In Remembrance: Archaeology and Death

Overview

In recent years, federal and state governments have recognized their responsibility for the protection of unmarked ancient burial grounds that may be threatened by modern land use activities and natural disasters. The editors have compiled case studies that reflect effective answers to removal, analysis, and reburial of human remains by archaeologists. Each study provides fascinating research from the excavation of historic cemeteries, which has added considerable knowledge to our understanding of factors ...

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Overview

In recent years, federal and state governments have recognized their responsibility for the protection of unmarked ancient burial grounds that may be threatened by modern land use activities and natural disasters. The editors have compiled case studies that reflect effective answers to removal, analysis, and reburial of human remains by archaeologists. Each study provides fascinating research from the excavation of historic cemeteries, which has added considerable knowledge to our understanding of factors relating to health, disease, and trauma, and the social histories of the diverse human communities occupying North America during the last three centuries. The volume also represents an important resource guide for archaeologists, historians, and other researchers concerning the sensitive treatment of the nation's historic burying grounds and cemeteries exposed by 20th century changes to the landscape.

The Introduction highlights recent examples of the way osteological analysis of burials contributes to our knowledge of past histories. Part I examines several socially disenfranchised groups that are under-represented in historic records. These analyses demonstrate how archaeological and anthropological research can contribute to a better understanding of cultural conditions and life ways of important social groups. Part II consists of articles that illustrate where past and recent traumas and desecration have affected human burials. Part III represents the only technical section, providing a resource guide on professional standards in conducting documentary research as well as fieldwork in the location and excavation of historic burials.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Presents case studies on historical cemeteries and burial grounds in North America, and discusses ethical and social issues surrounding the removal, analysis, and reburial of human remains by archaeologists. Looks at investigations of burial grounds associated with historically disenfranchised populations, and at how past and recent trauma and desecration have affected historic human burials, and offers guidelines for conducting research and protecting ancient burial grounds. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780897894197
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 2/28/1997
  • Pages: 264
  • Lexile: 1420L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.63 (d)

Meet the Author

DAVID A. POIRIER is Staff Archaeologist with the Connecticut Historical Commission, where he is also Environmental Review Coordinator for the State Historic Preservation Office.

NICHOLAS F. BELLANTONI serves as the Connecticut State Archaeologist with the Connecticut State Museum of Natural History at the University of Connecticut.

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Table of Contents

Illustrations
Preface
Introduction: New Perspectives on the Past 1
Pt. I Disenfranchised Peoples 17
1 The First African Baptist Church Cemeteries: African-American Mortality and Trauma in Antebellum Philadelphia 19
2 Babies in the Well: An Insight into Deviant Behavior in Eighteenth-Century Philadelphia 51
3 Folly Island: An African-American Union Brigade Cemetery in South Carolina 65
4 Recovering Lost Minds: Evidence of Insanity in a Late Nineteenth-Century Almshouse Skeletal Sample 79
5 The Invisible People: The Cemetery at Catoctin Furnace 93
6 Cedar Grove: African-American History in Rural Arkansas 105
Pt. II Trauma and Desecration 119
7 Buried Prisoners in Eighteenth-Century Quebec 121
8 Rescue, Research, and Reburial: Walton Family Cemetery, Griswold, Connecticut 131
9 Little Bighorn: Human Remains from the Custer National Cemetery 155
10 Forensic Archaeology at the Chauncey Family Crypt, Indian Hill Cemetery, Middletown, Connecticut 173
11 Disaster and Relief Efforts at the Hardin Cemetery 185
Pt. III Resource Guide 199
12 Locating and Excavating Historic Burials 201
13 Documentary and Comparative Scholarly Research: Context in Cemetery Archaelogy 219
14 In Partnership: Descendants, Friends-of-the-Dead, and Archaeologists 231
Index 237
About the Contributors 245
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