Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

Secrets in the News: November 2019


A roundup of Secrets in the News for November 2019. Read more below for neanderthal necklaces, mammoth prints and ancient Peruvian geoglyphs.

Jamestown mystery: Archaeologists unearth a churchyard grave

Daily Press reports: It was tradition in 17th century Virginia to bury corpses with the heads pointed west and the feet to the east. This was done so that the eyes would face east, toward Jerusalem and the rapture. Almost a year ago, archaeologists in Jamestown found a grave — and perhaps the answer to a mystery — while studying the architecture and foundation of a church that was started in 1639… [read more]


Dozens of dinosaur footprints reveal ancient ecosystem of Alaskan Peninsula

Science Daily reports: Abundant dinosaur footprints in Alaska reveal that high-latitude hadrosaurs preferred tidally influenced habitats, according to a study released October 30, 2019 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Anthony Fiorillo of the Perot Museum of Nature and Science in Texas and colleagues… [read more]


‘Last necklace made by Neanderthals’ discovered by archaeologists in Spain

Smithsonian Mag reports:  With cut after cut of a stone knife, a Neanderthal painstakingly sliced a sharp talon from the toe bone of an eagle, perhaps crafting a necklace or some other personal ornament. They then tossed aside the bone on a cave floor along with other scraps and broken tools. More than 39,000 years later, archaeologists found the cut-marked toe bone in what is now Spain. An analysis of the eagle remains, published today in the journal Science Advances, adds a new piece of evidence to our understanding of the behavior of Neanderthals. The find reignites a debate among scientists: Did our extinct cousins engage in symbolic activities, like making art and decorating their bodies, that we’ve long believed were uniquely human? … [read more]


Radar Scans Reveal Ancient Human Footprint Embedded in Mammoth Track

Gizmodo reports: Tens of thousands of years ago, a human walked north at what is now White Sands National Monument in New Mexico. A large proboscidean, possibly a Columbian mammoth, later walked west, stepping onto one of the footprints left by the human. Soon after, a person—perhaps the same individual who had gone north—walked south, parallel to the earlier tracks. And in walking south, they stepped directly into one of the mammoth’s footprints… [read more]


Scientists Uncovered 143 More Huge Ancient Drawings In Peru

Vice reports:  Some 2,000 years ago, the ancient people of southern Peru created hundreds of enormous drawings in the soil, which are known today as the Nazca Lines. Now, scientists have used advanced techniques to discover 143 previously unknown “geoglyphs,” the term for these etched figures, within the Nazca region. One newly found geoglyph, which appears to represent a humanoid figure, was even identified by an AI model, according to the recent announcement of the discovery… [read more]


PBS is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.