For instance friends would stay up to watch the deceased loved one and make sure they were prepared for the funeral. This was so the grieving family members would not have to do this.
Black crape was tied to the door or to the doorbell with a white ribbon to inform visitors of the death in the family.
Hearses weren’t used in Victorian times but funeral carriages pulled by horses to bring the deceased loved one to their final resting place. The carriages also wouldn’t not take a direct route to the cemetery because they were afraid their loved ones spirits would return so they would take indirect routes to the burial sites.
There was even a certain length of time a family should mourn over the loss of their loved ones, especially widows. Woman would wear a black bonnet with heavy black crape over their faces for a minimum of three months and after that time should wear the crape pushed to the back over the back of their necks. They would still need to wear it for the duration of the year, but would continue to wear working dress for a total of two years.
Widowers only had to wear a black suit for a year with a deep weed upon his hat.
Heaven forbid when in mourning, would you go to a public function. You had to wait at least a year for that, it just wasn’t proper.
These are just a few of the customs in the Victorian era and most of these are unheard of today. I have to admit, I like many of the old ways and it is one of the reasons I say I was born a century too late. Or maybe one life time too many.
Founder of Historic Haunts Investigations