JF Ptak Science Books Quick Post
This is the 12th installment of a new series United States Patent Reports on electrical quackery and unsubstantiated bric--a-brac from the newly-electric world of the period of 1870-1900.
This extraordinary device was an experiment in the further purification of the American way of death. The casket was fitted with an electrical heating element which--after viewing of The Departed was completed--would be activated to heat a soft metal, which would seal the casket. After this, the casket would be pumped to "form a vacuum" so that there would be no further deterioration of the deceased. There seem to have been at least a dozen different designs for these caskets from 1880 to 1950 or so, each building on some hope and prayer for the benefits of the dead not deteriorating, for whatever that was worth.