The History of Embalming in the Funeral Industry


About the course
This course is presented in two parts. The first part of the course discusses the history of embalming, introducing significant practitioners and authors, the invention of innovative devices and techniques, and the sub-discipline of restorative techniques. The second part of the course discusses possible risks of embalming, including those associated with formaldehyde exposure highlighted in recent research findings, and the hidden danger of arsenic in our old cemeteries.

Learning Outcomes

  • Discuss some of the reasons different cultures have embalmed their dead.
  • Describe the process and materials used to embalm the dead in ancient Egypt.
  • Discuss the historical changes affecting embalming policy from the Dark Ages through the Renaissance.
  • Explain how the Civil War changed the history of embalming.
  • List three noted early American embalmers and their contributions to the field.
  • Name three inventions that significantly changed embalming techniques in the 1800s and 1900s.
  • Name the first well-known “demi surgeon” whose restorative techniques were a sensation in the early 1900s.

How to Receive Credit

  • Read the entire course online or in print.
  • Answer the final examination questions at the end of the course. A passing grade of 75% is required. Test questions link content to learning objectives as a method to enhance individualized learning and material retention.
  • Provide required personal information and payment information.
  • Complete the mandatory course evaluation.
  • Print your Certificate of Completion.

Resolution of Conflict of Interest
Colibri Healthcare, LLC implemented mechanisms prior to the planning and implementation of the continuing education activity, to identify and resolve conflicts of interest for all individuals in a position to control content of the course activity.

Sponsorship/Commercial Support and Non-Endorsement
It is the policy of Colibri not to accept commercial support. Furthermore, commercial interests are prohibited from distributing or providing access to this activity to learners.

The information provided in this activity is for continuing education purposes only and is not meant to substitute for the independent medical judgment of a healthcare provider relative to diagnostic and treatment options of a specific patient’s medical condition.
©2023: All Rights Reserved. Materials may not be reproduced without the expressed written permission or consent of Colibri Healthcare, LLC. The materials presented in this course are meant to provide the consumer with general information on the topics covered. The information provided was prepared by professionals with practical knowledge of the areas covered. It is not meant to provide medical, legal, or professional advice. Colibri Healthcare, LLC recommends that you consult a medical, legal, or professional services expert licensed in your state. Colibri Healthcare, LLC has made all reasonable efforts to ensure that all content provided in this course is accurate and up to date at the time of printing but does not represent or warrant that it will apply to your situation nor circumstances and assumes no liability from reliance on these materials. Quotes are collected from customer feedback surveys. The models are intended to be representative and not actual customers.

Colibri Healthcare, LLC is approved by the Academy of Professional Funeral Service Practice (APFSP) (Provider #1046). APFSP also approves all funeral courses. Many states accept APFSP approved courses.