Early Tuesday morning, research scientists at the University of Texas confirmed what many have thought for decades. The grave located on the southeast corner of the Denton square, does not actually belong to John B. Denton.
After a well-shrouded exhumation that occurred in July of 2013, subsequent DNA tests showed that the bones that lie near the Denton Courthouse are actually of porcine (read: pig) origin and not even human.
While many anthropologists and historians have suspected that John B. Denton wasn’t actually buried in this location (after all, dude has three graves - Shaun Treat said so in this Back in the Day from last year) for many years, to actually have this confirmed is fairly disheartening to many Dentonites who have viewed and respected this gravesite for many years. There have been plenty of times that we have taken it upon ourselves to clean trash off of what we thought were the resting grounds of John B. Denton.
Unfortunately, this news now places the courthouse’s historical status under question and it is now likely that by the end of the summer of 2014, the courthouse and surrounding grassy area will no longer be considered “historical.” Apparently, the courthouse’s renovation in 1987 was so heavy that the crux of what comprises the structure is too new to be considered for preservation. The courthouse also sits directly over an interesting section of the Barnett Shale that local natural gas drillers, EagleRidge Energy, have been eyeing for fracking purposes for many years now. So far, the company has been unable to reach the area through horizontal drilling from any of their Denton gas well sites. The loss of the courthouse’s historical status will make it fair game for fracking purposes if the current regulation stands.
As for John B. Denton, we are now left wondering, “Where do the remains of John B. Denton actually lie?” Many suspect that Denton’s body was never moved from it’s original unmarked burial location in what is now Bolivar, TX. In the meantime, write to your city council and state representative if you don’t want to see fracking on the Denton square. Also, J & J’s is turning into a Pizza Hut.