Local News

1/19/2013

City finishes excavation of 18th century cemetery

By NIKKI WILEY The Brunswick News

The site of the old Glynn Middle School is returning to normal after months of excavating a long-rumored 18th century cemetery.

A total of 37 graves were found at the site that was once Wright Square Park before Glynn Middle School was constructed.

The school was recently demolished and the land given back to the city as part of a trade that gave the Glynn County Board of Education land on Lanier Boulevard to build the new Glynn Middle School.

Crews were filling in the gravesites Thursday.

One hundred gravesites were originally estimated, but City Manager Bill Weeks, a former anthropology researcher, said it's possible that construction of Egmont Street and later construction of Glynn Middle destroyed some graves.

Burials may have taken place as early as the 1700s and as late as the Antebellum period, the period between the American Revolution and the American Civil War.

Because no graves were found on the west side of Egmont Street, Weeks said it's likely the cemetery ends under the road.

"We essentially extended out that excavation until we had found the extent of the cemetery in all directions," Weeks said. "We dug until we essentially ran out of graves."

The next step is determining how to memorialize the cemetery that Weeks is calling the Wright Square Burial Ground.

The city had planned to return the space to a park.