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Gold Coast Bones May Pre-Date Great Fire

By Marcus Gilmer in News on Feb 24, 2010 8:20PM

Photo by kevinzim
Human bones discovered at a Gold Coast construction site are likely remnants of a 19th century cemetery and could date back to pre-Civil War. A construction crew discovered the bones earlier this week in the basement of a townhome near 1500 North State Parkway. Chicago History Museum spokeswoman Lauren Dolan told WBBM, "The boundaries of that Irish Catholic cemetery - we weren't able to locate the exact boundaries. But we knew it was a smaller cemetery just south of North Avenue, which would've been right around the area (where) the bones were discovered." The Trib has more:

The area between Dearborn Street and Lake Shore Drive south of North Avenue to Schiller Street was a Roman Catholic cemetery from early in the city's history until after the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, according to historians...

The city cemetery was relocated in the 1860s, with many of the bodies going to the Dunning neighborhood on the Northwest Side. The Catholic cemetery was sold off in pieces in the late 1800s, according to accounts from the time. Human remains have been found frequently since in both areas whenever digging has taken place.

Dolan estimated the bodies were buried there between 1840 and 1860.