At Sterling Monument, we know and understand that the process of selecting and installing a memorial is an important way to honor and spend time in remembrance of our loved ones. So, we have always welcomed families to attend as we perform the service of installing their loved one’s memorial.

I grew up participating in memorial installation services while helping my father, who learned the process from his own father, Claude Harris, in the 1960s. Over these past 7 decades, the same question often arises from families who have chosen an upright monument for their loved one: why are you putting pennies between the upright stone and its granite base?

When my grandfather was bringing my father, Samuel, into the business initially, a young and curious Sam asked his father that same question many families have asked me when seeing a copper penny being placed under all four corners of the memorial: “What are the pennies for?”

The answer is quite simple. Due to the extreme weight of a granite upright headstone, if we don’t have an anchor between the two pieces of granite, the sheer weight of the upright headstone will eventually push all of the epoxy (glue) out from between the two pieces of granite. Therefore, there must be an anchor. 

Claude Harris’ philosophy was, “there’s nothing more sustainable and cheaper than a penny.” And although this is true, I have begun to understand that we’ve been missing an amazing opportunity with families for the past 50 years, which is why I am writing this article. You see, I have been placing random pennies (always head’s up) under all upright memorials I have installed. But these are just that, random pennies I’m pulling from my bag to do the job.

At Sterling Monument, our mission is to serve families by connecting generations together through the unique story of memorialization. We see an opportunity to do so by inviting you to select your own pennies to use as anchors for your loved one’s monument.

Should you wish, you are invited to select your own four pennies to go under your upright headstone.  These pennies will stay there forever and can serve as a unique tribute to your loved one. The special part of it for you, is the process of deciding what pennies to bring. Will they represent anniversary dates, kids’ birth years, or come from a special collection, or is it just important that they come from family? That part of the story is yours!

We are just so grateful to be a part of celebrating someone special and look forward to hearing the unique stories we will share as we place these special pennies under the upright monument for you and your family.


God bless,


Curtis Harris