Tuberculosis Sanatoriums: Historical Archaeology, Landscape, and Identity

Author(s): Alyssa Scott

Year: 2018


This paper examines the archaeology of the Weimar Joint Sanatorium, an institution which functioned as the county tuberculosis hospital for fifteen counties in California during the early twentieth-century. Field data from topographical survey, historic structures recording, geophysical survey, and surface collection are interpreted along with historical information in order to understand how the institution and people connected to it were situated within the larger landscape. Within the institution and surrounding communities, people navigated narratives about health, illness, disability, gender, race, ethnicity, age, class, and other forms of identity. Tuberculosis sanatoriums as a building type occupied a space midway between an institution and a domestic space, and tuberculosis sanatoriums consisted of a variety of building configurations, from dorms to private cottages. Archaeology can be used to understand narratives about the body and normative expectations which are embedded in the built environment and the landscape, and identifying these narratives is an important step towards destabilizing structures of inequality and stigma.

Cite this Record

Tuberculosis Sanatoriums: Historical Archaeology, Landscape, and Identity. Alyssa Scott. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 442822)

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Spatial Coverage

min long: -124.189; min lat: 31.803 ; max long: -105.469; max lat: 43.58 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 22421