Why 7,000 bodies are buried underneath the University of Mississippi campus

University of Mississippi (Photo Source: Facebook/ The University of Mississippi - Ole Miss)
University of Mississippi (Photo source: Facebook/ The University of Mississippi – Ole Miss)

The University of Mississippi Medical Center, located in the city of Jackson has a problem. Apparently, there may be as many as 7,000 bodies buried across 20 acres of the campus. The dead are former patients of what was called the Insane Asylum, which was built in 1855 and closed its doors in 1935.

In 2013, UMMC was expanding its campus and during the excavation of a road discovered a site that contained 1,000 unmarked graves. Then in 2014, while building a parking lot, more graves were discovered. Using underground sonar the school soon discovered thousands of bodies buried across the campus. It was determined that the bodies would be exhumed and relocated but the cost of the procedure would be an estimated $3K per grave. That would bring the total cost of exhuming all of the bodies to $21 million.

Rather than go down such a costly road, the university is proposing to handle the exhumation of the bodies itself and building a historical center over the site. This would entail the university spending $400K per year on the project until its completion, an amount that the school is hoping they can raise through grants.

The university has already started the process by exhuming 66 bodies using students and teachers of the Mississippi State Institute of Archaeology. One of the archaeology students has used genetic sequencing of the bodies to determine the health of the deceased while they were alive. Information so far showed that the bodies suffered nutritional deprivation, severe stress and evidence of the disease pellagra, which is caused by a vitamin B deficiency and was common in the South during the early 20th century.

According to university officials, up to 35,000 patients were housed at the asylum between 1865 and 1935. Asylum records that have been examined show a total of 9,000 died there, with about 6,000 of them buried in the asylum cemetery. By building at historical center on the campus, future researchers will be able to examine the bodies and give insight on the treatment of the mentally ill during the running of the asylum.

Mo Barnes
Mo Barnes

"Mo Betta" Maurice "Mo" Barnes is a graduate of Morehouse College and Political Scientist based in Atlanta. Mo is also a Blues musician.

  1. so they have to go to school upon a grave site? how herendious and discusting , how do they just live on top of bodies , to cheap to just relocate them , there is plenty of desert in californica dig them all up and put in a mass grave hell not like they know or care they are being dug up or burn the bones its not a deal unless you make it .. most of the family of them people is dead , if not all of them

    1. Obviously, the school doesn’t want the rest of the world to know the real deal with those bodies. This is Mississippi – where there are rumors that Black people remained enslaved into the 1950s. I would like to see an independent organization take over this project.

      1. I’m originally from Mississippi and there are alive and well today who can tell you that slavery was in effect in various places in Mississippi

          1. ..only if they are allowed to. I have learned to not let the white troll talking heads cloud my thinking. #fckem

  2. This is not the University of Mississippi(Ole Miss) campus at Oxford, this is The University of Mississippi Medical Center campus in Jackson, Mississippi the medical center of Ole Miss. No Students are not going to school on dead bodies. There’s a civil war grave yard(Union and Confederate) on the edge of campus(oxford) but not on campus. Many of the buildings(oxford campus) were used as hospitals during the civil war. The University of Mississippi, Ole Miss, is almost 200 years old and built before the insane asylum.

  3. The mentally ill were confined to asylums for hundreds of years and held as virtual prisoners because no one understood mental illness or knew how to help these people. The people buried on the campus were victims of a miserable life. However, that doesn’t meet the agenda of the race-baiting posters here who believe that black people are the only victims of injustice in the history of the world.

  4. On yes! The power and the will of the black people was so strong that evil whitey literally had to put them UNDER the school to “keep them down”.

    SMDH. Bunch of delusional, narcissistic, ‘always about me’ little children.

    1. @Had Enough The puppy rapist and cocoa dong swallower is back for his daily fix of brownie man meat,lol!! Glad to see him admit he is infatuated with “soul brothers”and can’t help himself. He finally admitted his obsession, that makes him keep coming to rolling out daily in hopes of seeing, as he stated,”some ebony make eye candy”! ????

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