Mercyhurst Archaeological Institute

Ted A. Rathbun Osteology Laboratory

This laboratory room serves dual purposes:

  1. Smaller teaching facility (12-15 students) often used for labs associated with classes or hands-on intense upper level classes
  2. Storage resource facility for most of the human and animal osteological collections of the Anthropology and Forensic Science Department

The Osteology Laboratory houses large, floor to ceiling, custom built (13.6× 70.7× 70.7 cm with a volume of 2.4 ft cubed, and 27.5× 0.7× 70.7 cm with a volume of 4.85 ft cubed) pull out drawers that contain our comparative collections of human remains, large vertebrate (Sus scrofa, Bos taurus, Capra hircus, Ovies aries, Ursus americanus, even African Cervis crania) skeletons, vertebrate faunal collections from a number of historical and prehistoric sites, fossil hominid casts, and donated human remains. Also housed in the room are smaller cabinets with smaller vertebrate skeletons and micro fauna. Side cabinets contain measuring devices from digital calipers and ostemetric boards to microscribe digitizer and microscopes. The Bone Lab is equipped with one computer which can run Fordisc 3.0, an interactive discriminant functions computer program, as well as Endnote and other programs.

In addition, this lab houses the majority of print publications available to students, including the Journal of Forensic Science and the American Journal of Physical Anthropology. Being enrolled at Mercyhurst University also gives students free access to many online journals and collectives, including ForensicNETbase, where students can read any CRC Press forensic science book online free of charge.

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