Category Archives: Småland

Ancient times along the Swedish east coast – An archaeological seminar in Blankaholm

As I check my back-log I see that I need to blog more about archaeology, but it seems that time just haven’t been there. During the coming weekend there will be time for archaeology though as it is time for the 5th annual archaeological seminar in Blankaholm – much thanks to Michael Dahlin.

The schedule holds 14 interesting seminars and it’s always fun to meet other archaeologists and archeo-buffs.

  • Michael Dahlin – On rhombic axes, from the late Bronze Age and their contexts in Kalmar County.
  • Gustaf Wollentz – On the future within the cultural heritage sector
  • Emelie Svenman – Beyond the grave – a georapahic analysis of the Bronze Age in Tjust
  • Kenneth Alexandersson – In the Age of Tingby. Mesolithics in Möre.
  • Lars-Erik Nilsson – the language of the rock art makers
  • Joakim Goldhahn – The rock art in Tjust – five years later
  • Michel Guinard, Mattias Pettersson & Roger Wikell – Early Mesolithic (flint) chips and their context
  • Helena Victor – Sandby borg at Öland – focusing on an ancient fortress
  • Helena Wilhelmsson – Archaeology captured in the moment – the osteological traces of the massacre at Sandby borg, ancient fortress, at Öland
  • Emelie Sunding – The residential district Gesällen – crafts and households in the 17th Century Kalmar
  • Ludvig Papmehl-Dufay – Back to the Tingby settlement
  • Patrik Gustavsson – A ship filled with goods – early Neolithic graves in Sörmland
  • Karl-Oskar Erlandsson – News from Kalmar County AdministrativeBoard – An archaeological report records and historic village sites
  • Anna Lögdqvist & Roger Wikell – Torshammarringar (rings with ritual symbols sometimes connected to Thor) seen in bigger geographic circles

14 seminars in two days and a great meeting place to discuss whats new and old in prehistorics! 😀

Magnus Reuterdahl


Blankaholm 2012 -Swedish east coast archaeological seminar

Tomorrow it that time of the year, again, when all eyes turns to the East Coast and the metropolis Blankaholm (you can find in google maps or such). Don’t know of it? Well, not many do, but since some years back an annual seminar on archaeology is held there – lots of fun and interesting archaeology is presented . All seminars are held in Swedish.

This 2012 schedule:

Saturday 25/2

  • From the Neolithic to a farming crisis – A farming historical research project on the north-eastern Smaland coast land and in land by Michael Dahlin & Mårten Aronsson
  • A few reflections on the archaeological excavations and the reporting of the E22 project in Blekinge by – Elisabeth Rudebeck
  • Mass production of green stone axes in western Blekinge by Kenneth Alexandersson
  • The Vikings – a long history by Roger Wikell
  • The Bronze Age in Blekinge – results from the E22 excavations by Helena Victor
  • Actions at an urn grave field. A presentation of the results from Flyestock and ideas concerning ducumentations of grave fields by Fredrik Strandmark.
  • About the excavation of the urns from the Flyestock grave field – methods and results by Torbjörn Brorsson.

Sunday 26/2

  • Reuse of picture stones on Gotland during the Iron Age by Martin Rundkvist
  • Props & Rit – traces of ritual actors with examples from the East Coast by Fredrik Gunnarsson
  • The Risinge mound; the excavation of a large mound on Öland by Ludvig Papmehl-Dufay
  • Brick making and maker stamps in Kalmar County by Örjan Molander
  • Mesolithic bones in Iron Age huts, Övra Vannborga, Öland by Magnus Reuterdahl

Magnus Reuterdahl


Day of Archaeology in Kalmar, Sweden. Arkeologidagen 2011 i Kalmar

Texten följer på svenska.

A few weeks ago I joined up with the web project Day of Archaeology 2011, check up the ca 400 blog posts on archaeology here. In Sweden we’ve have an annual Day of Archaeology irl where museums and institutions make different arrangements.

Kalmar County Museum is giving a mini seminar– if you know Swedish and is in the neighborhood you can come listen to me as I tell about the graves of Övra Vannborga. Two graves found under the remains of a late Iron Age settlement, one dated to early Iron Age, preroman time, and the other to the Mesolithic times. The dig is old, 1989-1991, but the graves are older 🙂 – I’ll talk about the excavation, the finds, the graves and on what information the bones has to give.

My colleague Ulrika Söderström will give a talk about an excavation made earlier this summer of an old glassworks in Målerås.

