Make sure you know where
the dog buries his bones.

About 40 km from Linz is the town of Lambach, where on the river Traun, the state hydro company has begun building a power station. It has been a significant project, which is a focal point for current discussion about the future structuring of the production of electricity in Austria.

Pros and cons about the project are being strongly debated. The pro side argues that to build it creates employment, and provides an alternative to the very controversial nuclear power. The con side argues that, to begin with, there is no shortage of electricity, and that the area in which the power station would be built is one of the few areas which is considered by the E.C. a protectable bird sanctuary.

Conflict and debates increased when the machines started to work in this area and ecology activists moved in and set up a camp there in order to hinder the work.

Recently the issues have been made even more complex. In their initial digging, in January 1996, the company discovered the mass grave of, (at last report), 15 people.

Several theories about the origin of the bones have gradually come forth:

1.The bones are from Hungarian Jews:
There were about 2000 prisoners from a concentration camp near Melk being herded to Ebensee just before the war ended. It is suspected that these are some of those prisoners.

2.The bones are from German soldiers:
Local people also talk about the American prisoner of war camp for German army and SS prisoners in Lambach, and think they could be prisoners from this camp.

3. The bones are from Slavic people:
This theory from an expert from the Soldier's Grave Organization of the Black Cross, who identified the bones as Slavic, still puzzles the local people.

4.The bones are from French soldiers:
In 1955 a similar discovery was made nearby. It was determined at that time that the exhumed remains were those of French soldiers from the Napoleonic wars. This was the favoured theory by the investigating archeologist.

5.The bones are from Oarmen of merchant boats:
Since there was busy ship traffic in former centuries along the Traun, it is thought that this grave, located on a rough corner of the river, could be men from capsized vessels. 6. The State head of Upper Austria has his own theory:
He says that just about every house builder finds such bones.

Not one wheelbarrow full of dirt will be left unscrutinized from this site now as laws about building over a grave site make solutions to the debate even more difficult. Official conclusions will be announced on March 4, 1996.

March 4, 1996:
After having investigated 60 skeletons at Lambach a commission of experts concludes that these human remains are at least 300 years old.
The metal buttons found along with the bones are definite evidence of the fact that the 100 skeletons are soldiers killed in action in the so called "Bauernkriege" (farmers' wars).

The minister of Interior Affairs commissioned a study to make sure that the graves are not the graves of Jews of World War II.

Information has been extracted from:
Kronen Zeitung, Jan.31, 1996
Oberösterreichische Nachrichten, Jan.31, Feb.6, 17, 22, March 5, 19, 1996
Standard, Feb. 16, 17, 1996 Profil, Feb.5, 1996