Alternate Theory of Inhabitation of North America Challenged

Jeff Sossamon, sossamonj@missouri.edu, 573-882-3346
News Source: 
MU News Bureau
Departments: 
Anthropology
Dean of Arts and Science

COLUMBIA, Mo. – There has long been a debate among scholars about the origins of the first inhabitants of North America. The most widely accepted theory is that sometime before 14,000 years ago, humans migrated from Siberia to Alaska by means of a “land bridge” that spanned the Bering Strait. However, in the 1990s, a small but vocal group of researchers proposed that North America was first settled by Upper Paleolithic people from Europe, who moved from east to west through Greenland via a glacial “ice bridge.” Now, researchers at the University of Missouri, working with colleagues the Cleveland Museum of Natural History and elsewhere, have definitively challenged the ice bridge theory.

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