At Kalmar County Museum, 13.00-15.00, august 28th

Arkeologidagen 2011 Kalmar

På söndag den 28 augusti är du välkommen till Kalmar läns museum. Här kan du få höra undertecknad prata om Ölands äldsta kvinna och andra fynd från Övra Vannborga. En mindre del av boplatsen Övra Vannborga undersöktes 1989-1991. Boplatslämningarna är daterade till perioden 600-800 e Kr. Boplatslämningarna överlagrade dock två äldre gravar, den ena från förromersk järnålder och den andra från mesolitikum, daterad till ca 7000 f Kr cal C14. Jag kommer prata lite om platsen som sådan och om gravarna per se och vilken information benen kan ge.

Min kollega Ulrika Söderström kommer att hålla ett föredrag om de arkeologiska undersökningarna vid Målerås glasbruk som utfördes tidigare i somras.

Mer information finns på Kalmar läns museums hemsida (Såg just att informationen inte kommit upp än – men den kommer upp inom kort)

28 augusti, klockan 1300-1500, plats Kalmar läns museum

Magnus Reuterdahl


A week at the museum

What do an archaeologist do when he isn’t excavating? We do quite a lot of things – some obvious some less so. We write reports on the field works, we analyze the finds we’ve made, we attend meetings, we write survey and excavation plans, we attend meetings etc.

This week I’ve mainly been indoors preparing for a work next week’s work just outside Västervik. There’s a lot that needs to be seen to before you begin digging into the cultural layers. In this case I hadn’t done the excavation plan myself – so first there was some reading up, to get to know the area, what’s, what preps had been done etc. e.g. what I need to do. The work is the first step in the Swedish archaeological process an archaeological investigation; this means a survey of the area and on occasion we also dig search shafts in order to find remnants hidden underground – as will do in this particular job.

First things first – living arrangements; I got a hold of livening quarters just by the site – two minutes to my work area, lunch at home etc… luxury 🙂

Next order of business getting hold of a rover (a RTK Instrument) – a kind of multi-GPS, a backhoe and make sure that all tools are in place such as shovels, hoes, helmets, pads, tracing paper, etc.

Finally there are the question of other things that might be hidden underground – cables, wires, tubes etc. All to make sure all you guys still have an internet connection, electricity and water.

Well now all is done, I hope, so next week is field week 🙂

Magnus Reuterdahl


A busy day

Tomorrow I’m off to Kalmar and Kalmar County Museum for a five month tour, hopefully longer. So it’s packing and finding out what I need for my first week. On Wednesday I’ll be part of a Nordic TAG panel on social media and archaeology – I’ll have to give some thought to that as well.

I’ll be back with some pics and thoughts on Kalmar tomorrow

Magnus Reuterdahl


New job, new town, new challenges

Unemployment – bye, bye! Kalmar – Hallo!

I’m south east bound – to Kalmar in Kalmar County on the Swedish south east coast where I will work at Kalmar läns museum (Kalmar County museum) from the end of April ’til September or longer. Kalmar county is part of Småland where I worked a lot in the past, foremost in Kronoberg County but also on a few jobs in Jönköping County where I was born and raised and some years back on Öland in Kalmar County. In 2004 I was part of an excavation team at Ottenby Kungsgård where we excavated an pitted ware culture site (ca 3300-2400 BC), see more on this here.

I’m looking forward to an interesting season :). If you’re in the neighbourhood don’t be a stranger! Currently I’m looking for housing so if you got any tips send me a mail (inventerare()hotmail()com) or write a comment!

Magnus Reuterdahl


Interviewed in Västerviks tidning

Today an interview in with me and fellow archaeologist Veronika Palm (Kalmar County museum and Västeviks museum) is published in Västerviks tidning (newspaper). The article is on the proposition on the new deal for exploratory (mission) archaeology in Sweden that is currently out on a consultation round, see more here.

To read the article click here.

I believe that its good that the news, not only the national but also the regional and local, take an interest and follows up on this.

Magnus Reuterdahl

 

 


4th annual archaeology seminar in Blankaholm

Michael Dahlin

This weekand we visited Blankaholm on the Swedish east coast for the Blankaholm seminars arranged by archaeologist and local resident Michael Dahlin, who is also the man behind the Swedish archaeology blog Misterhultaren.

All seminars are connected via the prehistory or history of the Swedish east coast, the themes are varied as well as the periods. All in all it was a very nice session with many nice meetings, new and old, and lots of information.

The previous three seminars are available in the books Forntiden längs ostkusten 1 (2010) and 2 (2011) (Ancient times along the east shores) both edited by Kenneth Alexandersson et al.

