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March 26, 1981 - Image 7

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1981-03-26

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The Mihigan Daily-Thursday, March 26, 1981-Page 7

Skulls,
bones
from old
g yburial -
ground
BRIDGEWATER, Mass. (UPI) -
Thirteen human skulls and assorted
bones discovered on the grounds of a
state hospital for the criminally insane
are probably from a long-forgotten
burial ground, officials said yesterday.
The skulls and bones, discovered
Tuesday by construction workers at the
Bridgewater State Hospital, were
spaced regularly about five feet apart
and three-and-a-half feet down.
AUTHORITIES SAID the grisly
remains might have been buried more
than 80 years ago.
Dr. Pierre E. Provost, associate
medical examiner in Norfolk County,
said a preliminary. investigation in-'
dicated the site was a "formal burying
ground," which may have been used
before the hospital opened around 1900.
"There was wood found around the
bodies, indicating coffins," he said.
HOSPITAL Superintendent Charles
Gaughan said, "We were not aware
that there was a burial ground in this
location. There are two other burial
grounds here."
From 1854 until the beginning of the
20th century, a public alms house for
poor immigrants was located on groun-
ds where the hospital now stands,
Gaughan said.
There was a mausoleum, constructed
in 1898, about 100 yards from where the
remains were discovered, he said.
Bodies were stored there in the winter
when the ground was frozen and buried
in the spring.
"NOBODY HERE WAS aware that
bodies were actually buried here. Most
were taken to the other two nearby
cemeteries," he said.
Eight skulls - seven male and one
female - were packed in cardboard
boxes and stored for examination by an
anthropologist and a medical examiner.
Hospital employees collected near the
site and gasped as the skulls were
removed.
Five skulls remained partially
buried. One, however, was exposed
from the forehead area to the jaw and
teeth.
Workers digging a trench for a steam
pipe first uncovered the remains. The
trench runs for 200 feet in the central
part of the 1,500-acre hospital grounds.
Excavation halted yesterday while an
investigation was underway.
"We have no idea how many bodies
are buried in the location," Gaughan
said. "We certainly have no idea when
. they were buried."
:VD: A
worry for
- 500
students
(Continued from Page1)

or touching another because the pores
of the skin can transmit the bacteria.
Second stage signs disappear after a
feu months, but the disease remains.
If the disease is left untreated, the.
bacteria attacks internal organs, even-
tually causing insanity, deafness, blin-
dness, paralysis, and finally death,
Rosey said.
He added that people who engage in
casual sex are high risk candidates for
VD and should have periodic check-ups.
AN OFFICIAL FROM the health ser-
vice said males are given a smear and
culture test. If the test results are
positive, the patient receives shots of
penicillin or another medication if the
patient is allergic to penicillin. Women
generally receive just the culture test,
since-4hey may show no visible signs,
which are necessary for the smear test.
To test for syphillis, blood must be
drawn and studied. Syphilis is also
treated with penicillin and other
medications.
The clinic requests patients to con-
tact those with whom they have had
asexual intercourse, so they can be
asked co come in for testing. The health
service will contact these people if the
patient feels too embarrassed to call.
Local facilities treating VD are the
Washtenaw County VD Clinic in Yp-
silanti and the University Health Ser-
vice VD Clinic. These two facilities

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