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29 September 2007
Archaeological find rewrites Tasmania's history

A recently discovered cave, in Tasmania's remote south-west World Heritage Area (Australia), yields clues to early human occupation. For a long time everyone thought that the Franklin River valley was uninhabitable and had never been inhabited by humans. When the Australian Hydro-Electric commission justified a dam project in the early 1980s, it assumed that no archaeological remains were at risk. But then the discovery of a limestone cave revealed a hoard of human treasure. Only now have the finds been analysed, by archaeologist Jillian Garvey, who has sifted through quarter of a million animal fragments and 75,000 tool fragments from the cave, and found that far from the area having never been occupied, there were people living here 15-20,000 years ago.
     These findings could not have occurred if the area had been flooded by the Hydro Electric project. Awarded World Heritage Area status in 1982, which secured its survival, this incredible primeval wilderness is now protected. Used as a backdrop in the Walking with Dinosaurs documentaries, it continues to amaze the world and slowly reveal its many secrets.

Source: Homes Worldwide (25 September 2007)

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