Fourteen projectile points, sharp as razors, which were affixed to spears or arrowswere found along the banks of a river in southwestern Idaho in the United States, according to a study published in Science Advances on December 23. They would have been shaped by a group of hunter-gatherers nearly 16,000 years ago. According to the scientists, the similarities between these objects and artifacts made before this period suggest that the manufacturing technique could come fromEast Asia. These sharp objects are similar to projectile points found in Hokkaido, Japanwhich date from 16,000 to 20,000 years ago.
These deadly sharp points are older than any previously found on the American continent, they could be the very first tools made in America. Scientists have estimated that they are precisely 15,700 years old, 3,000 years older than the oldest spikes found in North America, and 2,300 years older than spikes previously found at the site. They oscillate between 1.3 and 5 centimeters. The study explains that they come from people who would have come from the south along the Pacific coast, and who would have entered North America. The site, called Cooper’s Ferry, is located at a higher elevation than the rest of the landscape. Thanks to this position, this place has escaped, over time, floods and avalanches that have destroyed or buried the neighboring valleys.
The first peoples of America would have arrived before the end of the ice age
This discovery gives substance to the way the first peoples of America lived. “It’s one thing to say ‘we think people were present on the American continent 16,000 years ago’, it’s another to measure it by finding artifacts they left behind” , pointed out Professor Davis, in a statement from the University of Oregon of December 23. But above all, they demonstrate the existence of an intercontinental connection between the Ice Age peoples of Northeast Asia and North America, at a time when the ice cover on the earth seemed to be ubiquitous, details the ‘study.
This discovery contradicts the thesis (called “Clovis First”) that prevailed until then on the way America was populated. For a long time, it was believed that the first peoples of America arrived from Asia via Siberia and Alaska, nearly 14,000 years ago, after the melting of huge layers of ice. The artifacts found dating from this period pointed in this direction. But in recent years, much older tools found in Chile, Texas, and now on this site, have contradicted this hypothesis. On the site of Gault, in Texas, one thus discovered thousands of old artefacts of 16,000 to 20,000 years. It will therefore be necessary to evaluate these tools more precisely to identify the potential regions of Asia from which the first Americans could originate. It remains to be seen why these projectile points, which appear to be in perfect condition, were discarded and scrapped.