archaeological open-air museum

The Story of your Site: Archaeological Site Museums and Archaeological Open-Air Museums

Roeland Paardekooper (NL)
Archaeological site museums may not be that well defined worldwide, yet, they are found almost everywhere. Archaeological sites with reconstructed buildings based on archaeology however seem to be a younger phenomenon and are mainly concentrated in Europe, Japan and North America. Both types of museums however have old roots. Important is not so much the site per se, but the message...

Documentation Strategies at Butser Ancient Farm

Trevor Creighton (UK)
Butser Ancient Farm has been at the forefront of experimental archaeology in Britain1. for more than 45 years. The pioneering work of its first director Dr Peter Reynolds in the evaluation of Iron Age structures and agriculture demonstrated beyond doubt the importance of experiment in archaeology in the UK and international experimental archaeology work...

Book Review: Ricostruire e Narrare. L’esperienza dei Musei archeologici all’aperto (Reconstructing and storytelling. The experience of archaeological open-air Museums) by M. Valenti

Marco Romeo-Pitone (IT)
This book is particularly welcomed within the scarce Italian literature on the topic of archaeological open-air museums. The lack of debate and accurate information on this type of museums in Italy, drove the author to put together this volume, seven years after the publication of Dr Paardekooper’s magistral “The Value of an Archaeological Open-Air Museum in its use” in 2012, often referred in this book...

Experience instead of Event: Changes in Open-Air Museums Post-Coronavirus

Roeland Paardekooper and
Annemarie Pothaar (NL)
The year 2020 started out for museums as usual, with plans for new exhibitions, new buildings even, and above all many events and visitors. Soon we saw how wrong we were. Open-air museums who had prepared to open up for the season found out that COVID-19 meant they were sitting ducks: no visitors, no income, no life in the museum area. The situation will not return to 'normal'...

Conference Review: Documentation Strategies in (Archaeological) Open-air Museums

Matilda Siebrecht (NL)
The conference in Documentation Strategies in (Archaeological) Open-air Museums, organised through the Experimental Archaeology Society (EXARC), was due to be held in Berlin on March 26th and 27th 2020. Unfortunately, the first half of March 2020 saw the spread of the Coronavirus pandemic throughout Europe which caused the implementation of government restrictions on travel and...

The Use and Relevance of Archaeological Open-Air Museums

Roeland Paardekooper (NL)
Archaeological open-air museums form a colourful and varied assemblage of heritage institutions. These are places where stories about the past, inspired by archaeology, are presented. Their obvious use is for experimental archaeology, ancient crafts and live interpretation. However, these museums can be more relevant to society than meets the eye. They can teach newcomers about...

Experimental Research on the Setting up and Exploitation of the Human Prehistoric Habitat in the Middle Dniester Region

I. Niculiţă,
S. Matveev,
A. Nicic and
A. Corobcean (MD)
The research of archaeological monuments in the Middle Dniester basin over the last two decades has highlighted a series of new data on the evolution of human communities during the first Iron Age (8th to 10th centuries BC), demonstrating the advanced level and original character of Cozia-Saharna communities...

Book Review: Mittelsteinzeit, ein Leben im Paradies? by Werner Pfeifer

Michael Müller (DE)
Considering actual studies about the analysis of ancient DNA is an important question, if only the lifestyle or the population, too, changed when hunter-gatherers became farmers and stockbreeders. The results point so far towards the latter possibility. However, the foragers of the Northern European Ertebølle culture preserved their lifestyle for one millennium, even though they lived in neighboring areas...

Reaching Out to the Communities We are Here to Serve: Developments at the Scottish Crannog Centre

Frances Collinson (UK)
The Scottish Crannog Centre is a small archaeological open-air museum on Loch Tay in Perthshire. It originally operated as a visitor attraction, giving people a glimpse into life in the Early Iron Age through demonstrations of ancient skills and guided tours of a reconstructed crannog – loch dwelling – based on discoveries and excavations made by the Scottish Trust for Underwater Archaeology...