Cemetery Monument Information and Frequently Asked Questions

Cemetery monument information and some answers to frequently asked questions. We encourage you to visit with our staff about other questions you may have.

How long should I wait before purchasing a monument?

Usually a family will try to purchase a monument within one year of the date of death. Most families start this process within one month of the death. The grieving process is different for each individual and only you know when you are emotionally ready.

What do I need to know about purchasing a monument?

Most people have never bought a monument before. Schlitzberger & Daughters Monuments and Caskets will have all the information you will need to know for this process.

Currently in the United States, there are more than 160,000 cemeteries; each with varying regulations, restrictions and requirements. No comprehensive data base of cemetery policies, restrictions and guidelines exists. It is therefore impossible for Schlitzberger & Daughters or for any other memorial retailer to sell you a memorial online and assure you that it will meet your local cemetery’s requirements. This dilemma highlights the consumer’s need to work with an experienced, reputable company to insure that whatever monument is designed and purchased will not be rejected by the local cemetery board. Schlitzberger & Daughters have this experience and expertise.

In addition to the technical impossibility of online selling due to varying cemetery requirements, standards and regulations, there is another important consideration – customer care. There are noted online booksellers who provide great pricing, a wide selection and exceptional customer service. But a memorial is not a book. There are many considerations when designing and crafting a memorial. We at Schlitzberger & Daughters have certified memorialists who are passionate about providing our customers with personalized, quality care. We choose not to sacrifice this value for mere expediency.

What are monuments made of?

Monuments are usually made of granite, marble or bronze. Granite is the most common material. It is available in many colors and is the most durable of the choices. Marble monuments are usually white in color. The surface will wear away over time due to the environment. Bronze is a brown man made metal used most often for flat markers and statues.

What are typical monument styles?

With today’s technology a memorial artist can create a variety of monument styles, shapes and sizes.

  1. Flush markers – these are placed flush with the ground.
  2. Bevel markers – these are not very high above the ground, with the back of the stone being a few inches higher than the front.
  3. Slant markers – these stand typically 16 or so inches above the ground with the back of the stone straight vertical, and the front sloping at about a 45 degree angle.
  4. Traditional upright monument – these are typically a two piece memorial consisting of the monument and a base that it is attached to, or a one piece monument (called a monolith) with a portion of it buried into the ground.
Are mausoleums an option?

More and more people are choosing a mausoleum today than any time before for remembering someone in a very special way. Mausoleums can be a building with stained glass windows and a bronze door (called a walk in mausoleum). They can also be a smaller above ground building that has no windows or doors (called a crypt) where the person is entombed. You will find that if you choose to explore the option of a mausoleum, you will find that they are relatively affordable in today’s market.

What about personalizing a monument?

How would you like to remember the person being memorialized? Did that person have a hobby, a favorite poem or favorite place? Today’s technology allows monuments to be shaped in any form. Techniques such as sandblasting, shaped carving, sculpture and etching allow scenes and portraits to be placed directly on the memorial, thus enabling you to tell the story of your loved one’s life. Your memorial artist is most experienced in helping you individualize your memorial.

What other products can be added to the monument?

There are many products to choose from such as vases, candles and photographs, to name a few.

How much does a monument cost?

Price depends upon the material and its quality, shape, size, design, lettering, and personalization of the monument. Prices will range from a few hundred dollars to thousands of dollars, depending upon the various styles of memorials. The memorial artists at Schlitzberger & Daughters Monuments and Caskets can help you choose a memorial that remembers your loved one and fits your budget.

What are the exact dimensions of the memorials you are comparing?

Often companies will sell a monument as a “Double” or “Single” size. Please check to make sure you are comparing apples to apples. Ask for the sizes to be transcribed into inches.

What are the credentials of the company you are buying from?

How long has the business been owned by the current owners? Are they members of their local state monument builder’s associate? Are they active in the Monument Builders of North America? Are they Certified Memorialists? If they claim to be, ask to see the documentation or do the research on your own. A quick Google search will tell you lots about your potential company.

Are the memorials double processed or single processed?

On many polished memorials you will notice a light, unpolished block, or “panel,” around the names. The polish has been sandblasted off to better read the names. There are two ways to achieve this, Single Process and Double Process. Single Process engraving is quicker, though undesirable. In this process, the letters are deeply sandblasted into the polish first, and then the polish is sandblasted off, on top of the letters, to create the panel. Double Process engraving is achieved by first creating the panel through sandblasting, and then sandblasting a second time, deep cutting the letters. This leaves the lettering with crisp clean edges and far more visibility. Double processing deep cut lettering and designs creates better quality memorials. {See the picture of Westbury for an example of Double Processing vs. Single Processing.}

westbury

How deep is the lettering carved into the stone?

The “V cut” method is always the most desirable for most stone colors. In other words, the stone is cut down to the point where it actually looks like the letter “V” in a cross section. Some companies will just scratch the surface of the stone and then use a black paint to make it appear deeper. After a few years, this paint fades, and the lettering is no longer as visible as it was. Ask to see examples of their cutting depth.

If you purchase from an online company, what type of recourse do you have if the memorial arrives wrong?

If you purchase from an online company and the memorial arrives wrong, you usually do not have any recourse. Granite weighs between 250 and 300 lbs. per square foot, and shipping it back is not usually an option.

We have been here since 1961, and we have a storefront available for customers to visit. We do not sandblast a memorial until the customer has signed their approval on a scale layout.

Only the Best Granites

We use only the best granites to design and build the finest memorials.

Award Winning Designs

Nationally certified and winner of many prestigious awards

Customer Service

Personalized and attentive customer service is our trademark

Direct to Public

We offer our products and services direct to the public at reasonable prices.

“My experience with your company was amazing. You put me at peace throughout the entire process and I knew my mother’s memorial was in good hands. I had an idea of what I wanted the memorial to look like and I was able to tell the designer directly and she came up with something beautiful that very much reflected my mother’s personality and class. I so appreciate your company and the kindness and great customer service that I received from all employees. I will recommend your to friends and family in the future.”

Schlitzberger & Daughters Client

Let Us Help You

If you have questions please feel free to call or email us.