University of South Florida forensic anthropologist Dr. Erin Kimmerle will be back at the former Dozier School for Boys on Monday, the same place where she spent four years researching and unearthing the remains of boys buried on the massive 1,400-acre site in Marianna, located about 60 miles (96 kilometers) northwest of Tallahassee.
I first posted about this subject in Briefly Noted: ‘The White House Boys’ and ‘The Boys in the Dark’ in 2012. The post saw a lot of visitors at the time because the story was big news for a while. Since then, I’ve added numerous updates to the end of the post in chronological order.
I was struck by the synchronicity of events about Dozier school as researchers return to investigate more prospective graves at the time Colson Whitehead’s new novel, based on that school, The Nickel Boys is released.
That school hung like a spectre over our high school in Tallahassee because it was touted as the ultimate punishment for disobeying school rules. I think I knew people who were sent there, but I’ve never been able to verify it. The reason the school scared people had nothing to do with the later revelations about it, but by the fact it was an overkill solution for seemingly minor infractions.
Years ago, parents and other authorities used various folklore stories about goblins and gremlins to keep kids in line. We were threatened with, “If you’re bad, they’ll send to Marianna.” That threat was worse than saying we’d go to hell.
Update 7/23: No New Graves We Found.