Cleaning and recording a wooden stake

On 7 September, 2012 by Matt Law
The wood from the island

Wooden stake found during excavations at Walpole in 2011

Although some of the team are still working at the Walpole site, most of us are now working on cataloguing the finds, digitising the drawings, processing the samples and writing the report. A very important task is the recording of the wooden stake found last year at the south western edge of the island. It hasn’t been dated yet, but it’s certainly prehistoric, and we think it might be a mooring post for a small¬†coracle¬†or canoe. The wood looks so well preserved because it is waterlogged, but in truth much of its structure has been replaced by water. This means that if we let it dry out, it will very quickly shrink, twist and split. It is important then that we keep it wet, and make detailed records including photographs and a measured drawing. Our worked wood specialist will then give us advice about the wood should be conserved by specialists, or if any other recording is required.

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