Around 13,000 years ago, Paleoindian hunters were making red ochre from iron-rich hematite collected from a quarry in the western foothills of the Rocky Mountains. Red ochre had an important role in Paleoindian societies, and is associated with many campsites, kill sites, graves, caches—and notably, found in rock art. Worldwide, the historical record of red ochre mines extends back tens of thousands of years.
Footprints have many stories to tell. Humans once shared a world with giant creatures, and footprints can be a window into those interactions. From the ancient tracks found in White Sands National Park recently to those found in Africa decades ago, tracks provide reliable evidence of occupation.
Rock art by ancient Native American artists includes images of large mammals that are now extinct, the hunting weapons that people used, and much more. We can learn valuable information about ancient lives, traditions, and landscapes from rock art images when they are fit into the context of cultures and time.
When mammoths, mastodons, ground sloths, horses and other Pleistocene megafauna became extinct in the Americas some 12,000 or so years ago, what happened to the plants those animals were eating? It’s an interesting story, especially [...]
Did you know that camels evolved in North America? From early rabbit-sized jobs to long-legged 10-foot-tall giants, the diverse camelid family flourished in North America for more than 40 million years. Then, about 3 million [...]
Saber-tooth cats with huge, gaping jaws and slashing canine teeth, were top predators that roamed around California and other parts of the Americas during the Pleistocene Epoch (from about 2.6 million to 11.7 thousand years [...]
Evidence of the Pleistocene “Ice Ages” can be found along the Sonoma Coast north of San Francisco today. On a bone-chilling cold and windy day a few decades ago, two scientists were checking out an [...]
Did you know that traces of the Pleistocene “Ice Ages” can be found north of San Francisco on the Sonoma County coast? There is a “mammoth” finding hidden in clear view there. But before I [...]