In 1837 Captain John Christian Brining opened a cabinet shop in the town of Boonsboro. He operated the shop along with his son, John Calhoun Brining. The cabinet shop prospered so that in 1888 they advertised for an apprentice. William F. Bast, who was apprenticing in Frederick at the time, was given the position.
Soon after William Bast joined the Brining’s the firm began to offer their services as undertakers, since they had been providing coffins for funerals for many years. Sometime later, William Bast bought into the business, possibly when the senior John Brining left the business or died.
Around the turn of the century, William Bast bought the rest of the business and it became William F. Bast & Son. William’s eldest son, John Harlan Bast, helped his father with the business. As other children came along, they also helped with the business.
After William Bast passed away, the business passed down to John Harlan and his brother Gerald. As business prospered, eventually the business was divided into a furniture store and a funeral home. John H. Bast bought the funeral home portion, and Gerald Bast bought the furniture store.
In 1964, John Bast passed the funeral home on to his only son, John Harlan Bast, Jr. As Boonsboro grew, it became more crowded and parking in town became a premium. In 1972 John Jr. built a new funeral home on the edge of town. He conducted funerals out of the new facility for 35 years until his death in October 2007.
In April 2008, G. Douglas Stauffer and his family, longtime friends of the Bast family, acquired the funeral home.
Doug Stauffer and his family resided on Main Street in Boonsboro in the 1970's while he was serving his apprenticeship under both John Bast, Sr. and John Bast, Jr. Doug continued to serve the community at the Bast Funeral Home both at its former in-town location as well as at the present facility on Old National Pike. Doug later moved back to his hometown in Frederick County and over the past thirty years, has provided families with compassionate service at their five full service funeral homes, which include: Brunswick, Frederick, Mt. Airy, Thurmont and Walkersville.
The Stauffer Family has vowed to continue the Bast tradition of outstanding service and dedication to the community.