Canteen Kopje: Cultural Heritage Under Threat
The Canteen Kopje skull. The arrow points to a healed lesion.
3D tomography generated reconstruction of the back of the skull
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The Canteen Kopje (CK) skull was found by a diamond digger working the Vaal River gravels in 1929. It was hailed by Robert Broom as an exceptionally robust prehistoric individual that was ancestral to modern South African populations. Further exploration of the Vaal Gravels has confirmed the antiquity of the purported find locality. A recent study using X-ray tomography to create a computerised 3D image showed that the CK cranium falls within the range of variation of Holocene Khoesan and lacks archaic features. The skull was probably a Late Stone Age intrusion into the Vaal Gravels or the overlying Hutton Sands.
Read more: 2012. Smith, P., R. Nshimirimana, F. de Beer, D. Morris, L. Jacobson, M. Chazan, and L.K. Horwitz. Canteen Kopje: A new look at an old skull. South African Journal of Science 108(1-2): 9 pages.