This past weekend the National Archaeology Days took place, with lots of archaeological activities and presentations across the Netherlands. Obviously an excellent occasion to draw attention to our new project and the various experiments we are conducting.
The most important eye catcher was of course the experimental dugout canoe that we are starting to make (see our longer blog on this topic). Under the watchful eye of our two experienced woodworkers and boat makers, the Masamuda volunteers attacked a large oak tree with polished flint axes. Using these axes, antler adzes and wooden wedges they started to remove the sapwood, splitting off large slices of what will become the outside of the dugout’s hull.
Other activities included grinding acorns into flour and using polished flint axes as cores. We also showed information about the objectives of the project and naturally we demonstrated replicas of all kinds of typical Neolithic artefacts. The children were very intrigued by all these objects that they could touch and were curious about their function. Even the Dutch newspaper Algemeen Dagblad, made a short article about our activities.
Over the two days we received many visitors: scouts, Leiden University alumni, Vlaardingen locals and many dog walkers. Maybe we even have attracted a few new Masamuda volunteers.