Nevada Rock Carvings Proven To Be Oldest In North America

The true age of this rock art had not been known, but a new analysis suggests these petroglyphs are the oldest North America, dating back to between 10, and 14, years ago. Though Winnemucca Lake is now barren, at other times in the past it was so full of water the lake would have submerged the rocks where the petroglyphs were found and spilled its excess contents over Emerson Pass to the north. To determine the age of the rock art, researchers had to figure out when the boulders were above the water line. The overflowing lake left telltale crusts of carbonate on these rocks, according to study researcher Larry Benson of the University of Colorado Boulder. Radiocarbon tests revealed that the carbonate film underlying the petroglyphs dated back roughly 14, years ago, while a later layer of carbonate coating the rock art dated to about 11, years ago. Those findings, along with an analysis of sediment core sampled nearby, suggest the petroglyph-decorated rocks were exposed first between 14, and 13, years ago and again between about 11, and 10, years ago. Researchers previously believed the oldest rock art in North America could be found at Long Lake, Ore. The deeply carved lines and grooves in geometric motifs in the petroglyphs at Winnemucca Lake share similarities with their cousins in Oregon.

Rock Art Dating and the Peopling of the Americas

Ancient rock etchings along a dried-up lake bed in Nevada have been confirmed to be the oldest recorded petroglyphs in North America, dating back at least 10, years. The petroglyphs found on limestone boulders near Pyramid Lake in northern Nevada’s high desert are similar in design to etchings found at a lake in Oregon that are believed to be at least 7, years old. Unlike later drawings that sometimes depict a spear or antelope, the carvings are abstract with tightly clustered geometric designs – some are diamond patterns, others have short parallel lines on top of a longer line.

Scientists can’t tell for sure who carved them, but they were found on the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe’s reservation land.

Dating North America’s oldest petroglyphs, Winnemucca Lake subbasin, Nevada. Journal of Archaeological Science, vol. 40, no. 12, pp.

The petroglyphs found on limestone boulders near Pyramid Lake in northern Nevada’s high desert are similar in design to etchings found at a lake in Oregon that are believed to be at least 7, years old. Unlike later drawings that sometimes depict a spear or antelope, the carvings are abstract with tightly clustered geometric designs — some are diamond patterns, others have short parallel lines on top of a longer line.

Scientists can’t tell for sure who carved them, but they were found on the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe’s reservation land. The petroglyphs could be as much as 14, years old, said Larry Benson, a geochemist who used radiocarbon testing to date the etchings and was the lead author of the research paper. Radiocarbon testing dated the carbonate layer underlying the petroglyphs to roughly 14, years ago. Geochemical data and sediment and rock samples from adjacent Pyramid Lake show they were exposed to air from 13, to 14, years ago, and again from 10, to 11, years ago.

Dennis Jenkins, an archaeologist with the University of Oregon’s Museum of Natural and Cultural History, called it a significant discovery. He led recent excavations of obsidian spear points near Paisley, Ore. William Cannon, a longtime archaeologist for the U.

Dating North America’s oldest petroglyphs, Winnemucca Lake subbasin, Nevada

A few years ago, I attended a program by Eugene Hattori at the Nevada State Museum about the incredibly old petroglyphs that were carved into the tufa coating on boulders in the Winnemucca Lake area. Unlike most Nevada petroglyphs, such as those at Grimes Point that are carved on boulders coated with brown desert varnish, the ones at Winnemucca Lake are carved into the coating of tufa on the surface of boulders that had been under water several thousand years before.

Also, unlike petroglyphs on desert varnish coated boulders, petroglyphs on tufa rock can be dated due to traces of organic material in the tufa. The western side of Winnemucca Lake is home to several boulders carved with petroglyphs that lie within the Pyramid Lake Indian Reservation. The site was first described by Connick and Connick in The team, Frances and Robert E.

lake bed in Northern Nevada have been confirmed to be the oldest recorded petroglyphs in North America, dating back at least years.

Chat with us in Facebook Messenger. Find out what’s happening in the world as it unfolds. Story highlights Scientists say petroglyphs found in Nevada are the oldest so far dated in North America The rock carvings at the dry Winnemucca Lake are very distinctive geometric designs A calcium carbonate deposit on the rock’s surface helped researchers date the carvings The petroglyphs “show very early ancient artistic expression,” says anthropologist.

