Tidewater dating

Near the bay, artifacts of the first hunting/gathering camps of the Paleo-Indians and the initial sites of the Archaic Period may be buried under sediments deposited over the last 6,000 or so years.Further offshore, on what is now the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS), even older sediments could bury evidence of the first hunting bands to set up camp in what is now Virginia.One day, when underwater archeology is much easier, we may discover a great deal of information about the first Virginians - under the Chesapeake Bay, and as much as 30 miles offshore from Virginia Beach on the Outer Continental Shelf.

Over the last 15,000 or so years, they developed or imported new tools, such as the atl-atl throwing stick and ultimately the bow-and-arrow, to accompany their earlier stone scrapers and points.

The English colonists who arrived in 1607 considered the Native Americans to be "savages" with different religious beliefs, different customs when engaged in war, and different forms of dress.

Those "savages" had greater skills than the European immigrants in understanding, exploiting, and adapting to change in the environment in which they lived.

underwater research may one day reveal how the first Virginians lived Source: National Park Service, Archeology Program The best clues to understanding prehistoric societies, the cultures that existed before European colonists began writing down their perspectives on Native Americans, are the tools used by the hunters/gatherers and the remnants of their camps.

Most artifacts are stone, but a few seeds and bones charred by campfires have survived and facilitate dating ancient archeological sites.


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