Tag Archives: archeology

Want to Create Your Own New World?


The Hobbits of Middle Earth will have nothing on you.

Usually the creation of a new world in literature has a basis in fact. I don’t mean that there is a Middle Earth. I mean that the idea for a fictional place called Middle Earth started with an idea inspired by a real culture somewhere. New Zealand claims to be the inspiration behind the Hobbit story.

Science is presently upending the long-held view about who originally populated the Americas. The old premise is that Asians crossed a land bridge from Russia to Alaska to Canada and turned south, setting up civilizations along the way southward into the South American Andes. The migration took place about 13,000 years ago, science says.

Now, archeology is uncovering, on the east coast of the United States, sophisticated stone tools to match those used in the region around modern-day France and Spain 17,000 years ago. The tools are turning up in places like Pennsylvania and Virginia.

The new first peoples are believed to have been Solutreans. Europeans, not Asians, first settled America, according to the new findings.

That name, Solutreans, has a real ring to it, doesn’t it? These were stone tool-making, western European seafarers who lived on the edge of the biologically rich  ice shelf, much as the Eskimos and other peoples of the arctic regions do today. It is believed that during a glacial period, the mariners put to sea in sealskin boats and hunted their way along the ice from Europe to North America.

Read more about the new findings here: http://www.bostonglobe.com/ideas/2012/03/17/did-solutreans-settle-america-first/9xYYgZLa4iTkGzG4rcM3nM/story.html

Perhaps you’ll be inspired to create a new trilogy about your own brave, new world after reading this. If you do, please give mention to this humble wanna-be for tickling your fancy in the forward of your book! 🙂

Lost Generation


Go into a local antique store or museum, and you’ll find old photographs and books. Even an old photograph album will fetch a price at an estate auction. People like to collect memories and look at them in print over and over. It is a tangible connection to the past.

In fact I have a collection of photographs that I keep on top of my breakfast table under glass. When family or friends visit, it’s one of the first places people look, to see what — or who — is new or review existing images. It is a kind of photo album over which coffee or conversation gets shared.

Today photographs and books are digital. (The same is true of much music.) The digital memorabilia is stored in electronic devices: computers, electronic readers, cell phones, CD’s. Seldom are the images or pages committed to paper.

When the decades roll around, will anyone wonder what great grandmother looked like? Will they care how she lived, what she wore, what she read or cooked, what music she listened to? Unless a family historian preserves the digital data, the means to satisfy a great grandchild’s curiosity will be lost. Digital devices change rapidly. Electronic data is corrupted with time. No one keeps photo albums, phonograph records or print book libraries any more.

Grandmother’s favorite recipe with her notes or Grandfather’s comments in his Guide to Trout Fishing – and the accompanying family photographs showing them engaged in these activities – will be vaporized when the iPhone falls in the soup or the thumb drive corrupts. CD content will get scrambled by children’s magnets. Even “the Cloud” will get hacked or compromised. Or the family historian will die of a sudden heart attack without passing on the storage location and password to the family history.

For all these reasons, I worry about this generation becoming the lost generation. Without tree books, paper photographs, and other paper documents to preserve images and stories about us, the proof we existed will be gone.

Oh, I forget. There’s always the landfill. . .thank God for archeology. We’ll be the generation defined by our trash.