Fishing and Shipping (6000 - 1200 BCE)

Mesolithic Wooden Dock (6000 BCE)

(Jan 10, 2023) Excavated in the Solent waterway between the Isle of Wight and the southern coast of Britain. This suburb report on this underwater archaeological find at Bouldnor cliff begins at 25:47. 

The dock is composed of logs made flat on one side and place on pole in a marsh. It is 2 by 1 meters and double layered. The best explanation which would cause the local people to invest this amount of time would be to dock large dug out canoes loaded with fish and perhaps occasional trade goods. This is much easier than slogging a basket of fish over a 1oo meters of marsh. The dock would then be connected to solid land with sloping piles of  dirt which are now eroded away.

They even did some experimental archaeology to determine how these could be made with the Mesolithic tool set. They seem to have split these pieces from a large oak tree which had been felled by storm coastal erosion. After that they to burn and carbonize future flat surface so they could easily chop out the carbonized bits with their stone tools. Carbonization is a standard procedure used by stone age tribes worldwide to make dugout canoes, even into recent times.

Significantly, archaeologist found Einkorn wheat at this site indicating the coastal people were already at the proto-agricultural state of development in which they had a series of settlements to which they travel according to the time of year.

Dr. Laura Harrison is Director of Access 3D Lab Research and Assistant Professor University of South Florida . Her research focuses on digital heritage in archaeology and museums, public archaeology, and the Bronze Age eastern Mediterranean.

Bronze Age Trade in the Eastern Mediterranean

(August 9, 2022) We can trace forerunners of the contemporary world back to the Bronze Age (ca. 3000-2000 B.C.E.), at which time Turkey was both a crossroads between neighboring societies in the Aegean and Mesopotamia, and an independent center in its own right.

Archaeological remains from Seyitömer reveal how the standardization of pottery technology, the quest for luxury goods, and a cataclysmic earthquake transformed daily life in this Bronze Age village. 

This is a HALF SIZED replica. Despite being overloaded it still has plenty of freeboard for crossing seas on a good day. Online at:

Bronze Age Boat Found At Dover, Britain (1500 BCE)

This boat is make from oak planks. It was around 18 meters (60 feet) long, 2.5 meters (8 feet) wide, and weighed about 8 tons.  It could carry approximately 2 tons of cargo.  Most likely that it travelled between the coast of France and then along the southern coast of Britain to Cornwall where it would pick up supplies of tin   (for making bronze) .

The boat had been made waterproof by pressing in a “stopping” (possibly a mixture of beeswax and animal fat) into the stitch-holes and along the seams, where the stopping was overlain by pads of moss wadding, compressed and held in place by long thin laths of oak under the yew stitches. The boat had clearly been used extensively. Tool marks on its bottom (outboard) surface were differentially worn away, suggesting it had been beached regularly on a sand or gravel shore. The main timbers had split and were repaired by stitching wooden laths over the damage.

End View of the Dover Boat on Display at the Dover Museum

Dover Boat Construction Schematic


Clark, Peter (2005) Shipwrights, Sailors and Society in the Middle Bronze Age of NW Europe. JOURNAL OF WETLAND ARCHAEOLOGY 5, 2005, 87–96
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Making a 17th Century Powhatan Canoe

Powhatan is the name of the native American tribe in Virginia at the time of the Jamestown settlement in 1620.  They had a stone age tool kit prior to trading with the British yet they could make canoes holding up to 60 people. This video along with many other excellent ones are put out by the Jamestown Settlement & American Revolution Museum at Yorktown.

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