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Unformatted text preview: shelf were not covered by ice toward the end of the last Ice Age. One study suggests that except for a 250mile coastal area between southwestern British Columbia and Washington State, the Northwest Coast of North America was largely free of ice by approximately 16,000 years ago. Vast areas along the coast may have been deglaciated beginning around 16,000 years ago, possibly providing a coastal corridor for the movement of plants, animals, and humans sometime between 13,000 and 14,000 years ago. The coastal hypothesis has gained increasing support in recent years because the remains of large land animals, such as caribou and brown bears, have been found in southeastern Alaska dating between 10,000 and 12,500 years ago. This is the time period in which most scientists formerly believed the area to be inhospitable for humans. It has been suggested that if the environment were capable of supporting breeding populations of bears, there would have 264
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been enough food resources to support humans. Fladmark and others believe that the first human colonization of America occurred by boat along the Northwest Coast during the very late Ice Age, possibly as early as 14,000 years ago. The most recent geologic evidence indicates that it may have been possible for people to colonize icefree regions along the continental shelf that were still exposed by the lower sea level between 13,000 and 14,000 ago. The coastal hypothesis suggests an economy based on marine mammal hunting, saltwater fishing gathering, and the use of watercraft. Because of the barrier of ice to the east, the Pacific Ocean to the west, and populated areas to the north, there may have been a greater impetus for people to move in a southerly direction. Paragraph 1: It has long been accepted that the Americas were colonized by a migration of peoples from Asia, slowly traveling across a land bridge called Beringia (now the Bering Strait between northeastern Asia and Alaska) during the last Ice Age. The first water craft theory about the migration was that around 11,00012,000 years ago there was an icefree corridor stretching from eastern Beringia to the areas of North America south of the great northern glaciers. It was the midcontinental corridor between two massive ice sheetsthe Laurentide to the westthat enabled the southward migration. But belief in this icefree corridor began to crumble when paleoecologist Glen MacDonald demonstrated that some of the most important radiocarbon dates used to support the existence of an ice
free corridor were incorrect. He persuasively argued that such an icefree corridor did not exist until much later, when the continental ice began its final retreat. 1. According to paragraph 1, the theory that people first migrated to the Americans by way of an icefree corridor was seriously called into question by ○paleo...
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This note was uploaded on 09/17/2013 for the course LANGUAGE 13DL208 taught by Professor Wang during the Fall '13 term at East China Normal University.
- Fall '13