Nevada Petroglyphs the Oldest in North America

A new study reported in the Journal of Archaeological Science shows Winnemucca petroglyphs, the oldest known petroglyphs in North America, date to at least 10, years ago and perhaps even as far back as 14, years ago. 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. Dr Benson with 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. Tree form at the Winnemucca Lake petroglyph site. The tree form is 70 cm tall Benson LV et al. According to the team, 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.

Nevada Rock Carvings Proven To Be Oldest In North America

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.

Dating North America’S Oldest Petroglyphs. No Pets Please We Lisa Appleton reveals new Pool and Spa Full procedure with photoshoot in amp 15 amp.

Winnemucca Lake petroglyphs. Credit: Benson, Larry V. A new study reported in the Journal of Archaeological Science shows Winnemucca petroglyphs, the oldest known petroglyphs in North America, date to at least 10, years ago and perhaps even as far back as 14, years ago. 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.

Dr Benson with 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. May 12, Benson, E. Hattori, J. Southon, and B. The large, complex motifs at this side are formed by deeply carved lines and cupules.

A carbonate crust deposited between 10 and calibrated years B.

Rock art in Nevada believed to be oldest in North America

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.

North America’s Oldest Dated Petroglyphs at Winnemucca Lake, Nevada. Submitted by Carson Now Reader on Mon, 10/12/ – pm. Tweet.

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. Bureau of Land Management who discovered the petroglyphs at Long Lake in Oregon, brought the Nevada site to Hattori’s attention years ago. He said they bore similarities to petroglyphs at nearby Winnemucca Lake, and Hattori began connecting the dots after Benson spotted the carbonate coating on the rocks.

The etchings in Nevada and Oregon have relatively deep, carved lines dominated by linear, curved and circular geometrical designs.

THE ROCK ART OF THE SERRA DA CAPIVARA

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. 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.

Abstract On the west side of the Winnemucca Lake subbasin, Nevada, distinctive deeply carved meter-scale petroglyphs are closely spaced, forming panels on.

Inscrutable symbols etched on a limestone boulder in western Nevada — herringbone patterns, series of pits, and chain-like links — are the oldest known petroglyphs in North America, scientists say. And they may be the oldest evidence of humanity on the continent. The rock art, perched along the shore of now-dry Lake Winnemucca some 55 kilometers northeast of Reno, had been discovered decades ago. But a new study, published in the Journal of Archaeological Science , reports that tests of residues found both on top of and underneath the glyphs dates them to at least 10, years ago — and perhaps has much as 14, years ago.

The research, led by L. Benson of the U. Where carbonate has formed, the limestone rocks must have been under water. Radiocarbon dating of the lower layer of carbonate, under the carvings, showed that it formed about 14, years ago. The layer above them, meanwhile, dated to 10, years ago. Some of the designs have been compared to those found in petroglyphs in Oregon UC-B So, the team argues, the petroglyphs sandwiched between the two strata must have been made within that time frame.

Those dates were further confirmed by carbon dating sediments found at the same elevation as the petroglyph site — about 1, meters — from around Lake Winnemucca and neighboring, and still wet, Pyramid Lake. Those results showed that, indeed, the waters of the prehistoric lake had receded temporarily for two extended spells — from 14, to 13, years ago, and again from 11, to 10, years ago — indicating when the boulders were above the water line to serve as canvases for some ancient artists.

These Carvings Are the Oldest Rock Art in America, by Thousands of 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.

Also, unlike petroglyphs on desert varnish-coated boulders, petroglyphs on tufa rock can be dated due to traces of organic material in the tufa.

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. Read more about the dating process at NPR. Link -via Metafilter Image credit: Larry Benson. Customization and personalization available.

Winnemucca Lake

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.

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 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.

Researchers discover oldest rock carvings in North America

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.

Dating North America’s oldest petroglyphs, Winnemucca Lake subbasin, Nevada. Citation Data Journal of Archaeological Science, ISSN: , Vol:

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 in 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.

As for what the petroglyphs represented to their Native American creators, researchers are still scratching their heads.

Dennis Cassinelli: North America’s oldest petroglyphs are at Winnemucca Lake

Scientists now say that the petroglyphs at Pyramid Lake, Nevada, are the oldest in North America to have been age-dated. Though appearing confident about some details, they cannot yet identify the ancient peoples who carved those rocks. But the ancients did possess one characteristic that surprised secular scientists. Lying inside a Paiute Reservation, the Nevada petroglyphs look well-crafted and aesthetic. Diamond-like patterns resembling fish scales and tight, regular designs, including shallow cup forms, adorn limestone boulders.

The carvings also look similar to petroglyphs that U.

Prior to our study, the oldest petroglyphs in North America (Cannon and Ricks, ) were represented by a panel of deeply incised, tightly clustered geometric​.

All rights reserved. Ancient symbols etched onto the sides of boulders lying along the western edge of a desiccated lake in Nevada are the oldest confirmed rock carvings in North America—possibly dating back to the first peopling of the New World, scientists say. The so-called petroglyphs, carved in soft limestone millennia ago, range from simple lines, pits, and swirls to more complex and ambiguous shapes that resemble diamonds, trees, flowers, and veins in a leaf. They range from about 8 inches 20 centimeters up to about 3 feet 1 meter in width.

In a new study, published in this month’s issue of the Journal of Archaeological Science , geochemist Larry Benson and his team concluded that the petroglyphs, located about 35 miles 56 kilometers northeast of Reno at Winnemucca Lake, are at least 10, years old, and perhaps as much as 14, years old. See video of rock art in Arizona. To date the petroglyphs, Benson and his colleagues began by figuring out just when they could have been made.

Though Winnemucca Lake is dried up now, it was once so full of water that the boulders upon which the petroglyphs are etched were submerged. As the water levels slowly dropped, crusts of a mineral called carbonate formed on the boulders. Radiocarbon testing of these carbonate layers revealed them to range in age from about 14, to 10, years old. The carbonate ages, combined with an analysis of sediment cores taken from neighboring Pyramid Lake, suggest that the boulders were exposed to air—and thus accessible for carving by humans—between about 14, to 13, years ago, and again from about 11, to 10, years ago.

In between the two time periods, the boulders were submerged, the scientists say.

North America’s oldest rock carvings discovered

Official websites use. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites. By: Larry V. On the west side of the Winnemucca Lake subbasin, Nevada, distinctive deeply carved meter-scale petroglyphs are closely spaced, forming panels on boulder-sized surfaces of a partially collapsed tufa mound.

Ancient North Americans gouged elaborate rock art into a heap of big older than the oldest dated petroglyphs in North America,” he recalls.

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.

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