Archives for: December 2004, 25


Permalink 11:07:30 pm, Categories: Urban Exploration, 537 words   English (US)

grave digger

I went to my father's house for Christmas today and ended up stumbling ass-backwards into what might be a great find.

While I was at his house, we drove down the road and he gave me a tour of a piece of land he'd bought a while back. He started telling me about how the Trail of Tears had come right by his property. Supposedly, a couple dozen Cherokee had died while camped in the area and they were buried somewhere close by. He said that some people from the Trail of Tears Association had even come to the area, and he had his neighbors had given them permission to search their properties for the grave sites.

Then things got really interesting. My father drove us down into the field on the property about a hundred yards, then we got out and walked back into the trees near the back. We came up on a flat area, and he began to point at several body-sized mounds littering the area.

It turned out when the Trail Association had come to my father, he'd immediately thought of those mounds. He didn't want to be rude to them, so he'd given them access to his property. However, he said nothing about the mounds because he was honestly afraid that their might be some sort of eminent domain thing where the government could take his land for archaeological purposes.

(Pretty ironic to see a white man worried about Native Americans taking his land, eh?)

I want to stress at this point that neither myself or my father were at all convinced that these were actually grave sites. We both thought it was possible it was just places where someone had dug up the ground for whatever reason, or perhaps where a tree had been blown over and had rotted away leaving only the dirt ripped up by its roots.

However, something really made us wonder. First of all, if it is just a place where it's been dug up, it had to have been done by hand. It's not at all uncommon to see odd places in a field where it's been bulldozed up in the past. But these mounds were surrounded on all sides by large, old trees, which meant no one had had any bulldozers back there in our lifetime. There's really no other reason to be digging in that area (no minerals, etc), other than grave digging.

I asked my father if he would mind if I came back sometime later with a shovel and carefully dug up one of the mounds. He said he had no problem with it, since he was curious as well. His one condition was that if we found anything, we wouldn't go public with it unless we were sure they couldn't take the land away permanently for that purpose, although he had no problem with them digging there as long as he retained ownership. I told him I didn't know if land could be taken for that reason, but that I would look into it. I kind of doubt that it could, but you just never know these days.

So, to make a long story short: I may be going grave digging!

Underground Ozarks Blog

Here you can read about White Rabbit's day-to-day explorations and adventures.

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