Magnolia Monuments, a fixture for decades

Published 7:00 am Tuesday, April 5, 2016

MONUMENTAL: Neville Miller has been running Magnolia Monuments for more than 50 years in Pearl River County.  Photo by Jeremy Pittari

MONUMENTAL: Neville Miller has been running Magnolia Monuments for more than 50 years in Pearl River County.
Photo by Jeremy Pittari

For more than 50 years Magnolia Monument has been helping families honor the memory of loved ones by providing quality granite headstones.
Owner Neville Miller said he started the business in 1962 while he was also working at the Naval Oceanographic Office at Stennis Space Center doing sandblasting and painting.
For the first year Miller had a business partner, until the man passed. In the infancy of the business, Miller said he conducted most of his business out of his vehicle, but as the years went on he would later set up a storefront in Picayune on both sides of Canal Street at different points. By 1975 he was putting all of his time into Magnolia Monuments.
For the most part, the granite used in the headstones comes from a quarry in Elberton, Georgia, especially the gray variants. But Miller also sells other colors, such as black granite from China, a speckled black hue from Elberton, red from India and a golden-brown tinged granite mined from North Dakota.
If the type of granite a customer is looking for is in stock, he said he can have the order fulfilled in about two weeks, but he can also order exactly what the customer is looking for if they are willing to wait. Special orders may take up to four months to be delivered.
Miller also has a selection on display outside the current location in Carriere, which is down the street from the local WIC Center on 40 Pine Hill Dr., Carriere. That location was established in 1998.
When the order is made, Miller provides the family with a visible sketch of what the headstone will look like, which ensures the family is getting exactly what they want.
If a customer would like to remember their loved one with a special graphic, Miller’s business can order it for them. From flowers to fish, anything can be added to the granite with laser cutting technology.
Miller prides himself on selling only the best granite in all hue variants, which won’t fade with time.
While the special imagery on the headstones is conducted at Miller’s supplier, his business takes care of engraving the names and highlighting the letters with black.
Having been operating in Pearl River County for so long has helped Miller grow the business. He added that he has seen repeat business from second and third generations within a family. He attributes his success to selling only quality products and helping families find the best way to memorialize their loved ones during a difficult time.
“When you memorialize a loved one, it’s very rewarding,” Miller said. “If you give good service and have a good product, they’re going to beat a path to your doorstep.”

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