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Doubts cast on the Walker, Minnesota site

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  • minnesotastan
    In mid-January I posted a message here reporting the discovery in northern Minnesota of lithic artifacts found beneath glacial outwash till, implying a
    Message 1 of 3 , Mar 5, 2007
      In mid-January I posted a message here reporting the discovery in
      northern Minnesota of lithic artifacts found beneath glacial outwash
      till, implying a pre-Clovis date of deposition.

      The findings have been widely publicized and discussed. This past
      week the Minnesota state archaeologist came out with a report casting
      doubt as to whether the materials recovered were in fact man-made.

      He indicates that the stone tools were more primitive than one would
      expect (there were no points found, just supposed hammerstones,
      scrapers, etc and some possible flakes), that the stone composition
      was only local material, and that the items found could have been
      produced by natural means (water motion, etc).

      Since the find does suggest pre-Clovis occupation, it's not surprising
      that skepticism would be a prominent reaction among established
      archaeologists. On the other hand it is also true that extraordinary
      claims require extraordinary proof.

      The materials recovered are currently being more extensively curated,
      with opinions sought from more experts. It appears likely that the
      site will be excavated again (fortunately the town of Walker is eager
      to protect and preserve the site). Probably no definitive answers
      will be forthcoming for quite a while.

      Those interested in the details of the state archaeologist's views can
      find them in a pdf linked at this website -

      http://www.admin.state.mn.us/osa/

      Over and out,

      Stan
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