The Clarion-Ledger

The Clarion-Ledger

University of Mississippi officials have updated the body count after a land survey uncovered 800 to 1,000 more graves on property slated to be developed on their medical center campus.

Up to 2,000 unmarked graves have been identified on the land, which is bisected by a roadway, officials said. The remains were discovered using ground-penetrating radar.

“We’ve always known there were graves on this site, many of them unmarked. It was really a matter of knowing how many and where,” University of Mississippi spokesman Jack Mazurak told Mississippi News Now.

Mazurak said that some of the graves came from the old Mississippi Lunatic Asylum, which operated on the grounds between 1855 and 1935. Other graves may be associated with an African American church, and a potter’s field for indigent people.

“We recognize that these are people’s relatives. We hear all the time, social media, people calling us up saying I had a grandmother who was at the insane asylum,” Mazurak told the station. “We recognize there is a direct connection to people today.”

The Clarion-Ledger reported that those buried on the plot could include tuberculosis patients, former slaves, and Civil War casualties.

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