When I was in Iraq in 1986, there was so much pottery coming out of the Hamrin salvage
area projects, the Iraqis were "storing" (ie dumping piles) of the less than perfect pots outside the dig house
at Nineveh. Of course, they wouldn't let more than a few sherds out of the country for study
On a visit to Umm Dabighiyah, it looked like most of the finds had been dumped into
piles outside of the excavation trenches there too. There was a nice pile of sherds, a nice pile of lithics with
debitage, and piles of animal bones.... The reason we were told this had been done was that there
wasn't room for storage. :( To me, it seemed like the whole issue of conservation and the keeping of the
non-artistic collections was something they didn't want to deal with.
PS--the courtyard and areas behind the dig house at Nineveh were great to "excavate" in
(assuming you watched out for snakes and scorpions). All sorts of sherd piles, sculptural fragment
piles collected from all over and put there for "storage." No labelling what-so-ever...
> >Hello All
> >Please John tell us which archaeologists are
> >"deliberately destroyed by the archaeologists (it happens a lot with
> >pottery) to prevent any of it getting into private hands."
> I could give you the name of one of them, but I won't. She told me about it
> and she was working under direct orders from others (who also were smashing
> these pots)
> The dig was in Tusacany. It was Etruscan black bucchero ware. All pots that
> bore no decoration were to be smashed. There was a considerable pile of
> them. The museums had enough of that type of pottery, and the laws
> prohibited its sale, so it could only be destroyed.
Niigata Prefectural Museum of History