An isotopic investigation of the diet and origins of 18th- and 19th-century individuals from Newfoundland and Louisbourg, Nova Scotia

Garlie, Megan Elizabeth (2022) An isotopic investigation of the diet and origins of 18th- and 19th-century individuals from Newfoundland and Louisbourg, Nova Scotia. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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The forced migration of French colonists from Placentia, Newfoundland, to what would become the Fortress of Louisbourg, Nova Scotia, following the Treaty of Utrecht connects the two sites historically. To investigate this link, isotopic analyses involving carbon (δ¹³CVPDB), nitrogen (δ¹⁵NAIR), and strontium (⁸⁷Sr/⁸⁶Sr) were conducted to evaluate the diet and geographic origins of individuals from archaeological sites in Newfoundland, including St. Paul’s Anglican Cemetery in Harbour Grace, Foxtrap-2 in Foxtrap, and St. Luke’s Anglican Cemetery in Placentia, as well as the Block 3 cemetery at the Fortress of Louisbourg. Isotopic analyses (δ¹³CVPDB and δ¹⁵NAIR) were also conducted on faunal remains from Placentia and the Fortress of Louisbourg to establish local isotope baselines for comparison. While there was variability in human δ¹³C and δ¹⁵N values from all the sites, these data were interpreted to indicate a mixed C₃ terrestrial and marine diet. The ⁸⁷Sr/⁸⁶Sr data suggest most individuals could have originated in coastal regions of either Western Europe or North America. This research contributes to the growing isotopic data for the historic period in North America, especially the Atlantic Canadian region, and more specifically provides isotopic evidence of the historical connection between Placentia and the Fortress of Louisbourg.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Item ID: 15764
Additional Information: Includes bibliographical references (pages 131-159)
Keywords: isotope analysis, bioarchaeology, historical archaeology, diet, mobility
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Archaeology
Date: September 2022
Date Type: Submission
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Stable isotopes; Human remains (Archaeology)--Newfoundland and Labrador--History--18th century; Archaeology and history--Newfoundland and Labrador--History--18th century; Human remains (Archaeology)--Newfoundland and Labrador--History--19th century; Archaeology and history--Newfoundland and Labrador--History--19th century; Human remains (Archaeology)--Nova Scotia--Louisbourg--History--18th century; Archaeology and history--Nova Scotia--Louisbourg--History--18th century; Human remains (Archaeology)--Nova Scotia--Louisbourg--History--19th century; Archaeology and history--Nova Scotia--Louisbourg--History--19th century; Diet--Newfoundland and Labrador--History--18 century; Diet--Newfoundland and Labrador--History--19 century; Diet--Nova Scotia--Louisbourg--History--18th century: Diet--Nova Scotia--Louisbourg--History--19th century; Excavations (Archaeology)--Newfoundland and Labrador; Newfoundland and Labrador--Antiquities; Excavations (Archaeology)--Nova Scotia--Louisbourg; Louisbourg (N.S.)--Antiquities

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