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Frederick Civil War Museum spotlights severed arm

Written by The Associated Press | Oct 30, 2014 8:17 AM
civil_war_arm.jpg

Photo by AP Photo/Lori Eggleston, National Museum of Civil War Medicine

This handout photo provided by the National Museum of Civil War Medicine, taken Oct. 27, 2014, shows a well-preserved arm purportedly found on the Antietam battlefield shortly after the Civil War clash in 1862.

(Frederick, Md.) -- A well-preserved human forearm purportedly found shortly after the 1862 Battle of Antietam is grabbing the Halloween spotlight at the National Museum of Civil War Medicine in Frederick, Maryland.

The naturally mummified relic went on display topday as museum officials released findings of a scientific and historical investigation. 

Smithsonian Institution anthropologists who examined the arm couldn't identify its owner or determine its authenticity as a battlefield relic.

They say it belonged to a white man of about 16 who most likely was from the New York-Pennsylvania-Ohio area, based on forensic evidence of his diet. 

The arm was donated to the Civil War museum in 2012 after it had been displayed for decades at a roadside museum in Sharpsburg as "The Arm of the Unknown Soldier.''
 

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