Master of Arts (MA)


Geography and Anthropology

Document Type



The Poole-Rose ossuary, a prehistoric Native Canadian population from Ontario, Canada, represents a Late Woodland period communal burial that has been radio-carbon dated to 1550 A.D. +/- 50 years. The location and attributes of this ossuary, a secondary burial deposit, led the site's excavator, Dr. Heather McKillop, to believe that it is a part of the "Feast of the Dead" ceremony. Due to commingling of the individuals, the human remains from this ossuary have been analyzed by element. This thesis examines the ulnae, one of the bones of the forearm, for evidence of degenerative joint disease. Additionally, the thesis includes analysis of cutmarks on the ulnae associated with defleshing of the remains as part of a burial preparation ceremony. A minimum number of 221 individuals (MNI) are represented by the left ulnae in this population. Analysis of degenerative joint disease (DJD) included examination of pitting, lipping and eburnation on all joint surfaces. A chi-square analysis of DJD on the ulnae indicates a significant relationship (p < 0.05) between locations where the DJD is present. However, no significant relationship exists in terms of the side of occurrence of DJD (left versus right), with the exception of distal lipping. Cutmark analysis reflects that defleshing cutmarks on the ulnae are randomly distributed between left and right ulnae and on the shafts.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Mary Manhein