A geochemical approach to Inuit-European contact

Author(s): Tyrone Hamilton

Year: 2014


Iron was among the most sought-after forms of material culture for Labrador Inuit, who obtained it at Breton, Norman and Basque seasonal whaling and cod fishing stations along the southern Labrador coast and the Quebec North Shore by the 16th century, both through trade but also through pilfering during off-season visits. This project uses geochemical analysis via Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry to study the provenance of a sample of iron artifacts from Inuit sites in south, central and northern Labrador and to compare these to geochemical signatures of iron recovered from the Basque whaling station of Red Bay and the French fishing station at Dos de Cheval. Results give a measure of the focal importance of these source-sites to the Inuit.

Cite this Record

A geochemical approach to Inuit-European contact. Tyrone Hamilton. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Quebec City, Quebec, Canada. 2014 ( tDAR id: 437215)

Individual & Institutional Roles

Contact(s): Society for Historical Archaeology

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): SYM-66,10