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Both areas depopulated when the carrying capacity of the land collapsed.  Easter Island seems to have depopulated through starvation and war; there may have been some people who got off in the last canoes -- nobody knows.  Chaco Canyon depopulated by internal warfare, as there are instances of Chaco-like structures on easily defended buttes and mesas, but it seems most of the people scattered over thousands of square miles.  

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Fri Jul 18th, 2008 at 03:03:47 PM EST
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The Easter Islanders seem to have been isolated from other human societies, but did range hundreds of miles to the nearest (uninhabited) atoll.  

there may have been some people who got off in the last canoes  

THERE is the makings of a story.  They would have been adventuring into the (for them) unknown.  Say, a team of dolphin hunters out on the ocean thinks about what they are going back to, and what is bound to happen, how their catch is really not going to make any difference . . . and decide not to return . . . Brings to mind Kim Stanley Robinson's "Icehenge."  

The Fates are kind.

by Gaianne on Sun Jul 20th, 2008 at 10:25:11 PM EST
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