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Monte Verde: Human Subsistence and Mobility in Pre-Clovis Chile
Along the lush banks of Chinchihuapi Creek, a tributary of southern Chile’s Maullín River, lies one of the most controversial archeological sites of the twentieth century, Monte Verde, where in 1978 archaeologist Tom Dillehay and his colleagues found well-preserved human artifacts and features in association with Late Pleistocene faunal remains (fig. 1) (Dillehay 1989). Initial radiocarbon analyses of materials from the Monte Verde II cultural layer consistently dated the site to 12,500 BP. With this, Dillehay (1989) asserted that Monte Verde was occupied by humans between 12,000 and 14,000 years ago, predating what was then the earliest known Paleoindian site in the Americas at Clovis, New Mexico by some 1,000 years.