House-Yard Burials of Enslaved Laborers in Eighteenth-Century Jamaica

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Abstract

Four burials were excavated from discrete house-yard compounds in an eighteenth century African Jamaican slave settlement at Seville plantation. Though only four in number, these individuals provide significant information on burial practices and physical conditions within a clearly defined African Jamaican community. The analysis of material remains illuminate living conditions and social relations within the African Jamaican community. Each individual was interred within a separate house-yard and with a unique set of artifacts that yield information about their unique identities and positions within the Seville community. Bioarchaeological assessments describe the osteological remains and detail findings concerning pathologies. To date, they are the only excavated individuals who represent the African Caribbean practice of house-yard burial.