Jason Ryan Engler is a Cremationist and Cremation Historian in Northwest Arkansas. In 2002 he began researching the history of the Missouri Crematory Association and after countless hours of research and numerous visits to the historic facility, he has become the expert on the history of the beautiful structure. His articles and lectures regarding the history of Cremation and the Crematories of St. Louis have been featured throughout the United States. He is a practicing Funeral Director, having pursued the respectable profession since the age of twelve.
Body to the Purifying Flame: A History of the Missouri Crematory Association, Saint Louis, Missouriby Jason Engler
In the late 1870's a group of forward-thinking St. Louisans began gathering to discuss the idea of constructing a building and apparatus to perform Cremations in their city. These friends of Cremation organized into what would become the Missouri Crematory Association, which was incorporated in 1885. The Missouri Crematory was completed in 1888 and was the tenth modern Crematory in the United States. The beautiful Romanesque structure still stands today with its imposing presence. Its rich history, unique architecture and unmistakable place in the history of the city of St. Louis have made this enigmatic structure a monument to those who have been entrusted to its care, and to the Cremation movement in the Midwest.
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