reply to post by thelibra
Oh, I'm aware. I just made mention 'cause every time some red-haired mummy falls out of the desert or a cliff tomb or something, some knucklehead
always go "See, white people were here first!" It really gets on my nerves at times.
I know that Kennewick Man's skull measurements were different from those of "normal" Native Americans. This is not all, however. There is, after
all, an almost complete skeleton, and DNA tests have been run. What these further examinations have shown is that the remains are closer to South
Asian or Ainu populations than anything else. Kennewick Man is, in every shred of likelihood, the descendant of an ancient Asian coastal people, of
the same group that gave rise to the Ainu, the Polynesians, the Indonesians, and the Taiwan natives. If I had to wager, he is likely descended from an
Ainu / Siberian group that followed the kelp forest during the postglacial period.
I would actually be incorrect on presuming he'd be a full-on Polynesian, unless the radiocarbon dating was WAY off. Those fellas didn't reach the
extremes of their turf - Rapa Nui and Ao Tea Roa - until what, about the 13th century?
Also, don't confuse "Caucasoid" with "Caucasian." It's a pretty common mistake, but they mean quite different things.
Both: Another thing to consider is the possibility of far-Northern polar travel. Though I haven't seen any theory like this yet, personally,
during class last night, the Professor was talking about how the Muskovy Company got founded when it was suddenly realized you could sail northward
and find a route all the way to Russia's northern shores. That got me thinking about the recent claims on the North Pole as global warming makes it
more and more accessible to sea travel.
Perhaps during one of the "rapid unstable warming periods", enough north-pole ice melted that the short distance through the polar region would have
been possible. It would have been cold, trecherous, and probably fatal the vast majority of the time, but it would not have been impossible during
certain time frames.
It's a plausible theory, but there's two snags. One, the Inuit walked into what was, as far as anyone can tell, uninhabited land, round about three
thousand years ago. There is no evidence of a previous American arctic sea culture, whether couched in Inuit myth, or hidden in Archaeological
evidence. Even in genetics, the Inuit are almost completely northeast Asian, with some mingling with "Standard" Native American from Inuit expansion
southward into the territories of the Athapascan and Cree people. The other snag, is whales. Following whale migrations is about the only sane excuse
I can think of for a migration of people paddling through the arctic ocean (remember, "Warm" is a relative term when we talk about the poles). And
whale hunting as an individual activity didn't appear in Inuit culture until a few hundred years ago.
So while the possibility is there, it's very likely it never happened. Mostly because, I would wager, even the ancient people of Siberia and North
Europe were smart enough to not paddle around the Arctic ocean chasing thirty-ton things that don't like having spears stuck into them.
My personal pet supposition is that the Kennewick Man probably sailed to America from an area similar to Finland, or North Russia, across the
North pole (not exactly along the pole, but enough so to vastly shorten the journey from Asia to Canada), which would have been rich with food, since
the area was not fished, recently opened for spawning, but not have enough time for predators to have spread in the area, and the krill would have
been much more exposed, providing the fish and seals a more readily available food source.
Well, I presume you mean the people he was part of, since I seriously doubt the dead guy in question ever saw anywhere more than a few dozen miles
from his birthplace. In all likelihood, he was born and raised near where he died, into a family that had been there long enough that they believed
themselves to have always been there.
My personal theory, since we're sharing, is that his culture, whatever it was, had its origins on Asia's pacific coast, and followed the kelp forest
that stretches from China north, then east, then down to California. putting down settlements as it traveled.
Now, you want something interesting on the subject of the "Real" first Americans?
There have been discoveries through South America, from Brasil south to Tierra del Fuego, of extinct native cultures unrelated to the current
inhabitants. Pre-dating and totally different. Know who these cultures and remains most resemble? Australian aborigines. The Natives of Tierra del
Fuego, the Yaghan and Selk'nam, were almost fully identical to Australian Aborigines (the last full-blooded Fuegan native died in 1999)
Now, we know the Aborigines have been in Australia for a long, long, LONG time. So it piques the interest. The ancestors of the Australian natives
were able to boat around the Indian and pacific oceans, settling Sri Lanka, the Andaman Islands, the Phillipines, Melanesia, and Australia. It's not
at all far-fetched to think that these people, all these many, many, MANY thousands of years ago weren't content to stick to the Indian and South
Pacific, and boated up the Asian coast, and into North America, where they expanded and migrated through both continents.
Kind of a neat image, really. And again, entirely plausable. Perhaps they were the first big push of human migration.