The discovery of ancient wooden logs in Zambia has revolutionized archaeologists' understanding of early human life. Led by Prof Larry Barham from the University of Liverpool, the research team found evidence that the wood had been used to build a structure nearly half a million years ago. This challenges the prevailing belief that ancient humans led simple, nomadic lives. The logs, which were found to be about 476,000 years old, were preserved in the riverbanks near the Zambia-Tanzania border. The team also found ancient wooden tools and two pieces of wood at right angles to each other with notches cut into them, suggesting they were used as structural objects. The discovery could have been made by a species other than Homo sapiens, as no bones have been found at the site and the timber predates the earliest modern human fossils. The wooden artifacts are being stored in the UK but will soon return to Zambia for display. This groundbreaking find has the potential to deepen our understanding of ancient woodworking techniques and human interactions with the environment.
Photo Credit: Keith Misner