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Our Beginnings

A Historical Perspective of Novak Funeral Home

1840 - James W. Jeffries home built at 126 Front Street.

1885 - Seaborn Crawford starts the Crawford Funeral Home and operates from his family's furniture store in downtown Brownsville.

1896 - Jesse T. Ross succeeds Seaborn Crawford.

1903 - Seaborn Crawford, former owner of Crawford Funeral home, Brownsville, PA, passes away.  Interment in Bridgeport Cemetery.

1914 - Howard Johnson's home built at 515 Front Street.

1916 - Arley Kisinger starts his funeral business on May 15, 1916, and was first located at 11 High Street. In 1922 he moved his business to the Old Post Office Building Annex (Flatiron Building) and remained there until 1930, when he moved to Market Street on the northside of town. Mr. Kisinger was a member of one of Brownsville's oldest families, with the first Kisinger coming to Brownsville in 1840. He was an antique collector and was keenly interested in boats and river lore.

1923 - Homer J. Ross succeeds his father, Jesse T. Ross and moves the funeral home from the furniture store downtown to 126 Front Street.  Jesse T. Ross is interred in Redstone Cemetery.

1961 - March 1961, The Kisinger Funeral Home completed its move from Market Street to a new home at 515 Front Street. The Market Street Funeral Home was torn down due to construction of the high level bridge. The new funeral home was the former residence of Frank P. Silliman, President of Hillman Barge and Construction Company from the early 1930's until 1960.  Frank lived in the Front Street home with his wife Evalyn and children, John Robert and Jane Lou. Also acquired were lots on Front and Brashear Streets (which now serve as private parking). Remodeling was done under the direction of T. Ray Fulton, Prominent Uniontown Architect.

1967 - Homer L. Crawford succeeds his uncle, Homer L. Ross at the funeral home.

1974 - Dale F. Crawford succeeds his uncle, Home L. Crawford.  Homer L. Crawford, 49, of Brownsville Business man, church and civic leader, died in his home at 131 Front Street, Browsville, PA on February 21, 1974.  He was born in Uniontown, September 28, 1924, the son of the late Luther S. and Hazel Ross Crawford.  He was a graduate of the Pittsburgh Institute of Mortuary Science, class of 1950.  He was a veteran of WWII, having served with the Marines in the South Pacific.  Surviving are a sister, Joanne Piper and a brother, Ross Crawford.  Burial in Redstone Cemetery.

1982 - Norman J. Wimer purchases the 126 Front Street funeral home.  The funeral home name is changed to the Norman J. Wimer Funeral Home.

1991 - Jason J. Novak starts to work part-time while a senior at Brownsville Area High School at the Norman J. Wimer Funeral Home.

1994 - Amy Jo Confer purchases the Kisinger Funeral Home at 515 Front Street. It was then known as the Confer-Kisinger Funeral Home after her purchase and later changed to Confer Funeral Home.

1996 - Amy Jo Confer purchases the Norman J. Wimer Funeral Business. The 126 Front Street funeral home is purchased by a different party.

September 15, 2003 - Jason J. and Janice L. Novak purchase the Confer Funeral Home, due to the death of Amy Jo Confer in April 2003. The name was changed to Novak Funeral Home. The records of the Crawford, Ross and Wimer Funeral Homes were also purchased by Jason and Janice Novak.  The Novak Funeral Home continues to be the oldest funeral home in Brownsville.

August 5, 2021 - Janice Lynn Novak, Owner and Funeral Director passes away (1973-2021)

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