Archaeologists discover the world’s oldest wooden structure

A research team led by the University of Liverpool excavated the world’s oldest wooden structure on the archaeological site of Kalambo Falls, Zambia.

Collaborating with international and interdisciplinary experts, working with local communities and using novel technologies, we’re using research like this to piece together how humans lived and worked. And how this has shaped who we are today.

Earliest wooden structure in the world

Professor Larry Barham talks about this amazing archaeological find and what it suggests about the capabilities of our earliest ancestors. Archaeology researchers excavating a wooden structure at Kalambo Falls in Zambia.

THE Connect: Rewriting our understanding of early humans

Listen to Professor Larry Barham, Dr Nicola George and Perrice Nkombwe talk about their fascinating discovery and the impact it has had beyond academia. You can also read the full article.

An interview with JR Peterson Photo of a man photographing beneath the water

Behind the lens - Q&A

Gain a deeper insight into the excavation at Kalambo Falls. Technician JR Peterson reveals how the project team uncovered the evidence of humans building structures made of wood half a million years ago. Professor Larry Barham receiving his award.

Archaeology researcher receives award

Professor Larry Barham has been awarded a prestigious Shanghai Archaeology Forum (SAF) Discovery Award following the groundbreaking discovery of the world’s oldest wooden structure. An archaeology student examines an object during a practical session in a laboratory.

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Undergraduate and master's courses are available in archaeology. Explore the early origins of humankind and discover the fundamental role of archaeology in contemporary science and society.

Facilities Two students examining bone fragments in an archaeology laboratory.

State-of-the-art facilities

Our archaeology facilities include a microscope laboratory, scientific analysis and flint-knapping resources, and a palaeodiet laboratory for the analysis of skeletal remains of humans and animals.

Garstang Museum Researchers

Garstang Museum

The Garstang Museum is the University of Liverpool's museum of archaeology. Founded in 1904, its extensive collections and artefacts provide unique insights into ancient civilisations around the world.