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Elands Bay bones may be 500-year-old Khoisan

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« on: February 13, 2008, 01:07:52 am »

Elands Bay bones may be 500-year-old Khoisan 

    February 11 2008 at 08:35PM 
By Natasha Prince

Skeletal remains, possibly those of a Khoisan man who died 500 years ago, have been found by builders in Elands Bay, sparking excitement among locals and archaeologists.

They unearthed the skull and the forearm while digging about 1.2 metres into the ground over two weeks ago.

Simon Pfotenhauer, one of the landowners on whose property the remains were found, said the bones were found in an upright, seated position.

When an archaeologist arrived to collect them a week later, Pfotenhauer was told the bones could be those of a Khoisan man and could be about 500 years old.

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« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2008, 01:08:31 am »

Archaeology students at the University of Cape Town are now investigating the remains.

One archaeologist involved in the discovery said she was not able to comment because the permit from Heritage Western Cape had not yet been approved.

At the time of the find, police spokesman Elliot Sinyangana said the skeletal remains had been referred to the police forensics department for further investigation.

Residents of Elands Bay, which is about 220 kilometres from Cape Town, were excited by the find.

Rumours that the bones may have belonged to one of the victims killed in a Standard Bank robbery that occurred in the town more than 20 years ago surfaced among the locals.

Other residents speculated that the bones were those of a Khoisan Strandloper.

In the Bobbejaan Mountains above Elands Bay, there are many rock art paintings.

The last major bone discovery in the Cape Town area was in May 2003, when hundreds of human skeletons were uncovered on a construction site in Prestwich Street, Green Point.

After investigations, a forgotten cemetery was found under the foundations of old buildings, which were being demolished to make way for a new building.

Later the building of a R5,6-million heritage centre to house the centuries-old human remains found in Prestwich Street led to the discovery of more remains by construction workers and an archaeologist was called in, as is required by law.

When it became known that some were likely to be those of slaves, there was an outcry and a call for them to be left undisturbed.
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