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Thule Culture whale bone house, Resolute Bay, Cornwallis Island, Canadian Arctic Islands.

Thule Culture House, made of whale bones, Resolute Bay. For location, see [1]

A small hut built some 600 years ago by Innuits of the Thule culture near the hamlet of Resolute Bay. It was restored recently by archaeologists.

Whale bones are used to support the roof. The floor is made of slabs of supported stones, raised to keep an insulated layer of air against the permafrost. This keeps the floor dry and relatively warm.

The hut is small. It easily keeps the heat inside during the cold winter months with temperatures of around -45 Celsius. The heating was done with oil lamps and body heat. Temperatures inside would be a pleasant 5-10 Celsius.

This area was inhabited during the warm medieval period between 1300 and 1500 AD. The Innuits used to roam a large part of the area, all the way to Ellesmere and Axel Heiberg Island some 600 km to the North. These areas have rich hunting grounds for caribou's and hares.

The oldest settlements in this region and Northern Greenland date back from around 2000 BC, relatively soon after the major ice sheets of the last ice age made their final retreat starting in 5000 BC.

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