Six graves found during construction of new high school near Columbus

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UPPER ARLINGTON, Ohio (WCMH) – As construction continues on Upper Arlington’s new high school building, archaeologists have unearthed history below the current high school’s campus.

Historians said the building was constructed in 1955 on top of a cemetery belonging to freed slave Pleasant Litchford. He bought the land for his family and other African-Americans who were excluded from white cemeteries.

The district moved remains they found, but recently, archaeologists found six graves with body parts, including one full body intact.

Now the district wants to confront the community’s past before tearing down the old high school.

“Bringing this to all, this story to attention, to everybody, with the board and so forth, Paul Imhoff was so amazing that he said we’re going to make a wrong right, from 1955, how they had done, we’re going to change that and make it all right and remove any bodies that were there, not just cover them back up,” said author Kim Shoemaker Starr.

The dig will likely continue into early next year.

Starr said it will be up to any family members located through DNA testing as to what happens with the remains that are found.

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