New Highway Leads to Discovery

On a desolate hillside pending construction of a new highway outside of

A mummy from the site. And a lady.

Lima,Peru,a well-preserved, ancient cemetery was found in 2004 which dates back 500 years ago, to the Inca empire. The area remained largely undisturbed by human activity, despite its close proximity to the country’s congested capital. The new site lies on the edge of the largest discovered Inca cemetery, called Puruchuco-Huaquerones, where thousands of mummies and artifacts had previously been discovered between 1999 and 2001.

The site lies between two sections of the new highway in Lima, which had been an ongoing project to reduce traffic congestion for 30 years. The excavators were allowed 2 months to dig at the site and then construction of the highway began. Items from the site were sent to a museum. The highway did not cross directly over the cemetery, but around it. However, the real problem of leaving the cemetery was looters. Guillermo Cock, the archaeologist leading the excavation, stated that “If we leave the cemetery it is going to be destroyed in a few weeks.” Unfortunately, there were no laws or obstacles preventing the highway from being built.

Original Article:

Roach, John. “Dozens of Inca Mummies Discovered Buried in Peru.” National Geographic News. 11 Mar 2004. Web. 19 Nov 2011.

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2 Responses to New Highway Leads to Discovery

  1. kafleming says:

    It’s amazing to think about how many ancient and valuable works of art have been looted, and where they have ended up. Thinking back to Ancient Egypt, all of the pyramids had been looted (except Tutankhamen’s, which was why it was so exciting). Where do all of these artifacts go? I hope that most of them eventually find their way to museums.

  2. krnunnally says:

    I find it unfortunate that despite this discovery there were no plans to reroute the highway. Building a road system so close to it makes it susceptible to not only automobile traffic but human traffic as well. Because of this urbanization, important artifacts could be forever lost to history. It is essential to preserve these artifacts especially because Mesoamerican history is one of the lesser well-known historical subjects.

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