A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America
New Evidence of a Viking Voyage Found at L’Anse aux Meadows
Thursday, June 06, 2013
PROVIDENCE, RHODE ISLAND—Chemical analysis of two jasper fire starters unearthed at the site of L’Anse aux Meadows, a Norse site in the New World, suggests that the raw material to make them came from the Notre Dame Bay area of Newfoundland. “This area of Notre Dame Bay [is] archaeologically the area of densest settlement on Newfoundland, at that time, of indigenous people, the ancestors of the Beothuk,” said Kevin Smith of Brown University. Smith thinks it’s possible that the Norse and the ancestral Beothuk may have made contact when the Norse traveled from L’Anse aux Meadows. Other trips may have taken them to the Gulf of St. Lawrence, where they may have obtained butternut seeds, and the Canadian Arctic, where they may have traded with indigenous people. Norse sagas tell of hostile meetings with peoples of the New World.
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