Fished up from the Baltic Sea: A New Ertebølle Site near Stohl Cliff, Kiel Bay, Germany

  • Julia GoldhammerEmail author
  • Sönke Hartz
Part of the Coastal Research Library book series (COASTALRL, volume 20)


In the coastal waters of Kiel Bay near the village of Strande (district of Rendsburg-Eckernförde, Schleswig-Holstein) divers unexpectedly came across trunks of fallen oak trees at 6 m depth, which led to the discovery of a new submerged late Mesolithic site. During a preliminary excavation in 2012, research divers uncovered a well-preserved coastal site, consisting of several organic sediment and silt layers with a large number of stone artefacts and organic finds. Wooden objects, plant remains, bones of several marine and freshwater fish, marine and terrestrial mammals, water birds and fragmented human bones were found. Tree ring dating, radiocarbon dates of leister prongs and human bones, and the artefact inventory pinpoint the site to the pre-pottery Ertebølle phase (5450–4750 cal BC). Sites of this time period are of particular interest as they are still rare in the south-western Baltic Sea area, where only very few sites have been examined in detail. To evaluate the extent of the organic sediment and silt layers and their potential for preserving more finds, a survey project was executed in summer 2014 over a wider area around the excavation trenches. This established a high potential for the recovery of additional finds and structures in the surrounding area, and further investigations at Strande are planned.


Baltic Sea Schleswig-Holstein Submerged Settlement Terminal Mesolithic Underwater Archaeology Ertebølle Culture 



The prospection of 2014 was funded by the German Science Foundation (DFG), the excavation of 2012 was enabled by funding and help from the following: the State Archaeological Department of Schleswig-Holstein; the Archaeological Society Schleswig-Holstein e. V.; the State Archaeological Museum of Schleswig-Holstein; the Institute of Pre- and Protohistoric Archaeology at Kiel University; the Centre for Scientific Diving, Kiel University; and the Sailing Centre, Kiel University. We thank all these institutions and the following individuals and organisations: Rolf and Gerald Lorenz, Matthias Wehkamp, Jonas Enzmann, Feiko Wilkes, Jana Ulrich, Karl Bruhns, Jörn Sievert, Florian Huber, Christian Howe, Philipp Schubert and Robert Lehmann of Submaris, Petra Amelow, Torsten Janßen, Henry Skorna, AMLA (Study group for maritime and limnic archaeology), all students and collegues involved in the 2012 excavation, Senckenberg am Meer Wilhelmshaven, the Workgroup of Prof. M. Wahl at Geomar Kiel, the Centre for Scientific Diving, University of Oldenburg, and the Stickenhörn and Schilksee Marinas. We also thank Geoff Bailey and Jonathan Benjamin for help in revising the text.


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© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Lower Saxony Institute for Historical Coastal ResearchNiedersächsisches Institut für historische KüstenforschungWilhelmshavenGermany
  2. 2.Bohusläns MuseumUddevallaSweden
  3. 3.State Archaeological Museum of Schleswig-HolsteinStiftung Schleswig-Holsteinische Landesmuseen Schloss GottorfSchleswigGermany

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