Old Dead People Blocking Progress of Grand Parkway

OLD DEAD PEOPLE BLOCKING PROGRESS OF GRAND PARKWAY Texas’s department of transportation is requesting permission to remove 4 bone fragments found buried in the Katy Prairie — in the path of what will eventually be the largest-circumference ring road ever constructed around a U.S. city. The bones, believed to represent the remains of several people, are at least 2,000 years old, which would make them older than any human body parts previously discovered in the Harris County area. They were unearthed by construction workers. As a result, construction of a portion of Segment E of the Grand Parkway, which will connect I-10 to U.S. Hwy. 290 through acres of uninhabited grasslands, has been halted. TxDOT’s application asks for “expedited removal” of the remains so that work can continue. [abc13; previously on Swamplot] Photo: Deeya Maple

15 Comment

  • Ack, the grand parkway will be cursed for sure now. Indian burial ground and all that.

  • At least they didn’t find some rare gnat. The thing would never get built.

  • So when a construction worker finds bones at a worksite, is he like: “Hell yeah, I just found me some bones! I’ll be at the icehouse till some fancy-pants beaurocrat gets off his can and lets us know when we can get back to work.”

  • If it’s an incidental set of bones it shouldn’t cause a stir. If it’s an actual burial site, that could certainly complicate things as little is known about Gulf Coast native peoples in Texas, specifically the Karankawas.

  • How do you even find bone fragments at a construction site of this magnitude? It is not like the guys are out there with gardening spades.

  • Please, this is an historical burial site, and should have a scientific archealogical dig.

  • Hurry let’s remove the bones before they discover there are others! Texas isn’t too “historic-friendly” so don’t expect a major archaeologcal dig. They didn’t let a bunch of old bones from old dead people stop progress in Fourth Ward so why would you expect they would let a bunch of old bones from old dead people stop progress on our highways?

  • I think much of the delay (or progress) will centre around public response. Did anyone by chance follow the story about the first planned Whole Foods in Hawaii? Interesting story there…

  • The annoying thing about this is that if they had run into a Spanish period cemetery they could have just kept going.

    My biggest problem with these kind of laws, in particular the ones about Indian graves is that they encourage property owners to destroy sites and relics. I have actually seen evidence of this out west and heard quite a few stories about this happening to major sites and even large precolumbian mounds in Louisiana.

  • Think how angry the people are who live along the planned route between I-10 and 290 and have been waiting for this tollway to help with their transportation needs. Both of those people must be pretty upset!

  • miss_msry,

    Any TxDOT project requires a full archaeological work up. If there is any evidence of a potential archaeological site, it must be investigated.

    If they didn’t do the archaeological research, they would be in court before the project starts (especially on a project this big).

  • TXDOT should’ve followed NAGRAPA, ARPA, NHPA, NEPA Federal Law and State Law a month prior to knowing about the remains being found by the State Archaeologist there is protocols that specify procedures that should have been followed and there is also Consultation with Tribal groups and that was not carry out so now TXDOT is in violation of the Federal Laws and should be action taken against those who were aware of the findings.

  • Federal law (NAGPRA) requires that Native American remains and associated funerary objects belong to lineal descendants. If lineal descendants cannot be identified, then those remains and objects, along with associated funerary and sacred objects, and objects of cultural patrimony belong to the tribe on whose lands the remains were found or the tribe having the closest known relationship to them. TxDOT is not allowed to just send them anywhere. Has anyone contacted the Comanches or Tonkawas?

  • If memory serves me correct, the Commanches originated in Colorado and didn’t move south until the Spanish brought horses to the New World. The other Indian groups were many and varied, depending on the exact moment in history, so for now it would be impossible to assign the proper tribe. The current dig site is kept secret to prevent any vandalism, but we will see soon what they find. Fascinating stuff right under our noses.

  • Heh, that’s what you get for building another toll road that nobody wants and nobody will use.