An archeological survey conducted for clearing the way for construction next to a mall has led to the discovery of thousands of stone tools, which according to scientists, were made a minimum of 10,000 years back.

Robert Kopperl, the leader of the field investigation team, said that the discovery has left him and his team deeply amazed. He added that the site of the discovery is the oldest archaeological site to have stone tools in the Puget Sound lowland.

This rare find will allow scientists to gather more knowledge about a time when prehistoric mammoths and bison were still roaming around in the area we now refer to as Western Washington State. Here, it must be mentioned that to date, just a handful of archaeological sites as old as 10,000 years (or more than that) have been spotted in this part of America.


Carrying out chemical analysis of one of the stone tools allowed scientists to gather information on the food habits of people of that era; they found that during that period, humans used to consume salmon, sheep, bear, deer and bison. The excavation also led to the discovery of a portion of the salmon bone, which serves as the testimony of the fact that salmon existed in the local streams even 10,000 years back.

The excavation resulted in unearthing of a range of other strange tools, for instance, bottoms of a couple of spear points with concave bases.

The site, which is located near the Redmond, Washington-based Redmond Town Center mall, was surveyed fist in 2009. The survey was conducted as the city officials initiated a project for restoring Bear Creek’s salmon habitat; for those who don’t know: Bear Creek is a tributary of the Sammamish River and got confined to a rocky channel several decades back.

This salmon restoration project has been funded largely by the Washington State Department of Transportation. The state department has done so to mitigate certain environmental impacts of broadening the roadway and constructing a floating bridge on Lake Washington.

According to Kopperl, his discovery shows that the site was probably inhabited by small groups of people associated with jobs like repairing and crafting stone tools. He added that the excavated site is a great place for having a camp; its perfect position allowed the prehistoric humans to go out, hunt, fish, and gather and then craft stone tools.

SOURCEPortland State University