St. Vital Cemetery (1879-1885) : An Osteological and Paleopathological Assessment
In the fall of 1999, human skeletal remains and historic artifacts were discovered on private farmland approximately two kilometres south of the Town of Battleford, Saskatchewan. Document searches and a ground-penetrating radar survey of the property resulted in the discovery that the land was once used as a cemetery for the Catholic Church of St. Vital during the years of 1879 to 1885. Numerous interest groups were brought together in the process of handling this sensitive situation, including the landowners, the Heritage Resource Branch of the Department of Saskatchewan Culture, Youth and Recreation, the Rural Municipality of Battle River, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Prince Albert, and the Battleford Tribal Council. A decision was made to relocate the burials to the current town cemetery. In the meantime, permission was granted for the University of Saskatchewan to play the lead role in the excavation and analysis process. The partial and complete skeletal remains of thirty individuals were recovered, and in addition to a basic osteological analysis of the individuals that included sex determination, age at death and population affinity, a detailed assessment of the pathological conditions was also undertaken. The document and artifact analyses will be the subject of a separate thesis by Colette Hopkins.
Advisor:Walker, E.G.; Kennedy, M.; Meyer, D.
School:University of Saskatchewan
School Location:Canada - Saskatchewan
Source Type:Master's Thesis
Keywords:forensic anthropology osteology historical cemeteries saskatchewan archaeological sites battleford osteological assessment burial skeletal remains human archaeology paleopathological
Date of Publication:04/14/2008