Funeral societies were established by African Americans in Charleston for several purposes. The first was to provide financial assistance to members of the society for funeral services of family members. The second was to maintain and regulate the society's cemetery property and grave sites. The third was to create a symbolic arrangement between the dead and living: the living maintained the graves to keep the memory of the dead alive, and this action reaffirmed the life of the living.
|Unity and Fellowship Society|
Morris Brown Cemetery
|Brown Fellowship Society|
Upside-Down Flower Pot
An example of the tradition of burial with personal possessions (or other household items). This reflects the belief that the items are there for the spirit to use in the after-life.