Perhaps the Neolithic Age was the biggest leap forward in the history of humanity which, until then eked out a subsistence level living by hunting and gathering techniques. For hundreds of thousands of years human beings who had been finding shelter in the caves and living out on whatever the nature gave them, were now trying to augment what the nature was offering them by developing new tools. In other words, they were taking the first steps from reconciliation with nature in the direction of changing it.
Yumuktepe is one of the witnesses of this important turning point in the history of humanity. It possesses layers of settlements beginning with the Early Stone Age until the Islamic Civilizations of the Middle Ages.
The findings obtained from the archeological excavations between 1937 and 1940 and reports detailing this research were destroyed when the British Archeological Institute in Liverpool was bombed during World War II. Prof. John Garstan of Liverpool University who led the excavations at Yumuktepe gathered documents from Chicago University’s Oriental Institute and people who were privately in possession of such material and restarted the dig in 1947 and 1948.
After a long break following these first excavations, a team of Turkish and Italian archeologists resumed the work at Yumuktepe in 1993.
To see the objects evidencing the fact that humanity passed from the period of making tools from pure copper that is found very rarely in the nature to the phase of developing a technology to process abundant copper oxides to produce new metals in this part of the world, one has to go to the Mersin Museum.
But, let us first mention the places worth seeing around.