I will not go into detail on the seminars but only give a short recap of them to present what can be expected of the coming Forntiden längs ostkusten 3 and the 2012 seminars.

Day 1

The meeting started with a quick presentation of the seminars and Blankaholm by Michael Dahlin

Pierre Petersson

followed by a seminar by the same on the late Neolithic and Bronze Age settlements on the east coast of Småland. On surveys from the 30’s until today and future projects. The seminars continued by another Swedish archaeology blogger Pierre Petersson the man behind the blog AHIMKAR. In this seminar we move forward in time to the middle ages and thoughts on living conditions for the nobility and ordinary man. Pierre put forward an interesting example site Kläckeberga church, its surroundings and the findings that has been done via archaeological excavations etc. From the

Kenneth Alexandersson

middle ages we take a big leap back in time. Kenneth Alexandersson from Kalmar County museum presented the results from a settlement excavation just south of Kalmar airport. The expected finds was an Iron Age settlement but they found a Stone Age site dated to ca 9000 BP instead. After this we move north to the south of Norrland as Michel Guinard and Therese Ekholm presents the project Nordic Blade

Michel Guinard

Technology network which concerns the earliest habitants after the latest Ice Age. Two sites, one that has been situated in the inland and one by the coast are currently excavated by students and scientists. Larforsen is located in Hälsingland, dated to ca 7200 BC, and Torsåker in Gästrikland are several small settlements, dated to ca 8500-5000 BC. There are several specialists involved such as osteololgist Therese Ekholm who will study

Ludvig Papmehl-Dufay & Therese Ekholm

bones from the hearths looking at spices as well as dating. We return to Småland and hits the neolithics once again as Ludvig Papmehl-Dufay discuss the Funnelbeaker culture. The funnelbeakers are considered as the first real farmers in Sweden. Ludvig is working with materials from the island Öland in his post-doc research. Among them results from a settlement excavation at Resmo. The day ends with another fellow archaeology blogger Martin Rundkvist from Aardvarchaeology who spoke on projects done and projects to come concerning Bronze Age sacrifical deposits, in both wetlands and on human settlements, etc. His idea is to look for the sites found in the late 1800’s and first half of the 1900s and excavate these again. By categorize them due to location and natural features etc. create models to predict where to find new places. Almost all sites we know of today were found by framers while draining wetlands to create new farmland or working behind the plow seeing what it plowed up. This ended the sessions of day 1.

Martin Rundkvist

Day 2

Sven Gunnar Broström and Kenth Ihrestam

The day began with Kenth Ihrestam and Sven Gunnar Broström presenting their survey finds of Bronze Age rock art in Casmirsborg (MEM) some miles north of Västervik. During their latest surveys the number of known figures has increased from 13 to 175. They have found several large finds of ship carvings, people, foot soles, animals etc. From art to Claus Ruskas land transactions in the

John Hutto

Middle Ages. John Huttu described the way from middle class to the gentry, from the city to land ownership and what can be found in medieval diplomas. Tar production was probably a big deal during the middle ages – Veronica Palm from Kalmar County Museum and Västerviks

Veronica Palm

museum goes forward in time and tells a tale of a tar production site from the 18th century. The site was just outside of Målilla and excavated in 2010. Very nice findings and interesting results. Back to prehistoric times with Joakim Wehlin (sorry all pics were out of focus) who research ship settings on Gotland. There is a much larger material than I knew; in total 380 are known at Gotland whereof ca 100 are excavated. Joakim told us about an interesting excavation from this summer where they found a double grave in a small round stone setting just next to a ship setting. An interesting project to follow! Last speaker of the day was Rune Johansson who works as a nurse and are studying archaeology. He presented his thoughts on archaeology as a rehabilitation tool. As all people have a history most have a connection with the past and therefore it is a way to get people interested. There are also several things in archaeology that can be therapeutic, walks in woods, feeling artefacts, associations between artefacts and modern things, being part in projects such as digs etc.

Rune Johansson

I would like to thank all involved who made this a great weekend. I will be back 🙂

Magnus Reuterdahl



Kumlaby church at the island Visingsö

Last week I visited Visingsö, an island in Lake Vättern; it is an island with plenty of ancient remains and cultural heritage. If you happen to be in the vicinity it’s well worth a visit.

I’ve written about Visingsö here before so I thought I should show a few things that are easy to miss out on.

