In May of 1906, Lon Smith and his son, Rush, came to Salina
after purchasing the Phillip Young Undertaking establishment which
was located at 131 N. Santa Fe. In 1909 they purchased and moved to
the Roach Building at 141-143 South Santa Fe where they combined
the furniture (formerly the Ganett Furniture Store) and undertaking
In 1916 Rush Smith and his father Lon purchased the ground at
the corner of Ninth and Iron and started building the Lon Smith and
Son Funeral Directors. Eighteen months later the business was moved
to the location, which was one of the first funeral homes to be
built exclusively as a funeral home. For many years hearses were
driven by horse, but when the automotive hearses began to appear,
Rush Smith was one of the first to make these available for
In 1918, Rush Smith purchased the funeral business from his
father, Lon who continued to operate the furniture business
downtown and helping to assist in funeral services until his
retirement, when he sold the furniture business to the Gebhardt and
Jilka Furniture Company.
On July 1, 1959 the funeral home and business was sold to James
L. Geisendorf and his wife Marjorie.
On January 1, 1986, the Geisendorf's sold the funeral home and
business to Roger and Tedi Brent, who had been long time employees
of the Geisendorf's.
In 1997, the Brent's sold the funeral home and business to
Carriage Services in Houston, TX. who continued ownership until
November 2002 when the funeral home and business was sold to Mike
and Helen Carlson.
Since 1916, the funeral home had been located at 401 W. Iron but
now is located at the state-of-the-art location of 500 S. Ohio.
Complete with it's own crematory.