From a distance they look like ridges on the side of rocks. But scientists say carvings at a dried-up lake in Nevada’s Great Basin may be North America’s oldest and shed light into a civilization perhaps 15, years old. Eugene Hattori, an anthropologist with the Nevada State Museum. We have long wondered what the dates are,” said Hattori. University of Colorado geologist Dr. Larry Benson has studied other sites with petroglyphs in the area, but these, he said, are “the oldest ones so far dated in North America.

Winnemucca Lake

Submit your own Neatorama post and vote for others’ posts to earn NeatoPoints that you can redeem for T-shirts, hoodies and more over at the NeatoShop! The rock carvings on the Pyramid Lake Indian Reservation in Nevada are fairly well known, but no one knew just how old they were before paleoclimatologist Larry Benson dated them using the history of the area’s climate. Just by looking at the designs, Benson thought he might know how old they were.

He noticed that the symbols are much whiter than the gray rock they’re carved into. He knew from his climate research that the dry area where the petroglyphs are located was once a lake, and that the white coating was probably left from the last time the rocks were submerged in water, which suggested that the petroglyphs may be older than 11, years “And I did know, at least from my limited knowledge, that these were probably older than the oldest dated petroglyphs in North America,” he recalls.

By comparing the coatings of the carved rocks with non-carved rocks in the area, he determined that the petroglyphs were carved in a dry period between 10, and 14, years ago.

The rock art of shelters of Serra da Capivara National Park in Brazil opens debate of datable hearths, the earliest dated to 46, BC, arguably the oldest dates for Critics, mainly from North America, have suggested that the hearths may in.

A set of petroglyphs in western Nevada dated in August to between 10, and 14, years old, are the oldest rock art ever found in North America, tracing back to a time in which it is believed the first inhabitants had recently arrived in North America. The previous oldest rock art in North America was dated at 6, years old and can be found at Long Lake in Oregon. The Oregon petroglyphs were carved in rocks across approximately 60 sites, before being covered in ash from the Mount Mazama volcanic eruption.

The ancient petroglyphs in Nevada are carved into limestone boulders located on the west side of the now dried-up Winnemucca Lake. The rock art includes both simple petroglyphs such as straight lines and swirls and more complex petroglyphs that resemble trees, flowers, or the veins of a leaf. There is also a series of abstract designs that look like ovals or diamonds in a chain.

The deeply carved lines and grooves in geometric motifs share similarities with the petroglyphs found in Oregon. However, the meaning and symbolism has not yet been deciphered. A petroglyph found in Nevada appearing to depict the veins in a leaf. Some look like multiple connected sets of diamonds, and some look like trees, or veins in a leaf.

The Oldest American Petroglyphs

A few years ago, I attended a program by Eugene Hattori at the Nevada State Museum about the incredibly old petroglyphs that were carved into the tufa coating on boulders in the Winnemucca Lake area. Unlike most Nevada petroglyphs, such as those at Grimes Point that are carved on boulders coated with brown desert varnish, the ones at Winnemucca Lake are carved into the coating of tufa on the surface of boulders that had been under water several thousand years before.

Also, unlike petroglyphs on desert varnish-coated boulders, petroglyphs on tufa rock can be dated due to traces of organic material in the tufa. The western side of Winnemucca Lake is home to several boulders carved with petroglyphs that lie within the Pyramid Lake Indian Reservation. The site was first described by Connick and Connick in The team, Frances and Robert E.

Abstract On the west side of the Winnemucca Lake subbasin, Nevada, distinctive deeply carved meter-scale pet | Larry Benson, E.M. Hattori, John Southon.

On the west side of Nevada’s dried-up Winnemucca Lake, there are several limestone boulders with deep, ancient carvings; some resemble trees and leaves, whereas others are more abstract designs that look like ovals or diamonds in a chain. The true age of this rock art had not been known, but a new analysis suggests these petroglyphs are the oldest North America, dating back to between 10, and 14, years ago. Though Winnemucca Lake is now barren, at other times in the past it was so full of water the lake would have submerged the rocks where the petroglyphs were found and spilled its excess contents over Emerson Pass to the north.

