Woman Finds 80 Skeletons Crammed Into Ikea Bags

Gruesome discovery made in Swedish church

By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff

Posted Aug 1, 2014 2:45 PM CDT

(Newser) – Centuries-old skeletons should probably be 6 feet under—not overflowing out of blue Ikea bags and shoved under a tarp in a Scandinavian church. But that's exactly what Kicki Karlén says she recently found at the Kläckeberga church in Sweden. "There were loads of skulls and bones stuffed into Ikea bags—I counted up to 80," she tells the Expressen newspaper via the Local. "I became angry, very angry about how they were just sitting there." There appears to be a (somewhat) reasonable explanation, at least for the initial excavation.

The church called in an archaeology team five years ago to exhume the skeletons—some estimated to be 500 years old—for a renovation, according to one of the scientists who spoke to the Local. "The plan was to rebury them as soon as possible … but the county board said they couldn't leave church ground, and it became complicated," he says. He does give props to the unusual storage containers, acknowledging that "the Ikea bags aren't actually that bad [because] they'd be great for stopping the molding process." Karlén still insists it's a terrible idea, posting on her blog (where you can see a picture of the bone-burdened bags): "How would you feel if it was your grandmother or grandfather?" (Click to read about a Utah teen who found ancient remains in his backyard.)

A woman says she found Ikea bags filled with bones and skulls inside a Swedish church.
A woman says she found Ikea bags filled with bones and skulls inside a Swedish church.   (Shutterstock)
File photo of an Ikea store in Brooklyn.
File photo of an Ikea store in Brooklyn.   (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)
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Randy Travis singing "Diggin' Up Bones."   (YouTube)

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