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Lower Valley of the Awash
Site number:
Type of site: Cultural
Date: Prehistoric
Date of Inscription: 1980
Location: Africa, Ethiopia, Afar region
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Description: The Awash valley encompasses one of Africa’s most significant groupings of palaeontological sites. The remnants discovered on site (some dating back at least 4 million years) have presented startling evidence of human evolution that changed our notion of the history of humankind. In 1974 the site provided the most amazing discovery: 52 fragments of a skeleton were found, which allowed for the eminent Lucy’s reconstruction. --WHMNet paraphrase from the description at WHC Site, where additional information is available. For 360 degree imaging of this site, click here.
  The Awash (sometimes spelled Hawash) is a major river of Ethiopia. Its course is entirely contained within the boundaries of Ethiopia, and empties into a chain of interconnected lakes that begin with Lake Gargori and end with Lake Abbe (or Abhe Bad) on the border with Djibouti, some 100 kilometers (60 or 70 miles) from the head of the Gulf of Tadjoura. It is the principal stream of an endorheic drainage basin covering parts of the Amhara, Oromia and Somali Regions, as well as the southern half of the Afar Region. Humans have lived in the valley of the Awash since the beginning of the species. The Middle Awash has been where numerous pre-human hominid remains have been found. The valley of the Awash from about 9° N downstream is the traditional home of the Afar people. The valley of the Awash have been included as part of the territories of the historic provinces or kingdoms of Dawaro, Fatagar, Ifat, and Shewa. Except for Shewa, these provinces disappeared with the arrival of groups of the Oromo in the 16th century. The first European to trace the course of the Awash to its end in the Aussa oasis was Wilfred Thesiger in 1933/1934, who started at the city of Awash, followed the river's course to its final end in Lake Abhebad, and continued his expedition west to Tadjoura. --Wikipedia. Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. For 360 degree imaging of this site, click here.
Reference: 1. UNESCO World Heritage Center, Site Page.
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