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From Aug 2006 - Nov 2013 WeDig provided a live forum for diggers & fans of Vindolanda. It has now been mothballed and will be maintained as a live archive.

Here you will find preserved 7 years of conversation, photos, & knowledge about a site many people love. Vindolanda gets under the skin. (Figuratively and literally as a volunteer excavator!) It's a place you remember, filled with people you remember!

Thanks for 7 great years!

Stanegate
I wonder about the name of the road which predates the building of Hadrian's Wall and the future Military Way. Stanegate seems to be from Old English and defines as the stone opening, or even stone gate. My reading about the Stanegate frontier (or not frontier) often makes mention of the roadway and alludes to it being a Roman road. Does this mean a classic road paved in stone? I think the settlers after the Roman period may have called the road the "Stanegate" because of the milestone markers along the road and not because it was paved in stone. I was rereading "Band of Brothers" and reminded of the letter that says the road is in a terrible condition. What if the road is the Stanegate and was generally a dirt track with numerous milestone markers? Wouldn't this change how research plans must be developed to find the Stanegate? Is there any research published on archaeology of the Stanegate, the road, and not the frontier? Any further incite would be helpful.
Matt

A Rogues Gallery from area B
Thanks for the pictures Justin. I was testing out my arms for flight in that picture,I think! Happy Holidays to you and your family. After seeing the pictures you posted I can't wait to excavate in May and June when the weather may not be as wet!
Matt

Whither the Vindolanda Tablets?
Andy-
What do you think of the academic and research ethics if the Trust chose to fight to have the tablets returned to Vindolanda when the the study center is completed and then charge researchers and the like to access the catalogues to view the artifacts? Would something like this generate more income for the Trust to continue to expand the facilities? Or would this be construed by academia as too greedy?
Matt

Disk space increase!
Harry-
Does that mean Andy's phantom attached PDF of the Hedley excavations can be posted now?
Matt

Roundhouses at Vindolanda, why?
Has soil sampling of the area around the roundhouses been tried? It seems that samples with high phosphate contents could lend credence to the theory of cavalry being stationed in the roundhouses. I don't know enough about sampling procedures to have an idea how long activities must be occuring to reliably show in the soil, though. If the roundhouses were used just a few years then sampling might not help much. Why north African cavalry, Andy? Are there inscriptions or some sort of information that you are using to get that gut feeling of yours?
Matt

New arrivals
Congrats Andy! Welcome to the world Sophia. I concur with Harry-PHOTO PHOTO!

Matt & Katie

Museum or an art gallery?
Here goes-

1- I don't have a favorite museum/gallery. I've grown up in Southwest Florida which does not have too much culture. Just sun and sand! Katie enjoys visiting the British Museum and the New York Met.
2- Katie went often to the local county museum when she was growing up and liked seeing the Seminole Indians and their crafts and eating the cooking. Me, again, not much of the culture thing.
3-I prefer museums to see what people have crafted and the expert explanations as to why. Katie concurs on preferring the museum.
4-Katie likes the tablets, especially those written by or on behalf of the women.
I like the stone sculpture and pottery displays.
5-Katie says she would like to learn more about the Vindolanda area and the people living there post Roman period. I would like to understand better what the area was like before the Romans arrived in force and how the interactions affected the natives.

Matt & Katie

Whither the Vindolanda Tablets?
Harry-
You must explain further the "Adopt a Tablet" idea. Anything like the "Adopt a Road" program :D

Andy-Do many academics request information from Vindolanda's catalogues?

I agree with Harry that it is much better to wander Vindolanda's museum and knowing that everything I am seeing has come from the site.
Matt

Whither the Vindolanda Tablets?
Agreed, Andy. Vindolanda Trust does better (IMO) than any other active excavation in keeping up to date on what is being found. There are sooo many excavations that have yet to be properly reported in Southeatsern U.S.
Matt

Whither the Vindolanda Tablets?
Andy, to me, you reply brings up the question of proper cataloguing by the museums. Have any of the museums, especially along the Wall, have a catalogue that can be viewed or purchased by researchers and the like. Many things are not on display due to condition of the artifacts, size constraints of the museum, and often the whim of the director. From my time spent with the National Park Service in the states I know that hundreds of boxes of material excavated in the 1920's and 1930's sit in central storage without accurate write-ups. I imagine that most places where the artifacts originated may not know how much or what is still in storage off site. Cataloguing the material would be a first step to displaying artifacts thought lost or misplaced which may be important now or more so than a few decades ago.
Matt

The team
Great pictures Andy. Justin, do you have any from your end of the site? I'm keen to see what the excavations look like once the water table fell enough to really get the trowel dirty.
Matt