Over thousands of years, there have been six different generations of humans or hominids. Throughout these many years, the tools of these hominids have progressed immensely. The tools have transformed from sharpened rocks and sticks, all the way to what the modern humans are able to construct today.
Australopithecus afarensis “Southern Ape”
Australopithecus afarensis were the first hominid that evolved from apes.
Their hands were jointed differently; therefore, they could use tools instead of being able to climb and cling onto trees
They didn’t have the intelligence to make sophisticated tools, so they may have made tools out of bones that they found
Australopithecus afarensis mostly used tools that they found, they usually used the simplest, most basic tools
Homo habilis “Handy Man”
Homo habilis were the second hominid on Earth. They evolved from Australopithecus afarensis.
Known as the “tool- makers”
This period of time was called the Stone Age because Homo habilis made tools out of stone
They made stone tools for chopping, scraping, and cutting
They were able to hunt for food using sharpened rocks and sticks
Homo habilis could use fire but were unable to make and control it
They mostly made shelters out of tree branches and used stones as tools
These hominids used a knife edge, a side scraper, a primitive hammer, and a scraper as tools to survive
Homo erectus “Upright Man”
Homo erectus were the third hominid on Earth. They evolved from Homo habilis.
During this period of time, the tool making skills had improved
They could make weapons including stone axes and knives
Homo erectus were considered the first true hunters
They were able to make and control fire; therefore, they could migrate out of Africa
Homo sapiens Neanderthalensis “Wise Man”
Homo sapiens Neanderthalensis were the fourth hominid on Earth. They evolved from Homo erectus.
They made stone tools, bone needles, and bone fish hooks
They were able to sew clothes from animal skins and thread from other parts of animals
They mostly used caves as their homes instead of building one
Homo sapiens Neanderthalensis were great hunters and cooked their prey
Homo sapiens Cro- magnon “Early Modern Humans”
Homo sapiens Cro- magnon were the fifth hominids on Earth. They evolved from Homo sapiens Neanderthalensis.
They made permanent homes that looked like tents or tepees
Homo sapiens Cro- magnon made their homes out of tree branches, mammoth bones, and animal skins
Very skilled toolmakers
Their weapons include stone axes, knives, spears, harpoons, wooden bows, and sharp, stone tipped arrows
They could make rafts so they could sail across oceans
These hominids made clothing and jewellery
Homo sapiens sapiens “Modern Humans”
Homo sapiens sapiens are the sixth hominid and are on the Earth right now. Homo sapiens sapiens are us. We evolved from Cro- magnon.
Extremely sophisticated toolmakers; every man-made tool that we have today is made by Homo sapiens sapiens
We make several forms of transportation
Build permanent homes out of wood, stone, bricks, etc.
Make clothing and jewellery
10 000 years ago
50 000 years ago
Later hand axes
200 000 years ago
Early hand axes
1million years ago
2.5 million years ago
Tools over these many years have transformed by a huge amount. The progression of the tools has helped us fulfil our basic needs and lifestyles.
Hominid transformation by firstname.lastname@example.org @ http://www.flickr.com/photos/spidermandragon5/2922128673/sizes/m/in/photostream/
Australopithecus afarensis by Rafaelamonteiro80 @ http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Australopithecus_afarensis_new.JPG
Homo habilis by Sargoth @ http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Homo_habilis-cropped.jpg
Homo erectus by Ryan Somma @ http://www.flickr.com/photos/14405058@N08/2955598515
Homo erectus skull by askabird @ http://www.flickr.com/photos/93752018@N00/756057273
Homo sapiens Neanderthalensis by Matt Celeskey @ http://www.flickr.com/photos/7855197@N05/2771735470
Homo sapiens Cro- magnon by High Contrast @ http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Diorama,_cavemen_-_National_Museum_of_Mongolian_History.jpg
Homo sapiens sapiens by Paulo Cesar-1 @ http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:H._sapiens_sapiens.jpg
Homo sapiens sapiens skull by Dr. Gunter Bechly @ http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Homo_sapiens_Combe_Capelle.jpg
Other Places, Other Times by Rosemary Neering and Peter Grant
Ancient Worlds by Arnold Toutant and Susan Doyle