Excavating a Site: A step by step guide

Let’s not waste anymore time talking…put words into action (so to speak)

The site is found and you are ready to uncover the next world famous artefact…what do you do?…follow these steps to archaeological infamy!

Digging Process

1. You must survey the site. An accurate plan of the site must be drawn up at the beginning. This will let you track your findings at a later stage.

2. Mechanical Diggers need to be brought in if the site is big. You will want these to take away only the topsoil. Be careful not to dig too deep as they can damage the artefacts that may be buried below.

3. A grid of squares needs to be made to accurately map exactly where each artefact is found. This can help better understand what it is you have found and what the site’s function may have been.

4. Once the diggers have finished removing the topsoil, it’s time to get to the real work! Trowels, brushes, sieves and other small tools must be used in the search process. This is to ensure that no artefact isn’t damaged when digging. At least you will have a better chance at maintaining the artefact!

Recording Process

1. All records MUST be kept! Any objects found must be placed in separate bags and labelled correctly, making sure to note where on the grid it was located.

2. These are then catalogued in an on-site computer or book.

3. Photographs and drawings are taken of the object for record.

4. The finds are then taken to a laboratory where they are investigated.

So that’s it! It’s time to go find yourself a site and seek out that life changing artefact!. Please do not operate any heavy machinery under the influence of stupidity. This blog does not condone the theft of or illegal actions you will commit behind the wheel of a digger! 

For more info on how to test objects..be sure to check out my blog “Testing the Evidence” in this category


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