Mass Grave Found at Ex-Orphanage in Ireland

A mass grave has been discovered at a former Catholic orphanage in Ireland, and it contains the remains of what could be as many as 800 babies and young children. Excavations at the County Galway site have taken place since November, and officials have uncovered a structure underground made up of 20 chambers with “significant quantities of human remains.” The ages range from 35 weeks to 3 years old, according to a DNA analysis, and were buried for the most part during the 1950s. The orphanage closed in 1961. “Everything pointed to this area being a mass grave,” local Tuam historian Catherine Corless said, adding that boys playing in a field had reported seeing a pile of bones there in the 1970s. Katherine Zappone, the government’s commissioner for children, called Friday’s announcement “sad and disturbing.” She added, “We will honor their memory and make sure that we take the right actions now to treat their remains appropriately.”