FRANKLIN, Tenn. -- Construction crews digging a sewer line made a historic discovery in Franklin on Thursday.
While digging near a Burger King restaurant at the corner of Columbia Pike and Southeast Parkway, the body of a Civil War Union soldier was uncovered. The remains of the soldier were found scattered in a 2-foot grave. Curators and historians from the Carter House and Lotz House arrived at the location to analyze the body. Bones and well-preserved buttons were recovered from the site.
"He likely would have been killed on the retreat out of Franklin. He was buried in a hurry, likely buried by his own troops about 2 feet down in the ground," said J.T. Thompson, Lotz House Curator. State archaeologists will take the remains to a lab and then have them reburied. Archaeologists are looking for more remains and artifacts at the site and have stopped the building project.
Archeologist Larry McKee believes that no more bodies will be found at the site, and this was a lone soldier buried on that spot. It is unclear if the soldier will be buried at a Union Cemetery in Murfreesboro or laid to rest where he was found in Franklin. An estimated 2,000 soldiers were killed in the Battle of Franklin, which took place in November 1864.Submitted by Richard Welch