History of Hardage-Giddens Chapel Hills Funeral Home
More than 75 years of history follows the Hardage-Giddens Chapel Hills Funeral Home and Memory Garden’s name. It began in 1929 when two gentlemen, Hugh L. Hardage Sr. and Ralph Williams, opened a mortuary located at 517 Park Street in the Riverside area of Jacksonville, Florida. It was known as Hardage & Williams Funeral Home. The company became Hardage & Sons when Mr. Williams retired in 1944, and four of Hugh's sons, Hugh Jr., Robert, Gordon and Richard, became partners in the family business.
Mr. Hardage Sr. died in 1964, and his sons continued the family business, even expanding it by acquiring Estes-Krauss Funeral Home in 1971. Meanwhile, in 1932, two more gentlemen in Jacksonville opened the first Giddens Funeral Home at 85 Riverside Avenue. T. J. Giddens owned and operated the firm, while J.D. McEwen served as a silent partner. Mr. McEwen sold his part of the business to Mr. Giddens in 1935.
In 1941, the funeral home moved to 116 Riverside Avenue. Mr. Giddens' son, Ronald T. Giddens, became a partner in 1947. In 1960, William H. Griffith joined the firm as a partner until his retirement in 1972. In 1970, Ronald T. Giddens opened the Edgewood Chapel in the Murray Hill District. The two firms of Hardage & Sons and Giddens-Griffith merged in 1972, yet operated under their respective names.
In 1975 an affiliate of Service Corporation International acquired both firms. Both businesses continued to expand throughout Jacksonville, and in the mid-80s, became known as Hardage-Giddens Funeral Homes. Today, we're proud to be a member of the Dignity Memorial® network of more than 1,800 funeral, cremation and cemetery service providers.