Archeological Excavation and Reburial of Historic Graves in the Oscar Abstein Cemetery (41HR976), Harris County, Texas
Proposed improvements to Interstate Highway 10 (IH-10) in Harris County led the Texas Department of Transportation to contract Prewitt and Associates, Inc., to conduct an archeological investigation of a small cemetery near the intersection of IH-10 and Eldridge Parkway in west Houston. Historic research in 2002 revealed that Oscar Abstein and a small child died in 1884 and were buried near two older but unidentified graves. Records indicate that Abstein’s grave was moved in 1892, when the Missouri, Kansas and Texas Railway was built, and various historic maps and documents refer to the presence of two to four graves in the project location. Archeological investigations in November 2003 located and exhumed the remains of four individuals in three separate graves. Onsite analysis revealed one grave contained remains of a probable 30 to 40 year old female, one contained remains of a adult of indeterminate age and sex, and the third grave contained the disarticulated remains of Oscar Abstein and an unidentified child. The remains from all three burials were reinterred in the Washington section of Washington-Glenwood Cemetery near downtown Houston.