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"Whether they turn out to be as old as 14,800 years ago or as recent as 10,500 years ago, they are still the oldest petroglyphs that have been dated in North America." While Native American artifacts found in the Lahontan Basin -- which encompasses the Winnemucca Lake subbasin -- date to the time period of 11,300 to 10,500 years ago, it does not rule out the possibility that the petroglyphs were carved as early as 14,800 years ago, Benson said.
The oldest dates calculated for the Winnemucca Lake petroglyph site correspond with the time frame linked to several pieces of fossilized human excrement found in a cave in Oregon, said Benson, who also is affiliated with CU's Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research.
Archaeologists have discovered the oldest tattooing artifact in western North America.
The tool was made around 2,000 years ago by the Ancestral Pueblo people of the Basketmaker II period in what is ...
Co-authors on the study included Eugene Hattori of the Nevada State Museum in Carson City, Nev., John Southon of the University of California, Irvine and Benjamin Aleck of the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe Museum and Visitor's Center in Nixon, Nev. Benson sampled the carbonate into which the petroglyphs were incised and the carbonate that coated the petroglyphs at the base of the limestone boulder.
The radiocarbon dates on the samples indicated the carbonate layer underlying the petroglyphs dated to roughly 14,800 ago.
When the lake level was at this height, the petroglyph-peppered boulders were submerged and therefore not accessible for carving, said Benson, an adjunct curator of anthropology at the University of Colorado Museum of Natural History. According to Benson, a white layer of carbonate made of limestone precipitated from the ancient, overflowing Winnemucca Lake had coated some of the petroglyph carvings near the base of the boulders.
"We have no idea what they mean," Benson said of the Winnemucca Lake petroglyphs.The petroglyphs located at the Winnemucca Lake petroglyph site 35 miles northeast of Reno consist of large, deeply carved grooves and dots forming complex designs on several large limestone boulders that have been known about for decades, said CU-Boulder researcher Larry Benson, who led the new effort.Although there are no people, animals or handprint symbols depicted, the petroglyph designs include a series of vertical, chain-like symbols and a number of smaller pits deeply incised with a type of hard rock scraper.These vehicles have strong roots in Boulder dating back to 1972.Jeep’s Wrangler has been so popular that it has surpassed both Cherokee and Grand Cherokee sales.
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A new high-tech analysis shows the oldest known petroglyphs in North America, which are cut into several boulders in western Nevada, date to at least 10,500 years ago and perhaps even as far back as 14,800 years ago.