Idaho Site Shows Humans Were in North America 16,000 Years Ago
September 11, 2019 at 9:41 AM - Views: 21 #145198
The site at Cooper’s Ferry along the Salmon River is more evidence humans first traveled along the coast, not via an ice-free corridor
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The dig site at Cooper’s Ferry. (Oregon State University)
By Jason Daley
August 30, 2019
Artifacts recently unearthed at a site in western Idaho called Cooper’s Ferry indicate that humans were living there 16,000 years ago, pushing back the timeline of human habitation in North America.
The find is more evidence to overturn the “Clovis First” hypothesis, reports Megan Gannon at National Geographic. Archaeologists previously believed that the oldest culture to settle the interior of North America came through a gap in the ice sheets in central Canada that appeared roughly 14,000 years ago. These people have left behind distinctive Clovis points, found in various places in North America throughout the 20th century, the oldest dating back 13,500 years.
But in recent years, archaeologists have found numerous sites and artifacts older than that migration timeline, suggesting that early humans didn’t travel through the ice but followed the coast, likely using boats. A site called Monte Verde at the southern tip of Chile is at least 15,000 years old, a sinkhole in Florida recently yielded a knife and butchered mammoth bone more than 14,500 years old and the Gault site in Texas has yielded thousands of artifacts that could be 16,000 to 20,000 years old.
The finds at the Cooper’s Ferry site are the final nail in the coffin of the Clovis theory argues Todd Braje of San Diego State University, who reviewed the new paper in the journal Science “The Clovis-first model is no longer viable,” he tells Gannon bluntly.
September 11, 2019 at 4:07 PM #145476
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I love the way scientists fight for the primacy of their own theories. It is quite possible that humans came to North America by two or more different routes. It’s also possible that the first humans to arrive are not the only ancestors of all our native people. An early group may have populated one part of the continent, with later arrivals colonizing a different area.
September 12, 2019 at 7:57 AM #146477
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I feel the same. Whenever the first people arrived they weren’t exactly throwing up billboards to announce their arrival. It’s also unlikely they came in large groups.
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