Just south of Kumlaby church is Visingsö folk high school and Visingsö Museum. The museum is situated in a building from 1633 built as a courthouse by count Per Brahe the younger (1602-1680). In 1680 it had lost its use as a courthouse and became the “new” school house for or the school Per Brahe established on Visingsö in 1636, it had previously been housed in Kumblaby church. In 1816 the school was moved to Jonkoping and is today known as Per Brahe high school. Today it houses a small museum. The collection isn’t big but relevant and hold finds and keys to the islands history, from the Stone Age and fourth. Within the museum two of four known rune stones from Visingsö are walled in (one is long since lost and the fourth at Jonkoping County Museum). It’s well worth a stop while you’re on the island.

A few pictures from the museum.

Rune stone SM 124

Inscription: : iskil : auk : kuna : (l)agþu : setn : …n : bunta sin : kuþ halb : se(l)u has :

Translated to English: Áskell and Gunna laid the stone … their husbandman. May God help his soul.

Rune stone SM 125

inscription: …n × lit : kaura : stain : þinsi ×: aftir : fiul:muþ : …

Translated to English: … had this stone made in memory of Fjôlmóðr ..

At the graveyard by the Brahe church, aka Ströja church (Per Brahe the Younger demolished most of the medieval Ströja church in the 1600s and built the Brahe church, the only remaining part of the medieval church is the tower), this piece of a stone cist, of Eskilstuna type, with ornamentations was found in 1988. These kinds of stone cists, or remain of them, are unusual and found around some medieval churches. These monuments are normally dated to the 11th or 12th century and may indicate an older church than the Ströja at the spot. Ströja church was built during the 12th century. On this some the colours are intact.

A model of Visingsborg castle, as it once looked. Today the ruin can be seen from the harbour, and is open for visits. As you will notice, if you visit only ruins, there are only ruins of the southern part of the castle, the west wing and the north wing have long since gone – but the ruin is impressive none the less.

The original school house was Kumlaby church. The church itself was probably built during the 12th century and is open for visitors during the summer for a small fee, you’re also allowed up in the tower to watch the view. Until 1811 the school used the church building at least occasionally but after 1811 it became a deserted church left to the forces of nature. During its use as a school the building went through some rather big changes: The entrances on the south side of the tower and the nave was walled up and a portal to the west was raised, the medieval windows of the naves north and south walls were also walled up and square windows were raised. The paintings on the inner walls and roof were covered by lime. The spire was removed and a patio made for astronomical observations. Though used as a school the burial ground was still in use until 1893, though not frequently, when a new burial ground was landscaped at Brahe church, by the harbour, on the island.

From1876-1884 the decay was temporary stopped as the church was being used as a missionary. Between 1884-1922 it was once again left to the forces of nature.

In 1922 a renovation was started, in the church the paintings from the 15th century was uncovered, some of the 17th century paintings have been kept. The work restoration is described in J.M. Danielssons book Kunlaby kyrka och kyrkogård på Visingsö 1929. (Kumlaby church and graveyard at Visingsö).

The paintings within the church and the hike up the tower are interesting but I believe there at least as interesting things that can be seen outside the church. Just under the roof of the north and south side of the nave, in the east end, one can see carved ornaments in the form of leaves and animal ornamentation. Another interesting detail is at the southern portal, made of sandstone, which has a zigzag ornamentation which indicates a probable influence from the west, from England. Furthermore, there are two clear stonemason brands in the portal. Walking around the churchyard I’m also struck by how well-preserved the gravestones are.

These are just a few of the things there are to keep an eye out for; I’ll probably come back to Visingsö again.

Magnus Reuterdahl


Triples of reptiles

I’ve returned from Växjö and is once again in Östersund, last week I’ve participated in two archaeological investigations; both in a fossil acres where our task was to seek traces of settlements within the acres and in one case to determine if a stone stetting really was a grave. In this case the stone setting was heavily damaged because stone had been taken from it for road construction, etc (in historic times) and due to uprooted trees. The weather was fine, the sun was warming and that was about 10-15 degrees celcius in other words nice spring weather.

During this time of year it really nice to be outdoors in the woods as everything is coming to life, the trees and grass is getting green, flowers appears, the air is filled with birdsong and you get see a lot of animals waking; this time I got see three different spices of reptilians;

An Adder (Vipera berus) which the only poisonous snake in Sweden living in the wild.

A lizard (Anguis fragilis) that looks like a snake, in Sweden known as Copper snake or Copper lizard.

And yet another lizard, that I don’t know the name of.

I quite often see or hear lizards as I roam around the country side, snakes and Copper lizards are more unusual though so it’s always nice to see one.

Magnus Reuterdahl


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