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What is now Colombia and Panama emerged as the Republic of New Granada.
The new nation experimented with federalism as the Granadine Confederation (1858), and then the United States of Colombia (1863), before the Republic of Colombia was finally declared in 1886. Since the 1960s, the country has suffered from an asymmetric low-intensity armed conflict, which escalated in the 1990s but then decreased from 2005 onward.
In 1547, New Granada became the Captaincy-General of New Granada within the viceroyalty.
Between 50 BCE, hunter-gatherer tribes transitioned to agrarian societies; fixed settlements were established, and pottery appeared.
Beginning in the 1st millennium BCE, groups of Amerindians including the Muisca, Zenú, Quimbaya, and Tairona developed the political system of cacicazgos with a pyramidal structure of power headed by caciques.
The Muisca inhabited mainly the area of what is now the Departments of Boyacá and Cundinamarca high plateau (Altiplano Cundiboyacense) where they formed the Muisca Confederation.
The oldest archaeological finds are from the Pubenza and El Totumo sites in the Magdalena Valley 100 kilometres (62 mi) southwest of Bogotá.
These sites date from the Paleoindian period (18,000–8000 BCE).