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Ontario Archaeology – OA 71, 2001

Nineteenth Century Burials from Peterborough, Ontario
Volume:  OA71
Year:  2001
Page Range:  1 – 28
Abstract:  This study examines human skeletal and cultural remains from the first burial grounds at Peterborough, Ontario, dated between 1827 and 1854. Approximately 32 individuals are represented, including ten skeletons and the commingled remains of 22 more individuals. They are described as to their age, sex, populational affinity, height and pathologies. The sample includes five subadults and possibly 35 adults. An overrepresentation of males is found compared to the 1851 Personal Census of Canada. Cranial measures prove the skeletons to be those of European settlers. Body height is a very tall 178.12 centimetres for males and an average 159.2 centimetres for females. Overall, the health status of the skeletons reveals severe signs of degenerative joint disease, nutritional-metabolic deficiencies and some fractures. Dentally, the high ‘diseased and missing’ index in addition to a strong representation of periodontal diseases and abscesses shows again a poor health status. These are people who engaged in heavy, long-term, sustained physical activity, who had a poor diet during their developmental years, and who lacked good oral hygiene. These characteristics, in addition to the cheaper personal artifacts found with burials, are indicative of lower socioeconomic status. Burial patterns are consistent with the nineteenth century cultural trend toward increased embellishment following adoption of the larger Western ideology surrounding the ‘beautification of death’.

Sweat Lodges and Solidarity: The Archaeology of the Hubbert Site
Volume:  OA71
Year:  2001
Page Range:  29 – 78
Abstract:  In 1990, Archaeological Services Inc. undertook salvage excavations at the Hubbert site, a mid- to late-fifteenth century Late Woodland period settlement located on the eastern margin of the Innisfil upland over-looking the broad valley of Lovers Creek. In the course of excavating 3,260 square metres of this one hectare settlement, two longhouses were completely exposed, while the end of a third house was documented as well. The most conspicuous features associated with the houses were their 17 semi-subterranean sweat lodges. This paper summarizes the findings of the excavations with respect to the settlement patterns, the various aspects of the material culture and subsistence practices of the sites occupants, and concludes with a summary and interpretation of these data.