In the mid to late 19th century, the front room or parlor of most homes was strictly formal. Funerals and wakes took place at home then, and because deceased family members were laid out to receive their final respects in the parlor, it became known as the “death room”. But by the beginning of the 20th century, funeral professionals became widely available. So more and more people began turning to funeral homes to take care of their deceased loved ones. By the end or World War I, nearly all funerals and wakes were held at funeral parlors. As a result, the Ladies Home Journal sought to take back the “death room” as a place to be used by the family. In 1910 they officially renamed it the “living room”. Although living rooms are often blended with family rooms to create “great rooms” in new construction today, the living room remains as an important feature of many homes.