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By David Knopf/Richmond News
It’s 122 years since the death of Judge George Washington Dunn, a contemporary of Alexander Doniphan who presided over the burial of Bloody Bill Anderson.
But the issue of Judge Dunn’s final resting place will be resurrected as the topic of discussion at 10 a.m. Friday in the courtroom of another judge, James Thompson.
Thompson will hear the results of what’s described as a radar-based examination of the backyard of Richmond residents Mark and Amanda Guy. According to an unconfirmed report, the radar analysis confirmed what a Dunn relative, Richmond resident Kayce Duran, and others have argued: that the monument marked the graves of Dunn, his wife and their children in the family cemetery.
Calls to Duran and her Holden attorney, Donald Bowers, seeking confirmation of the results were not returned.
In 2010, Thompson consented to the Guys’ petition to be allowed to move a 6,900-pound monument from its original location in the center of the backyard north 12 yards to a fence line. The Guys said relocation of the stone – described in their petition as a “memorial” – would allow them greater use of their backyard.
Jack Gorham, the Guys’ attorney, said in his petition that he could find no record that the original monument location was, in fact, a burial ground. He also said he’d been unable to locate any Dunn descendants in the area.
Duran, the relative, is the judge’s great-great-great-great niece on her father’s side.
In addition, it appeared that information uncovered at the courthouse by researchers, including now-Ray County Historical Museum Manager Linda Emley, contradicted the arguments of Gorham and his clients.