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Glossary of Funeral & Cremation Terms

Courtesy of the California Department of Consumer Affairs, Cemetery and Funeral Bureau

Alternative Container: An unfinished wood box or other non-metal receptacle without ornamentation, often made of fiberboard, pressed wood or composition materials, and generally lower in cost than caskets.

Casket/Coffin: A box or chest for burying remains.

Cemetery Property: A grave, crypt or niche.

Cemetery Services: Opening and closing graves, crypts or niches; setting grave liners and vaults; setting markers; and long-term maintenance of cemetery grounds and facilities.

Columbarium: A structure with niches (small spaces) for placing cremated remains in urns or other approved containers. It may be outdoors or part of a mausoleum.

Cremation: Exposing remains and the container encasing them to extreme heat and flame and processing the resulting bone fragments to a uniform size and consistency.

Crypt: A space in a mausoleum or other building to hold cremated or whole remains.

Disposition: The placement of cremated or whole remains in their final resting place.

Endowment Care Fund: Money collected from cemetery property purchasers and placed in trust for the maintenance and upkeep of the cemetery.

Entombment: Burial in a mausoleum. Funeral Ceremony A service commemorating the deceased, with the body present.

Funeral Services: Services provided by a funeral director and staff, which may include consulting with the family on funeral planning; transportation, shelter, refrigeration and embalming of remains; preparing and filing notices; obtaining authorizations and permits; and coordinating with the cemetery, crematory or other third parties.

Funeral Planning Society: See Memorial Society.

Grave: A space in the ground in a cemetery for the burial of remains.

Grave Liner or A concrete: cover that fits over a casket in a grave. Some liners cover tops and sides of the casket. Others, referred to as vaults, completely enclose the casket. Grave liners minimize ground settling.

Graveside Service: A service to commemorate the deceased held at the cemetery before burial.

Interment: Burial in the ground, inurnment or entombment.

Inurnment: The placing of cremated remains in an urn.

Mausoleum: A building in which remains are buried or entombed.

Memorial Service: A ceremony commemorating the deceased, without the body present.

Memorial Society: An organization that provides information about funerals and disposition, but is not part of the state-regulated funeral industry.

Niche: A space in a columbarium, mausoleum or niche wall to hold an urn.

Urn: A container to hold cremated remains. It can be placed in a columbarium or mausoleum, or buried in the ground.

Vault: A grave liner that completely encloses a casket.

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Personalization
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Nearly all of our products can be personalized. From traditional engravings, to photo and artwork engravings, to cast bronze plaques, you'll find the perfect solution for your personal needs.

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Cremation Urn Sizing
What size urn do I need?

One pound of body weight will yield just less than 1 cubic inch of ash. Assume for shopping purposes that: 1 pound body weight = 1 cubic inch ash.

Cremation urn item descriptions list the size of the urn in Cubic Inches. If you know the weight of the deceased - then you know the size of the urn you need. Approx Weight = Approx Size.

Easy example: A cremated 100 pound person will yield almost 100 cubic inches of ashes. So, if 1 pound = 1 cubic inch then this person would need an urn that is approximately 90-100 cubic inches or larger.

Keepsake Jewelry is designed to hold a trace amount of ashes, similar to the size of the head of a sewing pin.

Full cremation urn & jewelry sizing details...