3,000-year-old canoe found

American maritime archaeologists from the Wisconsin Historical Society, working alongside indigenous peoples, have discovered a second ancient canoe on Lake Mendota, Madison, USA.

Back in November 2021, the team discovered a 1,200-year-old canoe that made all the international headlines. The team has now discovered a second canoe that is 3,000 years old, making it the oldest specimen found in the Great Lakes region by about 1,000 years.

The canoe is carved from a single piece of white oak and is 14.5 feet long. It was found in the same area where the first canoe was found, according to Dr. James Skibo, state archaeologist for the Wisconsin Historical Society.

“The discovery of another historically significant canoe on Lake Mendota is truly incredible and offers invaluable research and educational opportunities to explore the technological, cultural and stylistic changes that have taken place in dugout canoe construction over 3,000 years,” Skibo said. “Because it was located within 100 yards of where the first canoe was found at the bottom of the lake’s fault, the find prompted us to investigate fluctuations in water levels and ancient shorelines to explore the possibility that canoes were near the lake but water later flooded dry land.”

The 3,000-year-old canoe helps tell a fuller story of the uninterrupted life of Wisconsin and the Great Lakes Natives.