Lafferty Funeral Home

From Ohio History Central

In 1848, William Voris Lafferty founded the Lafferty Funeral Home in West Union, Ohio. The Lafferty family has run the funeral home since that time. It is one of the oldest funeral homes in the United States operated by a single family.

William Lafferty originally was a cabinet and furniture maker in West Union. Because he commonly also built coffins, he eventually expanded his business to include funeral services. Lafferty's son, Theodore Lafferty, and his grandson, Latour Lafferty, eventually became involved in the business.

In the twentieth century, James William Lafferty, the founder's great grandson, acquired the Lafferty Funeral Home. He also began to collect materials related to mortuary practices. James Lafferty died in 1987. To honor him, his family opened the William Lafferty Memorial Funeral and Carriage Collection. The museum is dedicated to preserving the tools and artifacts of the funeral profession. Established in 1994, the museum is located in West Union.

James Lafferty's son and grandson have both worked in the Lafferty Funeral Home. They are the fifth and sixth generations of Laffertys to do so.