In DepthArchaeology

Claim of very early humans in Americas shocks researchers

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Science  28 Apr 2017:
Vol. 356, Issue 6336, pp. 361
DOI: 10.1126/science.356.6336.361

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What broke the 130,000-year-old mastodon bones in California? Most archaeologists would tell you it couldn't have been humans, who didn't leave conclusive evidence of their presence in the Americas until about 14,000 years ago. But a small group of experts now says that the fracture patterns on the bones, found during highway construction near San Diego, must have been left by humans pounding them with stones, also found nearby. If correct, the paper, published this week in Nature, would push back the presence of people in the Americas by more than 100,000 years—to a time when modern humans supposedly had not even expanded out of Africa to Europe or Asia. But many other archaeologists say it will take much stronger evidence to convince them that the bones were fractured by ancient people.