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Thor Heyerdahl Biography

Learn about anthropologist and explorer Thor Heyerdahl by reading this biography. This resource includes extension activities to further children's knowledge of geography, ancient Egypt, transportation, and anthropology.
Grades:
5 |
6 |
7
Themes:
Explorer / Anthropologist

Born: 6 October 1914
Died: 18 April 2002 (cancer)
Birthplace: Larvik, Norway
Best known as: Leader of the Kon-Tiki and Ra Expeditions
In 1947 Thor Heyerdahl and five crew members sailed the Kon-Tiki, a balsa wood raft, from South America to Polynesia, to prove his theory that pre-Columbian intercultural global contact was possible. During 1969-70 he sailed two papyrus rafts, Ra I and Ra II, across the Atlantic, to show that ancient Egyptians could have had contact with South America. Although his theories often earned him the scorn of academics, Heyerdahl had a profound influence on anthropology and archaeology.
Extra credit: The film of his Kon-Tiki expedition earned an Oscar in 1951 for Best Documentary Feature.

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Extension Activities:

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