International Journal of Anthropology

, Volume 6, Issue 3, pp 267–275 | Cite as

Pathological traits observed in a historic Great Basin Native American Indian Skeleton

  • S. Brooks
  • R. H. Brooks


During the excavation of an irrigation ditch in Churchill County, Nevada, a burial was encountered, with associated artifacts indicative of historical provenience. The pattern of occlusal attrition, the lack of dental work, and the skeletal morphology indicate the individual was a Great Basin Native American Indian. Sex determination was female and age at death estimated as 40±.

The skeleton is nearly complete and several of the long bones, as well as the vertebrae, scapulae, sternum and xiphoid process have minor pathologies, either osteophytic growths or areas of porosities and pitted appearances. The left sacroiliac joint is extensively affected by an unusual pathology, with the auricular surfaces of both the sacrum and ilium having a scooped out or hollowed appearance. Although the other pathologies are interpreted as being related to both age and possibly the lifestyle of a female Great Basin Indian during historic times, the sacroiliac pathological condition is construed as a manifestation of a more severe affliction.

Key words

Pathologies Great Basin Historic Indian 


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Copyright information

© Editrice Il Sedicesimo 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. Brooks
    • 1
  • R. H. Brooks
    • 1
  1. 1.Anthropology DepartmentUniversity of NevadaNevadaUSA

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