Professor pens book that argues Indigenous peoples have been in North America for 130,000 years

Algoma University professor and Indigenous Paleo Archaeologist Paulette Steeves has written a new book that challenges the belief that humans came to North America during the last ice age. While archaeologists have believed that the first people to come to North America came across the Bering Strait around 11,500 to 12,000 years ago, this history conflicts with the viewpoints of some Indigenous peoples who understand that their ancestors have been here “since time immemorial.” The discovery of fossilized footprints in 2017, which were dated to between 21,000 and 23,000 years old, have helped create change, while archaeologists who had opposed this idea have begun to be more open to it. Steeves’ book gathers arguments and evidence that point to a human presence in North America for at least tens of thousands of years. “This was an area that was an academic violence against Indigenous people,” said Steeves, who is Cree-Metis. “This is where their languages grew. This is where they’re from.”

CBC | Algoma (Research Bio)