St Marys Headland,
Dig - August 1999
Day 6 - Monday
23th August 1999
Weather Forecast Until Thursday
Although we have set out local weather predictions above don't bet
your house on this being the pattern.
08:30. Trench A now has no exposed skeletons. They have been
taken to the laboratory. However, there are believed to be other
skeletons still to be discovered in this trench. The programme for today
includes careful recording of the various features in Trench A including
the levels at which each skeleton was found and the nature of the ground
beneath and around it. This having been completed by taking photographs
and making drawings the diggers will then work to expose other skeletons
and to find out if any are buried beneath those which have already been
Jenny Parker from Durham joined the team today. She reckons she
was coerced but seemed keen enough anyway. Welcome to Dig'99 Jenny.
Update:The metal objects which were found
close by skeleton B1(see Day 4)have been sent for
non-destructive testing by X-ray before any attempt is made to remove earth
Trench A. Jim records details of the grave
skeleton B1 was removed
Further Update: Liz & Lyn announced
that they had both passed their A-Level Archaeology Examinations.
Good grades too - both got a 'B' grade. Not bad
for only about 25 hours tuition. Congratulations girls.
15:30.Trench A. Fiona has uncovered two separate skeletons to the
south side of skeleton C1. In the corner there are some bones (not
shown in the picture) and about 1.5m north of them a skull which is clearly
not part of the same body. The scratch mark in the earth indicate the probable
postion of the grave wall. It is obvious that the burials here are positioned
very close together. It is also clear that the absence of Fiona's
Tibetan hat is proving to be some kind of good luck charm though as yet
no one understands the significance of this.
09:30. Trench D: Jo and Trevor have uncovered
what is probably a water feature (fountain?). Whatever it turns out to
be it does not seem to be ancient but probably dates back to the time of
the Londonderrys. Does anybody out there know of the existence an
old pond or fountain we'd be glad to hear from you.
15:00Trench D: The pebbles have been removed and
Jo & Trevor record essential details. The blur on Trevors left have
arises from anattempt to hide a cigarette lest his wife should ever see
this web page.
A white line has been added (lower left) to
indicate more clearly the circular nature of the feature.
16:15. Its getting late in the day now but Lyn (not to be outdone
by Fiona minus her Tibetan hat) has just uncovered another skull.
Trench A. Lyn (kneeling) has just revealed
Liz, who has worked alongside her all
day, drops her
head in disbelief. Can it be true that
wearing a hat is
a jinx? We don't think so. Bet Liz still wears
Joking aside the finding of the skull had a profound effect on Lyn.
We'll let her describe it in her own way:
"I was so chuffed today to find the skull,
but I felt a little sad to realise it was so small it had to belong to
a child. It certainly took the gloss off the feeling of satisfaction -
not only had I found something but had even recognised it as of importance!
- it humanises the whole scenario in a way and makes it all seem real.
There were families out there etc."
Tomorrow promises to be a productive day in terms
of exposing more skeletons but will anything else be revealed? There
appears to be no evidence of anything but burials using a shroud rather
than a coffin? Will the bottom half of skeleton B1 be found in a
neighbouring grave? Tomorrow will be a fine day for digging.
Let us have your feedback.