History & Archaeology, Portfolio

Destitute and Dissected

On the same street in London where Charles Dickens lived twice during his formative years stands the Cleveland Street Workhouse, a severe brick building built in the late 18th century that is now part of Middlesex Hospital. Archaeologists involved in its renovations are studying the burial site associated with it, and gaining evidence on how the original workhouse operated and on the living conditions of its inhabitants. But this painstaking work is also revealing that the remains of the destitute poor were regularly dissected for anatomical purposes against their own wishes.

Read the rest of my piece for the Order of the Good Death here.