Tuesday 30 June 2015

Jokiniemi day 7/22

Today we found our first solid proof of the site being occupied during the late neolithic corded ware culture. In the midst of all comb ceramic pottery this small rimsherd made our day. The ornamentation is identical to a vessel found in a neolithic grave some 10 km to the west from our dig (Vantaa Jönsas).

Battle Axe culture rimsherd.

Other neolithic finds are of course also accumulating rapidly. A fragment of a flint knife or arrowhead, a nail shaped slate tool being among the more interesting ones today.

 Grooved "nail shaped" slate object.

 Grooved "nail shaped" slate object.

Flint knife or arrowhead fragment.

To be continued ;)

Monday 29 June 2015

Jokiniemi days 5-6/22

Summer has finally arrived in S Finland at least for this week. After spending a wonderful weekend vacation in the archipelago I will now post a short update on last Friday and today, sry for the delay guys...

I will start of describing the finds of neolithic pottery. As we are now (finally) digging into the untouched stone age layers of the site the amount of pottery is gradually rising. As for now it seems we are mostly finding late neolithic pottery (late comb ceramic period or Ka III) which corresponds to the elevation of ca 20-21 m. asl.

Due to the great weather on friday and today we have been advancing a lot and the dig is now only approx one day delayed from schedule. We will probably catch up for lost time tomorrow :).

Happy diggers :)

Let´s see what tomorrow and the rest of the week will bring when it comes to finds. The find layer is rich and thick and dark brown in color so I guess anything can happen :).

"On the beach"

Thursday 25 June 2015

Jokiniemi 2015 day 4/22

The day was windy and cloudy but thank God almost no rain. Work on the site is advancing steadily and by tomorrow afternoon we should be through the topsoil on the entire excavation area.

With over 20 persons participating in the dig tomorrow we should finally be through layer one.

Despite only touching the surface of the find layer the finds are accumulating rapidly. Todays finds included potsherds (late comb ceramic culture) and a fragment of a slate sinker.

Fragment of a small neolithic slate sinker (notice the notch or groove at the end).

What would I do without all the wonderful people participating in the dig, totally fearless of the weather. The archaeology students from Helsinki university dpt of archaeology are top guns too :)

 Archaeology students Nelli and Emma <3

The best crew ever!

Wednesday 24 June 2015

Jokiniemi 2015 day 3/22

This day was a rainy one but thanks to the hard working crew it turned out very good! Lot´s of great finds too (well preserved neolithic pottery, another intriguing crystal an unfinished flint arrowhead and a beautiful fragment of  a neolithic slate ring fragment (according to grave finds these were probably used as dress ornaments).

Digging in the rain (our tent covers an area of only 10 x 3 meters so space became a problem at the end of the day :)

Original 1980´s Finnish design "Rukka" raincoat!

Below two of todays beautiful finds, an unfinished neolithic flint arrowhead and a fragment of a neolithic polished slate ring!!

Below is a complete neolithic slate ring found during excavations of the neolithic grave site of Laukaa, Hartikka.

A slate ring from Laukaa, Hartikka. Photo Museovirasto.

The slate rings from one of the red ochre graves from Laukaa, Hartikka. Photo Mirja Miettinen.

Tuesday 23 June 2015

Jokiniemi 2015 day 2/22

Still digging through the topsoil but we are slowly getting there ;). As the profile of the excavation area grows higher the finds get bigger. Like this nice rimsherd (typical comb ceramic ware) illustrates.

 Typical comb ceramic ware ca 3600 BC.

The decorated rim of the same potsherd.

In order to better illustrate the land upheaval effect on the site we have placed signs showing the participants were the seashore was during different periods of occupation of the site.

Ca 3000 BCE (before Christian era) translates to ca 21 m above present sea level.

First radio interviews today too. The reporter was awesome and stayed at the dig for the complete day!!  :)

Tuomas interviewed by radio reporter from the Finnish National Brióadcasting company (YLE).

To be continued .... :)

Monday 22 June 2015

Jokiniemi 2015 neolithic stone-age dig day 1/22

Today we started our one month long dig. First heavy rain and then finally only cloudy skies. A hectic day but a good one in more ways than one. First of all very nice people and three superb archaeology students who personally guided each and every one of the participants.

Excavation in progress.

The first days are more or less about removing the remains of the 30-50 cm very wet plough layer that covers the excavation area. By Wednesday we will be start digging into the first level of the neolithic find layer.

Tough work.

