Document Type


Date of Degree Completion

Spring 2020

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Cultural and Environmental Resource Management

Committee Chair

Sterling Quinn

Second Committee Member

Robert Hickey

Third Committee Member

Nicole Jastremski


The historical-period Old City Cemetery in Roslyn, Washington contains individuals from diverse social backgrounds and exhibits considerable variation in mortuary expression. As such, the Old City Cemetery offers a unique opportunity to explore potential differences in social group mortuary practices spatially and statistically. Using burials in Roslyn’s Old City Cemetery, this project developed a methods framework to assess mortuary practice through demographics, burial location, and monument/plot attributes. I tested correlations between demographics and mortuary expression using spatial-statistical cluster analysis (Ripley’s K-Function), spatial density analysis (Kernel Density Estimation), and non-spatial statistical significance assessments (Factor analysis and Pearson’s R), and identified several demographic-based mortuary trends. Similarities in some ages and nationalities were significantly associated with choice in burial location and monument/plot attributes in the Old City Cemetery, suggesting social dynamics in historical-period Roslyn valued these demographic designations. I did not identify any significant trends in choice between similar occupations or causes of death. Cemetery chronology and known decade-based norms appeared partially responsible for burial location siting and choice in monument or plot attributes.

This project serves to recommend the viability and importance of incorporating both spatial and statistical dimensions into mortuary analysis of historical-period cemeteries, and I offer that this framework can be applied in such contexts to investigate mortuary expression and social dynamics.