An ancient burial site in southwestern Ohio is believed to have been created by a group of hunter-gatherers, who had access to a small piece of ground on which they laid a stone tool to make a bone knife.
The site is known as Old Fort Knox, a designation bestowed by the US Army in 1876.
The burial site was uncovered by archaeologists working in the area of the Ohio River in the early 1990s.
Archaeologists have been trying to determine what happened to the burial site for years.
The remains of a young child are on display at the site, which was discovered by the Army in the late 1970s.
The team discovered the remains of about 70 people in the village of Old Fort Kinzie in the Ohio Valley about 15 kilometres south of Akron.
They were buried with the rest of the group when the town was settled in the mid-19th century.
They include people who may have lived on the site for hundreds of years, possibly hundreds of generations.
“There are some people that are just buried here and the rest are buried here, and that’s where we’re looking,” Dr Richard Suggs, an archaeologist with the Ohio Archaeological Commission, said.
“We don’t know where they came from.”
The bones of a child at the Old Fort kinzie site.
Photo: Paul Sowinski Archaeologists excavated a number of graves at the ancient site, including some that were not previously identified.
They found the skeleton of a female and child that could be about 40 years old, according to Dr Suggders.
The skeleton was wrapped in an olive leaf, and her hands were tied to a wooden stake, with the child in a prone position.
They also found the skull of a male who could have been around 12 to 15 years old.
It was wrapped around the child’s head and held between the hands and feet.
Dr Saugerts said it was possible the child was buried with a female.
“It’s possible that she died after that, and she had the body for a period of time, and the skull was taken from her and put in a container and buried,” he said.
A woman with the remains.
Dr Hagen Wohlke, an assistant professor of archaeology at the University of Akron, said the remains looked like a skeleton with a large number of cuts and bruises, suggesting it may have been buried with someone.
“The bones that we’re finding show that the hunter-gathers could have used these tools to butcher animals, or use them to make bone knives,” Dr Wohlkes said.
Dr Wochers said it may be possible that some of the people buried in the site were buried together, perhaps as a family.
Dr Toni Gaddis, a researcher with the Army Archaeological Research and Documentation Center at Fort Knox who has been involved in the excavation for more than 20 years, said that she had not seen anything like it before.
“They were all buried together and probably had some kind of arrangement of family members,” she said.
She said the bones of some people were very large and might have been the remains or bones of large animals.
“That would be one of those things that we never had a chance to examine, to really look at the bones and get a sense of how they were handled,” Dr Gaddises said.
The Old Fort was built by a man who lived in the 16th century, according the US Military.
“He built a small camp at the edge of the village where he would spend the winter and he was probably in his 70s,” Dr Soggs said.
He said the site was found during the excavation of a former fort, which had been abandoned.
“These were very ancient structures,” Dr Swillke said.