After Anzick: Reconciling New Genomic Data and Models with the Archaeological Evidence for Peopling of the Americas

Part of: Society for American Archaeology 81st Annual Meeting, Orlando, FL (2016)

The past two years have witnessed the publication of a series of ancient genomes that illuminate the peopling of the Americas: the Anzick infant, the Malt’a boy, and Kennewick Man. Along with similar data from later Holocene skeletal samples and extant Native American populations, these genomes show that a single small but diverse founder group, ancestral to all Native populations south of the Arctic, left Siberia after 23,000 cal BP and crossed Beringia about 15,000 cal BP. Is it possible to reconcile the new genomic data with putative evidence of pre-Clovis or non-Clovis archaeological cultures south of the ice sheets before 14,500 cal BP? Can archaeological and genomic data be unified into a consilient model of the peopling process?

Resources Inside This Collection (Viewing 1-11 of 11)

  • Documents (11)

  • The Anzick Genome Proves Clovis Is First, After All (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Stuart Fiedel.

    The close relatives who buried the Anzick infant ca. 13,000 cal yr BP made classic Clovis tools and were unequivocally the lineal genetic ancestors of all the living Native peoples of southern North America, Central America, and South America. Clovis-derived Fell 1 fishtail points track the rapid southward migration of this ancestral population all the way to Tierra del Fuego. Any hypothesized earlier populations—e.g., the seaweed eaters of Monte Verde or the rock-bashers of Pedra Furada—if they...

  • Are we looking to discover the first Americans or the first successful Americans? (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Darrin Lowery.

    With respect to the peopling of the New World, recent research has focused on linking genetics with the archaeological record. Given historical analogies, there were probably multiple accidental or intentional settlement attempts or migrations into the Americas, which ultimately failed. These failures would have left an archaeological record, but no "legacy" genetic signature among the successful New World settlers. The lecture will address this issue based on recent research at several possible...

  • Beringia is not the sole source of people in the New World (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Michael Faught.

    I challenge the belief of biological and archaeological anthropologists that Beringia is the only place people have come into the Americas, even if along the coast. I show how researchers affirm their consequent, don't show direct historical continuity in areas where gene samples are modern, can't find any other than Dyuktai/Denali/Dene cultures archaeologically, nor have evidence of north to south, or west to east propagation after intrusion. In its place, I propose South America as the locus...

  • Clovis Origins: A Global Perspective (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Juliet Morrow. Stuart Fiedel.

    I review the archaeological record of northern Eurasia and North America from 15,000 to 12,000 cal BP to better define the Clovis cultural complex and identify its most likely area and time of origin. Evidence including a clinal pattern of point style changes indicates migration southward and eastward through North America south of the ice sheets. Diagnostic attributes permit discrimination of early, middle and late Paleoindian assemblages. These data support a relatively simple and parsimonious...

  • Colonization of Northern North America: a view from Eastern Beringia (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Ben Potter. Joshua Reuther. Vance Holliday. Charles Holmes.

    Recent investigations at multiple well-stratified multi-component sites in interior Eastern Beringia have provided important data on late Pleistocene technology, subsistence economy, and habitat use. Our review incorporates recent multidisciplinary work at Upward Sun River, Mead, and Swan Point. We summarize these data within human ecological perspectives and derive implications for the lifeways of early Beringians. We review the biogeography and early archaeological record for the Ice Free...

  • Continental Roots and Coastal Routes? Merging Archaeological, Bio-Geographic and Genomic Evidence of the Peopling of the Americas (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Christopher Gillam. Andrei Tabarev. Masami Izuho.

    Genetic evidence suggests that the Amerind haplogroups A-D coalesce in north-central East Asia (CEA), around Mongolia. How, then, do we have a late Pleistocene coastal migration to the Americas when ancestral populations are centrally-located in the heart of the continent? One answer is offered by bio-geographic and archaeological evidence and an (in)convenient gap in our genetic knowledge of Upper Paleolithic Japan. Japan’s mainland, Honshu, is proposed as the genetic refugia of the first...

  • The First Americans South of the Continental Ice Sheets–Correlating the Late Pleistocene Archaeological and Genetic Records (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Michael Waters.

    There is strong empirical evidence showing that North and South America were occupied before Clovis. This comes from sites such as Monte Verde, Chile, Paisley Caves, Oregon, Schaefer and Hebior, Wisconsin, Page-Ladson, Florida, Debra L. Friedkin, Texas, Wally’s Beach, Canada, and a few others. This evidence places the initial occupation of the Americas at about 15,000 cal yr B.P. Quality chronological data for Clovis still place this complex between 13,000 and 12,600 cal yr B.P. Genetic studies...

  • Human and Animal Dispersal in Beringia: Reconciling the Genetic and Archaeological Records (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only David Yesner.

    Peopling of the New World involved a dispersal process across Beringia that included both humans and animals. The archaeological record from eastern Beringia suggests a multiple-stage process of both pre- and post-Younger Dryas (YD) colonization from different regions of Northeast Asia, with the pre-YD colonization subdivisible into multiple waves. These archaeological manifestations can in turn be related to waves of terminal Pleistocene opportunistic entry into NE Asia itself, but can only be...

  • Making Sense of Kennewick Man (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only James Chatters.

    For almost 20 years, the >9000 year-old skeleton known as Kennewick Man has been the subject of rumor, media hyperbole, lawsuit, political posturing, and even some good science. Archaeological, osteological, morphometric, stable-isotope, chronometric, and genetic studies have now been completed and reported and more than 50 scholars have presented their findings in internet publications, journals, and books. Widely divergent claims have been made about this man’s heritage and place of origin. He...

  • Nunataks and Valley Glaciers: Over the Mountains and Through the Ice (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Marcel Kornfeld. Bob Dawe.

    The first peopling of the Americas is characterized by either a coastal route or an ice free corridor during the late Wisconsin glaciation, when continental ice still covered the north half of the continent. While the pendulum has swung somewhat towards the coastal route, no smoking gun exists that will deliver a champion in this controversy. With this paper we would like to present a third option – the “Icy Corridor.” We argue that a corridor is an unnecessary feature for Clovis predecessors...

  • The old age of mitochondrial linage D1g from the southern cone of South America supports the early entry of the first migrants (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Michelle De Saint Pierre.

    The southern cone of South America has been an important source of information regarding the early peopling of America. The discovery of Monte Verde archeological site meant a revolution, leading to the idea and eventual acceptance of the Coastal route, also named Pre-Clovis hypothesis. Notwithstanding the fact that many pre-Clovis sites has been discover throughout America and this hypothesis is already accepted, the debate of the real age of the first migration still continues. Probably...