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Hueyatlaco: 250,000 Year Old Settlement In Mexico Found Under Volcanic Ash

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Humans were hunting mastodons in Mexico 250,000 years ago.  This archaeological heresy is supported by finding at Hueyatlaco. 

Hueyatlaco is an archeological site in Valsequillo, Mexico. Several potential pre-Clovis localities were found in the 1960s around the edge of the Valsequillo Reservoir, Mexico.  One of these localities is the site of Hueyatlaco.  This site was excavated by Cynthia Irwin-Williams in 1962, 1964, and 1966. 

One of its early excavators Virginia Steen-McIntyre writes “Hueyátlaco is a dangerous site. To even publicly mention the geological evidence for its great age is to jeopardize one’s professional career. Three of us geologists can testify to that. It’s very existence is blasphemous because it questions a basic dogma of Darwinism, the ruling philosophy (or religion, if you will) of the western scientific world for the past 150 years. That dogma states that, over a long period of time, members of the human family have generally become more and more intelligent. The Hueyátlaco site is thus ‘impossible’ because Mid-Pleistocene humans weren’t smart enough to do all that the evidence implies. Besides, there is no New World anthropoid stock from which they could have evolved.:


The Hueyatlaco Archeological Site is situated on the Tetela Peninsula, along the north shore of the Valsequillo reservoir in the State of Puebla, Mexico, approximately 100 km southeast of Mexico City and 10 km south of the City of Puebla.

In the 1960s, highly sophisticated stone tools rivaling the best work of Cro-magnon man in Europe were unearthed by Professor Juan Armenta Camacho and Dr. Cynthia Irwin-Williams at Hueyatlaco, near Valsequillo.

 Dr. Cynthia Irwin-Williams

Credit: Smithsonian National Archives

After excavations in the 1960s, the site became notorious due to geochronologists’ analyses that indicated human habitation at Hueyatlaco was dated to ca. 250,000 years before the present.

Professor Juan Armenta Camacho

Beds containing human artifacts at Valsequillo, Mexico, have been dated at approximately 250,000 years before the present by fission-track dating of volcanic material and uranium dating of a camel pelvis. The dilemma posed by such dates is clearly stated in the following quotation from the conclusions of the subject article.

“The evidence outlined here consistently indicates that the Hueyatlaco site is about 250,000 yr old. We who have worked on geological aspects of the Valsequillo area are painfully aware that so great an age poses an archeological dilemma. If the geological dating is correct, sophisticated stone tools were used at Valsequillo long before analogous tools are though to have been developed in Europe and Asia. Thus, our colleague, Cynthia Irwin-Williams, has criticized the dating methods we have used, and she wishes us to emphasize that an age of 250,000 yr is essentially impossible.”
(Steen-McIntyre, Virginia, et al; “Geologic Evidence for Age of Deposits at Hueyatlaco Archeological Site, Valsequillo, Mexico,” Quaternary Research, 16:1, 1981.)


These controversial findings are orders of magnitude older than the scientific consensus for habitation of the New World (which generally traces widespread human migration to the New World to 13,000 to 16,000 ybp). The findings at Hueyatlaco have mostly been repudiated by the larger scientific community, and have seen only occasional discussion in the literature

According to  Steen-McIntyre “we have evidence for two primitive human skulls. The Dorenberg skull was collected in the area over 100 years ago (Reichelt,1899 (1900)) . The interior cavities were filled with a diatomite that contains the same Sangamon-age suite of taxa that occurs associated with the artifacts at Hueyátlaco (VanLandingham 2000, 2002b,c, 2003). It was on display in a museum in Leipzig for many years, and was destroyed during the bombings of WW II. We are looking for a photo or drawing of it.

The second skull, the Ostrander skull, is rumored to have been collected illegally at Hueyátlaco sometime in the late 60’s or early 70’s and recently to have been turned over to a Native American tribe for reburial. No attempt was made to date it.”

