Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Arts




Dr. Christine White

2nd Supervisor

Dr. Fred Longstaffe

Joint Supervisor


This thesis uses stable isotopes of carbon and nitrogen derived from bone collagen and tooth dentin to study infant feeding behaviour, diet, and mobility at the 19th century Sacred Heart Cemetery in Ingersoll, Ontario, in use from 1848 to 1880. d15N and d13C bone values indicate a diet high in protein with a mix of C3 and C4 plants. The most significant source of dietary C4 plants is through secondary consumption, via livestock raised on maize fodder. The dietary profile of the Sacred Heart population is similar to two contemporary Ontario populations. There was no significant difference in the d15N and d13C bone collagen or dentin composition between the sexes, but consumption does vary by age. Supplementary infant feeding began between 8 and 10 months, and weaning continued until approximately 18 to 20 months. Although most individuals were local, there is evidence that some members of the population were landed migrants. ­­