Archiver > NEW-ZEALAND > 2011-07 > 1310709567

From: Ainslie <>
Subject: Re: [nz] Burials - bodies on ice.
Date: Fri, 15 Jul 2011 15:29:27 +0930
References: <> <> <AF00D8EAD9EB4AF19EB1D9DA9494B337@claireac3e9bca> <> <002601cc42a7$25b82ae0$712880a0$><001701cc42b0$6405c9c0$2c115d40$>
In-Reply-To: <001701cc42b0$6405c9c0$2c115d40$>

Hi Mary,

A final (?) comment - it may also have depended what the cause of death
may have been. If an infectious condition then maybe the family were
afraid of it spreading.

As for the suggestion of it being something to do with hot weather -
I've experienced some fairly hot summer temperatures in parts of the
South Island of NZ which would equal temperatures here in Australia
during some of our heatwaves. The very thought of an open coffin with a
body lying-in-state in the front parlour certainly doesn't sound too

Its not too many years ago when the only means of keeping food fresh was
in an ice-chest. There was a delivery every day (in heatwaves) from
The Iceman, who would arrive at the house and come to the back door with
a huge block of ice wrapped in hessian which was put into the top of an
ice- chest - the fore-runner of the refrigerator.
We stayed with a family in Melbourne in 1950 whose only means of keeping
food cold was one of these ice-chests.
I'm assuming undertakers would have a similar means of keeping bodies
(on ice) otherwise same day burials would no doubt have been quite common.
Once the Last Rites had been accomplished then there would be no reason
to delay the burial.


This thread: