Our History

 Our Horse-Drawn Hearse 

Our 146-year-old Antique Horse Drawn Hearse has been in the Nelson-House family for over 35 years. It is one of a select few horse-drawn hearses that is still used in actual funeral services in Michigan. It is also available for hire. The hearse currently sits on display in the carriage house at 120 E. Mason Street, Owosso.


This hearse was built in 1870 by James Cunningham Co. of Rochester, N.Y., and it was originally retired by the Drowns Funeral Home in Ellensburg Depot, N.Y. In 1976, it was restored and used in the U.S. Bicentennial Parade in Butler County, PA.


Nelson-House purchased the hearse in March of 1981. It is featured in many parades in the Mid-Michigan area, and has taken top honors in the Curwood Parade, Oakley-Brady Festival, Michigan State Fair Grand Opening Parade, 75th United Auto Workers Parade, and Genesee County 150th Birthday Celebration Parade. It has also been previously loaned to and displayed at the R.E. Olds Museum in Lansing.


Owosso Chapel


Our Owosso location was established in 1880 by Myron H. Knapp and John Peters. In 1887, Peters sold his half of the business to Frank C. Smith, renaming the business to Knapp & Smith Funeral Home. After Frank’s death in 1901, Myron’s son-in-law Fred W. Smith joined him in business. In 1926, a new funeral home building was constructed on the corner of Park and Mason Street, the former site of the Owosso Armory, and our current location today. In 1949, Paul W. Ruggles purchased the funeral home, later selling interests in the firm to Paul W. Ruggles II and Bob W. Nelson in 1971. On February 1, 1980, Bob Nelson and his cousin Harold “Sonny” House Jr. purchased the funeral home in entirety and incorporated it as Nelson-House Funeral Homes. In 1998, Kevin Kregger joined the Nelson-House team. In 2001, House retired, and Kevin became a part-owner of the business in 2006. In 2019, Bob officially retired and his stepson, Michael Hulik became co-owner with Kevin Kregger.  Today Kevin and Michael, along with their families, continue to serve the Owosso Chapel.




(989) 723-5234

120 E. Mason Street
Owosso, MI 48867



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