The antiquity of the purposive hominid use of fire continues to be pushed back according to a study released earlier this year by Berna et al. in PNAS. Analyses of material at the Wonderwerk Cave, Northern Cape province, South Africa support that charred remains were burned inside a cave, ruling out other natural causes. One million years is the oldest archaeological evidence of hominid controlled fire use yet found. From the 1970s thru the 1990s, this same site has yielded Aucheulean materials, suggesting occupation by H. erectus.
Thanks to Erin Weyman’s “Hominid Hunting” for bringing this to my attention (via Google Currents)!