Americas oldest carbon-dated relics could rewrite the nation’s history

June 9th, 2008 - 2:32 pm ICT by ANI  

Washington, June 9 (ANI): An archaeological dig at Allendale County in the US has uncovered the oldest carbon-dated relics ever found in North America, at 50,000 and 51,000 years old, which supports a controversial theory that humans lived here 37,000 years before the first people arrived in America.

According to a report in The Island Packet, the archaeological dig that has revealed the ancient relics is being carried out at the Topper Site in Allendale County by University of South Carolina archaeologist Dr. Albert Goodyear and colleagues.

In 1998, Goodyear had found pre-Clovis artifacts at an ancient rock quarry in the woods that shade the Savannah River in western Allendale County.

Goodyear named the site, just a few miles south of a tiny town called Martin, Topper after the resident who found it.

Topper is now a pit 12-feet deep where volunteers dig in whats called the Pleistocene Terrace. named for the time period that spanned from 1.8 million years ago to 10,000 years ago.

The hard clay dirt is in layers and must be sprayed with water and scraped away every five centimeters.

According to Goodyear, plant remains found in the pit have been carbon-dated to between 50,000 and 51,000 years ago.

Stones called cores - rock altered by human hands - were also found at the same level. These rocks were used to make tools as sharp as glass for pointed spear-like blades or chisels, some of which were also found.

In 2004, Goodyear began working on the rocky hillside of Topper at what he calls the Clovis dig.

The Clovis dig has uncovered tens of thousands of stone chips, scraping tools and flakes of stone blades.

Since Goodyear believes the area was a manufacturing site for the first American tools, archaeologists and volunteers only expect to find mistakes, castoff equipment that didnt make the cut. The functional tools would have been taken off-site and used.

There were probably families spending several days and weeks camping and working on their tools, said Goodyear. We dont think they lived here permanently, he added.

According to Goodyear, the find shows that Clovis people in South Carolina probably communicated with people in adjacent areas.

We want to know about their world, he said. Yes, this is a factory, a quarry, but there is more to their lives than just beating on rocks, even though thats basically all that survives, he added. (ANI)

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