December 9, 2023 all-day

Dec 9, 1792. The first formal cremation of a human body in America took place near Charleston, SC. Henry Laurens, colonial statesman and signer of the Treaty of Paris ending the Revolutionary War, in his will provided: I do solemnly enjoin it on my son, as an indispensable duty, that as soon as he conveniently can, after my decease, he cause my body tobe wrapped in twelve yards of tow cloth and burned until it be entirely consumed, and then, collecting my bones, deposit them wherever he may think proper. Laurens died Dec 8, 1792, at his plantation and was cremated there.

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