City Life

A hearse's final resting place on Speedway Road

What's the story behind the vintage hearse?

If you’ve ever driven down Speedway Road, you’ve probably seen the vintage hearse on display in a glass box at Cress Funeral & Cremation Service.

Carey Cress Fose, the funeral home’s director of administration, says the story of the hearse dates back to 1891 when the horse-drawn vehicle was owned by Christ Belsaas, who also owned a funeral home in Boyd, Minnesota.

Fose says his father, W. Robert Cress, lived down the road from the Belsaas Funeral Home in the late 1920s and 1930s. Cress grew up with a deep respect for the undertaker and the funeral home, as his father was a doctor who used Belsaas’ services.

“He remembered the team of horses used to draw the shiny, black hearse at funerals,” Fose recalls his father telling him.

Ultimately, the Belsaas family sold Cress the hearse in the 1980s after remembering his interest from childhood. Cress restored it to its original condition. The vintage hearse has been in parades, funerals and even traveled back to Boyd for the 100th anniversary of the city’s foundation, but it has been on display for the past 25 to 30 years in retirement.

“[The hearse is] to be enjoyed by those driving by … remembering simpler days in our great journey forward,” Fose says.

Click here for more mysterious tales and oddities.

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