Four unknown soldiers to be buried at Biloxi National Cemetery - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Four unknown soldiers to be buried at Biloxi National Cemetery

USM anthropology students Sarah Himebrook, left, of Forest, MS, and Danielle Cook of Bellingham, MA, search Greenwood Island for evidence of Mexican-American War soldiers from 1848. USM anthropology students Sarah Himebrook, left, of Forest, MS, and Danielle Cook of Bellingham, MA, search Greenwood Island for evidence of Mexican-American War soldiers from 1848.
Lynn Funkhouser, left, from Murfreesboro, TN, Himebrook, center, and Cook dig for clues. Lynn Funkhouser, left, from Murfreesboro, TN, Himebrook, center, and Cook dig for clues.
Funkhouser examines soil deposits. (Photo source: www.USM.edu) Funkhouser examines soil deposits. (Photo source: www.USM.edu)
BILOXI, MS (WLOX) -

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) – On this Memorial Day, the remains of four unknown U.S. soldiers will be buried with full military honors at the Biloxi National Cemetery.

Back in 2008, anthropology students from the University of Southern Mississippi unearthed the remains from Greenwood Island in Pascagoula. Exactly 160 years earlier, that was the site of Camp Jefferson Davis at the end of the Mexican-American War.

"Camp Jefferson Davis represents one era in Gulf Coast history that receives little recognition," said Dr. Marie Danforth. She's a professor of anthropology at USM.

The remains were found buried in cypress wood coffins, and were identified by Southern Miss researchers as males of European descent between the ages of 18 and 30. Researchers were able to determine the skeletons were veterans returning from the Mexican-American War in 1848. Buttons found on the soldiers' remains helped determine their origin.

Southern Miss researchers have concluded that 90 soldiers died on Greenwood Island. Almost half of those remains have been identified.

The four unidentified remains buried on Monday morning will lay next to grave sites for two other soldiers. Their skeletons were discovered on Greenwood Island in 1979.

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