Selected Article from the BHAS Bi-Annual magazine "Flint"
Volunteering at Brighton & Hove Museum
A small group of BHAS members have been volunteering on a rota basis
every Friday at Brighton Museum. Each week a maximum of 4 volunteers
are helping the museum to create a digitised record of the extensive
archaeological resourcesthey hold, hidden away in the basement.
We work in the Museum Lab Room which is open to the public in the
afternoons, giving us a chance to talk about BHAS and what we are
doing. It is also an opportunity to inform people about the new
Archaeology Gallery which will be opening later this year.
The main task to date has been looking at and sorting predominately
pottery finds from 2 excavations, undertaken in the 1970s: Newhaven
Roman Villa Site and Slonk Hill (Shoreham by Sea) Iron Age/Romano
British Site.This work has made us all realise how important it is to
mark finds clearly during post excavation processing. We have often
struggled with magnifying glasses and torches to decipher some of the
markings on the pottery. Black ink on black pottery can present quite
a challenge. Once the finds from each large bag are sorted, counted,
re-bagged and labelled the information is entered onto the data base.
Other activities which some of us have been involved in are:
photographing artefacts to go on the data base and making an
inventory of archaeological plans and drawings from the early part of
the 20th Century. Some of these plans of local excavations are by
Herbert Toms who was at that time curator of Brighton Museum. He was
by all accounts an enthusiastic and charismatic figure who did much
to promote archaeology in the local community and who was responsible
for setting up BHAS in 1906.