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Origin of Native Americans: Early Human Migrations

Updated on March 17, 2016
Ancient human migration to America
Ancient human migration to America

When Christopher Columbus discovered America, he found that people of distinct color and costume existed there.

Later Europeans found that these distinct people were spread all over American continent, in North, Central and South America.

Today we know these people as Native Americans, American Indians, Red Indians and by many other names related to their tribes.

The question is, when and where from they came to America?

According to anthropologists, they came in America approximately 12-14 thousand years ago, from Eurasia, via Beringia, a land bridge between eastern edge of Siberia (Russia) and western edge of Alaska, USA. This migration was in three or more waves. Then in a large span of time, they traveled toward south and spread all over North, Central and South America. They were divided in regional groups and tribes. They developed great civilizations like Maya and Inca.

This theory of the origin of Native Americans is supported by DNA tests of skeletons found across American Continent, Genetic relations between Asians and Native Americans, Archaeological evidences, as well as the linguistic evidences.

However, there are some other theories too, which indicate that all the native Americans did not come from Asia. But other theories are lacking of strong and scientific evidences.

The First Americans - Most Likely Migration Route

Native Americans

Other Theories of Native American Origins

There are few other theories of the origin of native Americans. According to an article published in National Geographic, nearly one third of the genes come from West Eurasian people. (Brian Handwerk, National Geographic, November 2013). New study shows that the ancestors of native Americans were not just East Asians, but also the people related to present day West Eurasians. Later the both groups were mixed up.


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  • Lord De Cross profile image

    Joseph De Cross 6 years ago

    Wonderful story,

    Actually we all have traces of so many backgrounds..well done!


  • Kadmiels profile image

    Kadmiels 6 years ago from Florida

    they may have come from outer space O_o