There are some discoveries that can change our way of thinking about history. Archaeologists in Chile believe they made such a discovery. They have discovered a human footprint that is approximately 15,500-16,000 years old. It is the earliest evidence found so far by people in America. The imprint has the potential to change how we believe the continent was settled and who its first inhabitants were.
The imprint was found at the archaeological site Pleistocene in Pilauco, which, according to Phys.org, "is where scientists dig since 2007". The Pilauco site also had evidence of extinct elephants and horses, and is located in the Chilean city of Osorno, about 800 kilometers south of Santiago de Chile, the capital of Chile.
The Pleistocene Footprint is the oldest surviving human footprint in America. Universidad Austral de Chile )
A Pleistocene Footprint
The footprint was found in 2010 near a modern home by a "student at the Universidad Austral of Chile," according to Reuters. While the impression seems to be a human footprint, the scientists were cautious as they could be traces of an animal that had become inappropriate and tedious over time. It is believed that the impression was buried under three feet of residue, which he received for posterity.
The RTE reports: "Paleontologist Karen Moreno and geologist Mario Pino needed years to reliably prove that they are human." This was only found by conducting footprint tests with humans was human. These also showed that it was made by a "barefoot, adult human who, according to the Daily Mail, had a" light weight ".
Scientists believe that pressure comes from direct descent due to foot pressure tests. The diagram shows the different types of printing that can be created with different angles and pressures. Universidad Austral de Chile )
It is believed that the footprint of a man who weighed 155 kilograms and, according to Phys.org, belonged to the species Hominipes modernus, a relative of Homo sapiens. "This was determined by the technology, that is, by the scientific study of the traces that were found in the sediment. Technologists who compared the brand to other traces found that it was H. modernus.
To determine if the Pleistocene footprint was human and how it was produced, the scientists performed foot pressure tests with different soil moisture levels and foot angles and pressures. Universidad Austral de Chile )
The Earliest Evidence for Humans
Scientists were able to date the find by using radiocarbon dating techniques in which organic plant material near the imprint was analyzed was approximately 15,600 Year old. According to RTE, this was the "oldest footprint in America". While other prints have been dug up, none is as old as the one in Osorno. It seems that the place was occupied by humans for some time, as footprints dated a thousand years later were also uncovered.
The Daily Mail reports that "these were the first evidences for people in America who were older than 12,000 years." Previously, it was believed that the first inhabitants of the continent came from Siberia about the Bearing Straits some 10,000 years ago. This discovery challenges the idea that Clovis Man, a paleo-Indian culture, was the first to populate the continent.
Archaeologist working on-site at the site when Pleistocene footprint was discovered. ( NERYX / Adobe)
Who settled the Americans first?
According to Plos One, the finding is evidence of the "colonization of northern Patagonia" in the late Pleistocene. The footprint shows evidence found at Monte Verde, Chile, that this region in the far south of the Americas was populated much earlier than expected. This in turn supports the so-called coastal migration model. This means that the first settlers who lived in America were drawn by shorelines, and might suggest that the Pacific Islanders were the first to settle on the continent.
The imprint and the surrounding sediment were removed from the Osorno site and are now stored in a specially regulated environment. There was a bit of a jump when the moisture in the floor dried up, but the impression is still clear. The print could be issued later, but it depends on the condition of the tracks.
Picture above: Region near the Pleistocene footprint. Source: Matyas Rehak / Adobe
By Ed Whelan