Wednesday, January 03, 2007

It's a Coffin AND a Life Preserver

Using Google Patents, I've turned up several inventions designed to prevent people from being buried alive, or to save people so interred. It appears that the most recent was patented in 1983, and the earliest—Coffin to be Used in Cases of Doubtful Death—in 1843.

Be it known that I, Christian Henry Eisenbrandt, of the city of Baltimore and State of Maryland, have invented a new and useful improvement in coffins, which I term a "life-preserving coffin in doubtful cases of death," and whereas there have been instances of human beings having been buried alive the inventor of this coffin has contrived an arrangement whereby any one who may not really have departed this life may by the slightest motion of either head or hand acting upon a system of springs and levers cause the instantaneous opening of the coffin-lid.
It is intended to place the above described coffin, with its inmate, in a vault, with a key to the vault deposited inside of its entrance, until decomposition takes place, so that should the person not really be dead, life may be preserved.


Oh wow... and this obviously would not work in a typical under the earth burial.



But it would make for great fun at a funeral. An eighteen-wheeler would drive by the church, trigger the mechanism, and the lid would spring open mid-eulogy.

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