointed out hereinafter.
The invention accordingly comprises the constructions hereinafter described, the scope of the invention being indicated in the following claims.
In the accompanying drawings, in which several of various possible embodiments of the invention are illustrated,
FIG. 1 is an exploded view of a memorial grave marker of this invention;
FIG. 2 is an enlarged fragmentary section taken along line 22 of FIG. 1; and
FIG. 3 is an exploded view of a modified form of the invention.
Corresponding reference characters indicate corresponding parts throughout the several views of the drawings.
Referring now to FIGS. 1 and 2 of the drawings, a grave marker of this invention is shown generally to comprise a base 1 and a name plate 3 which is positioned over a portion of the upper surface 5 of base 1. Fasteners generally designated 7 in FIG. 2 afiix the plate 3 to the base.
More specifically, the base 1 is a one-piece metal base preferably made from bronze by casting, forging, etc. The base is positionable at the head or foot of a grave and it is fixed to a base pad (not shown) by any of the customary arrangements. The base is shown as having two large generally rectangular openings 9 which together are only slightly smaller in length and breadth than the name plate 3. The number and shape of these openings can be varied as described. Openings 9 are separated by an integral crosspiece or bar 10 which strengthens the central portion of the base. There are three small holes 11 through base 1 between and adjacent to the ends of openings 9. Holes 11 are adapted to receive the fasteners 7.
Base 1 is devoid of all name and date indicia normally appearing on grave markers although certain ornamental indicia 13 representing cut stone, flower patterns, leaf designs, or other desired patterns may be provided in the surface 5 at the time the base is formed. An opening 15 is optionally provided at the upper center portion of the base for mounting a vase assembly (not shown) for holding flowers.
The plate 3 is preferably a metal plate made from the same metal or metal alloy as the base 1. This plate may be cast, forged or formed by other suitable processes. It is somewhat larger in length and breadth respectively than the combined openings 9 in the base, so that when its lower surface 17 is positioned on the upper surface 5 of base 1, the plate contacts and overlaps upper surface 5 around the entire margins or peripheries of openings 9 and entirely covers openings 9. Thus, no debris collecting recesses are formed. The upper surface 19 of plate 3 has indicia 21 formed in relief on it when the plate is formed. If desired, indicia 21 can be formed by engraving the plate. The indicia 21 is the family surname. Other indicia can be formed on scroll-like end portions 23 of plate 3. The indicia on end portions 23 can be, for example, emblems of fraternal or religious societies or orders, military ranks and organizations, etc.
At the ends of the scroll-like portions of plate 3 there are rolls 25. The rolls may be hollow, as shown or they may be solid metal. Tapped or threaded holes 27 are provided in bosses 29 in the rolls. These holes face downwardly toward the upper surface 5 of base 1 so that they are hidden when the plate is mounted on the base.
The fastener 7 shown at the right in FIG. 2 comprises a threaded stud 31 which projects through the small holes 11 in base 1 and into hole 27. Stud 31 receives a nut 35 to hold the plate 3 firmly mounted on base 1. The other end of plate 3 is affixed to the plate in a similar manner. The central portion of plate 3 is secured to the base by a stud similar to the one shown at 31 which projects from the back face 17 of the plate so that it passes through the hole 11 between openings 9 and receives a nut 35. By mounting the plate on the base in this manner, the fastening means are entirely hidden, the division between the plate 3 and the base 1 is substantially hidden and the grave marker appears to have been integrally formed.
The marker illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 2 is intended to mark two separate graves. For this reason indicia 21 on plate 3 is only the family surname. Two cast metal name plates 37 and 39 are provided and have indicia 41 in relief on the upper surface. Indicia 41 on each plate 37, 39 preferably indicates the given name and the dates of birth and death. Plates 37, 39 are attached to base 1 by fastening means shown in FIG. 2 to comprise screws 43 which extend through holes 45 in plates 37 and 39 and through mating holes or openings 47 in base 1. If desired, plates 37, 39 can be attached to base 1 by hidden fasteners such as those shown in FIG. 2 for afiixing plate 3 to base 1. However, by using screws 43 the base 1 does not have to be lifted or moved from its installed position when the plates 37, 39 are aifixed to it.
