The first permanent settlers in North America turned to cannibalism to survive harsh conditions, say researchers from the Smithsonian. Human remains from the 17th century were excavated from a dump at James Fort, Jamestown, Va.
By analyzing the dental development of the third molar and the growth stage of the shin bone, the researchers determined that the bones belonged to a girl who was approximately 14 years old when she died.
The researchers noticed four shallow chops to the forehead which indicate a hesitant, failed attempt to open the skull. Then a series of deep, forceful chops from a small hatchet or cleaver to the back of the head split the skull open.
Tissue from the face and throat were removed using a knife.
A combination of digital and medical technologies made it possible to reconstruct her likeness.