The Sumerians were among the earliest civilizations in the Middle East. They dwelled in the land between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers known as Mesopotamia. In the southern portion of Mesopotamia, they established agriculture-based city-states stretching for hundreds of square miles. The most notable of these city-states were Erech, Kish, Nippur and Ur—the site of Abraham's birth. They dominated this area of Mesopotamia through the third millennium B.C. In 2400 B.C., they were conquered by the Akkad Kingdom. Ultimately, the Sumerians were absorbed as a part of Babylon.
The Sumerian written language known as cuneiform is one of the earliest examples of writing historians and archaeologists have found. Many Sumerian records written on clay tablets still survive in museums to this day.
The Sumerians' farming techniques were largely dependent on irrigation. Sumerian agriculture is credited as one of the first uses of irrigation in history, with some irrigation set-ups dating as far back as 4000 B.C. This, however, is contested by Creationists who assert that since God created the earth around 4000 BC, Sumerians could not have had irrigation set-ups by themselves at the time (or even could have formed their own culture so soon after Creation).