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vol.34 issue1PALEOPATHOLOGY AND LIFE-STYLE: THE CHONOAN EXAMPLEMORTUARY CONTEXTS IN THE BEAGLE CHANNEL REGION… FROM THE OCASSIONAL FINDING TO THE SYSTEMATIC SURVEY author indexsubject indexarticles search
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Magallania (Punta Arenas)

On-line version ISSN 0718-2244

Abstract

CASALI, Romina; FUGASSA, Martín  and  GUICHON, Ricardo. EPIDEMIOLOGICAL APPRAOCH TO EUROPEAN-ABORIGINAL CONTACT IN NORTH OF TIERRA DEL FUEGO. Magallania [online]. 2006, vol.34, n.1, pp.87-101. ISSN 0718-2244.  http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0718-22442006000100006.

European-native contact events during the last part of the 19th century and beginnings of the 20th century in the north of Tierra del Fuego are examined. Specifically, the events linked with the Salesian mission of Río Grande, Nuestra Señora de la Candelaria and the indigenous population. By means of the analysis of the missionary records -mission diary, deaths book and baptisms book- and of ethnographic and secondary sources, the cause of death among the natives was examined. Also its epidemiological aspects (age, sex, seasonal variation and year of deaths) and its possible impact in the Selk'nam extinction are analyzed. Tuberculosis has been the excluding cause of death in the Mission during the period between 1902 and 1931 and we suggest likewise for the period 1897-1902 (for which there it no deaths record). According to the typical behavior of the tuberculosis disease, either in occidental or indigenous populations, we proposes that population sheltered in the Mission was composed by a major proportion of children, teenagers and probably women. We emphasize the thesis that the drastic population reduction of Selk'nam people begum before the emplacement of thr Mission and that the 223 deaths reported in La Candelaria were a part of this process, but in an already irreversible context

Keywords : Selk'nam; tuberculosis; missionary records; La Candelaria Mission.

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