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Author Topic: How did humans migrate into North America?  (Read 7418 times)

Offline cheryl j

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How did humans migrate into North America?
« on: 17/12/2012 04:40:07 »
I've read that humans migrated from Asia to North America in two three separate waves, but how fast did they travel? How much distance was covered in say a single generation or two?
« Last Edit: 19/12/2012 15:10:17 by chris »


 

Offline Don_1

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Re: How did humans migrate into North America?
« Reply #1 on: 21/12/2012 14:39:52 »
It seems that the north American Indians we associate as being the indigeous Red Indians (Chrokee, Apache, Sioux etc) were all descended from the first wave of migrants some 17,000 years ago or more. Later migrants appear to remained in the north and became the Eskimo peoples and the Canadian Chipewyan.

But even these two groups share a good deal of genetic material with those of the first wave. The Chipewyan being 90% from the first wave.

It would appear that once humans had crossed the Bering land bridge, they spread south along the coastal regions. Obviously some humans remained in the far north and mitochondrial DNA even suggests that there was a subsequent northbound migration also, with some returning from as far as south America back to the frozen north. This suggest to me that the early settlers were not 'settlers' at all, but moved rapidly south, perhaps being more nomadic than settlers.

Man made artifacts found in Texas have been dated to around 15,500 years old. This certainly suggests that Humans moved rapidly once in the Americas.
 

Offline cheryl j

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Re: How did humans migrate into North America?
« Reply #2 on: 21/12/2012 22:22:47 »
It's not unusual for hunter gather groups to change locations when game becomes scarce or large groups split up. So what I was wondering was if this migration was the result of say, moving, say, 50 miles every year in the same direction?
 

Offline CliffordK

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Re: How did humans migrate into North America?
« Reply #3 on: 21/12/2012 22:30:50 »
15,000 to 17,000 years ago, it would have been mighty chilly in Canada which would have given early settlers incentive to head southward. 

The Russian reindeer herders are one of the most nomadic groups of people. 

It wouldn't be surprising if the early North American settlers were at least partially migratory, as northern game would have also been migratory, perhaps ranging over several hundred miles each year, with some of the children choosing to move into new range.

Also, 1000 to 2000 years to spread from Alaska to Argentina is a very long time.  Consider that much of "modern" humanity dates to the last 2000 years, since the time of Christ, with a considerable amount in the last 200 years with steam engines, trains, cars, and planes all coming about in the last 200 years.

If the generation time is about 20 years (or less for early man), then there would be 50 generations in 1000 years, or 500 generations in 10,000 years. 

About 8,500 miles from Alaska to Argentina.

That would still be a long distance to cover in a thousand, or a few thousand years, or a few hundred generations. 

Of course, population would have been growing exponentially.  How quickly?  I'm seeing notes of global population growth with early doubling rates of every few hundred years.  But, perhaps the doubling rate was higher when moving into new territory.
 

Offline cheryl j

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Re: How did humans migrate into North America?
« Reply #4 on: 22/12/2012 16:40:47 »
What got me thinking about it all is that I often here native groups where I live deny the migration from Asia theory. They say 'our people have always been hear.' But if a group only moved a 100 miles a year, it would certainly seem that way - same sky, same earth, same trees, more or less, at least with each individual's memory. 
« Last Edit: 26/12/2012 17:11:34 by cheryl j »
 

Offline OokieWonderslug

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Re: How did humans migrate into North America?
« Reply #5 on: 25/12/2012 14:47:08 »
The first Americans were European. There was a well established trade of copper going on during the bronze age. In fact, most of the copper from the bronze age is from Michigan. They were tall and redhaired. Those people were also the mound builders. They were wiped out by asians coming in from Siberia. They were wiped out by Europeans coming from England. It goes back and forth. When China gets too crowded they will come and wipe us out and then it will start all over again.

The Americas are not host to any people who originated here so it changes hands every few thousand years or so.
 

Offline CliffordK

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Re: How did humans migrate into North America?
« Reply #6 on: 25/12/2012 21:07:22 »
I'm seeing notes that the copper age began in Europe and Asia about 7000 BC, but in the Americas about 4000 BC (about the time Europe was transitioning to the Bronze Age). 

I think the Vikings only made it to Greenland about 1000 years ago.  Prior to the Vikings, I find it doubtful there was significant transatlantic trade. 

I'm seeing notes that there were at least 3 waves of Asians migrating into North America starting about 15000 to 25000 years ago.  (here and here)

Although, there are some notes of possible early European Clovis (stone age) influence in the Americas.  However, most of the DNA still is pointing towards an Asian origin.

Anyway, the Michigan copper likely stayed in North America, with Central and South American, as well as Europe mining their own copper more locally.
 

Offline OokieWonderslug

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Re: How did humans migrate into North America?
« Reply #7 on: 26/12/2012 14:24:25 »
http://www.philipcoppens.com/copper.html

http://www.rocksandrows.com/copper-trade-2.php

I think there is ample evidence that copper from Michigan created the bronze age. The amount missing from North America is about what we find in Europe. It is not impossible to make the trip. There are stops along the way to get food and water. Small boats could make the journey. Legends tell of those who came and mined the copper. Analysis of trace elements in copper "skins" shows origin in Michigan.

Seems obvious. We can't stay stuck in the rut that claims humans are recent immigrants to North America. Science gets too dogmatic about things. It takes decades to "prove" things that are self evident to everyone.

 

Offline evan_au

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Re: How did humans migrate into North America?
« Reply #8 on: 28/12/2012 21:59:41 »
I think a more likely explanation for the missing copper is that metals of any sort were valuable for arrow points and knives.
These would have been traded, used and lost around North America and into South America.
Copper does slowly corrode, so these small pieces of copper, widely distributed, may now be impossible to find, let alone be traced back to the original mine.
 

Offline CliffordK

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Re: How did humans migrate into North America?
« Reply #9 on: 29/12/2012 00:55:15 »
I think there is now the ability to analyse metals for impurities, perhaps even non destructively, and determine the origin of the metals. 

It should be easy enough analyse all of the European bronze age items to determine if they are made with American metals.

The article about Michigan Copper does list some metallurgical analysis, but with only very crude results.  Modern techniques should essentially be able to produce a fingerprint for both the origin of the tin and the origin of the copper.

It is interesting that the North American Indians were using stone tools at the time of the colonization of the USA.  Perhaps the Michigan mines were  used by the Mayans.  Certainly as the Mayan empire crashed, it could have had sweeping effects across North America.

Perhaps a stone arrowhead was much cheaper and more accessible than copper (which is soft), or bronze.
« Last Edit: 29/12/2012 01:00:47 by CliffordK »
 

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Re: How did humans migrate into North America?
« Reply #9 on: 29/12/2012 00:55:15 »

 

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