As Hart’s grew, more professional assistance was added. Employees were loyal and by 1926, the 6-member staff’s collective years with the company totaled an impressive 88. Jesse’s brother, J. Freeman Hart, had joined the business around 1908 and the name had subsequently been changed to “Jesse B. Hart & Brother.” Both brothers held distinguished offices in their industry’s trade associations, with both serving terms as president of the Georgia State Funeral Association, and Jesse being a member of the legislative committee of the National Funeral Directors Association. Freeman was appointed to the State Board of Funeral Examiners and later served the elected offices of secretary and treasurer.
In 1926, Hart’s was recognized by the local press as “one of the largest and best-known establishments of its kind in the state” -- a distinction that continues to this day.
With the Hart family’s commitment to compassionate funeral care, the firm eventually outgrew it original building, Freeman contracted with R.H. Smalling & Sons to design and build a new funeral home at 765 Cherry Street, its current location since 1931. After his brother’s departure from the business to pursue a banking career, Freeman continued at the funeral home and was later joined by his son, J. Freeman Hart, Jr. In 1982, J. Freeman Hart, Jr. sold the business to J. Milton Heard, III of Macon. Hart’s Mortuary continues as a family-owned and operated firm.
The high business standards set by one Macon family were continued by another. One newspaper account published in 1911 reads:
“Mr. Hart’s personal attention is given to the conduct of every funeral, thereby assuring the proper arrangements being made in every detail.”
From its beginnings in 1899 to today, highly-personal, quality service has distinguished Hart’s Mortuary. Employing the highest ethical practices in the industry, the firm continues to offer compassionate care and memorable tributes to the families of Central Georgia.
Hart's Mortuary opened its first branch location in August 2008 at 6324 Peake Road, the former home of the Cupola, the headquarters of the Homebuilders' Association of Middle Georgia.
Hart's Mortuary opened its second branch location in January 2015 at 307 Pecan lane, Gray, Georgia 31032.