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Monte Verde, Chili

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Most of the area exposed in the initial excavations, directed by University of Kentucky archaeologist Tom Dillehay, dates to about 12,500 years ago, making Monte Verde the earliest known site in the Americas by some 1,300 years. The new excavations will focus on what may be a second, earlier component of the site several hundred feet to the south. A small excavation there–fully documented in the Monte Verde site report published in 1997–yielded some possible stone tools and burned wood. Radiocarbon determinations suggest the material is about 33,000 years old (32,840 and 33,900 years), far older than any reliably dated site in the Americas.

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