Monday, 16 May 2016

Riverbed discovery places humans in the southeast US 1,500 years earlier than previously thought

MAY 13, 2016

by Susanna Pilny

It was a widely accepted fact since the 1930s: The first people to arrive in the Americas, now known as the Clovis culture, came here about 13,000 years ago.

The first crack in the theory came around in the 1970s, when archaeologists began turning up sites that predated the arrival of the Clovis culture—although acceptance of a pre-Clovis human arrival has been slow.

However, a newly-excavated site in Florida now offers substantial proof for those who doubt, as researchers there have dated human-made tools to 14,550 calendar years before present—and offers up a rare insight into when certain megafauna disappeared from the continent.

The Clovis culture
More than 13,500 years ago, the northern reaches of North America were covered entirely by sheets of ice—which, spanning thousands of miles in solid blocks, hindered the movements of humans and animals looking to move from Bering land bridge southward.

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