BRUNSWICK — Officials say three gravesites that had been lost to history for more than two centuries have been discovered at the site of a former middle school in Glynn County, near Georgia's coast.
The discovery comes after much speculation that the area in Brunswick was part of a Colonial-era cemetery.
Brunswick City Manager Bill Weeks and a public works department crew on Thursday unearthed evidence of at least three graves in what had once been known as Wright Square.
Cook called the discovery the city's most significant historical find.
"I would say this is definitely older than 1810," Cook told The Brunswick News about one of the gravesites discovered Thursday.
Cook said he thinks families began moving graves from the cemetery as roads began being laid according to Georgia colony founder Gen. James Oglethorpe's original 1771 plans for the city.
"This is now Brunswick's number one history site," Cook told The Florida Times-Union. "What could be more important than a Colonial cemetery? We have nothing else, not a building or anything, that relates to that period."
Workers didn't dig deep enough to expose any coffins, but Cook based his conclusion on the condition of the layer of dirt that was exposed and evidence of nails.
Crews also found what appeared to be a bone and a casket handle.
An 1893 newspaper article described the excavation and installation of a sewer line that lies beneath what is now Egmont Street. The story reported hundreds of bones being dug up, Cook said.