Friday , December 9 2022

Excavations on SEC-site completed

Archaeological excavations by Saba Archaeological Centre SABARC ahead of construction on the site of the new Saba Electric Company diesel generator plant has been completed and have unearthed an important archaic- age (before ceramics) Amerindian site that was occupied over many hundreds of years, dating back to 1,200 BC or earlier.
SABARC was commissioned by the Island Government of Saba and Saba Electric Company to conduct an archaeological survey on the site of the new electricity plant, which wanted to ensure the island’s cultural heritage, was preserved for future generations through responsible development. SABARC archaeologists and board members Jay Haviser and Ryan Espersen, together with SABARC manager Johan Schaeffer, excavated part of the site in late May, while Espersen and Schaeffer continued work at the site throughout June.
While an eighteenth century homestead and traces of a more recent Amerindian site were found, the Archaic Amerindian occupation (about 3,000 years ago) is the largest and most important part of the site. The Archaic Amerindian site was found about 80 cm beneath the surface, but was occupied for such a long time, that there is 40 cm (16 inches) of soil with artefact deposits, which include shell tools, stone tools, flint knives, and thousands of food remains like fish bones and shell fragments.
The site has drawn the attention Corinne Hofman, the Dean of the Faulty of Archaeology at Leiden University in the Netherlands. “The discovery of this site is very important for Saba and the Caribbean in general,” she said. “After Plum Piece, this is the second Archaic Age site on Saba to be registered.” Important results are to be expected from the analyses, which are planned by Leiden University in collaboration with SABARC. She hopes for plans of larger and more intensive excavations with a team of Leiden University experts, together with SABARC at the site later this year.

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