Evidence was presented in 1999 that the first Americans
were descended from Australian aborigines. The evidence was to be included
in a new BBC documentary entitled Ancient Voices.
It would show that the dimensions of prehistoric skulls
which had been found in Brazil matched those of the aboriginal peoples
of Australia and Melanesia. Other evidence suggested that these first
Americans were later massacred by invaders from Asia - the ancestors of
all later native Americans.
Asian migrants used the ice age land bridge between
Siberia and Alaska to reach North America, from where they could migrated
further across the whole of the two continents. With the ending of
the ice age, the land bridge was gradually flooded until it was cut
However, the new evidence showed that these people
did not arrive into an empty wilderness. Stone tools and charcoal from
the site in Brazil showed evidence of human habitation as long ago as
The site was at Serra Da Capivara in remote north-eastern
Brazil. This area is now inhabited by the descendants of European settlers
and African slaves who arrived just five hundred years ago. But cave
paintings found here provided the first clue to the existence of a much
Images of giant armadillos, which died out before
the last ice age, show that the artists who drew them lived here before
the Asian-descended natives who greeted the Europeans. The Asian
descendants have facial features which have been described as mongoloid.
However, skulls dug from a depth which equates to dates between
10,000-7000 BC are very different.