C unningham and Nelson Funeral Home has been a funeral service provider for Person County and the surrounding area for ninety-three years. The funeral home was founded prior to 1922 by Ossie Cunningham, Sr. and Luther Burton near the Virginia border in what was to become Raker City. The original funeral home was located in the Buchanan Masonic Lodge #344 building which is located on the Blue Wing Road in northern Granville County, and George Sneed worked to provide services for locals.
The business was relocated to Virgilina, Virginia where the partners were Cunningham, Hampton Smith and J. C. Woody. Subsequently, the business moved to Roxboro, North Carolina to Depot Street with partner William Albright, Sr. It was in 1922 that it became Albright and Cunningham Funeral Home.
Albright’s son, William Jr., joined the business as the business manager after serving his tour of duty with the United States Army. Cunningham’s sons, Ossie Jr. and Shelred, also joined the business. Ossie Jr. remembers that he became active "with body pick ups" while a teenager. Shelred joined the business after his tour of duty with the United States Army as a licensed embalmer. Both Cunningham sons became part owners. Cunningham, Sr., remained active in the business until his death in 1983.
John Nelson became part owner in 1974. It was at this time that the funeral home became Albright, Cunningham and Nelson Funeral Home. Albright, Jr., retired in 1978 and the funeral home became Cunningham and Nelson Funeral Home. Nelson remained an active part owner until his death in 1997.
John Nelson’s son, James Roger Nelson, Sr., became a partner in 1993. He currently serves as the business manager and licensed mortician. Cunningham’s youngest daughter, Ossie Prattsie, is a licensed funeral director and his brother Shelred is still a licensed mortician.
The year 2015 exemplified the fruition of a dream, fueled by faith and a vision, ultimately becoming a reality. The year earmarked the continuation of the legacy of "Compassion, Integrity, and Respect" with the relocation to a full service facility at 87 Brookland Church Road, Highway # 158 in Person County. These services include the offerings of: full-service Chapel; Dining Area for family repast(s); Monument Sales through the owners; and other amenities.