LAKE GEORGE, N.Y. (WRGB) -- Several state archaeologists are expected to return to Lake George this week to continue work on a site where the remains of at least 11 people have been found.
The initial find was Thursday, February 7th during excavation on a building site for townhouses not too far off Canada Street. That’s when Dr. David Starbuck says he was contacted by the Warren County Sheriff’s Department. He arrived at the scene the next day, and he says by the end of that day, they knew they had more than one grave disrupted.
“They were starting to see what looked like a row of burial pits where human remains were three to four feet down, about five to six feet apart,” said Dr. Starbuck.
Dr. Starbuck says he and numerous state archaeologists and the developer met Monday, and that’s when they found pewter buttons dating to the Revolutionary war, the first indicator of the time period of these remains.
“That doesn’t necessarily mean that everybody else in that row is also a Revolutionary soldier. The possibility is certainly there. So I think over next two days, as archaeologists come in to do this rescue effort, we hopefully will find more evidence that will tell us whether these are all soldiers,” said Dr. Starbuck.
He says the buttons found are not British nor French.
"They are American buttons. So these are quite possibly the remains of American patriots,” said Dr. Starbuck.
He says they hope to find more evidence of whether others are from the war period. He also says there was a number of small pox hospitals in Lake George during the Revolution. He says there is a remote chance these could be patients, but he says that will be more difficult to prove.
As for the developer of the town homes, their lawyer Mike Borgos says his is a two-million dollar project on hold, but that they will work with authorities to do what is right for skeletal remains. However, this could put his client’s company in bankruptcy.
Lt. Steven Stockdale of the Warren County Sheriff’s Department says everyone is working together to do what is right for the remains.
“We want to make sure that those interred get the respectful burial they are entitled to and deserve. We are going to go through it slowly and make sure everything is accounted for,” said Stockdale.