ANCHORAGE, Alaska—The ancient remains of three people found in the town of McGrath are expected to be sent off for carbon dating in the next week, but results on some of the materials found around the bodies has added a glimpse into how old they could be.
In October, the remains of an adult man, a young adult man and a child between the ages of two and five were found during a construction project. The remains were found in the town of McGrath, but the area was not permanently inhabited until the 1930s and 40s. Stone artifacts were also discovered with the bodies.
The discovery of the bodies has been labeled the Tochak Discovery. Tochak is a place name that refers to the confluence of the Takotna and Kuskokwim Rivers near McGrath.
The historical remains were sent off with a blessing ceremony in McGrath, and another in Nikolai, before being transferred to the Tanana Chiefs Conference in Fairbanks on Thursday.
Two archaeologists with TCC will study the remains, and the conference will send the bodies out for carbon dating in the next week or so, said Vicki Otte, CEO of MTNT, Limited, the McGrath village corporation, which owns the land on which the remains were found.
Otte says the archaeologists are also planning to return to McGrath next year for an archaeological dig of the site, where another hearth or dwelling area was also found.