29th November 2016:
Earlier this month, under a totem pole within the depths of the Pitt Rivers Museum, a team from OA South set up a display of ancient stone axes and arrowheads as part of the 'Being Human: Hopes and Fears' national festival, which explores how the humanities enrich everyday life.
A poster charting the evolution of lithic technology supplemented the original and replica tools that visitors could handle and examine on the display table. This was a real draw for visitors. Many of the visitors were amazed that they could pick up hand axes that were 700,000 years old, rather than having to peer at the artefacts inside a glass case. Others came to learn more about local prehistory and were very happy that many of the tools on display came from the region.
The event was a huge success, with over two hundred people visiting our display within a four-hour period. It also generated a lively discussion in answer to visitors' interesting questions about dating and excavation methods, subsistence strategies involving hairy hominids, and woolly rhinos, among other topics.