In May 2017, the EAMENA project launched an appeal for historical aerial photographs to aid the team in the identification of archaeological sites and possible factors threatening them. A subsequent post on the same appeal in the Royal Air Force Association magazine Air Mail led to a number of responses, including one from John Clubb, a former navigator in 683 Squadron RAF.
We spend a lot of time talking about how we can record and protect archaeology in the Middle East and North Africa, but in this blog post I want to present a different approach that we have been experimenting with during an archaeological survey project in the Wadi Draa, Morocco.
Historical aerial photographs are of great value for the EAMENA project, and we have recent launched an appeal to locate any held in archives or private collections. They can be analysed in conjunction with more recent photographs or satellite images and used to identify archaeological sites that have since been lost or altered by subsequent development, or to assess broader landscape change.
If you have access to or information about the whereabouts of any historical aerial photographs for the Middle East or North Africa, whether prints or negatives, we would be very interested to hear from you.
Since the beginning of 2017, one of the tasks the EAMENA team have been busy working on is collating and digitising existing data from surveys and excavations in Lebanon. These are published in a variety of places and ways, ranging from, for example, synthetic overview reports, to institute newsletters and archaeological journals.
Numerous surveys have been carried out across Northern Lebanon, from the Akkar plain in the north, to Copeland and Wescombe’s work across Lebanon as a whole
As part of its aim to record episodes of heritage damage, the EAMENA team responds to reports across the MENA region, often originating via short social media statements. This is far from a simple process, and investigating the fragmentary reports is, in some cases, more complex than the original narratives would suggest.
Endangered Archaeology as captured with the Aerial Archaeology in Jordan Project: September 2016 Season
In 2016, Dr Robert Bewley, Prof. David Kennedy, Dr Andrea Zerbini, and I had the pleasure of conducting several reconnaissance flights with the Aerial Archaeology in Jordan project (see our affiliate project page).
Neil Brodie will be spending January and February working with Lebanese NGO Biladi to offer a training course on international law and law enforcement as regards the theft and illegal trade of cultural objects.
At the beginning of October, I started my role as one of four new Part-Time Image Interpreters for the EAMENA project. One of the challenges of the project is to map heritage sites and identify potential threats to these in the vast EAMENA region