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With Underwater Archaeology the Nautical Archaeology Society reveals the real underwater treasure – a rich cultural heritage that has helped shape the world in which we live. By outlining the principles and practices, this book will enable the reader to make informed and responsible decisions about how to get the most from their involvement with underwater archaeology.
List of plates.
1. The NAS Handbook – why it was written.
2. Underwater archaeology.
What is archaeology?.
What is archaeology under water?.
What is not archaeology under water?.
Closely related and complementary approaches (ethnography and experimental archaeology).
3. Getting involved in underwater and foreshore archaeology.
4. Basic principles – making the most of the clues.
The importance of underwater sites.
The range of evidence on an archaeological site.
Links between categories of evidence.
Using the evidence.
Environment and site-formation processes.
The deterioration of wood.
Culture and site-formation processes.
5. Project planning.
The project design.
6. Safety on archaeological sites under water and on the foreshore.
Diving project plan.
Codes of practice.
Control of diving operations.
Working under water.
Potential diving problems and solutions.
Safety during excavation.
Inter-tidal site safety.
7. International and national laws relating to archaeology under water.
Jurisdiction – where do the laws apply?.
The regime in international waters.
International salvage law.
Underwater cultural heritage and salvage law.
Ownership of underwater cultural heritage.
Abandonment of ownership.
8. Archaeological recording.
The need for recording.
Planning the recording: what to record.
Recording information on site.
Recording environmental evidence.
Recording survey results.
Recording plans and sections.
Recording photographic results.
Identifying archaeological material.
Tags and labelling.
Storing the information.
Computing options and issues.
Geographical information systems.
Explaining, documenting and supervising the system.
9. Historical research.
Types of evidence.
Locating primary sources.
Methods of research.
Underwater photographic techniques.
Mosaics – photo or video.
Methods of position-fixing.
12. Underwater search methods.
Diver search methods.
13. Geophysical and remote-sensing surveys.
Search patterns, navigation and positioning.
Multibeam swath systems.
Submersibles: ROVs and AUVs.
14. Underwater survey.
Types of survey.
An initial sketch.
Setting up a baseline/control points.
Installing survey points.
The principles of survey.
Survey using tape-measures, grids and drafting film.
Vertical control (height/depth).
Processing measurements and drawing up the site-plan.
Three-dimensional computer-based survey.
Acoustic positioning systems.
Positioning the site in the real world.
15. Destructive investigative techniques.
16. Archaeological conservation and first-aid for finds.
Underwater burial environments.
Materials degradation and post-excavation deterioration.
Principal risks to finds during and after recovery.
Principles and procedures for first-aid for underwater finds.
Lifting, handling and transportation.
Approaches to packing and storage.
Sampling and analysis.
Holding and pre-conservation treatment solutions.
X-radiography and facilities.
Health and safety.
17. Site monitoring and protection.
18. Archaeological illustration.
Basic drawing equipment.
Drawing archaeological material.
Recording ‘by eye’.
Recording decoration and surface detail.
Recording constructional and other detail.
Post-fieldwork photography and laser scanning.
Presenting a range of complex information.
19. Post-fieldwork analysis and archiving.
Handling material and keeping records.
Post-fieldwork treatment of survey work.
Interpretation and gathering supporting evidence from other sources.
Producing an archaeological archive.
20. Presenting, publicizing and publishing archaeological work.
The importance of publicizing (where and when).
Identifying and satisfying an audience.
Methods of presentation.
Writing reports and publications.
A significant achievement and contribution.
Appendix 1: anchor recording.
Appendix 2: guns.
The importance of sea-bed recording.
Identification of material.
Classification by methods of loading.
Classification by shape.
Inscriptions and decoration.
Projectiles, charges and tampions.
Recording and illustrating guns.
Appendix 3: NAS training programme.
An introduction to foreshore and underwater archaeology.
NAS Part I: certificate in foreshore and underwater archaeology.
NAS Part II: intermediate certificate in foreshore and underwater archaeology.
NAS Part III: advanced certificate in foreshore and underwater archaeology.
NAS Part IV: diploma in foreshore and underwater archaeology.
References and further reading.