Carbon Dating Pioneer, Willard Libby, on Ancient Ages

           “The first shock Dr. Arnold and I had was that our advisors informed us that history extended back only 5000 years. We had thought initially that we would be able to get samples all along the curve back to 30,000 years, put the points in, and then our work would be finished. “You read statements in books that such and such a society or archeological site is 20,000 years old. We learned rather abruptly that these numbers, these ancient ages, are not known accurately; in fact, it is about the time of the First Dynasty in Egypt that the first historical date of any real certainty has been established.”

Willard Libby, 1960 Nobel Prize winner for pioneering carbon dating technique. American Scientist 44 January 1956

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woodcutter from Washington State
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