Historical Marker Dedication: Bynes-Royall Funeral Home

Saturday, May 8, 2021

On May 8, 2021, the Georgia Historical Society will dedicate a new historical marker recognizing Bynes-Royall Funeral Home. The marker will be dedicated in a closed ceremony in consideration of COVID-19 protocols.

The historical marker reads:

Bynes-Royall Funeral Home

During the last years of Reconstruction, Maj. William Royall established the Royall Undertaking Company to serve African Americans denied mortuary services by Savannah’s White-owned funeral homes. As a formal mortuary education was not available in the South until the early 20th century, Royall’s company trained many prominent Black funeral directors in the state through an apprenticeship program. In 1924, the company moved to West Broad Street, now Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard, the African-American cultural and business district of Savannah. In 1955, Cpt. Frank Bynes, Sr. and Frenchye Mason Bynes bought the business and renamed it the Bynes-Royall Funeral Home. Like many Black funeral homes during the Civil Rights Movement, Bynes-Royall provided a safe space to meet and organize. Bynes-Royall relocated here in 1963 and remains the oldest Black-owned business in Savannah.

Erected by the Georgia Historical Society and Save Our Youth Savannah