Thursday, March 25, 2010

Fear Factor

In the mid 1880s, until about 1910, undertakers sold Grave Alarm devices.These were elaborate rope-and-bell/pulley arrangements allowing those buried alive to summon help.The rope was placed into the hand of the (supposed) deceased, and it wound through a series of tubes to the bell outside the grave.

5 comments:

froggy said...

I have an old community cookbook that belonged to my grandmother, who got married to her soldier boy husband just after WWI. One of the ads in the booklet was for a funeral home which employed a female mortician to handle women who had passed over.

Laynie said...

..in the 30-or-so years it was used, would be interesting to know if anyone was ever saved by the bell.

#Debi said...

That's where the phrase came from!

Laynie said...

Debi, I surmised that it was either a burial or boxing phrase. I was wondering if there are any documented cases of it ever saving the life of someone buried alive.

#Debi said...

I don't know, but it's a fun fact, dontcha think?