The Quapaw Tribe recently purchased some land in Little Rock, Arkansas, but was surprised at what they discovered there—an unmarked slave cemetery, reports KARK Channel 4.
The land purchased was part of the tribe’s original reservation, so “it’s a very important piece of land to us,” the tribe’s business chairman John Berrey said. The tribe lived on this land in the 1800s before being forcibly relocated to Oklahoma.
After purchasing the 160-acre plot of land near the Little Rock Port Authority, the tribe commissioned an archaeological survey according to Channel 4.
The exact location of the cemetery is being kept secret to protect the graves there. The Quapaw want to preserve the history there.
“We want to find someone in Little Rock that would like to work with us in understanding how we should treat it, whether there is a community group that is interested in slave cemeteries or someone else, we would like to find them,” Berrey told the news channel.
During the archaeological survey, pottery pieces of historical value to the tribe were also discovered.