Volume 28, Issue 1 (January 1983)
Summary of Skeletal Identification in Tennessee: 1971–1981
Records of 111 forensic anthropology cases from Tennessee received from September 1971 through September 1981 are analyzed. Thirty percent of the cases in which no identification existed when the skeleton arrived were positively identified and an additional “probable” identification was made in 11%. The skull or skull bones were the most common element recovered followed by femora, mandibles, and innominates, in that order. The sternum was the single major postcranial bone least likely to be recovered. January has been the single busiest month for the discovery of skeletal remains in Tennessee, and there are almost twice as many fire-related discoveries between September and February. In the first half of the decade, from 1971 through 1978, there were 39 cases with 72 cases occurring from 1977 through 1981. This increase is probably because of efforts to educate students at the University of Tennessee as well as lectures to law enforcement and citizens' groups.