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Mystery Graveyard Leaves Few Clues for County

Public Works is seeking information on the bodies buried near Coles District Volunteer Fire and Rescue Station.

Public Works is seeking information on the bodies buries near Coles District Volunteer Fire and Rescue Station.
Public Works is seeking information on the bodies buries near Coles District Volunteer Fire and Rescue Station.
Provided, Prince William County Government:

There’s an abandoned cemetery near the Coles District Volunteer Fire and Rescue Stationwith graves that have been left unmarked over time, and the Prince William Public Works Department needs help in identifying who might be buried there.

“First and foremost, what we want to do is identify who’s in the cemetery,” said Matthew Corneliussen, an engineer with the Facilities Construction Management division of the County’s Public Works Department. “We’re just looking to find family members of people who may be buried there.”

Public Works officials have determined that they are looking for people who might know anything about the Norman or Tinsill families in particular, or anyone who might know something about the graveyard generally. “We’re sort of putting a call out for anybody who knows any information about the cemetery,” Corneliussen said. “Through courthouse records and genealogy records, there’s potential that there may be additional families. That’s why we’re hoping that if anyone knows anything about it, they’ll come forward and share that information with us.” 

The little graveyard with 12 to 14 graves isn’t unknown to people, Corneliussen said. The Prince William Historic Commission examined and documented the site about 20 years ago. There are a few headstones and footstones to attest to some of the burial plots, but indentations in the ground indicate that there are also other graves in the cemetery. 

Anyone with information is asked to contact Matthew Corneliussen at 703-792-5296 or Lou Ann Dorrier at 703-792-6674. 

The cemetery is located near the site where the new Coles District Volunteer Fire and Rescue Station is scheduled to be completed by late 2015.

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