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During the latter half of this century anthropological surveys in East Africa have made significant contributions to understanding how the human species has evolved.In the past two decades, particularly, discoveries of our fossil ancestors have been made in unprecedented numbers and diversity.Darwin was remarkably prescient when he wrote, in 1871 "The Descent of Man", that humans had evolved in Africa and were closely related to the great apes (gorilla, chimpanzee, and orang-utan).But at that time this view was anathema to many, since the majority of people still accepted the concept of special creation. Rather than accept the fossil as the remains of a human ancestor, the distinguished German scientist R.
This evidence prompted some paleoanthropologists to describe ER 1470 as one of the most ancient undoubted representatives of the genus Among other key finds from the Koobi Fora region are KNM-ER 1813 and KNM-ER 1805.
This interpretation reflected the prevailing prejudices about human ancestry, and was supported by misinterpretation of the remains of the "Old Man of La Chapelle", whose skeleton was warped by arthritis.
Even when the idea that apes and humans shared a common ancestor became more widely accepted, the concept of an African origin was not.
From 1945 onward, he and his colleague, John Robinson, used controlled explosions to extract more fossils.
In 1957, Dr CK “Bob” Brain of the Transvaal Museum found stone tools in a miners’ dump and Robinson and Revil Mason used a grid system to excavate in the stone tool area.
Yet even this seminal K-Ar dating study was plagued by the seemingly insurmountable problem of contamination.