Todays finds were very common finds for a stone-age dwelling site from this period (ca 3400-3100 BC). Pottery, quartz and flint flakes, pieces of polished stone tools... The most intriguing finds from today were a few quite large crystals of quartz.

 Quartz crystals.

Ka II:2 pottery ca 3400 BC.

Sunday 21 June 2015

Measuring and planning day

Today was the last day dedicated to planning and pre- excavation work on the site. The weather was still very good but tomorrow it looks very much like the excavation  will start off with rain as did the on first Heureka excavations of  the site in 1990.

We also found our first larger potsherd today, a rather large piece of asbestos tempered late neolithic so called "Pöljä" ware.

Saturday 20 June 2015

The HEUREKA Jokiniemi 2015 dig starts next Monday

The community archaeology excavation of one of the central neolithic sites in S Finland will continue for one month. Some 135+ people will participate. In the last few days we have been working with the preparations of the dig. Car rental, barracks and lavatories, shelters for rain and many other things. Thanks to the arranger Heureka the Finnish Science Centre and the always very kind and helpful  city of Vantaa all has gone according to plan :)

The excavation area before the removal of the topsoil.

Removing the topsoil

The main excvation area is situated on a former stone age seashore. The elevation of the site today is 21-22,5 m which translates to around 3400-3500 BC .

I will be updating here on a daily basis so stay tuned... ;)

Monday 15 June 2015

Telegrafberget news

The excavation was a success although we only cleared the area from overgrowth and trees that were threatening the preservation of the massive stone walls of the house foundation. We also did some measuring and documentation work.

The inside of the construction measured exactly 16 square meters.

This is what the site looked after we finished work on the first day!

 Photo from S.

 Photo from N.

Photo from NE.

The clearing up of the site revealed an interesting inscription on one of the foundation stones!

Friday 12 June 2015

Heading for Kemiönsaari tomorrow...

lecturing and digging the remains of an optical telegraph station from the "Krimean war". There´s no WiFi out there so You will have to wait for updates from the dig until next monday.

In our spare time (when we are not digging) me and my right hand man Olli Eranti will be fishing and relaxing in the SW Finnish archipelago ;)

Bronze age cairn, situated some 20 m:s from the Telegraph station.

Tuesday 9 June 2015

Excavating the optical Telegraph station on Telegrafberget "Telegraph hill" Kimito SW Finland 12.6 - 14.6.2015.

This interesting project will cover  documentation and excavation of what could be the barracks of the Russian soldiers manning the optical telegraph station during the Crimean war 1853-1856. The remains could also be  part of the original "telegraph building" itself.

What it might have looked like... 

 The foundations of the station or barracks are skillfully constructed.

 ... and at places over 1 m. in height.

Three rooms or small buildings in all!!!

A tight context is everything, even the more so in WW2 conflict archaeology

I have to say that finding an untouched closed dump from 1942-1944 was not what I expected in area of much military and other (Finnish government) activity 1945-2015.

Some parts of the former camp grounds are a mess, still they are labeled "Natural reserves" and protected as such.

Although the many period finds that illustrate the German military presence in Hanko S Finland are by no means sensational in themselves, the finds from the German dump in Deutsches Lager Hanko are a different story.

The taste of home. German "Zentis"  Marmelade jar.

These carefully excavated and documented finds can be used as a basis when forming a detailed picture of the daily life of the soldiers lives here 1942-1944. The museum of Hanko will be keeping and showcasing the finds and the tragic history of the German transition camp in an exhibition in 2017.

Even the smallest things tell interesting stories when their find context is solid.

Sunday 7 June 2015

More finds from "Deutsches Lager Hanko" and assorted good news regarding the project :)

Yesterday we finished the first leg of the 2015 excavations of  "Deutsches Lager Hanko". Below are some assorted pictures from last weeks work :)

Digging in.. 

 German bakelite soap box.

 Paper items, German cigarette box.

 Wehrmacht standard ration food cans and an ink bottle.

 Luftwaffe visor cap eagle.

German wine bottle and other stuff.

 Digging the Gebirgsjäger marching boot.

Gebirgsjäger bakelite box for the G.36 gun.

I will start work on my dissertation about the German transition camp next autumn at the University of Helsinki dpt of Archaeology. Also much needed additional funding for the excavations and interviews with locals (and so much more.. in Hanko) has been granted by "Sparbanksstiftelsen i Hangö". I would like to express my deepest gratitude to all who have been supporting me during the first steps of this project! Can´t wait to start working full time soon :)

7,5, cm Gebirgsjägergeschütz 36 mountain gun.