Our History

At George Funeral Home & Cremation Center, we have provided customizable memorial services for over 100 years. Personalized service options allow you to honor your loved ones in a way that is both meaningful and healing. We hope to provide support and caring while delivering memorial services that celebrate life and help families find the peace they deserve.
If you’re seeking an honorable celebration of life in Aiken and the surrounding areas, we invite you to learn more about where we came from and the dedicated people behind our work.

Mr. D.M. George

Our Founder

aLBERT gEORGE 

Son of D.M. George

Original Location On Richland Avenue

George Funeral Home & Cremation Center in 1946


A HISTORY OF CARING


George Funeral Home was founded in 1920 by Mr. D.M. George. Mr. George worked for Powell Hardware, which was located on Laurens St. in downtown Aiken. In addition to hardware items, Powell's sold coffins and tombstones. Jason V. and Isaiah George, younger brothers of Colonel Hagood George and uncles, invented a process called artificial stone, a process of making gravestones out of cement. D.M. wanted to start a business dedicated to handling funeral services. Sometime around 1913-1914, he left his family to attend the Cincinnati School of Embalming. They purchased a house on Richland Ave. between Newberry and Laurens Streets. George Funeral Home was one of the first funeral homes in South Carolina (License #4).

D.M. had three sons; Albert, Edward and Otto. All three sons were involved in the business, but it was Albert, a decorated WW II veteran, who was the most active in the funeral home.

The Georges ran the only funeral home in Aiken and in 1948, they outgrew the Richland Ave. location and purchased the current building at 211 Park Ave.

The home was owned by the Stevenson family prior to the war and was named Deodora. The house burned and was sold to Capt. and Mrs. Bell. The Bells rebuilt and operated a boarding house called The Bell House. The house was later sold to the Snow family and was part of the famous "Winter Colony" of Aiken. The Snow family was from the north, and they came to Aiken to escape the harsh, northern winters. The house is over 8,500 square feet and has three floors and a full basement. It contained two kitchens for servants to prepare meals for family and guests.

At the start of WW II, the Snow family allowed the house to be used by the Army as a lodge for traveling soldiers and government workers. Entertainers would visit to put on performances for the soldiers, and Jimmy Stewart did a watercolor drawing of one of the many beautiful sitting rooms, complete with fireplace and bookshelves. That picture still hangs in the funeral home today.

The funeral home is known for its many antiques. Back during the 1940s, many people traded furniture and valuables, instead of paying for a funeral. One of the lovely antiques acquired this way is an old grandfather clock, built in England sometime between 1750 and 1780. It still keeps perfect time today. Other noteworthy pieces are a large cabinet made in France during the 1850s and a beautiful European chandelier from the early 1900s.

The George family began a tradition of distributing calendars each year. The subject of their calendars was a family of five girls by the last name of Dionne. Each year the entire community could see how the girls had grown since the last year.

D.M. George died in 1949, and his son Albert ran the business until his death in 1976. The business was then entrusted to Joseph McClellan, a longtime employee of the George family. McClellan operated the funeral home as the sole shareholder. Upon McClellan's retirement, the business was sold to Ray and Alicia Visotski. In the summer of 2000, George Funeral Home became the first funeral home in Aiken to operate its own crematory.

In 2018, George was bought back to being a locally owned and operated funeral home.

Notwithstanding the tangible expansions and changes of time, the commitment established by the George family in 1920 remains the same. Over 100 years after it was founded, George Funeral Home is still caring for families and celebrating lives.


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Our Staff's Dedication to Respectful Care


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Scott Ayers

Licensed funeral director
(SC 2154)


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Erin Franklin

Licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer
(SC 3232)
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DR. CHRIS MASTERS
CHAPLAIN - GRIEF THERAPIST
(NON-LICENSED)

Dr. Chris Masters is a beloved pastor to many in the Aiken Community. He has served in numerous capacities in his years of ministry including being a Coach/Consultant for the South Carolina Baptist State Convention, Associate Dean, Covington Theological Seminary, Eastern SC, Professor of Biblical Counseling and New Testament- Convington Theological Seminary, Eastern SC

He has served as Associate Pastor/Senior Adults/Pastoral Care and Counseling Millbrook Baptist Church, Senior Pastor Langley First Baptist Church and recently retired from full time ministry as the Senior Pastor Shiloh Baptist Church. 

In addition to these positions, Pastor Chris has also served as a Youth Pastor, Education & Outreach Pastor, Minister of Music in other Southern Baptist Churches in South Carolina & North Carolina, He is mission minded and has led Youth Mission trips along with numerous camp size mission trips for youth groups. Prior to entering the ministry, Pastor Chris was the lead singer for The Landmark Quartet and after the group ended, he began solo work for revivals and Bible Conferences. 

Dr. Masters has also served as the Aiken Baptist Association- President of Ministers Conference, Interim Director of Missions, Aiken Assocation Moderator, Church Planting Committee, Personnel Committee and Ordination Council. 

He and his wife Areisha are the parents of two children, Hannah & Michael and the proud grandparents of 6 grandchildren. 

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ROSE DAUGHERTY 

FUNERAL ATTENDANT
(Non-Licensed)


Rose Daugherty was born and raised in Aiken. Rose attended Aiken County Public Schools and she is married to Greg Daugherty. Together they have four children and eight grandchildren. 

Rose worked at Leverett Shoes for forty-two years. She is a member of Hillview Baptist Church. Rose loves serving others and truly enjoys assisting at George Funeral Home. 

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Mary Ann Dyches

funeral attendant/ Beautician 
(NON-LICENSED Funeral)

Mary Ann Dyches is a native of Bath, SC and a graduate of Langley-Bath-Clearwater High School. She is a licensed cosmetologist and has been employed with the Historic George Funeral Home since 1973. 

Additionally, she is a cosmetologist at Trinity on Laurens in Aiken and has been married to William Dyches since 1952. They have two children, six granddaughters, and one grandson. 

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Jim Hall

Funeral Attendant 
(NON-LICENSED)
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Brandon Smith

Funeral Attendant 
(NON-LICENSED)


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JULIAN L. THIGPEN

Funeral Attendant 
(NON-LICENSED)

Julian Thigpen was born in Manning, SC and raised in Sumter. He graduated from Edmonds High School. After high school, he joined the US Army and was Honorably Discharged from the US Army Reservist in 1966. In 1963, he was appointed as a SC State Trooper and retired as a First Sergeant after 29 years of service. In 1993, he was employed as a Special Deputy United States Marshal and retired from them after 15 years of service. Julian has been in the funeral profession since 2008. He has been married to Eunice Widener of New Ellenton since 1964 and they have two children; a son, Rodney and his wife Melanie May Thigpen and daughter, Julie White and her husband Steve. He has four grandchildren, Brandon, Coley, Cory and Kellie. Julian and his wife are members of Town Creek Baptist Church. 



TOM VAIDEN

FUNERAL ATTENDANT
(NON-LICENSED)



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