Scottish News | Late Glacial Ahrensburgian-style lithics from Islay

◊ Dear Microburins,

Lateglacialchippedstonetools,RubhaPortant-Seilich647510_40239The University of Reading today issued a press release on exciting Late Glacial finds and geo-archaeological evidence from Islay, Inner Hebrides, Scotland. Trial excavations in 2013 have, literally, just scratched the surface.

“The archaeologists are grateful to the game-keeper who came across the Mesolithic objects after the pigs, who were released on Islay to reduce bracken, unearthed them, and thankful to the resident who knew of the earlier work the Reading team had conducted on the island, and tipped the researchers off.

Several layers of volcanic ash were found at Rubha Port an t-Seilich coming from both above and below the stone artefacts. This has enabled the team to date them [Tephrochronology] at 12,000 years old, 3000 years older than any previous discovery on Islay.”

All praise to the JQS for being open-access too!

Spence

Mesolithic Sites and Finds Update | East Islay Mesolithic Project

◊ Dear Microburins,

The UK Mesolithic Sites & Finds page has been updated with:

  • East Islay Mesolithic Project | Storakaig and Rubha Port an t-Seilich Archaeological evaluation of new Mesolithic sites on Islay, western Scotland by Steven Mithen and Karen Wicks (Website and video).

MesArrow_WillLord_YoutubeThe Mesolithic Videos page also now includes a new Youtube video:

  • Mesolithic Arrow | Will Lord | 27-Sep-2015 Youtube (15min)
    Watch master flint knapper and tool-maker Will Lord create a fletched Mesolithic arrowhead.

If you have other suggestions to add, with a webpage or press/media link, please get in touch.

Spence

Blogging and Archaeology | Please help a researcher!

Blog◊ Dear Microburins,

If my friend and archaeological blogger Robert M Chapple doesn’t mind, I’m using his own blog post text here to highlight a request from a researcher.

I’ve been blogging archaeology here myself since May 2012, nattering about my Mesolithic period research and related topics, activities, sites and finds in the news, challenges, frustrations, discoveries and wins.

I too have recently been contacted by Fleur Schinning, a post-graduate student in Heritage Management at Leiden University in the Netherlands. Her research focuses on the use of blogs and social media and how they contribute to the accessibility of archaeology in the Netherlands. For comparative material, she will be looking at a number of blogs from the UK and the USA (where archaeological blogging appears to be widely accepted). I’m honoured that she has asked me, and the readers of this blog, to participate in her research.

  • If you can spare even a few minutes, she would be very grateful if you could complete a simple questionnaire to share your thoughts about this blog | http://goo.gl/forms/z3BAUTyYUL

As a reward for your assistance, you will be entered into a draw for six issues of Archaeology Magazine.

Spence


Some Microburin blog statistics

      • Blog set up on 20 May 2012 when I didn’t know anybody in archaeology!
      • 119 posts
      • 19,157 visits
      • 35,819 views from people in 105 countries
      • 1.54 to 1.69 views per visitor this year
      • 1,204 followers on Twitter @microburin

I Love Museums | UK Campaign against yet more government cuts

ILMI Love Museums is a campaign led by the National Museum Directors’
Council to show the public support for museums.

The Campaign

Our museums are facing challenging times. Local and national governments are making tough decisions about funding, and we want to show them how much museums matter by celebrating the public support for our wonderful cultural institutions. We need you to stand up and say ‘I Love Museums’!

Whoever is to blame for the financial and banking crisis, and as we all try to recover, it is clearer than ever that our Heritage – monuments, archaeology and museums – also underpins our recovery. Our heritage assets, and the beleaguered professionals who manage them:

  • Draw tourists and footfall – make us an attractive place to visit
  • Offer a valued sense of place and well-being – for residents and business investment
  • Bring communities together – across diverse backgrounds, cultures and generations
  • Drive creative learning and education – about our past, present and future – across science, natural history, human achievement (and our foibles)

What you can do

  1. As a UK Resident, spend a minute to sign the petition
  2. Write to or email your elected representatives, Councillors, MPs and MEPs – it’s easy using this free resource (only needs your postal code)
  3. Add a twibbon to your Twitter profile picture
    Follow @ILoveMuseums
    Send a Tweet using hashtag #ILoveMuseums
    #ILoveMuseums because @ILoveMuseums

Learn more about how to spread the word »

Thank you for your support. A few minutes of your time can make a huge difference.

Spence
Archaeologist, lover of heritage and museums – and the people who make it all happen!

Schools Prehistory | Museums displaying prehistoric artefacts

◊ Dear Microburins,

My friend Kim Biddulph at Schools Prehistory is compiling a list of museums whose displays (and resources for children) include items from the Stone Age to Iron Age. I’ve sent details of some North Yorkshire and North-east museums not currently on the list:

  • Ryedale_IAhut2Palace Green Library, Durham City
    A new gallery tells the 10,000 year story of Durham from the ice age to modern times.
  • Museum of Hartlepool, Jackson Dock, Hartlepool
  • Ryedale Folk Museum, Hutton le Hole, North Yorkshire
    Displays Include antiquarian flints and stone axes, extra-ordinary finds from the “Windy Pits” and a waterlogged Iron Age Settlement. There’s a fantastic reconstructed Iron Age round house and some rare breed livestock.
  • Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens, Borough Road, Sunderland
  • Swaledale Museum, Reeth, North Yorkshire OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
    This small yet fascinating museum includes stone age flint and chert tools dating back to the Mesolithic and Neolithic periods (Tim Laurie collection).
  • Wensleydale, Dales Countryside Museum, Hawes, North Yorkshire
    Includes flint tools that likely date back to the late Glacial Upper Palaeolithic (13,000 years ago) discovered in Wensleydale (Tim Laurie collection).
  • Whitby Museum and Art Gallery, Pannet Park, Whitby, North Yorkshire Fylingdales
    The museum is an amazing place to visit and still retains its eclectic Victorian “collectors” atmosphere. There are stone age flint tools as well as Bronze Age pottery and bronze artefacts. A replica of the decorated Neolithic stone discovered after fires on Fylingdales Moor sits alongside finds excavated in the early 20th century at Roman signal towers along the Yorkshire coast.

Neolithic stone from Fylingdales Moor | Credit: Graham Lee, North York Moors National Park Authority.

If you have other suggestions (and you can include images with permissions), please contact Kim and the team using the form on this web page »

About Schools Prehistory

Schools Prehistory was set up in 2013 by a group of archaeologists and educators to help teachers and heritage educators get ready for the prehistory element of the new primary history curriculum at Key Stage 2 in England. They are available for consultancy, to run training or workshops in schools and museums. They also sell information booklets designed for the non-specialist on their website—more lesson plans and supporting resources will be coming soon. They are also developing good quality replica object-handling boxes for sale. Keep up to date with what’s happening on their blog »

  • Read about the introduction of prehistory into the English national curriculum in Kim’s article published in the Teesside Archaeological Society BULLETIN 19 (2014–15, pp 37–41) » PDF extract

Spence

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