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The First Time

Stories from the Stone Age.
Swimwear from the future

Season 2 is here

Travel

The first time for everything

The Stone Age lasted 3.4 million years and is divided into the Paleolithic, Mesolithic, and Neolithic periods, named after the Greek for “stone.” In this time, humans were doing everything for the first time. We all remember our first time.

The Paleolithic period

25,000 years ago

The Paleolithic period is the earliest & longest in the Stone Age. Humans banded together, hunted, gathered, and used tools. These humans were taller and healthier. Guess there is something to that paleo diet everyone is talking about.

The first time
it was lit

Fire changed our lives. When early humans learned to control the flames, they became the masters of their own domain. More BBQs meant less illnesses from eating raw meat, so the first men had more time to bro down. Who’s grilling?

How did we
light it up?

  • Hand Drill

    Rub wood quickly over tinder and blow. Tinder, rub wood, blow... sounds good!

  • Pump Fire Drill

    Set up the hand drill, wind up a strap, and let friction work its magic.

  • Flint and Steel

    Create flames with stone & a striker, knife, or axe, depending on your mood.

The first time
we chilled

An ice age is a long, cold, period, where ice sheets cover much of the Earth (duh). Many of the animals that lived in this time have since gone extinct, but their less scary (and less hairy, usually) relatives can be found all over the world.

Who’s who in
the ice age?

  • Woolly mammoth

    · 5,000,000 BCE - 2,000 BCE
    · North America, Europe, Asia
    · Elephant cousin

  • Glyptodon

    · 7,000,000 BCE - 10,000 BCE
    · South America
    · Armadillo aunt

  • Smilodon (Saber tooth tiger)

    · 2,500,000 BCE - 10,000 BCE
    · the Americas
    · Unconfirmed relative of Dracula

The first time we
were omnivores

Hunting & gathering was the most successful human adaptation. Many strategies were used, including trapping, fishing, and gathering nuts, berries, and other edible food. Props to these guys for knowing what was ok to eat without the Internet.

The earliest
veggie side dishes

  • A variety of fruits,
    berries, nuts,
    beans, and seeds

  • An assortment of
    vegetables and roots

  • Different types of
    mushrooms, mollusks,
    insects, and worms

The first time we played
“Go, Fish”

Fishing is an ancient practice that dates back at least 40,000 years ago. While most of the early humans were nomadic, fishers were known to set up permanent settlements. Because as everyone going through a breakup knows, there are plenty of fish.

Spears at
the ready

Early fishers commonly used
barbed spears or harpoons to
hook the catch of the day in
Paleolithic times.

The Mesolithic period

15,000 years ago

The winds of change were blowing in the Mesolithic, or middle, period of the Stone Age. Better hunting techniques expanded their palettes, but changing climate meant they had to make some lifestyle adjustments. It was time to settle down.

The birth of
the schedule

  • Fishing

  • Building huts
    (the original
    glamping)

  • Skinning
    animals for
    fur, leather,
    anything
    else

  • Gathering
    wood for
    campfire
    barbecues

  • Making
    woolly
    mammoth
    jerky

  • Preparing
    food

  • Cooking
    over the
    open flame

  • Gathering
    the goods

The first time we met
man’s best friend

Around 15,000 years ago, the cuteness of wolf puppies got the best of some brave men, who decided to breed them as pets. By finding the friendliest and prettiest pups, they created the dogs we know and love today. And thank goodness for that.

The first time for
the tech bubble

Humans during the Mesolithic Period were the first to modernize stone tools. This advancement of technology is literally what separated them from chimps. We’re not saying that this led to the iPhone, but we’re not not saying that either.

Tooling around

  • Paleolithic Period -
    tools unchanged
    from what was
    found in nature

  • Mesolithic Period -
    chipped stone,
    mounted with
    serrated edges

  • Neolithic Period -
    polished
    stone tools

The first time old
MacDonald had a farm

Early men began herding sheep & goats and keeping cattle & pigs. These animals were like a one-stop grocery store for the villages because they could be used for milk and fresh meat as well as bone tools, leather, and wool. Paper or plastic?

Farmville IRL

Pigs 11,000 BCE

Cattle 10,000 BCE

Sheep 12,000 BCE

The first time we were
starving artists

Cave painting was common as far back as 25,000 BCE but the Mesolithic men were the first to make their art portable. They created figurines, beads, and decorative tools. Because pizazz is definitely what the stone tools were missing.

Why the
long face?

Stone idols, art, and jewelry found in Lepinski Vir, the oldest and most significant human settlement, gave insight into a complex and cultured society. These stone faces all shared a strange expression - the original emoji?

The Neolithic period

11,000 years ago

The Neolithic Period, the final of the three Stone Age divisions, is marked by the beginning of agriculture and the development of pottery. Who would have thought growing crops and making ceramic bowls would be on the same level in history?

From Gathering to Farming
in 5 easy steps

18,000 years ago, the climate warmed. Humans began collecting wheat and bringing the seeds back to their settlements to plant.

Gatherers

  • When gathering
    seeds, some fell
    in the dirt 1

  • Wheat grew and
    settlements
    formed around 2

  • New tools were
    created for the
    harvest 3

  • Seeds were
    collected to
    plant later 4

Plots were plowed to
ensure max growth
And that's how we
became farmers 5

Farmers

The first time we
made a corny joke

Corn was first grown by men in Mexico around 10,000 years ago. Maize then spread to every continent, except Antarctica. Since corn can be used for tortillas, we can probably thank these early farmers for tacos, too. Corn-gratulations!

The first time we
needed a scarecrow

Wheat was first cultivated around 9,600 BCE and early humans made some of the most important early technological advancements, like soil preparation, crop rotation, and horse-drawn plows, to increase production. Pretty s-wheat, right?

The first time the chicken
came before the egg

Domesticated chickens are relatives of wild junglefowl found on the Indian subcontinent. Humans recognized the importance of brunch and began keeping chickens for their eggs around 7,500 BCE. It took a while for hollandaise to catch up.

A brief history
of farm animals

  • Cattle 10,000 BCE

  • Horse 6,000 BCE

  • Sheep 12,000 BCE

  • Pig 11,000 BCE

  • Duck 6,000 BCE

  • Chicken 8,000 BCE

  • Lama 4,400 BCE

  • Cavia 7,000 BCE

  • Alpaca 4,400 BCE

  • Turkey 2,000 BCE

The first time the pen was mightier than the sword

Writing is the representation of language through symbols. Independently conceived and developed in Mesopotamia and Mesoamerica, writing allowed humans to express ideas and emotions. I wonder where we can find the earliest, “u up?” message.

a different kind
of tablet

The Tărtăria tablets date back to around 5,300 BCE and contain what some think is the earliest writing. The meaning of the symbols is unknown, but it was likely religious, not 50 Stones of Grey.