Day one: the fun begins!

Today marked the culmination of many months of planning, emails and numerous phone calls. Finally, we actually started the excavation at the pre-colonial shipbuilding yard at Horeke! The team was divided across the site to cover both the upper and lower sections of the shipbuilding yard.

Turfing
Turfing through the kikuya grass on the upper terrace.

The excavation involved a combination of mechanical and hand-based techniques to remove the topsoil and to uncover the artefacts – of which over 300 have already been recorded.

Digger
Graham Campbell operating the 6 ton excavator to remove the topsoil.

Once the topsoil was removed, it was sieved using the Roman crane, purpose-built by Dr Hans Bader, who can be seen assembling it in the photo below.

Hans and the trebuchet
Dr Hans Bader and Rick Bullers raising the crane. 

Despite working in the hot, humid conditions, the team made excellent progress, and after a long and productive day, had opened up five excavation areas for a total area of 172 square metres. The number, type, age and distribution of the artefacts that were uncovered today suggest there is much for this site to reveal during the rest of the excavation – stay tuned for updates!

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