story begins in the closing years of the last century, when a
Dutchman named Eugene Dubois unearthed the fossilized remnants
of what was later to become known as 'Java Man', near the East
Javanese village of Trinil. In 1894, three years after the discovery,
Dubois published an article in which he claimed that the remains
belonged to a distant ancestor of modern man, who had lived almost
a million years ago. He named the creature Pithecanthropus Erectus
(L). The article created such an outcry among the scientific
community, as well as the religious orthodoxy, that Dubois ended
up re-burying his finds under his own house, where they stayed
for the next thirty years.
Since then, evidence of early man has continued to be unearthed through the co-ordinated efforts of a number of Indonesian institutions, among them Surabaya's Airlangga University and the University of Gajah Mada in Yogyakarta. Trinil is still an important site and the remains of long extinct animal species are discovered annually, often by local farmers. The more important finds are preserved in a small museum close to the site where Eugene Dubois made his famous discovery 100 years ago.
Back To Discovering Menu