Over the course of the last century, American archaeology has remained an ever-shifting narrative. Since the 1930s, the existence of humans in North America at least as far back as 13,000 years ago had been well established; and since the new millennium, the evidence for people who arrived well in advance of the Clovis culture is no longer contested as a “controversial” idea.
Despite the obvious presence of people here before Clovis, there are still discoveries that come along from time to time that raise questions about just how much earlier people were arriving in the New World. Perhaps none of the proposed pre-Clovis sites in North America has aroused more controversy over the years than the Topper Site, an ancient chert quarry located in Allendale County, South Carolina.
In the video below, the Seven Ages team travels to the Topper site, joined by Dr. Albert Goodyear who oversaw excavations at Topper beginning in 1986. During our visit, Dr. Goodyear shared the history of the site and its discovery, and gave us detailed explanations for some of the most notable artifacts recovered there, the oldest of which could be as much as 50,000 years old:
To read more about the Topper Site and research that has been conducted there over the years, check out the complete article available at SevenAges.org. Also for those interested in Topper and North American archaeology, you may want to listen to this podcast, which features an interview with Dr. Albert Goodyear (featured in the video above) and Chris Moore Ph.D. of the Savannah River Archaeological Research Program.
Portions of this post originally appeared at SevenAges.org.by