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Archeological Excavation and Reburial of Historic Graves in the Oscar Abstein Cemetery (41HR976), Harris County, Texas
This report documents the exhumation and reburial of three historic graves within the right of way of Interstate Highway 10 (IH-10) near the intersection of Eldridge Drive. Called the Eldridge or Oscar Abstein Cemetery, historic research indicated that three to four graves probably existed near station marker 581+75 within the area of improvements that the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) proposed to IH-10. TxDOT’s Archeological Studies Program, Environmental Affairs Division, prepared a planning document entitled: “Exhumation and Reinterment Plan, IH-10, CSJ: 0271-07-247, Eldridge Cemetery” and contracted with Prewitt and Associates, Inc., of Austin, Texas, to conduct the necessary investigations. Work performed under Contract No. 573XXSA001, Work Authorization No. 57311SA001, included a mechanical grave search, excavation and removal of burial remains, on-site analysis, and reburial. These tasks were accomplished between November 18 and 21, 2003. No collections were made.
Gradall scraping and subsequent hand excavations exhumed the remains of four individuals in three separate graves. Analysis of these remains, as well as historical documentation, identifies these people as:
Burial 1 Unidentified adult, probably female, age 30 to 40 years.
Burial 2 Unidentified, probably adult, indeterminate sex and age.
Burial 3 Disarticulated remains of Oscar Abstein, a 38-year old male, and an unidentified child of indeterminate sex. These two died in 1884 and were reburied at this location in 1892.
All remains associated with these graves were reinterred in the Washington section of the Washington-Glenwood Cemetery, managed by Glenwood Cemetery, Inc., at 2525 Washington Avenue in Houston. The remains were placed together in a single plot designated as Section I, Lot 19, Space 6, West Half, within Washington Cemetery.
This is a work produced for the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) by the report producer. TxDOT and the report producer jointly own all rights, title, and interest in and to all intellectual property developed under TxDOT’s contract with the report producer. The report may be cited and brief passages from this publication may be reproduced without permission provided that credit is given to both TxDOT and the report producer. Permission to reprint an entire chapter, section, figures or tables must be obtained in advance from either the Supervisor of the Archeological Studies Branch, Environmental Affairs Division, Texas Department of Transportation, 125 East 11th Street, Austin, Texas, 78701 or from the report producer.
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