Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Bones discovered in Birds Point-New Madrid Floodway

CHARLESTON, MO (KRCU) - Water has subsided in the Bird Points Floodway and farmers have returned to their land. But it's not the washed away top soil that has many talking. Instead, it’s the washed up… bones.

The fragments were discovered near the blasted section of the levee, in Mississippi County Missouri.

By time the Mississippi County Coroner, Terry Parker, and his team stopped counting, the bone fragments were spread out over six and a half acres of land.

Parker is unsure exactly how many bodies the found fragments are from, but he is confident that more bone fragments may be found in the area when they go to exhume those they have already discovered.

Parker believes that the bones are likely from the area around or even under the part of the levee that was blasted.

However he is less certain as to whom the bones are from.

"Could possibly be early Native American, it could be early American settlers that were going to the west. It could be people that had resided in the early 1900’s, and that was their homestead, and as common they were buried there on the family home property," Parker said.

The bone fragments as well as the site have been turned over by Parker and the county to the Missouri State Parks and Historic Preservation Team.

The team is now tasked not only with discovering what time period the bones are from, but also what people the bones are from.

"You know if it’s American Indian, you know we have certain policies we have to follow and leave them as undisturbed as possible," Parker said. "So I think that right now they are in process there in the process of investigating, doing forensics to determine the nationality of the remains. And then at that point you know the process of collecting and reentering will happen."

Parker says that the process may take some time due to the degree of decomposition as well as the need for an accurate identification of what people the fragments are from.

Tim Filla, KRCU


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