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VCU unveils panels detailing human remains found in abandoned well

The four panels took place at the Kontos Auditorium on East Marshall St., focusing on four...
The four panels took place at the Kontos Auditorium on East Marshall St., focusing on four specific themes.(VCU)
Published: Sep. 24, 2021 at 6:30 AM EDT|Updated: Sep. 24, 2021 at 9:44 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Virginia Commonwealth University unveiled four panels dedicated to human remains found in an abandoned well on MCV’s campus Friday.

The remains were uncovered during construction 27 years ago. The remains, which were brought back to campus in 2019, are believed to be of African descent and discarded by medical staff in the 1800′s.

The four panels took place at the Kontos Auditorium on East Marshall St., focusing on four specific themes.

The well’s 1844 origin as a site for medical students to dump mostly Black cadavers when they were finished with them.

“Today’s East Marshall Street Well panel unveiling is an important step toward reclaiming the full humanity of our ancestors — those unearthed 27 years ago as well as those likely still buried beneath the Kontos Building,” said Carmen Foster, Family Representative Council.

The discovery of the well and human remains in 1994 during the Kontos building’s construction.

Interest in the remains picked up again in 2011 due to the documentary “Until the Well Runs Dry: Medicine and the Exploitation of Black Bodies,” by VCU professor Shawn Utsey.

The panel unveiling was part of the VCU Office of Health Equity’s History and Health Program, launched in March this year with this initial focus on racial equality.

Copyright 2021 WWBT. All rights reserved.

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