Ostrander skull to the rignt, allegedly from the Hueyatlaco Site. On the left a modern skull

Credit:  Austin Whittall

Cynthia Irwin-Williams led the team that first excavated the site in 1962 The dig is often associated with Virginia Steen-McIntyre because of her continuing efforts to publicize her findings and opinions. However, the site was actually discovered by Juan Armenta Camacho and Irwin-Williams. Steen-McIntyre joined the team in 1966 as a graduate student, at the request of project geologist Hal Malde. The excavation was associated with the U.S. Geological Survey.

The region, about 75 miles SE of Mexico City, was known for its abundance of animal fossils, and Irwin-Williams described Hueyatlaco as a “kill site” where animals were hunted and butchered.

These tools are believed to be 250,00 years old from the Hueyatlaco site. 

Credit: Dr. Cynthia Irwin-Williams/H.S. Rice

Excavations were conducted via standard protocols, including securing the sites to prevent trespass or accidental disturbances. During excavation, investigators discovered numerous stone tools. The tools ranged from relatively primitive implements at a smaller associated site, to more sophisticated items such as scrapers and double-edged blades uncovered at the main excavation site. The diversity of tools made from non-local materials suggested that the region had been used by multiple groups over a considerable period.

Credit: Chris Hardaker

In 1967, Jose L. Lorenzo of the Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia claimed that implements had been planted at the site by local laborers in such a way as to make it difficult or impossible to determine which artifacts were discovered in situ and which were planted. Irwin-Williams counter-argued that Lorenzo’s claims were malicious and without merit. Furthermore, in 1969 Irwin-Williams cited statements of support from three prominent archeologists and anthropologists (Richard MacNeish, Hannah Marie Wormington and Frederick A. Peterson) who had each visited the site independently and attested to the integrity of the excavations and the professionalism of the group’s methodology

Credit: Chris Hardaker

In mid-1969, Szabo, Malde and Irwin-Williams published their first paper about dating the excavation site. The stone tools were discovered in situ in a stratum that also contained animal remains. Radiocarbon dating of the animal remains produced an age of over 35,000 ybp. Uranium dating produced an age of 260,000 ybp, ± 60,000 years.

The site had been buried by the ash of La Malinche. The reservoir, which lies 100 km southeast of Mexico City and south of the city of Puebla is surrounded by four of Mexico’s famous volcanoes: Tláloc, Iztaccíhuatl, Popocatepetl, and La Malinche, which is shown below. 

Credit: Wikipedia

The authors admitted that they had no definitive explanation for the anomalous results. However, Malde suggested the tool-bearing strata had possibly been eroded by an ancient streambed, thus combining older and newer strata and complicating dating.

Credit: Chris Hardaker

In 1973, Steen-MacIntyre, Malde and Roald Fryxell returned to Hueyatalco to re-examine the geographic strata and more accurately determine an age for the tool-bearing strata. They were able to rule out Malde’s streambed hypothesis. Moreover, the team undertook an exhaustive analysis of volcanic ash and pumice from the original excavation site and the surrounding region. Using the zircon fission-track dating method, geochemist C.W. Naeser dated samples of ash from Hueyatlaco’s tool-bearing strata to 370,000 ybp +/- 240,000 years.

The confirmation of an anomalously distant age for human habitation at the Hueyatlaco site led to tension between Irwin-Williams and the other team members. Malde and Fryxell announced the findings at a Geological Society of America meeting, admitting that they could not account for the anomalous results. Irwin-Williams responded by describing their announcement as “irresponsible”.  Given the substantial margin of error for the fission-track findings, and the then-new method of uranium dating, Irwin-Williams asserted that Hueyatlaco had not been accurately dated to her satisfaction.  

Credit: Chris Hardaker

Excerpt of letter to Marie Wormington from Dr. Cynthia Irwin-Williams [circa 1969]:

“…Meanwhile, I recently got a letter from Hal, with some (completely wild) uranium dates on Valsequillo material. I don’t see how he can take them seriously since they conflict with the archaeology, with his own geologic correlations, and with a couple C14 dates. However, God help us, he wants to publish right away! I am enclosing a copy of Hal’s letter and my reply. Needless to say any restraint you can exercise on him would be greatly appreciated. All we need to do at this point is to put that stuff in print and every reputable prehistorian in the country will be rolling in the aisles.”

