Remains more than 1,000 years old discovered at the Corps' newest base

Julia LeDoux
October 13, 2020 - 9:19 am
Camp Blaz

Staff Sgt. John Ewald

The construction of the first Marine Corps base since 1952 has led to the discovery of four burial sites with human remains believed to be 1,000 years old.

The sites were found at Camp Blaz, a base under construction at Dededo, Guam.    

“The location is on the northern plateau on the west-northwest side of the island,” said Guam Preservation Officer Patrick Lujan. 

The burials were discovered during data recovery efforts at the site of the massive project earlier this year, he said.

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“What started out as a tooth finding resulted in the burial discovery,” explained Lujan.

The remains are believed to be those of four members of Guam’s indigenous CHamoru people.  

“The CHamoru people inhabited the island before the Hawaiians did theirs,” Lujan added. 

CHamoru is the official spelling of the peoples name under local law.

Lujan said previous archaeological surveys theorized that the northern plateau was used more for hunting and harvesting during ancient times and not inhabited.

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“These findings in the ancient village of Sabanan Fadang say otherwise,” he said. 

“This opens the possibilities of so many theoretical scenarios and it has also changed the archaeological mindset of the State Historic Preservation Office not only in this area but for the entire island."

Monuments in both English and CHamoru will be placed at the site and a visitors center outside the base’s main gate will contain other artifacts discovered at the site. 

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