View Full Version : Mortuary/Morgue info.

Ageless Stranger
08-31-2008, 04:28 AM
Has anyone here ever worked in a morgue? If so, may I humbly ask;

What would I expect to find in morgue?
What are the names of the instruments most likely to be found in a morgue?
What kind of substances would be used in a morgue? And what would they smell like?Also if anyone has any knowledge of older morgues such as those any time in the last one hundred years, your experience would be well appreciated. I'm very interested in hearing about morgues so any and all info will be welcomed.

Thanking all you all in advance. (Suckers, now you have to help me. :D)

08-31-2008, 04:34 AM
I've never worked in a morgue, but I've visited on occasion, though it's been a while.

Newer ones, lots of stainless steel, very clean. Smells like a hospital. (Though your imagination makes it seem different.)

Bone saw -- and that little circular saw that takes the top of the cranium off.

Rib spreader, perhaps.

Basically, stuff you'd find in an operating room.

08-31-2008, 05:42 AM
You might check out this Fay Wray movie from 1933: Mystery of the Wax Museum
There's a scene in it where a body gets stolen from a morgue.
I think there are lots of other movies from the 30's & 40's with morgues in them,
staring Boris Karloff and the like. Maybe one from the 20's, too, with Lon Chaney.

08-31-2008, 07:19 AM
Really matters when and where. If your setting is historical, I can't help. You note you're also interested in morgues...I've been to very numerous autopsies, some at med school, most at a crime lab...small and large city. Great HVAC in the rooming, strong lights, smells clinical...not so diff from say some ERs, dr or vet ofcs (without the animal scent). There are numerous clean slides handy, big red receptacles for the waste sharps (disposable scalpels and needles, mostly) and (modern) an audio recording system to make it easy to dictate the notes (sometimes foot pedal operated)...remember this is for someone wearing gloves, unable to put things down and scribble notes.

If per chance, your q relates to a small town... there actually could be no morgue...autopsy in the path at the little local hospital and then body to the mortuary. Are you asking about the mortuary aspect?

Mike Martyn
09-01-2008, 08:19 PM
Where I grew up (1960, town of 3000) autopsies were done at the town's one funeral home. convienient! The hearse also doubled when neccesary as the ambulance.

Coffins used to be shipped in these giant heavy duty card board boxes. We kids would beg them of the undertaker. They made great forts!

Perhaps that's why my sensse of humor has always tended to the morbid!