Texas A&M University researchers have found what are accepted to be the oldest weapons at any point found in North America: ancient spears that are 15,500 years old. The discoveries bring up new issues about the settlement of early people groups on the landmass.
Michael Waters, recognized professor of anthropology and chief of the Center for the Study of the First Americans at Texas A&M, and associates from Baylor University and the University of Texas have had their work distributed in the current issue of Science Advances.
The group found the various weapons – around 3-4 inches in length – while burrowing at what has been named the Debra L. Friedkin site, named for the family who claims the land around 40 miles northwest of Austin in Central Texas. The site has experienced broad archeological work for as far back as 12 years.
Spear points made of chert and different instruments were found under a few feet of silt that dating uncovered to be 15,500 years old, and pre-date Clovis, who for quite a long time were supposed to be the main individuals to enter the Americas.
“There is no uncertainty these weapons were utilized for hunting in the territory around then,” Waters said. “The disclosure is huge in light of the fact that all pre-Clovis locales have stone instruments, however spear points have yet be found. These points were found under a layer with Clovis and Folsom projectile points. Clovis is dated to 13,000 to 12,700 years ago and Folsom after that. The fantasy has dependably been to discover analytic antiquities -, for example, projectile points – that can be perceived as more seasoned than Clovis and this is the thing that we have at the Friedkin site.”
Clovis is the name given to the unique tools made by individuals beginning around 13,000 years ago. The Clovis individuals developed the “Clovis point,” a spear headed weapon made of stone that is found in Texas and parts of the United States and northern Mexico and the weapons were made to chase animals, including mammoths and mastodons, from 13,000 to 12,700 years ago.
“The discoveries extend our comprehension of the earliest individuals to travel and settle North America,” Waters said. “The colonizing of the Americas amid the finish of the last Ice Age was a mind boggling procedure and this intricacy is found in their hereditary record. Presently we are beginning to see this multifaceted nature reflected in the archeological record.”
The research was funded by The North Star Archeological Research Program and the Elfrieda Frank Foundation.
Michael R. Waters, Joshua L. Keene, Steven L. Forman, Elton R. Prewitt, David L. Carlson, James E. Wiederhold. Pre-Clovis projectile points at the Debra L. Friedkin site, Texas—Implications for the Late Pleistocene peopling of the Americas. Science Advances, 2018; 4 (10): eaat4505 DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aat4505