Ancient North American Settlement Unearthed

The oral history of the Heiltsuk Nation, an Aboriginal group dependent on the Central Coast of British Columbia, informs of a wooded strip of territory which didn’t freeze during the ice age, which makes it a place of sanctuary for ancient inhabitants of the land. As Roshini Nair accounts for the CBC, a new archaeological discovery proves to a historical human existence in the region linked to the tradition. While digging British Columbia’s Triquet Island, archaeologists uncovered a settlement which dates to this period of the previous ice age.

The archaeological team, backed from the Hakai Institute, sifted through meters of land and peat before hitting the charred remains of an ancient hearth. Researchers painstakingly peeled out charcoal flakes that were subsequently carbon dated. In November, evaluations disclosed that the hearth was some 14,000 years old, indicating the region where it was discovered is among the oldest human settlements found in North America. Or as Randy Shore of the Vancouver Sun contextualizes, the village is “twice as old as the fantastic Pyramid in Giza.” ┬áIt was recently covered in a documentary on UK Television, which you should be able to watch on the BBC although it can be difficult to access abroad.

Alisha Gauvreau, a PhD student at the University of Victoria as well as also a researcher using the Hakai Institute, presented the team’s findings at the yearly meeting of the Society for American Archeology this week. She tells Shore which archaeologists also discovered lots of artifacts from the region: fish hooks, a hand drill for igniting fires, a wooden apparatus for launching projectiles along with a cache of stone tools near the hearth.

“It looks we had people sitting in 1 place making stone tools beside evidence of a fire pit,” Gauvreau states. “The stuff that we’ve recovered … has actually helped us weave a story for the job of this website.”

These findings could have important implications for our comprehension of early human migration patterns. As Jason Daley accounts for Smithsonian.com, the standard narrative of human birth into the Americas posits that some 13,000 decades back, stone-age folks moved across a land bridge which linked modern-day Siberia into Alaska. But recent studies indicate that route didn’t include enough funds to the first migrants to efficiently create the crossing. Rather, some researchers say, humans entered North America across the shore.

In a radio interview with the CBC, Gauvreau states the early settlement on Triquet Island “actually adds extra evidence” for this theory. “Archaeologists hadn’t believed that … the shore would be fully uncalled and impassible when that’s quite clearly not the situation,” she describes.

The discovery can be significant to the Heiltsuk Nation, lending credence to oral traditions that put their ancestors in the area throughout the days of this ice ” [I]t reaffirms a great deal of the history our folks have been speaking about for thousands of years,” William Housty, a part of Heiltsuk Nation, informs Nair. He added the validation by “Western science and archeology” will aid the Heiltsuk people as they negotiate with the Canadian authorities over name rights into their traditional territory.

John Williams

http://www.changeipaddress.net/

 

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