Brown-Service Funeral Homes

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Brown-Service Funeral Homes Company is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Liberty National Life Insurance Company which provided burial services and merchandise to holders of Liberty National's burial insurance policies. The company, which had formerly provided home services insurance itself as the Brown-Service Insurance Company[1], was acquired in 1944 with the purchase of a $5 million share from principal owner Rufus Lackey. Thomas Boulware III was head of the division for 40 years.

In addition to managing burial policies, Brown-Service manufactured caskets. The company contracted with independent funeral directors, often acquiring their funeral homes and leasing them back. Clients using affiliated parlors received more complete services than those using non-affiliated parlors.

In the company's later years, it sold off many of its 59 funeral home properties to national service providers.

Birmingham area locations

Ridout's-Brown Service Valley Chapel
Ridout's-Brown Service Elmwood Chapel

Former area locations


  • Samford, Frank P., Jr (1985) Torchmark Corporation: History of a New Company. Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press
  • Edgar H. BATTLE, d/b/a Edgar H. Battle Funeral Home, et al. v. Liberty National Life Insurance Co. et al. (April 25, 1974) United States Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit. 493 F.2d 39, 1974-1 Trade Cases 75,030
  • Hansen, Jeff (February 29, 2004) "FTC's funeral rule aids planning in time of grief." The Birmingham News