Bowerman open house SundayPublished 9:37pm Wednesday, July 24, 2013
Jim and Karen Allred invite the Dowagiac and Sister Lakes communities to attend an open house Sunday from 3 to 5 p.m. to see the new look inside and out of the Bowerman Funeral Home in Eau Claire.
If you can’t remember what the 90-year-old funeral home at 6635 E. Main St. looked like before, photos of the March to June renovation are posted at www.bowermanfuneral.com.
Karen said the funeral chapel has been refurbished, including the addition of two large arched windows to let light brighten the dark space.
The exterior boasts new siding and stonework.
The Allreds, who also own and operate Allred Funeral Home in Berrien Springs, have owned Bowerman for more than 25 years, since Jan. 1, 1987.
They are its only owners outside the Bowerman family.
Francis and Leona Bowerman established the funeral home in 1923 and passed ownership to their son and his wife, the late Richard and Wanda Bowerman.
“We have always dedicated our business to providing personalized service with compassionate concern to those facing the pain of loss,” Jim, a funeral director, said. “We cordially invite our neighbor communities to join us in celebrating our 90 years of service.”
Funeral history in the Berrien County village goes back even farther. The first was established in conjunction with a furniture store under a different name in the 1880s by Herman Esalhorst.
Bowermans bought the business in 1923 and, about a year later, opened the town’s first funeral chapel at the corner of Berrien and Linn streets.
Prior to that, funerals took place either in the home of the deceased or in a church.
On Dec. 15, 1930, Bowerman opened his new, modern chapel at the current location on Main Street in a building which had for more than 30 years been the home and office of Dr. J.H. Herring, who bought the residence from his father-in-law, F.M. Hinkle, village postmaster.
The Bowermans semi-retired in 1961.
The Allreds worked with the Bowermans for more than 10 years before buying the business.