Pr. William remains displaced by football field to be reburied close to original graveyard

The Prince William County School Board decided Wednesday night to rebury remains exhumed last month to make way for a football field at a site near the original graveyard.

School officials had originally wanted to rebury the remains at a cemetery some distance away from the original graveyard, but presumed descendants of the deceased protested that the remains should be buried as close as possible to the original site, preferably someplace on the site of the school complex.

The complex is located on a tract that many years ago was the family’s farm.

The 11 graves were dug up last month to make way for the field that will be part of a new high school complex near the community of Independent Hill, south of Manassas. School officials said they did not know who the occupants of the graves were when they began the exhumations last month.

But researchers soon discovered that they were probably those of farmer William Lynn, his wife, Cordelia, and many of their children.

Local Lynn descendants quickly voiced their dismay at the exhumations and at the distance of the proposed site for reburial, Stonewall Memorial Gardens, north of Manassas.

Schools spokesman Philip Kavits said the reburial would depend on approvals from county and other officials. He said the exact site had yet to be determined, although a likely location has been identified just north west of the original cemetery. He said the reburial could take place in three to six months.

Lynn descendant Carolyn Lynn, of Manassas, said in an e-mail that she was happy about the development.

“It’s the decision I was hoping for,” she said. “As a compromise goes I think it’s a good one. “

“I’m probably the only person . . . who was wishing for a cemetery for Christmas,” she said.

The exhumed remains are currently being held in a laboratory at Towson University.

Mike is a general assignment reporter who also covers Washington institutions and historical topics.

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