NORCAL-L ArchivesArchiver > NORCAL > 2004-04 > 1081226964
From: "Sue Silver" <>
Subject: Sacramento County Hospital Cemetery
Date: Mon, 5 Apr 2004 21:49:24 -0700
The UC Davis Medical Center in Sacramento was established at the old Sacramento County Hospital property in the 1970s. When the County sold the University the property no provision was made for the County Hospital Cemetery. During construction for an expansion project, contractors found human remains in the project zone.
The body count has increased from 2 sets of remains to 28 sets of remains WITHIN THE PROJECT ZONE. The County Hospital Cemetery has been reported to have begun as 1 acre in 1877 and was expanded to 2 acres at a later date. Thirty graves have been reported to have been moved in the past, though neither the County nor UC Davis has the records of that relocation.
UC Davis Medical Center has petitioned the Superior Court of Sacramento County to allow them to exhume and relocate the 28 bodies found during their subsequent archaeological review. The medical center claims to be the "cemetery authority" even though California cemetery law required the County of Sacramento to relocate the graves from the cemetery before the County had authority to sell the land. A hearing will be held on April 13 in Sacramento Superior Court.
This is a true instance of Murphy's Law for this poor cemetery. What could go wrong, did go wrong. Now UC Davis is forced to bear the cost of the relocation which the County should have done before transferring the land. Now UC Davis only wants to address the 28 bodies in the project zone while ignoring the rest of the location of the cemetery and the untold remains that rest there. (Mostly under a parking lot and temporary modular buildings.)
If you had ancestors that were buried in the Sacramento County Hospital Cemetery, I encourage you to contact me direct at to learn more.
This entire situation could have been avoided had the County of Sacramento complied with the law. Without doing so, they had no statutory authority to sell the land from the county's ownership.
What happens when we violate the law? What happens when a County violates the law? Nothing unless someone sues them.
If you have someone buried in the Sacramento County Hospital Cemetery located at X St. and 45th St., please contact.
Sue Silver, State Coordinator
California Saving Graves