|Excavation of the Sacred Spring 1979|
Well, it’s rather a long process between excavation and museum storage, excavation is merely the start of a process that often takes years to complete. Once the excavation stage is completed the artefacts have to be cleaned, conserved, analyzed, reported on, published and finally deposited into a museum.
The cleaning, conservation and analysis work of artefacts forms part of what is commonly called post excavation. During post excavation all the significant material is sent to specialists, whose jobs are to look at everything and write reports on what they find. This ranges from working out what an artefact is exactly, how old it is, where it came from and how it was used.
|A mix of bone and stone objects|
Excavation is a destructive process; once it’s been done you can’t press an undo button and put everything back! So it’s extremely important to publish your findings, even if you didn’t find anything, that way others can learn from it! If you don’t let people know what you found what’s the point of doing the excavation?
Once all the finds have been processed and a final report created the archive (artefacts and records) can be deposited into a museum for permanent storage. Why does everything go to a museum? Well if everything is in a museum, it makes it a lot easier for interested people to find it so they can study it.
So what does this mean for the Roman Baths Museum? Well the Baths happens to be the English Heritage approved repository for archaeological archives in Bath and North East Somerset; this means any archaeological work undertaken in the county will probably end up here.
|East Bath Store|