One of the best things about archaeology is uncovering the unexpected.Some of the findings listed below certainly fit into this category – from elongated skulls to vampire graves, green slime, and the DNA of Bigfoot.The carbon 14 present in an organism at the time of its death decays at a steady rate, and so the age of the remains can be calculated from the amount of carbon 14 that is left. The cells of all living things contain carbon atoms that they take in from their environment.Back in the 1940s, the American chemist Willard Libby used this fact to determine the ages of organisms long dead.Here, traditional Aboriginal law and culture are still active and alive.The Worora, Ngarinyin and Wunumbul people are the three Wandjina tribes – these tribal groups are the custodians of the oldest known figurative art which is scattered throughout the Kimberley.
The skull appears to have been intentionally elongated through the practice known as cranial deformation, which is usually associated with ancient Mesoamerican cultures and was practiced extensively in Europe, Africa, Asia, and as noted, South America.
Most carbon atoms have six protons and six neutrons in their nuclei and are called carbon 12. But a tiny percentage of carbon is made of carbon 14, or radiocarbon, which has six protons and eight neutrons and is not stable: half of any sample of it decays into other atoms after 5,700 years.
Carbon 14 is continually being created in the Earth's atmosphere by the interaction of nitrogen and gamma rays from outer space.
The procedure of radiocarbon dating can be used for remains that are up to 50,000 years old.
The methods used by archaeologists to gather data can be applied to any time period, including the very recent past. This “garbology” project proved that even recent artifacts can reveal a lot about the people who used and discarded them.