Owsley, Douglas W., Bruwelheide, Karin S., Jantz, Richard L., Koste, Jodi L., and Outlaw, Merry. 2017. "Skeletal Evidence of Anatomical and Surgical Training in Nineteenth-Century Richmond." in The Bioarchaeology of Dissection and Autopsy in the United States, edited by Nystrom, Kenneth C., 143-164. Springer International Publishing. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-26836-1_7
A brick well containing human bones and artifacts dating to the mid-nineteenth century was discovered during construction on the Medical College of Virginia campus of Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) in 1994. The commingled assemblage associates the well with the first years of operation of the Egyptian Building, opened in 1844 and built to house the Medical Department of Hampden-Sydney College, established in 1838. A 2011-2012 analysis of the human bones identifies a minimum of 44 adults (individuals 15 years and older) and 9 children (ages 14 years and younger) represented by at least 19 fairly intact bodies plus partial remains of an additional 34 individuals. Males and females are represented, and African and European ancestries are conveyed in the morphometric analysis of the crania. Patterned cuts indicating autopsy and dissection are present on several bones and identify the well as a repository for the disposal of cadavers used in medical teaching and training during the college's formative years.