Source Information Pennsylvania, U.S., Oliver H. Bair Funeral Records Indexes, 1920-1980 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2012.
Original data: Oliver H. Bair Funeral Records. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Historical Society of Pennsylvania.

About Pennsylvania, U.S., Oliver H. Bair Funeral Records Indexes, 1920-1980

This database contains cards recoding names of deceased and billing information for funerals handled by the Oliver H. Bair Company.

Historical Background

Oliver H. Bair opened his first funeral home in Philadelphia in 1878. In 1907, the company built a five-story funeral home at 1820 Chestnut Street that eventually found its way onto the National Register of Historic Places. As the business grew, the company opened other branches and bought other funeral homes, and this database includes records from around the Philadelphia area and into New Jersey.

What You Can Find in the Records

These records make up an index to funerals handled by the Oliver H. Bair funeral homes. The majority are cards with the name of the deceased and billing information. However, the cards can contain other details, including

  • names of people being charged for the funeral
  • addresses
  • family members and indications of family relationships (niece, widow, son, etc.)
  • place of burial
  • dates

Records are arranged alphabetically the person charged for the services. Occasionally cards were misfiled, for example, John Smith may be filed under "John", rather than "Smith". It is recommended that you check both letters for the first and last name when browsing.

These index cards point to a larger packet of information that is available through the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. Once you find an item of interest, you can request reproductions of the material through the society's online shop.

You can learn more about the Historical Society of Pennsylvania and their collections and services on their website.