Stature of Adult Human Remains from Point San Jose

Author(s): P Willey

Year: 2018


Stature provides insights into the lives and wellbeing of individuals and populations. In living groups, stature is employed to evaluate differences associated with time (secular trend), geographic distribution, sexual dimorphism, socioeconomic differences, and from other living conditions. Poor living situations hinder growth and yield shortened statures; advantageous conditions enhance growth and result in greater heights. Similar influences are inferred for past populations and the skeletal samples that represent them, including human remains from a pit at Point San Jose (PSJ), San Francisco. Employing all possible PSJ adult stature estimations in this analysis, they average 64.3 inches. The PSJ statures display a bimodal distribution, with peaks at 62 inches and 66 inches. That bimodality may result from a number of causes: small sample size, over-representation of a few individuals, ancestral differences, or sexual dimorphism. When compared with worldwide adult statures, the PSJ material display average stature. On the other hand, compared to a 19th century U.S. military sample, most members from PSJ stand shorter than that group by an average of 3.5 inches. This result suggests that the PSJ individuals faced impoverishment, deprivations and other challenges during their growth period.

Cite this Record

Stature of Adult Human Remains from Point San Jose. P Willey. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 444396)

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections

Spatial Coverage

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

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 21474