Why Do Hearses Have S-Shaped Scrolls Where the Back Windows Should Be?

October 7, 2015
1 Comments
Advertisement

Article originally appeared on Mental Floss

Those diagonal irons on the rear quarter panel of hearses are called “landau bars.” They are purely decorative today, but they once served a purpose and are now in place as a nod to history.

The landau carriage was invented in Germany in the mid-18th century. Lightweight and suspended on elliptical springs, this four-in-hand coach was a precursor to today’s convertible cars in that it had a collapsible roof. The soft folding top on the original model was divided into two sections, front and rear, which were latched in the center. An elongated external hinge mechanism was necessary to support the folding roof, and since the pricey landau was designed as a luxury vehicle for the upper classes, designers added the elegant S-shaped scroll to the utilitarian hinges to make them more aesthetically appealing.

Advertisement

Early horse-drawn hearses were carriages that often featured fully functional landau bars. Before World War II, American automobile hearses borrowed the landau bar flourish as an homage and an attempt to add a touch of Old-World “class.” Over the years the landau bars became so ingrained in the public’s mind as a symbol of a funeral car that most hearse manufacturers still tack them onto their limousines as a matter of tradition.

CDFuneralNews

CDFuneralNews

ConnectingDirectors.com is the leading online daily publication for funeral professionals with a reader base of over 45,000 of the most elite and forward-thinking professionals in the profession. With ConnectingDirectors.com we have created a global community through an online platform allowing funeral professionals to Stay Current. Stay Informed and Stay Elite.
CDFuneralNews
Advertisement

You may be interested

Studio Nienke Hoogvliet Designs Cremation Urn Using Plastic Derived From Wastewater
Cremation
163 views
Cremation
163 views

Studio Nienke Hoogvliet Designs Cremation Urn Using Plastic Derived From Wastewater

CDFuneralNews - December 14, 2017

Originally Published on Dezeen Studio Nienke Hoogvliet has harnessed a method of transforming wastewater into bioplastic, and used it to create a sustainable cremation…

ICCFA, Wilbert and Pierce Mortuary Colleges Partner to Offer Live Streaming Cremation Training
Funeral Industry Press Releases
80 views
Funeral Industry Press Releases
80 views

ICCFA, Wilbert and Pierce Mortuary Colleges Partner to Offer Live Streaming Cremation Training

CDFuneralNews - December 14, 2017

STERLING, VA  – The International Cemetery, Cremation and Funeral Association has partnered with Wilbert and Pierce Mortuary Colleges to bring…

American Funeral Director Honors ‘Funeral Director of the Year’
Funeral Industry Press Releases
95 views
Funeral Industry Press Releases
95 views

American Funeral Director Honors ‘Funeral Director of the Year’

CDFuneralNews - December 14, 2017

WALL, N.J. — Danny Jefferson, location manager at Pierce Jefferson Funeral & Cremation Services in Kernersville, North Carolina, has been…

Comments