Right field at the new El Paso Chihuahuas (Class AAA; Pacific Coast League) ballpark will allegedly sit on top of one of the city's oldest graveyards, Camposanto -- a "spirits park."
Researchers say people were buried at Camposanto beginning in the 1830s. As the city grew and matured, the site was abandoned as a cemetery, with the tombstones and most of the remains moved to the outskirts of town. The issue: whether any remains remained at the site. There's been no indication of skeletal remains during the construction process, say city officials. That's to be expected: too many years have passed. From KDBC.com:
"The experts, the anthropologists, the archaeologists are, they're convinced that that was a cemetery probably 1830s 1840s perhaps maybe into the 1850s," said Bernie Sargent, Chairman of the El Paso County Historical Commission.
"Roughly speaking, it's called a 'Spirits' park' or 'Spirits camp', where the spirits are buried," he said.
He thinks workers from the nearby Ponce Ranch were buried there during the 1830's and 1840's. Ponce Ranch was located where the Camino Real is today.
"The first burials that we have heard of are going to be what we consider the Camposanto, which is where the baseball stadium is being built," Sargent said.
Of course, there are some haunted ballparks out there: Charlie Grimm supposedly wanders the Wrigley Field grounds and occasionally makes a call to the bullpen when no one is around. Still, we're not too worried about spirits interfering with play at the new ballpark -- we're guessing baseball is still reasonably popular in the afterlife.
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