Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Below Amsterdam's Canals

During the construction of Amsterdam's North / South metro line archaeologists were given a unique opportunity to access the riverbed of the Amstel. The Amstel River was pumped dry during the construction of the metro, giving archaeologists a very rare opportunity to search the riverbed for finds. The search proved very fruitful. During the excavations 700,000 different objects were found, some of them dating back to before the formation of Amsterdam itself.

You can explore the archaeological finds for yourself on the Below the Surface interactive map. This map allows you to zoom-in and get a close-up view of individual finds from the excavations carried out along the Rokin canal. On the map the finds are divided into two columns 'display case south' and 'display case north'. The objects within each column are then ordered by type, so that similar objects appear near each other on the map. If you click on the plus sign marker on an individual object on the map you can learn more about this find.

As well as exploring the finds on the interactive map you can also explore a timeline of the excavated objects. On this timeline the objects are organized by date. This timeline allows you to explore the finds from the excavation by age. Among the oldest finds are fossils over 4,000 years old. If you click on individual objects on this timeline you can not only learn more about the individual object but you can also view an interactive map of where it was found on the bed of the Rokin canal.

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