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Displaying items by tag: archaeology

#Archaeology - With yet another stormy weekend comes news that continued coastal erosion on the West Coast has exposed the remains of a shipwreck at Killary Harbour.

According to The Irish Times, the wreck on Tallaghbaun Strand is already known to locals though its origins are as yet unclear.

But archaeologist Michael Gibbons believes it could date from the late medieval period, as wrecks from the Spanish Armada have been identified in the region.

Gibbons has also been researching what appear to be the remains of a late Bronze Age or early Christian monastic site on Kid Island in Broadhaven Bay. The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.

Published in Coastal Notes

#Archaeology - It was quite a turn-up for the books on Omey Island recently as a US student found a 12th-century brooch in the sand on the Connemara tidal island.

As The Irish Times reports, the rare kite brooch was discovered by chance by McKenna McFadden while on a field trip with fellow New York University students led by Michael Gibbons, a local archaeologist.

It's since been identified as being 900 years old, and will be offered to the collection of the National Museum.

Omey Island is also the subject of a new book charting its remarkable history, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.

Published in Island News

#StormRachel - Ireland needs a dedicated 'rescue unit' to protect sensitive heritage sites around the coast from severe weather, as news of damage to some vulnerable spots emerges.

Michael Gibbons, an archaeologist from Connemara, told The Irish Times that while the high winds whipped up by the likes of last week's Storm Rachel have helped uncover new archaeological finds, there is as yet no procedure for protecting such finds from further weathering and erosion.

Gibbons commented specifically on the midden deposits uncovered in Roundstone on Galway Bay, which were hit by strong gales and exposed the vulnerable dunes in the area to further destruction.

The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.

Published in Coastal Notes

#SpanishArmada - A rudder from a ship that formed part of the Spanish Armada discovered at a beach in Co Sligo recently has been transferred to the care of the National Museum for preservation and study.

As Sligo Today reports, the 20-foot rudder was found on the beach at Streedagh – renowned for hosting the wrecks of three ships from the 1588 galleon fleet – by a local farmer, who contacted the Department of Heritage's Underwater Archaeology Unit.

Dr Nessa O'Connor of the National Museum, who was engaged to dive at the Streedagh site with Dr Douglas McElvogue of the Mary Rose Trust, was said to be so impressed with the discovery that she arranged for it to be immediately removed for preservation.

The rudder is almost completely intact, with a piece missing which the archaeologists believe may have been picked up at random by a passer by believing it to be driftwood.

It's hoped that this part can be recovered to put together "an important piece of history". Sligo Today has more on the story HERE.

Published in Coastal Notes

#CoastalNotes - The recent discovery of a piece of worked flint at Lough Hyne on the West Cork coast could unlock the secrets of 4,000 years of settlement in the area.

Cork's Southern Star reports that the archaeological find at Ballinard on the marine lake and nature reserve is what remains of a core piece of flint "which would have been worked on, or knapped, by a skilled stone worker" to create tools such as blades and arrowheads.

It's unknown how the flint came to be in the area, as it is not a rock common to West Cork, though it is supposed that it arrived either as a result of trade with people from the Antrim area - Ireland's main source of flint - or brought ashore as 'moonstones' by fishermen off what is now Galley Head.

The Southern Star has much more on the story HERE.

Published in Coastal Notes

#GALWAY BAY NEWS - Archaeologists in Galway Bay have unearthed an extensive tidal weir complex at Barna and a late medieval quay on Mutton Island, The Irish Times reports.

The weir, which is estimated to date from the early Christian period, consists of a granite barrier with channels cut through it, designed to control the flow of water in the adjacent lagoon.

Connemara archaeologist Michael Gibbons suggests that the weir implies a considerable fish stock migrating through the area into the Barna river.

The remains of a large Iron Age fort which overlooks the site may also have given its name to the townland of Knocknacarra, which is now a populous suburb of Galway.

Meanwhile, further east at Mutton Island a medieval quay which predates the current lighthouse quay has been found.

The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.

Published in Galway Harbour

Coastal Notes Coastal Notes covers a broad spectrum of stories, events and developments in which some can be quirky and local in nature, while other stories are of national importance and are on-going, but whatever they are about, they need to be told.

Stories can be diverse and they can be influential, albeit some are more subtle than others in nature, while other events can be immediately felt. No more so felt, is firstly to those living along the coastal rim and rural isolated communities. Here the impact poses is increased to those directly linked with the sea, where daily lives are made from earning an income ashore and within coastal waters.

The topics in Coastal Notes can also be about the rare finding of sea-life creatures, a historic shipwreck lost to the passage of time and which has yet many a secret to tell. A trawler's net caught hauling more than fish but cannon balls dating to the Napoleonic era.

Also focusing the attention of Coastal Notes, are the maritime museums which are of national importance to maintaining access and knowledge of historical exhibits for future generations.

Equally to keep an eye on the present day, with activities of existing and planned projects in the pipeline from the wind and wave renewables sector and those of the energy exploration industry.

In addition Coastal Notes has many more angles to cover, be it the weekend boat leisure user taking a sedate cruise off a long straight beach on the coast beach and making a friend with a feathered companion along the way.

In complete contrast is to those who harvest the sea, using small boats based in harbours where infrastructure and safety poses an issue, before they set off to ply their trade at the foot of our highest sea cliffs along the rugged wild western seaboard.

It's all there, as Coastal Notes tells the stories that are arguably as varied to the environment from which they came from and indeed which shape people's interaction with the surrounding environment that is the natural world and our relationship with the sea.

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