Ban Kao Archaeological Site
Ban Kao archaeological site is located on the bank of Kwae Noi River, Muang district of Kanchanaburi province. The site is one of the most important prehistoric sites in Thailand that dates approximately 3,800 years ago.
It is the first systematic prehistoric archaeological excavation in Thailand. The excavation was undertaken by the Thai-Danish Prehistoric Expedition from 1960 to 1962.
Many prehistoric burials with grave goods were found, the unique artifacts are tripod pots. Archaeologists assume that this type of tripod pot originated in Lung Shan Culture of Neolithic Period in China dated Ca. 4000 years ago, which the leg is more fat and shorter than the one found at Ban Kao.
Evidence of tripod pot in Thailand have been found in the western region down to the southern peninsula of the country, for instance, at Biang Bab Cave in Khiriratnikhom district, Surat Thani province and in Malaysia.
According to diffusion theory of Neolithic Period from China down south to Malay Peninsula, the prehistoric inhabitants at Ban Kao possible got technology of making this kind of tripod pot from China.
The studying of 28 skeletons which were found at Ban Kao can be estimated that the average age at death of the ancient Ban Kao population was about 30 years. The average height of a male was 160-176 centimeters and that of a female 146 – 161 centimeters.
The burial rites of the prehistoric Ban Kao population consisted of burying the corpse accompanied by offerings. The offerings found in burials include black and brown pottery stone axe and shell ornaments.