Heritage Grant Recipients Peter Cobb and Kyle Egerer Describe Their Summer with the Central Lydia Archaeological Survey (CLAS) in Western Turkey

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Kyle Egerer (foreground) and Peter Cobb (background left) with fellow CLAS team member Bradley Sekedat, conducting an architectural survey of a school house located in Eski Hacıveliler, Turkey.

We each received the ASOR Heritage Fellowship for the 2011 summer field season in Anatolia. We both participated in the Central Lydia Archaeological Survey (CLAS) in western Turkey, on the shores of the Gygaean Lake (modern Marmara Gölü), north of ancient Sardis (modern Sart). The CLAS project is co-directed by Christopher Roosevelt and Christina Luke of Boston University, and we would like to thank them for the opportunity to be a part of this research. We are also very thankful for the hospitality we received from the villagers in TekelioÄŸlu, the CLAS project’s host village. The residents of Tekelioğlu made us feel at home in the beautiful landscape of Lydia while ensuring we had our fill of the world’s best olive oil!

Among our many tasks this summer was the expansion of the Digital Elevation Model (DEM) of Kaymakçı, a Bronze Age citadel in central Lydia; analysis of the CLAS ceramic dataset; and documentation of a Turkish village, Eski Hacıveliler. While Kyle was up to his shoulders in thistles operating the Real Time Kinematic (RTK) GPS with other project members, Peter was walking through fields looking for sherds and familiarizing himself with the ceramic traditions of Lydia in the lab and making updates to the CLAS database, which Peter helps to manage.

Around the mid-point in the season, we and four other CLAS team members documented the architecture of Eski Hacıveliler, a project spearheaded by CLAS member Elvan Cobb. Here we were given the unique opportunity to help digitally record and reconstruct the architectural remains of the village through two methods: RTK-GPS survey to map the architectural plan of each structure in the village; and total station survey and photography to create photo-rectified elevations of wall facades. The documentation of the historic structures at this village builds on and helps inform ongoing ethnographic studies regarding the organization of social space. Overall we both learned a lot about extensive and intensive survey methods and how their products can be used to answer larger questions of local and regional significance.

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