AN ARCHAEOLOGICAL RECONNAISSANCE

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Archaeological reconnaissance involves walking around usually guided by oral information through which archaeological sites are identified and investigated. It also includes moving around the site so as to determine not just its content but also to take measurements and recording of the finds and features found on the site. Photographs were equally taken in order to have a proper documentation of all cultural materials found on the site. In addition to the above archaeological reconnaissance also includes the establishment of boundaries of the site by setting corner markers or monuments, to
ascertain coordinates of these corners, and to obtain boundary and site information required for plotting map.
Through reconnaissance, features on the old Birnin Gwari site were identified, described and documented. Old Birnin Gwari is an abandoned walled settlement. A complete ground survey of the inner and outer walls was carried out, through walking and
traversing, using Garmin 12XL hand held G.P.S device. This work was carried out between 22nd and 23rd June 2009. The GPS device was used to determine the coordinates and elevation of the various
stations identified on the walls and other archaeological evidences on the site. Through
this exercise the shape and size of the site was mapped and position of archaeological
features identified.
Considering the size/expanse of the site, we engaged the services of a trained surveyor who aided us in carrying out this detailed reconnaissance of the site. Photographs were also taken during this exercise in order to have a proper documentation of the natural and
cultural features on the site. Fortunately we were in the dry season and the vegetation on the site did not constitute any obstacle.

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