The first people to North America arrived thousands of years earlier than previously assumed, according to the latest discoveries by archaeologists. Fossil footprints have been discovered in the White Sands National Park in New Mexico in the United States, and are estimated to be up to 23,000 years old.
The latest research suggests that the first people in North America appeared much earlier than 11-13 thousand years ago, as is commonly believed. Archaeologists in White Sands National Park in New Mexico in the southern United States have discovered 61 fossilized footprints.
Using radiocarbon dating it has been found that the prints are 21,000 to even 23,000 years old. These are the oldest footprints found in the USA.
First People in North America. New study
Traces were buried in the soil layers. The researchers found that they belonged to different people, mostly children between the ages of 9 and 14.
In the same place, traces of mammoths and prehistoric wolves have also been discovered.
“Very convincing and extremely exciting”
“The evidence is very convincing and extremely exciting,” said Tom Higham, archaeologist and radiocarbon dating specialist at the University of Vienna.
The study was conducted by experts from the White Sands National Park, the US National Park Service, the United States Geological Survey, and the University of Bournemouth in England, the University of Arizona and Cornell University in New York.
The findings were published in the journal Nature on September 23.
Main photo source: Matthew Bennet / Bournemouth University