Day 10 — Touring the trenches

The project is starting to come to a close. After a week and a half of digging and excavation, the teams are now in the process of recording the finds, finalising the drawings and graphs and cleaning out the trench for final photographing.

The group gathered for the morning briefing

The group gathered for the morning briefing

We only had a short day, with a tour of the trenches starting at 2 pm. It was interesting to see the final results of the trenches, especially compared to last week. It was great to see the progress that was made, and there were quite a lot of interesting objects that were recovered.

Walking toward the end of the formal garden

Walking toward the end of the formal garden

Bradley and Andrew

Bradley and Andrew

Gathering around Sats’ trench in the courtyard

Gathering around Sats’ trench in the courtyard

Veronique and Emily at Emily’s trench

Veronique and Emily at Emily’s trench

Walking around the trenches, the progress that has been made in a week was truly incredible.Where there was just a path in the first week, the excavations in the second week have revealed a foundation of a large barn. A piece of a wall that was thought to be a part of a doorway turned out to be the end of a building, with another building starting a few meters over.

The killing grounds proved to be a major source of objects. We have found objects in this year’s excavation that we hadn’t come across in previous excavations. In the formal garden, we have found evidence of French presence, namely French and English musket balls, which completely goes against any history that has been written. The garden was reportedly never breached by the French, but this evidence suggests something else. Evidence for the battle in the courtyard has been found in the form of musket balls retrieved from the trenches there. Both French and English, we now have actual archaeological evidence for the battle. If you want to know more about the finds, have a look at the previous dig diaries.

After the tour of the trenches, a part of the group went up to the lion mount to visit the museum there, but also to walk up the mount and take in the panorama of the battlefield. Another part of the group stayed behind to look at a demonstration of firing a musket. A friend of one of the Dutch soldiers is a reenactor and brought out three firing muskets. It was impressive to see one being fired, especially since we have been excavating many musket balls.

A reenactor in Prussian Uniform

A reenactor in Prussian Uniform

Camille with a musket

Camille with a musket

Showing how to use a bayonet to defend against cavalry

Showing how to use a bayonet to defend against cavalry

Ian firing a musket

Ian firing a musket

All in all, we had a short but very interesting day. It was great to see the objects that were recovered over the past two weeks and to learn more about the battle itself, both in the museum and with the musket demonstration.