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Dr. John Hawver was the local dentist in Auburn and was also a paleontologist who had connections to UC. Berkeley. In 1906 a teenager came to his dentist’s office on Commercial Street in Auburn and showed him a bone found in a cave near the American River Confluence. Over the next several years Dr. Hawver unearthed many ice-age animal remains and documented them, keeping many at his office in a bookcase that can still be seen at Auburn elementary School. The artifacts were moved to Berkeley for safe keeping.
Many monuments have been erected to the dentist including a plaque on his office location at the top of commercial Street in old town Auburn, at the sight of his home where the extended parking lot for In and Out Burger is now located, and a tile has been dedicated to the Doctor outside the Pawn show on Lincoln Way. But one mystery remains: Where is Doctor John Hawver buried?
Gene Lorance, who works for California State Park as the Hawver cave project manager, has been studying all things Hawver and explains why his grave site is a mystery considering how well known he was.
Lorance has a very educated guess as to what may have happened.
Another inexplicable turn of events shows that Doctor Hawver purchased 2 cemetery plots in the old Auburn Cemetery on Fulweiler and one is occupied, believed to be the Doctor’s first wife, but it is an unmarked grave. You can learn more about the history of the Hawver Cave at Hawver cave dot org.