Back in early 2017 we started trying to develop access to historic aerial photographs for the MENA region to support the work of the EAMENA project. This work was primarily driven by the need to access high-resolution imagery for The Occupied Palestinian Territories, where U.S. legislation known as the Kyl-Bingaman Amendment limited the resolution of contemporary commercial satellite imagery for this area. It also built on the earlier work of Professor David Kennedy’s work on our sister project, APAAME, in gathering these historic aerial photographs and our colleague Rebecca Repper’s work in digitising the Sir Aurel Stein and O.G.S. Crawford collections at the British Academy and UCL respectively.
The SinaiArchaeoWater Project (SAW) is a collaboration between the remote sensing methodology of the EAMENA project ― identifying archaeological and heritage sites and disturbances and threats from satellite imagery ― and the Sinai Peninsula Research (SPR) project
Opening up historic aerial photograph datasets to support endangered heritage documentation in Egypt
Support from Arcadia Fund has enabled the EAMENA project to add a collection of historic vertical aerial photographs from 1938 covering the town of Mersa Matruh and its environs
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.
The UCL Institute of Archaeology Air Survey Photographs: an archaeological reference collection of Royal Air Force aerial imagery from 1918–1939
The UCL Institute of Archaeology Collections Air Survey photographs comprise a series of glass plate negatives, cellulose negatives, safety negatives, and prints of Royal Air Force (RAF) aerial photographs taken between 1918 and 1939. The photographs are predominantly of Iraq, the former Transjordan, Egypt, and Sudan (see distribution map).
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.
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
The EAMENA project documents endangered heritage in 20 countries in the Middle East and North Africa. In all but Iran, Arabic is the main language spoken in these countries. Therefore, in order to enhance the value of the EAMENA database as a heritage mapping and management tool for researchers and institutions based in the MENA region, the team has prioritised translating the platform into this language.
Between 26 June and 1 July, three EAMENA team members – Michael Fradley, Louise Rayne, and Nichole Sheldrick – attended the 23rd Biennial Meeting of the Society of Africanist Archaeologists (SAfA), hosted at the Université Toulouse – Jean Jaurès in Toulouse, France.