On March 30, 1981, Steen-McIntyre wrote to Estella Leopold, the associate editor of Quaternary Research: “The problem as I see it is much bigger than Hueyatlaco. It concerns the manipulation of scientific thought through the suppression of ‘Enigmatic Data,’ data that challenges the prevailing mode of thinking. Hueyatlaco certainly does that! Not being an anthropologist, I didn’t realize the full significance of our dates back in 1973, nor how deeply woven into our thought the current theory of human evolution had become. Our work at Hueyatlaco has been rejected by most archaeologists because it contradicts that theory, period.”

Eventually, Quaternary Research (1981) published an article by Virginia Steen-McIntyre, Roald Fryxell, and Harold E. Malde. It upheld an age of 250,000 years for the Hueyatlaco site. Cynthia Irwin-Williams (1981) objected to these findings in a letter responding to these authors. Her objections were answered point-for-point in a counter letter from Malde and Steen-McIntyre (1981).

Credit: Chris Hardaker

The case of Virginia Steen-McIntyre opens a rare window into the actual social processes of data suppression in paleoanthropology, processes that involve a great deal of hurt and conflict. In general, however, this goes on behind the scenes, and the public sees only the end result—the carefully edited journals and books that have passed the censors.

The Sangamonian Stage, also known as the Sangamon interglacial, is the name used by Quaternary geologists to designate the last interglacial period in North America from 125,000—75,000 years ago, a period of 0.05 million years. The Sangamonian Stage precedes the Wisconsinan (Wisconsin) Stage and follows the Illinoian Stage in North America

In recent times the Hueyatlaco Site has been reinvestigated by Dr. Sam VanLandingham using diatom dating methodology to confirm the anomalously old dates assigned by Malde, Steen-McIntyre and Fryxell:
Important artifacts have been found in situ (i.e., not redeposited) within lacustrine deposits in the Valsequillo region. These deposits contain many diatoms which indicate an age corresponding to the Sangamonian Interglacial sensu lato (80,000 to ca. 220,000yr BP). Two of the four samples in this study are associated with the Dorenberg skull or with stratigraphic units which contain bifacial tools. The remaining two samples are from diatomaceous deposits which are also Sangamonian and stratigraphically above the artifact units. These four diatomaceous samples yielded 30 extinct and 143 extant diatom taxa.

The ages of the four samples correspond to other diatomaceous samples (some of which are associated with artifacts) from nearby Valsequillo localities. A post-Sangamonian age for these four diatom-bearing samples is discounted by the presence of Navicula bronislaae and N. dorenbergi, both of which have short stratigraphic ranges and are known only from the Sangamonian (or its equivalents), and by 13 diatoms which evidently have known long stratigraphic ranges and extinctions before the end of the Sangamonian.

An age no older than Sangamonian for the artifacts and their enclosing diatomaceous deposits is indicated by the presence of two diatoms (Epithemia zebra var. undulata and Navicula creguti) known only from Sangamonian (or = age) or younger and by an extant diatom, Cymbella cistula var. gibbosa (C. gibbosa), which has its first occurrence in the Sangamonian.

The diatom biostratigraphy presented herein establishes a minimum (Sangamonian) and a maximum (Illinoian) age for the younger (bifacial) artifacts at the Hueyatlacoarchaeological site in units B,C, and E, Puebla, Mexico.

VanLandingham  used  diatom biostratigraphy in determining a minimum (Sangamonian = 80,000–ca.220,000 yr. BP) and a maximum (Illinoian = 220,000–430,00 yr. BP) age for the Hueyatlaco artifacts, Puebla, Mexico. Nova Hedwigia (February, 2009), Beiheft 135, p. 15-36.

