traces of prehistoric lakeside dwellings: piles

piles .jpg ( )


traces of prehistoric lakeside dwellings: piles



traces of prehistoric lakeside dwellings: piles


diver and pile                


Underwater archaeology

Our contribution to the underwater archaeology of Lake Geneva.

Many years ago, Mr. F. Vogt and I went scuba diving and marked out the perimeters around a dozen prehistoric lakeside dwellings.
We started by looking for their boundaries and marked them out using floating markers. Then, with the help of some other people, we pinpointed the position of these floating markers using theodolites.
To these reports we added photos taken under water (two of which are shown above) and photos of some objects collected in order to date the sites, objects which were then numbered and sent to the Department of Historical Monuments.

At one of these sites, we found two sets of two rows of smaller piles, perpendicular to the bank...
See sketch below for an idea

pile .jpg (17867 bytes)

At another site, we found something rather special: a pile cut square in a tenon, and supporting a horizontal beam with notches cut in a mortise. On the beam, a row of wooden slats, forming a platform...
See sketch below for an idea


Sadly, they no longer exist because hurricane Lothar did its best to demolish these structures and archaeologists salvaged anything that remained.

Many years later, the GRAP group resumed the work on a more professional basis. They had financial backing and the necessary equipment (caravan, etc).
Our findings were particularly useful to this group (the group leader said so when we met up with him to have a more in-depth chat about our findings and to show him a site that they had been unable to find).

(Back to "Remains"...)