On July 19, 1940 Robert Wadlow, the tallest man in recorded history, was laid to rest in Upper Alton Cemetery. Alton is just across the river and north of the St. Louis area. The “Gentle Giant” was buried in a coffin specially built by the Grand Traverse Casket Company. It was made of steel, weighed 1,000 pounds and was 10 feet six inches long. A dozen pallbearers and eight other assistants were required to move the coffin.
Wadlow was 8 feet 11.1 inches tall at the time of his death and weighed 439 pounds. A life-size statue and museum about Wadlow is located in Alton.