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Bascom Hill the site of two graves dating to the 1830s

October 27, 2011 By Dennis Chaptman

Since it’s nearly Halloween, here’s something worth knowing: Though most people are unaware of their presence, two graves are located atop Bascom Hill near the statue of Abraham Lincoln.

Two small bronze plaques on the esplanade walkway in front of Bascom Hall bear the initials of the two men still interred on the hill.

One is the grave of Samuel Warren, of Middlesex, England, who was killed by lightning in Madison in 1838. The other plaque memorializes William Nelson, who reportedly died of typhoid fever in 1837.

The remains of the men were discovered during an excavation in 1918 that moved the Lincoln statue from further down the hill to its current location, but were not removed.

Four years later, Warren’s gravestone was discovered by workers on the hill.