Archaeological News

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Posts tagged "channel islands"

A record of Neanderthal archaeology, thought to be long lost, has been re-discovered by NERC-funded scientists working in the Channel island of Jersey.

The study, published today in the Journal of Quaternary Science, reveals that a key archaeological site has preserved geological deposits which were thought to have been lost through excavation 100 years ago.

The discovery was made when the team undertook fieldwork to stabilise and investigate a portion of the La Cotte de St Brelade cave, on Jersey’s south eastern coastline.

A large portion of the site contains sediments dating to the last Ice Age, preserving 250,000 years of climate change and archaeological evidence.

The site, which has produced more Neanderthal stone tools than the rest of the British Isles put together, contains the only known late Neanderthal remains from North West Europe. Read more.

Washington, DC—(ENEWSPF). Seventy years after it was scuttled off Los Angeles, Calif., government archaeologists have found the wrecked remains of a rare Pacific Coast schooner that was employed in the lumber trade during the early 1900s.

Today, Robert Schwemmer, maritime archaeologist for NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, presented a scientific paper on the George E. Billings history and its discovery in February 2011 at the eighth California Islands Symposium in Ventura, Calif.

The Billings, a five-masted schooner built in 1903 by Halls Bros. of Port Blakeley, Wash., hauled lumber from the Northwest to Hawaii, Mexico, South America, Australia and southern California. After decades servicing the lumber trade it was converted into a sport-fishing barge. In 1941, the owner decided to scuttle the aging vessel off the coast of Santa Barbara Island. Read more.

The remains of the first HMS Victory are to be raised from the sea bed nearly 300 years after it sank, it has been reported.

The vessel, predecessor of Nelson’s famous flagship, went down in a storm off the Channel Islands in 1744, taking more than 1,000 soldiers to their deaths.

Along with a bronze cannon collection, some believe the ship was carrying a large quantity of gold coins from Lisbon to Britain, which would now be worth a reported £500 million.

According to the Sunday Times, the wreck is to be handed over to the Maritime Heritage Foundation, which is expected to employ Odyssey Marine Exploration to carry out the recovery. The American company found the ship four years ago.

A Ministry of Defence spokeswoman said: “Efforts to protect key parts of British Naval history such as the wreck of HMS Victory 1744 are very welcome and we hope to make an announcement shortly.” Read more.

Archaeologists are investigating islands around Britain to find out why our ancestors gave up being hunter-gatherers 6,000 years ago and turned to farming.

Academics from the universities of Southampton and Liverpool are hoping to shed new light on the long-standing debate about whether the change around 4,000BC was due to colonists moving into Britain or if the indigenous population gradually adopted the new agricultural lifestyle themselves.

The experts will be excavating three island groups in the western seaways - the Channel Islands, the Isles of Scilly and the Outer Hebrides - to understand what sailing across this area would have been like in 4,000BC.

Fraser Sturt, from the Centre for Maritime Archaeology at the University of Southampton, said: “How people changed from hunter-gatherers to agricultural lifestyles is one of the big questions in archaeology. Read more.

A three-view look at a chert crescent dating to ancient seafarers on San Miguel Island.

Evidence for a diversified sea-based economy among North American inhabitants dating from 12,200 to 11,400 years ago is emerging from three sites on California’s Channel Islands. Read more.