Since the base portion of the memorials do not contain indicia relating to a specific grave, they can be formed for example by casting in large quantities from a single mold without changing the mold. For the same reason the base portion of the marker can be supplied in quantities to a cemetery or other retailer. Since the retailer can purchase the base 1 in large quantities, he can obtain quantity discounts not obtainable by retailers of one-piece markers in which the name is formed when the single piece of metal is cast. Also, mass production of base 1 lowers the unit cost of the markers to the manufacturer so that higher profits and/or lower prices are realized. The grave marker can be economically manufactured even though separate name plates are used due to the provision of the two openings 9 which reduce the quantity of metal required for base 1 by an amount which approximates the quantity of metal required for manufacturing plate 3. This economy is realized without significantly adversely affecting strength of the base 1 due to the provision of crosspiece or bar 1 separating the two openings 9.
When a grave marker is purchased by a family, the retailer need only order plates 3, 37 and 39 in order to complete the grave marker. These plates are small, easily produced and can be supplied more quickly than one-piece markers requiring the given and surnames to be formed as part of the single unit. Moreover, the order form used by the retailer for plates 3, 37 and 39 is simpler, thereby reducing orders errors and the number of resulting defective markers. However, if an order error is made then only a small, inexpensive plate need be replaced, not an entire marker. The grave marker is particularly suitable for sale on a pre-need basis since the purchaser can select the desired design and style and have it available for use except for the addition of the name plate containing the date of death. In the event a grave marker is sold on an installment payment pasis and there is a default in payments, the marker can be repossessed and the base portion resold for another grave, whereas one-piece cast markers are useless (except as scrap metal) if repossessed. A grave marker of this invention is easily and inexpensively repaired since if a part is broken only that part need be replaced, not the entire marker.
A modified grave marker of this invention is illustrated in FIG. 3 of the drawings. The marker of FIG. 3 comprises a base 51 having openings 53 therethrough similar to the openings 9 previously described. There is a border of indicia 55 in the base 51. A hole 57 is provided in the base for a flower vase (not shown). There are three small holes 59 in base 51 for receiving fasteners. Base 51 is substantially the same as base 1 previously described except that it is somewhat smaller in size and it is intended to mark a single grave.
A name plate 61 is provided and contains on its upper surface 63 indicia 65 indicating the given and surname, dates of birth and death, and may further include emblems of fraternal, religious or other orders or societies. Plate 61 is attached to plate 51 by suitable hidden fasteners such as those shown at 7 in FIG. 2. Nuts 67 are threaded on the fasteners projecting from plate 61 through the holes 59 in the base. In other respects, the grave marker of FIG. 3 is the same as that previously described.
It is to be understood that blind or hidden fastening means other than those specifically shown herein may be used in the practice of this invention.
In view of the above, it will be seen that the several objects of the invention are achieved asd other advantageous results attained.
As various changes could be made in the above constructions without departing from the scope of the invention, it is intended that all matter contained in the above description or shown in the accompanying drawings shall be interpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.
What is claimed is:
1. A memorial grave marker comprising a metal base devoid of all name and date indicia, a separate metal plate having an upper surface on which at least name indicia is formed, the length and breadth of said plate being substantially less than the length and breadth of said cast base, said base having an opening therethrough having a length and breadth which are slightly smaller than the length and breadth respectively of said plate, and hidden fastening means for affixing said plate to said base to overlap the entire periphery of said opening whereby the division between said plate and said base is substantially hidden and n0 debris collecting recesses are formed.
2. A grave marker as set forth in claim 1 wherein the fastening means comprises threaded studs projecting from the back surface of the plate through the base, and nuts on the studs holding the plate on the base.
3. A grave marker as set forth in claim 1 further comprising a second separate metal plate having an upper surface on which at least additional name indicia is formed, and fastening means for affixing the second plate to said base adjacent the first plate.
4. A grave marker as set forth in claim 1 wherein the name indicia on said plate is a surname, and there are two separate metal plates each of which has indicia on an upper surface indicating a given name, and means fastening the last-named plates on the base.
5. A grave marker as set forth in claim 1 wherein the indicia on the plate is in relief and includes a given name, a surname and two year dates.
6. A grave marker as set forth in claim 1 wherein said opening covered by said plate is symmetrically divided into at least two smaller openings by a reinforcing member integrally formed with said metal plate.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,669,782 5/1928 Risser 40'-125 2,148,660 2/1939 Sweeney 40-124.5 2,234,369 3/1941 Davis 40124.5
EUGENE R. CAPOZIO, Primary Examiner.
W. J. CONTRERAS, Assistant Examiner.