Ghosts on the Range Part I

January 15, 2016 on 4:44 pm | In Article | No Comments

Ghosts-on-the-Range

Libraries are an amazing place. We house books, Books-on-Cd, Playaways (pre-loaded MP3’s), CD’s, DVD’s and more. Our shelves are stocked with  information for enjoyment and research. The genre of paranormal is one of our patrons favorites.

Our number one paranormal based book to “fly” off our shelves is Ghosts on the Range by Debra D. Munn. This book was first released in 1989 and Ms. Munn was gracious enough to come to our library for a book reading. It was well attended by many of the locals. Included in her book are stories from across Wyoming.

Here is the excerpt from her book regarding the Sweetwater County Library.

The Library Built over a Cemetery

If you think that ghosts inhabit only old, run-down buildings, think again. The Sweetwater County Library in Green River was opened as recently as 1980, yet it appears to be one of the most haunted spots in Wyoming. And no wonder, when you consider that is was constructed on top of the city’s oldest cemetery.

Many of Green River’s earliest citizens rested peacefully but anonymously in unmarked graves until 1926. When the grounds were needed for town expansion, however, the bodies were all supposed to be exhumed and moved up the hill to the current cemetery.

Marna Grubb, now the mayor/secretary of Green River, was one of the many curious children who came to watch the gruesome procedure. “Some of the kids on their way to school actually took rings and other things right off the corpses!” she said and shuddered. “I saw only one of the bodies myself, but that was enough. He was just a skeleton, wearing an old western-style, fringed leather jacket. And that was strange was that he still had a red beard.

When housing for veterans was constructed in the area during World War II, it soon became obvious that not all the bodies had been exhumed in 1926. As more remains were discovered, they too, were re-interred in the new cemetery. After the veterans’ residences were no longer needed, the old cemetery grounds were left alone until 1978, when the library purchased them for the site of its new building. As soon as the groundbreaking began, however, workers made yet another grisly discovery: according to architect Neal Stowe of Salt Lake City, from eight to twelve more bodies were found in unmarked graves!

“A heavy Caterpillar was going back and forth, loosening and moving soil,” he explained. “I walked right through the middle of the site, where something that looked like a deteriorated coconut was sitting on top of some freshly churned dirt. I picked the think up, turned it around, and recognized it as part of a skull. Little tufts of dark brown hair were still clinging to it.

“I stopped the construction immediately and told the contractor that there might be other remains in the area, too. We met with various city representatives to try to determine the extent of the bodies still on the site. Any markings that may have been on the graves had long since been destroyed, and the records of the burials had apparently been misplaced, so it was next to impossible to determine what remains belonged to whom. We walked through the site and started probing with hand shovels, uncovering bits and pieces of wood as well as a variety of decayed bones,” the architect said. “The remains were typically buried in old wooden caskets that had deteriorated because of soil conditions.”

(to be continued)

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