In 1879, Dr. Thomas West Harris helped found the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's medical department. He received no salary, but practiced in the town for income. During his tenure, a woman's body disappeared from a local graveyard. Some thought students dug it up for anatomy class. The incident led to the passage of a law in 1885 by the General Assembly that made grave robbing a felony. Also in 1885, Harris resigned from the university, claiming that his practice had grown too large.