Underwater Archeology at Tohmajärvi, Finland – Background information Aug 17, 2016

This is a translation of the original article in Finnish here: https://www.h2ory.fi/vedenalaista-arkeologiaa-tohmajarvella-taustatietoja-17-8-2016/

Marine archeologist Harry Alopaeus. Kuva: Kai Kaartinen
Marine archeologist Harry Alopaeus. Photo: Sanna Siltanen (C) 2016

An underwater research camp was organized at Tohmajärvi county by Kai Kaartinen, the chairman of diving club Helsingin kaupungin Urheilusukeltajat ry. The field research work was lead by marine archeologist Harry Alopaeus.

In the camp, there was a total of nine attendees from the diving clubs Helsingin kaupungin Urheilusukeltajat ry and Sukellusseura H2O ry.

During the week, dives were organized at two ponds. The divers explored underwater wooden structures, possibly fish corrals and man-made islets, and, the remains of small wooden crafts.

The site was found in 2012 when a local habitant told that he had seen a sunken punt in one of the ponds in early 70s.

Ruuhi, kuva: Richard Eller (C)2016

In August 2015 the area was explored more thoroughly and a number of specimens were extracted for radiocarbon dating. Permission for this was obtained from the Finnish National Board of Antiguities. Two of the samples were sent to Uppsala University in Sweden. One of the samples was dated 185 years old and another was dated 2471 years old. However, further research needs to be conducted before any of the theories can be confirmed.

The purpose of the 2016 camp was to collect a further inventory of all the findings. All research, documentation and measurements were performed non-invasively without disturbing the ancient relics. The research still continues by analyzing the findings.

Meriarkeologi Harry Alopaeus tutkimussukelluksella. Kuva: Kai Kaartinen
Marine Archaelogist Harry Alopaeus conducting an exploraton dive. Photo: Kai Kaartinen (C)2016
Valokuvista muodostettu 3D-malli ruuhesta. (C)2016 Richard Eller
The punt – a 3D photogrammetric model generated from underwater photos. (C)2016 Richard Eller

Harry Alopaeus is currently writing a research report that will eventually be presented to the Finnish National Board of Antiquities.

For additional information and on-site footage, please contact Mr.  Harry Alopaeus.

E-mail: harry.alopaeus@tele2.se

The coordinators at the Finnish National Board of Antiquities are Intendant Sallamaria Tikkanen and Intendant Minna Koivikko.

E-mail: Sallamaria.tikkanen@museovirasto.fi
E-mail: Minna.koivikko@museovirasto.fi

Richard Eller from the diving club Sukellusseura H2O ry has shot high resolution underwater pictures of the punt and made a 3D photogrammetric model. Media, please contact him directly for any publishing needs.

E-mail: Richard.eller@cerella.fi

The Marine Archeology Chapter of diving club Sukellusseura H2O ry

Richard Eller kuvaamassa saarekkeiden alla. Kuva: Kai Kaartinen (C)2016
Richard Eller shooting footage under the small islets. Photo: Timo Hirvonen (C)2016