Lead isotope ratios and lead (Pb) levels were analyzed in 33 individuals from a forgotten cemetery at the Colorado Mental Health Institute at Pueblo, Colorado dating to 1879-1899. Isotopic ratios from healing bone fractures, cortical bone, and tooth dentine provide information about sources of Pb exposures over a range of time that illuminates individual's life histories and migration patterns. Historical records and Pb production data from the 19th century were used to create a database for interpreting Pb exposures for these African, Hispanic and European Americans. The analysis of these individuals suggests that Pb exposure noticeably impacted the mental health of 5-10% of the asylum patients in this frontier population, a high number by standards today, and that differences exist in the three ancestral groups' exposure histories.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Environmental Engineering
- Environmental Chemistry
- Waste Management and Disposal