Lacey Culpepper received her B.A. in Anthropology from Mississippi State University in 2004 and her M.A. in Applied Anthropology from MSU in 2012. Lacey has extensive experience in cultural resource management, and currently resides in Oxford, Mississippi.
Major Professor: Janet Rafferty
This thesis tracks how osteoarthritis appeared among prehistoric human populations, and how it changed through time. By examining these changes, information was provided about food acquisition and preparation activities in northwestern Alabama and northeastern Mississippi, from the Archaic period (B.P. 12650-5600) through the Protohistoric (A.D. 1550-1750) Osteoarthritis was also examined to determine whether a sexual division of labor existed among prehistoric populations from these same areas. Individuals from three specific occupations were analyzed: Dust Cave (1LU496), Lyon’s Bluff (22OK520), and Rolling Hills sites (22OK509, 22OK593, 22OK595). Using the Wilcoxon signed-rank test and logistic regression to find and assess patterns, this study showed that arthritis increased in severity, at a given age, among the Archaic males and the Mississippian/ Protohistoric females. Namely, male individuals from Dust Cave and female individuals from Lyon’s Bluff / Rolling Hills developed osteoarthritis earlier and to a greater degree of severity.