Nine human species walked the Earth 300,000 years ago. Now there is just one. While you may have heard about Neanderthals, you may not know much about their enigmatic cousins, the Denisovans that inhabited Asia.
The Denisovans are an extinct species or subspecies of archaic human that ranged across Asia during the Lower and Middle Paleolithic. With few remains available, what we know comes from from DNA evidence.
Join the NHSM fossil club to learn about the different human species and how they interacted with each other, what impact the Denisovans had on archaic human introgression, the transfer back and forth of genetic information from species to species through hybridization, and how the archaeological view differs from the paleogenetics view. The image titled, “The Beginning”, drawn by our presenter Robert Moshe Thompson, an amateur paleoanthropology enthusiast, depicts the skull of Sahelanthropus tchadensis. Like the Denisovans, S. tchadensis is a controversial hominin known only from one locale. Denisovan fossils appear nondescript, and could easily be mistaken for any other hominin- including S. tchadensis. Therefore, it is necessary to explore this problem in order to understand the Denisovans.
* Natural History Society of Maryland’s Fossil Club is a group of novice and more experienced collectors will meet to exchange knowledge and help with fossil identification, discuss fossil locations, as well as other fossil related topics. Monthly meetings are held the first Wednesday of every month at the Natural History Society of Maryland. Due to COVID, NHSM is opening up this club meeting to all. Non-members are asked to donate $5. If you are a fossil enthusiast, please consider joining (
The Natural History Society of Maryland is a volunteer-led non-profit organization, so the fee you pay will go directly to support the programs, the nature collections, and the building that make this kind of nature education possible.
You must register in advance to receive the Zoom meeting information.
If you have questions related to the Fossil Club, please email Adrien
NHSM Fossil Club Member: $0 Club member in good standing
Non-Member Suggested Donation : $5
COVID Impact Option : $0