Jesse James' remains, Mark Stoneking

Interviewee: Mark Stoneking. Mark Stoneking talks about Jesse James' remains.

The remains were in extremely poor shape, much worse shape then than they thought they had been. But they were examined by a physical anthropologist. They were, there was the skull showed signs of having been cut open for an autopsy, and it's known from historical records that an autopsy was performed. There was a bullet in the chest area, and it's also known from historical records that during the Civil War, Jesse James was shot in the chest by a sniper. Physical anthropologists did estimates of stature and size and sex and so forth, everything seemed to indicate that it was probably Jesse James. There was nothing in all this analysis to indicate that it was not Jesse James. But to really confirm the identity we carried out a DNA analysis. We took quite a bit of work, and for a while we thought we were just not going to be successful because the remains were in just such poor shape but finally were able to reproducibly get the same mitochondrial DNA sequence from the remains.

mark stoneking,mitochondrial dna,physical anthropologist,physical anthropologists,poor shape,dna analysis,dna sequence,jesse james,chest area,stature,autopsy,skull,sniper,civil war,estimates,signs

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