11,500-year old remains of cremated child found in Alaska

By on Feb 25, 2011 in Science, United States Comments

A group of archeologists were said to have found an 11,500-year old remains of a cremated child in Alaska, as shown in the photo below.

Part of the skull of the 11,500-year old remains
Photo credit: Ben Potter/University of Alaska

According to Science Journal on Thursday, the cremated skeletons of the child were found last year in a sealed fire pit of an ancient house near the Tanana River in Alaska.

The team of archeologists was led by Ben Potter of the University of Alaska, and their research report was published on the February 25 issue of the Science journal magazine.

“The fact that the child was cremated within the center of the house … this was an important member of society,” Potter was quoted as saying on the report.

Apparently, the gender of the child and the cause of the death are yet to be studied, but DNA tests to the 11,500-year old remains are expected to reveal the answers and can identify its ancestors.

For the meantime, the report said that the child’s teeth are suggesting that they may be belonging to kins of Native Americans and northeast Asians.

The child has been named Xaasaa Cheege Ts’eniin (or Upward Sun River Mouth Child), in which there were no signs of injuries found in the remains that composed although only about 20 percent of the entire skeleton was left after being burned.

Meanwhile, the researchers also found cooked bones of small animals, including salmon, rabbits, ground squirrels and birds, which suggest that cannibalism was not likely possible during those times.

In addition, the researchers discovered four used stone tools at the site, along with stone flakes left over from tool-sharpening, in which can be concluded that people in that era are hunting for food.

The area where the 11,500-year old remains of cremated child was found
Photo credit: Ben Potter/University of Alaska

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