A vacant lot adjacent to the site where Revolutionary War soldiers and others who died at the smallpox hospital at Fort George at the south end of Lake George were buried may be preserved as open space, with a historical marker denoting its historical significance.
Archaeologists from the New York State Museum, the Department of Environmental Conservation and the Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation have concluded that the Warren County, NY graveyard held at least 11 graves, containing the partial remains of 13 individuals.
It is believed that additional remains may be buried at that site, said Dan Barusch, Lake George’s Director of Planning and Zoning. According to Barusch, Town and Village officials have opened discussions with attorneys for the property’s owner, Ruben Ellsworth to purchase the property.
“So far, we have not been successful, but we’re working on it,” said Barusch.
If the property is protected, Lake George plans to seek to have it placed on the State and National Registers of Historic Places, said Barusch.
The remains of the Revolutionary War dead were discovered in 2019 at the site where Ellsworth later built a triplex. Sent to the New York State Museum in Albany, the remains are being studied by bioarchaeologists seeking more information about the individuals’ lives as well as possible causes of death.
Village officials also hope the remains will be reinterred on the grounds of Fort George Park.
Photos, from above: archaeologists and assistants examine excavated soils at the site where skeletal remains were found; a button from a uniform of the First Pennsylvania Battalion, found at the site.