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Skeletal remains found in uprooted tree

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A century-old tree in New Haven was uprooted Monday afternoon by Sandy’s winds, exposing skeletal remains of unknown origin, as reported by the New Haven Independent.

The woman, Katie Carbo, made the discovery around 3:15 p.m. near the corner of College and Chapel streets. Visible among the roots of the tree is the back of skull, upside down, with its mouth open (pictured). It is still connected to a spine and rib cage.

New Haven police spokesman David Hartman filled in a few details on the macabre discovery — and provided a bit of a history lesson as well:

“Hurricane Sandy has uprooted a famous New Haven tree on the upper town green. The tree was planted by Admiral Andrew Hull Foote’s Grand Army of the Republic post (the Union of the Republic). Foote, who was born in New Haven, was President Abraham Lincoln’s favorite Civil War admiral. He died in a naval battle and is buried in the city’s Grove St. cemetery.

Dutch Elm disease killed all of the majestic Elms planted by James Hillhouse in the 1820s. In honor of the 100th anniversary of Lincoln’s birthday in 1909, the Oak tree was planted.”

Hartman said the skeleton is likely that of a  “victim of Yellow Fever or Smallpox who may have been buried between 1799-1821 when the headstones were removed to the Grove Street cemetery. The bodies were never relocated.”

Hartman said detectives from the department’s Bureau of Identification and the State Medical Examiner’s office responded to the scene and collected the remains. The town green is the burial ground of possibly 5,000 to 10,000 people, according to local historian Robert S. Greenberg, Hartman said.

New Haven police have not launched a criminal investigation. The remains are being taken to the Medical Examiner’s office.

Categories: Weather
Brett Mickelson

11 Responses

  1. Just goes to show how inconsiderate the people that run our government are!!This is just one case found out after a few hundred years.Wonder what will be found out after the next 200 years!

  2. Poltergeist says:

    They moved the headstones, but not the bodies!!!!!

  3. Jambi says:

    Hoffa???

  4. kseniya Williams says:

    so ” the victims of Yellow Fever or Smallpox who may have been buried between 1799-1821 {when} the headstones were removed to the Grove Street cemetery. – -The bodies were never relocated.” and the town green(commons) is the burial ground of possibly 5,000 to 10,000 people! WoW I guess back then, they didn’t believe it was right to disturb the dead so only moved the headstones??? How creepy! So all this time, like the one commentor said, people have been walking on HALLOWED GROUND! What if instead of a commons area a house of business would have been built there! We have a “park” here in St. Louis, it was once the old Saint Marcus Cemetery, and I remember this place driving past it as a teen, really creepy and dilapidated!! They finally removed all the bodies (and headstones) and turned it into a park but a good many of the headstones still remain in this park, maybe never got hold of family members, I don’t know. but they call it a “passive park” (Commemorative Park) the most you find people using it for is a short cut and when they do they walk or bicycle through it FAST!!! The grave stones, are really far away one another and are all huge; monument size. If you walk up, you can read the history of the person. Most are German immigrants from the 1800′s. Y

  5. Gene says:

    Jimmy Hoffman…………..

  6. Brett Mickelson says:

    Fixed, thanks!

  7. OLuckyMan says:

    “Hurricane Sandy has uprooted a famous New Haven tree on the upper town green. The tree was planted by Admiral Andrew Hall Foote’s…”

    Should be Andrew Hull Foote.

  8. [...] Halloween is upon us and for many in the US, today is especially frightening. People all across the Northeast are beginning the process of cleaning up after the giant superstorm that just blew through, bringing with it death and destruction. As rescue workers toil away at the grim task of searching for survivors, they are also finding the victims. At the time of this recording, 50 corpses have been discovered and more are expected to be recovered. It’s wicked work and those doing it are to be commended. However, in one instance a body was just discovered in a very unusual location, proving that not only did this devastating hurricane have the power to take lives, but also … to raise the dead. Here’s the story from The New Haven Independent … [...]

  9. peeps says:

    great. now im going to be sucked into the tv. great

  10. Anne in Illinois says:

    Is anyone else reminded of “Poltergeist” here (and on Halloween, even!)? The city needs to at least erect a plaque or something to commemorate them, so people know they’re standing on hallowed ground. Not out of fear of ghosts, just out of respect for those poor souls whose memories were not honored by the previous city administration when they just moved the headstones.

  11. Angelika says:

    “The town green is the burial ground of possibly 5,000 to 10,000 people.”


    …..
    …….

    AAAAAAAAAAAAAUGH!!!!