The U.S. Army is being criticized for deciding to rebury the remains of two recently discovered Civil War soldiers without conducting DNA testing.

In this Sept. 6, 2018 photo, the 3rd Infantry Regiment, also known as the Old Guard, stretch the American flag over the casket containing the remains of one of two unknown Civil War Union soldiers at their grave at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va. The U.S. Army is being criticized for reburying the remains of two recently discovered Civil War soldiers without conducting DNA testing. The soldiers were found at Manassas National Battlefield, among severed limbs in what researchers believe was a surgeon’s pit. Army officials said DNA testing was unjustified and reburied them as unknown soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery.  (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)
In this Sept. 6, 2018 photo, the 3rd Infantry Regiment, also known as the Old Guard, stretch the American flag over the casket containing the remains of one of two unknown Civil War Union soldiers at their grave at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va. The U.S. Army is being criticized for reburying the remains of two recently discovered Civil War soldiers without conducting DNA testing. The soldiers were found at Manassas National Battlefield, among severed limbs in what researchers believe was a surgeon’s pit. Army officials said DNA testing was unjustified and reburied them as unknown soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

The two were recently discovered by accident in what turned out to be a surgeon’s pit at Manassas National Battlefield.

In this Sept. 6, 2018 photo, P. Daniel Smith; deputy director, National Park Service, left, Karen Durham-Aquilere; executive director, Army National Military Cemeteries, second from left, and Mark Esper, Secretary of the Army, right, participate in a military funeral with honors for two Civil War Union soldiers at their grave at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va. The U.S. Army is being criticized for reburying the remains of two recently discovered Civil War soldiers without conducting DNA testing. The soldiers were found at Manassas National Battlefield, among severed limbs in what researchers believe was a surgeon’s pit. Army officials said DNA testing was unjustified and reburied them as unknown soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)
In this Sept. 6, 2018 photo, P. Daniel Smith; deputy director, National Park Service, left, Karen Durham-Aquilere; executive director, Army National Military Cemeteries, second from left, and Mark Esper, Secretary of the Army, right, participate in a military funeral with honors for two Civil War Union soldiers at their grave at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va. The U.S. Army is being criticized for reburying the remains of two recently discovered Civil War soldiers without conducting DNA testing. The soldiers were found at Manassas National Battlefield, among severed limbs in what researchers believe was a surgeon’s pit. Army officials said DNA testing was unjustified and reburied them as unknown soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

Army officials rejected several families’ requests for DNA testing that might have allowed the two to be identified before reburying them as unknown soldiers. The ceremony last month at Arlington National Cemetery was attended by dignitaries including the Secretary of the Army.

In this Sept. 6, 2018 photo, the 3rd Infantry Regiment, also known as the Old Guard, Caisson Platoon carry the remains of two unknown Civil War Union soldiers to their grave at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va.  The U.S. Army is being criticized for reburying the remains of two recently discovered Civil War soldiers without conducting DNA testing. The soldiers were found at Manassas National Battlefield, among severed limbs in what researchers believe was a surgeon’s pit. Army officials said DNA testing was unjustified and reburied them as unknown soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery.  (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)
In this Sept. 6, 2018 photo, the 3rd Infantry Regiment, also known as the Old Guard, Caisson Platoon carry the remains of two unknown Civil War Union soldiers to their grave at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va. The U.S. Army is being criticized for reburying the remains of two recently discovered Civil War soldiers without conducting DNA testing. The soldiers were found at Manassas National Battlefield, among severed limbs in what researchers believe was a surgeon’s pit. Army officials said DNA testing was unjustified and reburied them as unknown soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

Paul Davis of Fort Myers, Florida, said the decision shows a disregard to families that might have learned answers about their ancestors. He says circumstances of the soldiers’ deaths suggest one may have been his great-great uncle, killed at the Second Battle of Bull Run.

Source: The Associated Press

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