Foodways, Animal Husbandry and Nipmuc Identity: Faunal Analysis from Sarah Boston’s Farmstead, Grafton, MA, 1790–1840

  • Amélie Allard


This study explores the processes by which some New England Native American households incorporated animal husbandry into their subsistence practices from the seventeenth century onward, as well as the political ramifications of this adoption. Faunal remains recovered from the Sarah Boston Farmstead site, a Nipmuc household in Massachusetts (1790–1840), suggest that the inhabitants used a variety of meat procurement strategies, including the killing of domesticated livestock, hunting wild animals, and purchasing provisions from local butchery shops. Over the course of several generations, these practices became part of habitual Nipmuc practices that continued to play a role in communal cohesion.


Zooarchaeology Native Americans Animal husbandry Colonialism New England 



I would like to thank Dave Landon, Steve Mrozowski and Steve Silliman, the members of my Master’s thesis evaluation committee at UMass Boston, as well as Kat Hayes, for their continued support and encouragement. I am also grateful to Heather Law and Guido Pezzarossi for their help throughout this project. This work was supported by the Fonds Québécois de la recherche sur la société et la culture (FQRSC) [B2 Research Grant for Master students;148126].


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Anthropology DepartmentUniversity of MinnesotaMinneapolisUSA

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