This Week In History News, May 12 – 18

Published May 17, 2019

Ancient Chinese dog sacrifices unearthed, oldest North American DNA found, dinosaur with bat-like wings discovered.

Puppies Found In Ancient Chinese Tombs Were Used As Cheap Sacrifices, In Lieu Of Humans

Ancient Chinese Burial Site

Archaeological Research in AsiaA sacrificial pit in Zhengzhou.

Long ago, human and animal sacrifices were a predominant ritual in many cultures. Now, researchers have found that puppies as young as six months old were sacrificed and buried — sometimes alive — in human tombs during China’s ancient Shang Dynasty.

Archaeologists Roderick Campbell and Zhipeng Li scoured old archeological data from past excavations in China and discovered that most of the dogs that had been sacrificed and buried were just pups at the time of their deaths. The discovery dispels the previously held belief that the sacrificed dogs were beloved pets that had been buried with their owners.

Dig deeper here.

This Native American Man Has The Oldest American DNA Ever Recorded

Darrell Crawford In Montana

TwitterDarrell “Dusty” Crawford didn’t even want to get his DNA tested. He merely did it to assuage his brother, who died before the results came back.

Before Alvin “Willy” Crawford’s heart gave out, the Montana man asked his brother, Darrell “Dusty” Crawford to get his DNA tested. When he did, CRI Genetics told Crawford that his results were so unprecedented that it was like finding Bigfoot.

CRI Genetics is one of many modern “biogeographical ancestry” companies. They trace a customer’s genetic makeup through time and space and attempt to find its place in the evolution of humankind.

The results, which are 99 percent accurate, indicated that Crawford’s line went back 55 generations. CRI Genetics said its never been able to date anyone’s DNA as far back as this. This is now officially the oldest American DNA found on the continent.

See more here.

Bizarre 163 Million-Year-Old Dinosaur Found To Have Bat-Like Wings

3d Illustration Of Ambopteryx

Min Wang/Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology/Chinese Academy of SciencesThe omnivorous Ambopteryx longibrachium dinosaur had membranous flaps like a bat.

Chinese scientists have discovered a bat-like winged dinosaur that took flight in our world about 163 million years ago. The finding is the second such specimen that scientists have found with membranous wings. These two discoveries seem to confirm the notion that there was an entirely different evolutionary track for airborne dinosaurs than previously thought.

But the significance of this discovery was not obvious when the team first collected the fossils from Jurassic-age rocks in Liaoning Province in China.

“I thought it was a bird,” Min Wang, a vertebrate paleontologist at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, said. But upon closer inspection, Wang and his team discovered distinct characteristics of the specimen that confirmed it was indeed a dinosaur and not a bird.

Read on here.

All That's Interesting
Established in 2010, All That's Interesting brings together a dedicated staff of digital publishing veterans and subject-level experts in history, true crime, and science. From the lesser-known byways of human history to the uncharted corners of the world, we seek out stories that bring our past, present, and future to life. Privately-owned since its founding, All That's Interesting maintains a commitment to unbiased reporting while taking great care in fact-checking and research to ensure that we meet the highest standards of accuracy.
John Kuroski
John Kuroski is the editorial director of All That's Interesting. He graduated from New York University with a degree in history, earning a place in the Phi Alpha Theta honor society for history students. An editor at All That's Interesting since 2015, his areas of interest include modern history and true crime.