archaeology
subscribe
Special Introductory Offer!

Early Aboriginal Site Discovered in Western Australia

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Australia Aboriginal SitePERTH, AUSTRALIA—One of the earliest sites showing Aboriginal occupation of northwestern Australia—some 50,000 years ago—has been discovered at the Drysdale River catchment in the Kimberley region, The West Australian reports. Archaeologists led by the University of Western Australia’s Peter Veth, in conjunction with Kwini Traditional Owners and Balanggarra Aboriginal Corporation Rangers, also found evidence of an early ax production industry at the Minjiwarra site, which had previously been interpreted as a dune feature indicating a break in Aboriginal occupation. “Our work changed that view,” said Veth. “This is actually a sedimentary (flood) feature built up over 50,000 years and it shows early, intermediate and more recent occupation by Aboriginal people. There is also a significant body of rock art in the region which suggests repeated occupation and symbolic engagement with these ancestral lands over many thousands of years.” Aboriginal occupation of Minjiwarra continued even through the peak of the Ice Age 19,000 years ago, when environmental conditions were especially cold and dry. To read about another Australian site with evidence of early human occupation, go to "Off the Grid: Kakadu National Park."

Advertisement

Advertisement


Advertisement