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Wednesday, March 30 • 16:20 - 16:45
S07-11 The documentation of Neolithic flint mines―An experimentation of methods

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The documentation of Neolithic flint mines – an experimentation of methods

Åsa Berggren, Anders Gutehall

What is the best method to document a site of numerous pits, the result of a complex sequence of digging and filling, cutting and reopening holes in the ground in search of flint during the Early Neolithic?

During an excavation of Neolithic flint mines in 2014 in the area of Södra Sallerup in Malmö, Sweden, we experimented with various methods to document the mines in plan. These methods are now being evaluated. In addition a comparison to methods used to record the mines during the decades long history of excavations in the area is also executed.

The methods used were hand drawing on paper, digital planning with GPS, orthophotography, and photogrammetry. This paper discusses the evaluation of these methods and the impact of the methods on the process of interpretation.

Archaeological documentation methods have developed quickly during the last decades, digital techniques have become increasingly accessible and affordable. The increased use of these methods affects the prerequisites of archaeological interpretation and consequently the knowledge that is produced. However, this shift is seldom problematised or analysed.

The development of methods often takes place within research projects, with carefully chosen objects. However, we were able to use a choice of methods within a contract archaeology project, albeit with additional means from a research fund supporting the evaluation. The objects are typical of developer funded archaeology, not visible above ground, quite different from standing remains of architecture often regarded as suitable for research experiments of digital documentation.

In addition to adjusting the method to the recorded object, our results show that quite low tech digital solutions can go a long way towards achieving a detailed and relevant record. As each method seem to capture slightly different aspects, a combination of methods also seems preferable.

Wednesday March 30, 2016 16:20 - 16:45 CEST
Domus Academica, Theologisk eksamenssal