Date Thesis Awarded

Spring 5-2010

Access Type

Honors Thesis -- Access Restricted On-Campus Only

Degree Name

Bachelors of Arts (BA)




Frederick H. Smith

Committee Members

Marley R. Brown

Michael Kelley


Historians and anthropologists have investigated lead poisoning among colonial American populations. They argue that lead was an inadvertent component in colonial diets, and that it was introduced by a wide variety of sources, especially through the use of pewter and lead-glazed ceramic tablewares. However, assessing sources of lead contamination within certain populations in a society is complex. Studies have been conducted that offer insight into the nature of lead contamination, such as leaching from lead-glazed ceramics and pewter plates. Yet, these studies offer little insight into that nature of consumer populations and the way their actions, beliefs and behaviors shaped lead contamination and toxicity. In other words, the source of contamination does not necessarily mean that all individuals within that society were subjected to contact from a specific lead source. In addition to the scientific analysis of leaded sources and surviving evidence, the affected society must be examined in historical context in order to discover how interaction, identity, and behavior shaped and contributed to lead contamination.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.


Thesis is part of Honors ETD pilot project, 2008-2013. Migrated from Dspace in 2016.

On-Campus Access Only