I have read several blogs posting about the Olmec "heads" as an example of an early presence of Africans in America (this is a typical example). I usually consider those theories a bit outlandish and shrug them off with little effort. But today I found something a bit more scientific; A paper by Dr. Clyde Winter who looks into the HLA variants to pinpoint an African expedition to Mesoamerica around 1310 AD.
Read his article here: Winters C. Inference of Ancient Black Mexican Tribes and DNA. WebmedCentral GENETICS 2015;6(3):WMC004856 doi: 10.9754/journal.wmc.2015.004856.
Apparently Abubakari II, ruler of Mali in Africa sent an expedition to America in 1310 and that is the source of admixture in Mesoamerica (not the later slave trade that brought millions of unfortunate Africans to work and die in the New World; read more about this African king.
For a good explanation on African - Native American admixture, see this website. The first Africans to reach America did so in what is now Santo Domingo Island in 1502. Some escaped, met the local natives and that led to the first admixture.
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