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East Whiteland Township, Pennsylvania: Mass Grave Of Irishmen

They all died of a mysterious something in 1832. A plaque and stone memorial mark the site, where the 57 deaths are attributed to cholera, but they don't really know.

Sugartown Rd, East Whiteland Township, PA
Pennsylvania Tpke exit 326 onto I-76/Schuykill Expy toward Philadelphia. East one mile, then take exit 328A onto US 202 toward West Chester. Drive west 3.5 miles, then take the Paoli exit onto Swedesford Rd/Hwy 252. South 2.5 miles, then turn right onto Lancaster Ave. West one-half mile, then bear left onto Paoli Pike. After 2.5 miles, turn right onto Sugartown Rd. One mile to the marker, which is at the corner of Sugartown and King Rds. There's also an unmarked stone memorial by the railroad tracks, which are a couple of blocks further north on Sugartown Rd.
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Grave of Irish Railroad Workers

This site has been excavated and featured on the TV series Secrets of the Dead. Postmortems of individuals buried separately from the mass grave show that they were murdered: smashed skulls, bullet wounds on bones. The present theory is that when cholera hit the camp, anti-Catholic militias surrounded it and killed anyone trying to get out.

[Joe Adams, 05/15/2021]

Mass grave of Irishmen.

Mass Grave Of Irishmen

It's in the corner of someone's yard but the mystery of not knowing the actual burial site is cool.

[Anthony B, 04/06/2012]

Duffy's Cut Mass Grave historical marker.

Mass Grave Of Irishmen

In 1832, a group of 57 Irishmen from Donegal, Tyrone, and Derry arrived to work on a stretch of the Philadelphia and Columbia railroad as cheap labor. Within six weeks they were all dead, but exactly where they were buried and how they died is a mystery. Cholera struck the Irishmen's camp, but cholera usually only kills half of the people who catch it. What, or who, killed the other Irishmen?

All were buried in a mass grave, believed to be somewhere near the tracks that nowadays carry SEPTA, Amtrak, and freight trains. Its existence is noted by a historical marker at the intersection of Sugartown and King Roads, and an unmarked stone memorial by the railroad tracks.

[ Team, 04/20/2007]

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