Nearly 8,000-year-old skull found in Minnesota River


Part of the skull discovered by two kayakers in Minnesota last summer is expected to be returned to Native American officials after investigations have revealed it to be some 8,000 years old.

Kayakers found the skull in the drought-ravaged Minnesota River about 180 kilometers west of Minneapolis, Renville County Sheriff Scott Hable said.

Hable, who thought it might have something to do with the disappearance or murder, turned the skull over to the coroner, who eventually turned it over to the FBI. And 6000 BC, Hable said.

Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers Meet
The scene where the Minnesota and Mississippi Rivers meet at Fort Snelling State Park in St. Paul, Minnesota on September 6, 2020.

Andrew Liechtenstein/Covis via Getty Images


“It was a complete shock to us that the bones were so old,” Hable said. Minnesota Public Radio.

Anthropologists have determined that the man’s skull has depressions that “probably suggest a cause of death.”

After the sheriff posted about the discovery on Wednesday, his office was criticized by several Native Americans who said posting photos of the remains of their ancestors was an insult to their culture.

Hable said his office had deleted the post.

“We didn’t mean to be offensive,” Hable said.

Hable said the remains will be handed over to Upper Sioux Community tribal officials.

Minnesota Indian Affairs Commission cultural resources expert Dylan Goetsch said in a statement that neither the commission nor state archaeologists had been informed of the findings required by state law governing the management and repatriation of Native American remains.

Goetsch said the Facebook post “showed a complete lack of cultural sensibility” by referring to the ashes as “small pieces of history” rather than calling individuals Native Americans.

Kathleen Blue, a professor of anthropology at Minnesota State University, said on Wednesday that the skull was apparently from the ancestors of one of the tribes still living in the area. report.

She said the young man would have eaten plants, deer, fish, turtles and freshwater mussels in small areas rather than following mammals and bison during their migrations.

“There probably weren’t that many people at the time who were wandering around Minnesota 8,000 years ago, because, like I said, the glaciers retreated thousands of years before that,” said Blue. “In that period, we don’t know much about it.”

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