See Photos of Amazing Cave Art. To determine the age of the rock art, researchers had to figure out when the boulders were above the water line. The overflowing lake left telltale crusts of carbonate on these rocks, according to study researcher Larry Benson of the University of Colorado Boulder. Radiocarbon tests revealed that the carbonate film underlying the petroglyphs dated back roughly 14, years ago, while a later layer of carbonate coating the rock art dated to about 11, years ago.

Those findings, along with an analysis of sediment core sampled nearby, suggest the petroglyph-decorated rocks were exposed first between 14, and 13, years ago and again between about 11, and 10, years ago. Researchers previously believed the oldest rock art in North America could be found at Long Lake, Ore.

Winnemucca Petroglyphs: Oldest Rock Art in North America Dates Back Up To 14,800 Years

Gene Hattori, Curator of Anthropology, will present a Frances Humphreys Lecture on petroglyphs from Winnemucca Lake, Nevada that date to between 10, and 14, years in age. The lecture is Thursday, Oct. These unusual petroglyphs were known by many residents and researchers, but their age was a mystery until recently. A rare set of circumstances allowed Dr. Hattori will review this research and comparisons of this site with another early, dated petroglyph site in south central Oregon.

Eugene M.

The oldest dates calculated for the Winnemucca Lake petroglyph site america with the time frame linked to Dating oldest north petroglyphs in North America.

A new high-tech analysis led by a University of Colorado Boulder researcher shows the oldest known petroglyphs in North America, which are cut into several boulders in western Nevada, date to at least 10, years ago and perhaps even as far back as 14, years ago. 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. Benson and his colleagues used several methods to date the petroglyphs, including determining when the water level the Winnemucca Lake subbasin — which back then was a single body of water connecting the now-dry Winnemucca Lake and the existing Pyramid Lake — reached the specific elevation of 3, feet.

The elevation was key to the study because it marked the maximum height the ancient lake system could have reached before it began spilling excess water over Emerson Pass to the north. 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.

A paper on the subject was published this month in the Journal of Archaeological Science. The National Research Program of the U. Geological Survey funded the study. 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.

Previous work by Benson showed the carbonate coating elsewhere in the basin at that elevation had a radiocarbon date of roughly 11, years ago. 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, ago. Those dates, as well as additional geochemical data on a sediment core from the adjacent Pyramid Lake subbasin, indicated the limestone boulders containing the petroglyphs were exposed to air between 14, and 13, years ago and again between about 11, and 10, years ago.

THE ROCK ART OF THE SERRA DA CAPIVARA

According to Benson, a white rock of carbonate made dating limestone precipitated from the ancient, overflowing Winnemucca Lake had coated some of americas petroglyph carvings near north base oldest the boulders. Previous work by Benson showed the americas coating elsewhere in the basin at that petroglyphs oldest a radiocarbon date of north 11, years ago. Benson sampled americas carbonate into which the petroglyphs were incised and the carbonate that coated the petroglyphs at the base of the winnemucca boulder.

L. V. Benson, E. M. Hattori, J. Southon, and B. Aleck, “Dating North America’s oldest petroglyphs, Winnemucca Lake subbasin, Nevada,”.

Subscriber Account active since. Researchers found that petroglyphs discovered in western Nevada are at least 10, years old, making them the oldest rock art ever dated in North America. University of Colorado On the west side of Nevada’s dried-up Winnemucca Lake, there are several limestone boulders with deep, ancient carvings; some resemble trees and leaves, whereas others are more abstract designs that look like ovals or diamonds in a chain.

The true age of this rock art had not been known, but a new analysis suggests these petroglyphs are the oldest North America, dating back to between 10, and 14, years ago. Though Winnemucca Lake is now barren, at other times in the past it was so full of water the lake would have submerged the rocks where the petroglyphs were found and spilled its excess contents over Emerson Pass to the north. To determine the age of the rock art, researchers had to figure out when the boulders were above the water line.

The overflowing lake left telltale crusts of carbonate on these rocks, according to study researcher Larry Benson of the University of Colorado Boulder. Radiocarbon tests revealed that the carbonate film underlying the petroglyphs dated back roughly 14, years ago, while a later layer of carbonate coating the rock art dated to about 11, years ago.

Oldest North American Petroglyphs Winnemucca Lake