NPR

New Evidence Suggests Humans Arrived In The Americas Far Earlier Than Thought

Until now, the earliest signs of humans in the Americas dated back about 15,000 years. But new research puts people in California 130,000 years ago. Experts are wondering whether to believe it.
(Left) A close-up view of a spirally fractured mastodon femur. (Right) A boulder discovered at the Cerutti Mastodon site in San Diego County thought to have been used by early humans as a hammerstone. Source: Tom Démeré/San Diego Natural History Museum

Researchers in Southern California say they've uncovered evidence that humans lived there 130,000 years ago.

If it's true, it would be the oldest sign of humans in the Americas ever — predating the best evidence up to now by about 115,000 years. And the claim has scientists wondering whether to believe it.

In 1992, archaeologists working a highway construction site in San Diego County found the partial skeleton of a mastodon, an elephant-like animal now extinct. Mastodon skeletons

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