Archive for September 21st, 2010

The Big Dig: Day Three

Day three began with the backhoe digging under the torn-down pig house, in a continued search for the Major. The dirt was rich and black, and full of earthworms that weren´t in the other dry soil. A possum popped up out of a hole below the pigpen dirt.

We uncovered the base of the biggest cross yet, which ended up being a monument rather than a grave.

Then, alack and alas, the backhoe blew an oil hose, and that was that. We carried the crosses and pieces of stone across the railroad tracks to store them safely in a nearby stone shed. We bagged small pieces together and marked bags accordingly.

Here is a diagram of all the findings at the dig.

We assembled a proposal to turn the American Cemetery that we´d uncovered into a memorial for all those that gave their lives in the construction of the Guayaquil & Quito Railway, with photos and sketches.

The team stopped for a photo in the ditch.

Then we loaded up the van and headed to Quito for an official celebration at the refurbished Chimbacalle Train Station. There commenced speeches and a presentation of a green marble plaque in honor of Archer and John Harman. We proposed our plan for the cemetery in Huigra, and we had the great pleasure of meeting the 90-year-old daughter of William Layman, whose remains lay under the first grave we uncovered.

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