An article in the most recent issue of Andy Burnham’s Megalithic Portal (www.megalithic.co.uk) caught my interest and I thought I’d pass it along because of its connection to the search for ancient civilizations.
“As one of the world’s leading authorities on ancient seafaring, Jon Erlandson has devoted much of his career to hunting down evidence of ancient human migrations, searching for something most archaeologists long thought a figment: Ice Age mariners.
The little ‘tree’ in my hand is a dart head fashioned from creamy-brown chert and bristling with tiny barbs designed to lodge in the flesh of marine prey. Erlandson recently collected dozens of these points from San Miguel Island, a scrap of land 27 miles off the coast of California. Radiocarbon dating of marine shells and burned twigs at the site shows that humans landed on San Miguel at least 12,000 years ago, and the dart head in my hand holds clues to the ancestry of those seafarers.
To read the entire article and access a link to much more information in Discover Magazine, check out:http://www.megalithic.co.uk/article.php?sid=2146413496
One of my favorite quotes is found in a comment to the original article:
“There is no question in almost all archaeological minds that the earliest examples of North American occupation are underwater,” said Dave Watters, curator and head of anthropology at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History. “There’s been a lot of discussion, but not a lot of research because you can spend a lot of time looking for something and not ever find it.”