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A similar absolute-dating method dendrochronology, or the dating of trees by counting their annual growth rings was first developed for archaeological purposes in the early 1900 s by the American astronomer Andrew Ellicott Douglass.
If an ancient structure has wooden parts, archaeologists can compare the number and widths of the growth rings in those parts with sequences from other samples to find out when that structure was built.
The remains found by classical archaeologists coins or written records, for example may have dates already written on them, but this is not always the case.
It is never the case for anthropological archaeologists, who study prehistoric materials. , confirmed that his carbon-14 test dating method was scientifically dependable within an acceptable margin of error for objects already dated. Culture History theoretical school of thought in archaeology.
For example, it is known that superbison became extinct in the Great Plains of what is now the United States and were replaced by modern bison.
Thus if archaeologists discover one site in which Folsom fluted points (the distinctive tips of a kind of prehistoric man-made weapon) are found imbedded in superbison remains, and they discover a second site in which a different kind of points, called Bajada points, are sticking in the remains of modern bison, they may conclude that Folsom points were made before Bajada points.
Culture History archaeologists focus their work on cultural processes and work to determine ...
This technique is based on the assumption that the oldest archaeological remains occur in the deepest strata of the excavation, the next oldest in the next deepest strata, and so on.
He noted that the mud and clay deposited by glaciers into nearby lakes sank to the lake bottom at different rates throughout the year, forming distinct layers, called varve, on the lake bottom.
Because each year s layer was different, the researchers were able to establish dates for artifacts or sites associated with a specific varve.
After death, this carbon-14 changes, or decays, into a more stable form of carbon.
Archaeologists can determine the age of once-living things such as bones, wood, and ash by measuring the amount of carbon-14 remaining in the specimen.