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Ancient DNA and Cranial Morphometric Analysis into Ancestry of Five Burials from Colonial Delaware

Author(s): Meradeth Snow ; Ashley McKeown ; Kathleen Hauther

Year: 2015

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Summary

Five burials were excavated from a small Colonial cemetery at the Elkins site in New Castle County, Delaware by Hunter Research, Inc. for Delaware DOT. The remains were analyzed for mitochondrial DNA haplogroups in conjunction with a standard skeletal biological assessment. Analysis of the mtDNA demonstrated European maternal lineages for all of the individuals. Additionally, an infant and an elderly male shared a derived haplogroup T haplotype, suggesting a matrilineal relationship between them. The infant was also established as male by amelogenin genetic testing. The craniofacial morphology of three of the adults is consistent with that seen in other early Colonial Europeans in the Chesapeake and Middle Atlantic, although it could be misinterpreted as indicating African ancestry. These individuals serve as an excellent example of this early Colonial pattern in Europeans and the mtDNA analysis confirms the European ancestry for all individuals from this cemetery.

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Ancient DNA and Cranial Morphometric Analysis into Ancestry of Five Burials from Colonial Delaware. Meradeth Snow, Kathleen Hauther, Ashley McKeown. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 398414)


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Spatial Coverage

min long: -80.815; min lat: 39.3 ; max long: -66.753; max lat: 47.398 ;

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America