Friday, August 29, 2014

The Adventure Continues

Example of a LIDAR picture showing underground
features--this is not of our dig
Because we both have always had an interest in archeology I started following several groups doing archeology digs in England this spring.  It was so fascinating that we decided we'd find one that would accept us as volunteers to do some digging.  We were lucky enough to find a group that had started work in Gloucestershire near Stroud that had beguntheir dig.  It had been mapped using LIDAR (light detection and ranging) and they hoped they would be uncovering some kind of temple.  Two trenches were being uncovered, the main one had a ditch cut through it and that's where most of the group were working.  As novices we worked with a lovely lady named Sue to uncover the second trench where LIDAR had indicated that a 20 meter in diameter circle was buried.
The sod was cut out and hauled off and then the digging with trowels began.  Working half way across the trench we removed the first 3-4 inches of topsoil lunch time came and then we started at the

Our Trench

Me digging with Sue in our trench

The other trench with folks digging in the ditch


Note the bedrock
beginning again and removed another 3-4 inches of soil.  We hit bedrock much sooner than we expected but not artifacts were found.  I found a teeny, tiny piece of glass and an animal tooth.
The other trench with its ditch had given up pieces of pottery jars and a quern which is a grinding stone.
Every rock and there were loads of those, every bit of dirt and there was even more of that had to be loaded into buckets, dumped into a wheelbarrow and wheeled over to the dump site.  It was hard, hard work and we enjoyed every minute of it.  The people we worked with were so interesting and helpful, particularly Tony the leader of the team and Sue who took us under her wing.
Blistered and sore we finished up around 4 pm and headed home.  The next day we were sore all over, but if we could go back again we'd be back there in a heartbeat, it was an incredible experience.

3 comments:

  1. I'm a closet archaeologist, and once helped with a dig close to home for the Mound Indians, who were here until about the ninth century. Simply fascinating.

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  2. I'm sorry that you didn't find something more unusual or fabulous, but it sounds as though you enjoyed it anyway! xx

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  3. Amazing to touch things last touched by people so many centuries ago.

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