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Clovis culture

From Simple English Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"A Clovis blade with medium to large lanceolate spear-knife points. Side is parallel to convex and exhibit careful pressure flaking along the blade edge. The broadest area is near the midsection or toward the base. The base is distinctly concave with a characteristic flute or channel flake removed from one or, more commonly, both surfaces of the blade. The lower edges of the blade and base is ground to dull edges for hafting. Clovis points also tend to be thicker than the typically thin later stage Folsom points. Length: 4–20 cm/1.5–8 in. Width: 2.5–5 cm/1–2
A Clovis point or Clovis projectile point

The Clovis culture was one of the first well documented Native cultures in the Americas. The Clovis people lived in the Americas about 13,000 years ago. They lived there for between 200 and 800 years. Different sources list different lengths of time in that range.

They had a special way of making tools like spear tips and knives from stones. The flint tips are called Clovis points. Artifacts that they made in this way can be found in many places in North America. The Clovis way of making tools only lasted between 500 and 1000 years. After that, other similar ways became more popular.

They are called "Clovis culture" because archaeologists first found their artifacts at Clovis, New Mexico.

The end of the Clovis culture[change | change source]

A decline in the availability of megafauna, together with the population becoming less and less mobile, led to local differentiation of lithic and cultural traditions across the Americas.[1][2] After this time, Clovis-style fluted points were replaced by other fluted-point traditions (such as the Folsom culture).[3]

Clovis First (a theory)[change | change source]

The Clovis First theory says that the Clovis people crossed the Beringia land bridge over the Bering Strait from Siberia to Alaska during the period of lowered sea levels during the ice age, then made their way towards the south, through an ice-free corridor east of the Rocky Mountains in present-day Western Canada as the glaciers retreated.[4]

Things that point to earlier settlement of the Americas[change | change source]

"Clovis First" is one of the theories about the Settlement of the Americas. There are other ideas and research that go against "Clovis First".

  • Evidence of human habitation before Clovis
  • Idea about a coastal migration route: Research on the mitochondrial DNA of First Nations/Native Americans, was published in 2007. It suggests that the people of the New World may have diverged (or went away from each other and stayed away), genetically from Siberians as early as 20,000 years ago.[5] One theory says that the Pacific coast of North America may have been free of ice, and maybe the first peoples in North America came down this route before the formation of the ice-free corridor.[6]

Research that shows human habitation before the Clovis culture[change | change source]

Map of the Americas showing sites before the Clovis culture, with BP dates.

Archaeological sites that have been shown to be older than the Clovis culture:

References[change | change source]

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