Charles Byrne, Coffin, Royal College Of Surgeons Hunts Harian Museum discussed on Stuff You Missed in History Class
Obtaining death certificates for as many as possible of the seven hundred ninety six children who died there while the home was operating a lot of their reporting that has come out over the last few years took a much more sensationalized turn in cordless actual work. She had talked about the fact that there were no burial records for these children. And that part of the burial site appeared to be a disused septic tank. And then these two threads got kind of mixed together into headlines along the lines of eight hundred children dumped in septic tank at mother and baby home. So what? Happened at the mother and baby home was appalling. This was a place where unmarried mothers and their children were sent usually against their will because their pregnancies were so stigmatized children died there at a rate of about one every two weeks often of malnutrition, but it was slightly different from those headlines. So further study and further excavation have gone on since it really started to make headlines twenty fourteen and thirties have been trying to figure out exactly what to do about these unmarked and unrecorded burials this October. It was announced that plans are in the works to fully excavate the site to try to zoom all the bodies to identify as many of them as possible. And if possible to return them to families archaeologists in west Flanders have been excavating World War ones hill eighty which was a German stronghold. This excavation effort was largely crowd funded and used largely volunteer labor. So those funds mostly paid for expenses in December. When the team is. Their final report of the previous season's work. They said that they had uncovered the remains of one hundred ten people that included seventy Germans nine British three French one South African and twenty seven others who could not be identified, but seem really wanted to identify the remains and return them to their families wherever possible. But while most of the Germans were identified as being from the twenty first reserve regiment as of December twenty eighteen only one set of remains had been personally inconclusively identified not quite an exhibition or a repatriation, which is what we're talking about next. But in seventeen eighty three a man named Charles Byrne died at the age of twenty two he was seven feet seven inches tall. That's two point three one meters. And he was nicknamed the Irish giant, and when he died he asked his friends to seal him in a lead. Coffin weigh it down and bury him at sea because based on his life experience, so far he feared his body being stolen and. Dissect it this was at a time when there was no honor in donating your body to science or medicine. There is more detail about that. In our episode on the doctors riot of seventeen eighty eight which is in our archive that he had been really viewed as the medical curiosity, and he was he was very concerned that something was going to happen to his body after his death. However, while burns friends made the arrangements for the burial that he asked for surgeon and anatomist John hunter stole his body possibly switching it with another body and then after removing the flesh from the body hunter kept the skeleton in his personal collection, the British government later purchased the collection and gave it to the company of surgeons, which became the Royal College of surgeons, and that became part of the Royal College of surgeons hunts Harian museum burns remains made a meaningful contribution to medical science, including helping doctors understand how.