• Strontium;
  • Zinc;
  • Magnesium;
  • Atomic absorption;
  • Ledders site;
  • Gibson site


Parallel chemical analyses of ribs and femurs from the Middle Woodland Gibson site and the Late Woodland Ledders site show that the elements most closely related to diet (strontium, zinc, magnesium) are found in identical proportions in the two bones. Elements associated with soil contamination (iron, aluminum, potassium, manganese) are found in a significantly higher proportion in the rib. The major elements calcium and sodium are found in lower levels in the ribs. Thus the rib is more sensitive to diagenetic processes that alter elemental proportions than is the femur. Conclusions concerning subgroupings by sex or site, derived from the diet-related elements (Sr, Zn, Mg), were found to be essentially the same for the rib and the femur.