Silenced Voices: Paleodemography, Representation, and Marginalization of the Individuals at the Baum Site



Midyette, Madeline

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This thesis employs a paleodemographic analysis of the series of burials at the Baum Site, in Currituck County, North Carolina. Although the nature of commingled secondary burials dictates the methods that can be applied and the analyses that can be conducted, paleodemographic reconstructions are a foundation upon which interpretations can be developed. Skeletal analysis has investigated an estimated 145 adult individuals within the secondary and primary burials that compose the “cemetery” area. This estimate is based upon the burials that remained, with knowledge of significant environmental erosion or the burial contexts prior to excavation. Estimated ages ranged from subadults to individuals estimated to be in their 80’s at the time of death. The data is contextualized archaeologically, and cautiously, historically. Discussion addresses the imposing power dynamic of European contact and histories, and the persistent lack of representation - which has resulted in marginalization, a need for increased mindfulness for living-dead interactions and the power dynamics that exist.



Baum Site, Ossuary, Middle Woodland, Late Woodland