Quoting the Abstract: The diatom biostratigraphy presented herein establishes a minimum (Sangamonian) and a maximum (Illinoian) age for the younger (bifacial) artifacts at the Hueyatlaco archaeological site in units B,C, and E, Puebla, Mexico. One of the 13 samples in this study is from a position of Sangamonian age which is stratigraphically higher than the artifacts. The minimum age of this sample (from unit B) is demonstrated by 6 taxa which became extinct at the end of the Sangamonian , and its maximum age (also Sangamonian) is denoted by 3 taxa with earliest known first occurrences in the Sangamonian. The diatoms of the remaining 12 samples have a minimum age of Sangamonian. Three of the 13 samples are in unit I and no Hueyatlaco artifacts are known below this unit. 



Chris Hardaker
The First American: The Suppressed Story of the People Who Discovered the New World (New Page Books, 2007)

 ^ Irwin-Williams, C., et al., Comments on the Associations of Archaeological Materials and Extinct Fauna in the Valsequillo Region Puebla Mexico, American Antiquity, Volume 34, Number 1, Pages 82-83, Jan 1969

^ Szabo, B.J., Malde, H.E., and Irwin-Williams, C., Dilemma Posed By Uranium-Series Dates On Archaeologically Significant Bones From Valsequillo Puebla Mexico, Earth and Planetary Science Letters, Volume 6, Pages 237-244, Jul 1969

^ Gonzalez, Silvia; Huddart, David; and Bennett Matthew. (2006) Valsequillo Pleistocene archaeology and dating : ongoing controversy in Central Mexico . World Archaeology, 2006, vol. 38, no4, pp. 611-627.

a b Irwin-Williams, C., et al., Comments on the Associations of Archaeological Materials and Extinct Fauna in the Valsequillo Region Puebla Mexico, American Antiquity, Volume 34, Number 1, Pages 82-83, Jan 1969

^ Irwin-Williams, Cynthia. (1978) Summary of Archeological Evidence from the Valsequillo Region, Puebla, Mexico. In Cultural Continuity in Mesoamerica, David L. Browman, ed. The Hague: Mouton Publishers.

a b c d e f g h Webb, Mark Owen and Suzanne Clark. (1999). “Anatomy of an Anomaly .” Disputatio, 6.

^ Szabo, B.J., Malde, H.E., and Irwin-Williams, C., Dilemma Posed By Uranium-Series Dates On Archaeologically Significant Bones From Valsequillo Puebla Mexico, Earth and Planetary Science Letters, Volume 6, Pages 237-244, Jul 1969

^ Steen-McIntyre, V., R. Fyxell and H. Malde. (1981) Geologic Evidence for Age Deposits at Hueyatlaco Archaeological Site Valsequillo Mexico, Quaternary Research, Number 16, Pages 1-17, 1981


^ VanLandingham, S.L., Corroboration of Sangamonian Age of Artifacts From the Valsequillo Region Puebla Mexico By Means of Diatom Biostratigraphy, Micropaleontology, Volume 50, Number 4, Pages 313-342, 2004

^ VanLandingham, S.L., Diatom Evidence For Autocthonous Artifact Deposition In the Valsequillo Region Puebla Mexico During Sangamonian (sensu lato = 80,0000 to ca. 220,000 yr BP and Illinoian (220,000 to 430,000 yr BP)), Journal of Paleolimnology, Volume 36, Number 1, Pages 101-116, Jul 2006


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    Total 16 comments
    • Louis

      “Controversial findings” indeed. There is no substantial evidence that proves without a doubt that the species Homo sapiens has existed on Earth for moire than 6,000 years. Unsurprisingly enough, that is precisely the scenario presented by Holy Scripture, which is the living word of God.
      People who think that they evolved or descended from apes or some other lower species are perfectly welcome to speak for themselves. But only for themselves. The only testimony that has any validity regarding mankind’s origin or destiny is that given by the Divine Lord Jesus Christ. All other testimony falls by the wayside as speculative or irrelevant, and need not be taken seriously.

      • ISeekTruth

        Jesus Christ, leave the poor guy on the cross already. You belief is in vain. The lies of early Christendom are still corrupting the minds and hearts of Mankind. There have been many ages dating back millions of years. Many civilizations, each one destroyed much like the one before it in it’s appointed time. I can’t help but wonder if the peoples of the lost ages were as stupid and willfully ignorant of even the most basic common sense.

    • Anonymous

      Absolutely no way it’s that old. It would be front page news around the world if it was.

      • ISeekTruth

        Jesus would have told you if it was true, right? Don’t be so shallow minded. Wake up or perish in ignorance of truth.

        • Awakenow2

          Dang ISeekTruth, for seeking truth you sure have a closed mind. Speaking of ignorance of truth, where do you get yours from? Darwin? The occult? and when you refer to “The lies of early Christendom” you are refering to catholicism, which is not the same as Christianity. Get your facts straight before you start dispensing insults. You call Christians shallow minded, but you are arrogant and foolish. You will perish by your own choice… free will, if that’s what you choose.

      • Anonymous

        Now you show your naivety….

    • SKuNKy

      Anon at the top might be right, except “The Living Word of God” is more likely “Alien given control doctrine”. As for this site, if it is that old then it is probably tools used and animals killed by our previous non-alien modified ancestors. Like Neanderthals (aka Bigfoots). Also, you can throw uranium dating out the window imho, the past use of nuclear devices on this planet negates it all if we dont know the original levels.

    • Joerg Klaemt

      Know your Bible,
      God said be fruitful and “REPLENISH” the Earth.
      God never said there was Life on Earth before that nor did he deny that there was none.
      Adam and Eve may have been the tenth chapter of Humans on Earth and like now all of them
      destroyed the Earth before over and over.
      Neither did God say that there are other Civilizations in the Universe.
      One thing the Bible says and we are seeing it now at the End there will be Strange Lights in the Sky. Ill leave it by that Food for Thought.

      • Anonymous

        Stop with the “anonymous ” crap. Be a man and identify yourself or keep your trap shut.

        From a Christian by the way. Not perfect just forgiven.

        • Pix

          Give a man a mask and he will give you his real face. :wink:

    • Pix

      “Three of us geologists can testify to that. It’s very existence is blasphemous because it questions a basic dogma of Darwinism, the ruling philosophy (or religion, if you will) of the western scientific world for the past 150 years.”

      Ruling philosophy ? There is no such thing as a consensus in science. Consensus is purely a political thing. So when a religious person uses such nonsense to make a point, they are politicising their belief, like consensus means proof. EG The religious world believed the world was flat at one time, they were wrong.

      Evolution is no longer up for debate, it is a proven 100% scientific fact. Consensus has nothing to do with it, the same as we breath air is not up for debate, we do, full stop.

      • Anonymous

        Any right thinking scientist will tell you that Darwinism is crap!

      • Anonymous

        That’s preposterous. Of course there’s consensus in Science, and no scientist will tell you the THEORY of evolution is “proven fact”. Natural selection *seems* to take place, but there’s not one drop of evidence for macro-evolution: it’s just a hypothesis, just like the “Big Bang”, which is most likely very inaccurate as well. Get away from establishment academia, it will blind and compartmentalize your intellect and make make you into a drone technician…..

    • westelca

      Typical of the modern religion of science.

      Destroy anything that contradicts the unproven theory of evolution!

      As for the religious people here, try rereading the Bible a few more times. You will find it says God created man, male and female he created them. Later in the garden of Eden God created Adam and Eve.

      There is no real conflict between Christianity and scientific findings.

    • ChuckL

      Maybe this would explain the Cain and Abel story when Cain was afraid for his life. he said “whoever finds me will kill me”. So in the long run this proves people were already here. The bible points that out so we need to ask ourselves what is religion hiding from us and why? Mankind is older then what people thought and its just time people face that fact.

    • Elva Thompson

      The Elite that run the world have been covering up the truth about our species for at least two thousand years.They have to keep control of our minds with fantasies of evolution, virgin births and saviours so we don’t think for ourselves. This world is a fractal hologram created by a demon. See Meet The Firm and read about the ‘loosh rote’.

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