MAAST participants piece together sherds of pottery (c) MOLA

MOLA Academy of Archaeological Specialist Training (MAAST)

Project partner: 
Heritage Lottery Fund, The Radcliffe Trust
Date: 
2018 -

The MOLA Academy of Archaeological Specialist Training (MAAST) is an archaeology training initiative run by our specialists to share their expertise, so that more people can contribute to the creation of new archaeological knowledge.

There are untold treasures held in archaeological archives that have not yet been studied in depth. MAAST invites people to help piece together stories of the past.

MAAST 2018: Understanding Archaeological Artefacts

Thanks to support from the Heritage Lottery Fund and The Radcliffe Trust, the pilot programme ‘Understanding Archaeological Artefacts’ ran for 22 weeks from 27 September 2018, led by Senior Finds Specialist Jacqui Pearce.

Fifteen trainees from outside the professional archaeological community were invited to participate free of charge in weekly two-hour classroom sessions and practical workshops led by a range of experts from our team. Topics included sorting, identifying and recording different types of artefact, as well as archaeological photography and drawing. Participants worked with 18th- and 19th-century archaeological material excavated from a site in America Square in London. Documentary research carried out alongside the sessions by some of the participants enabled the identification, with a reasonable degree of certainty, of the original owner of the discarded material: George Wolff, a Norwegian-born Danish Consul, who moved out of No. 16 America Square in 1808.

The course was accredited by CIfA (Chartered Institute for Archaeologists).  A report on the findings of the course was submitted for publication to London Archaeologist, and the glass, pottery and pipe data recorded by participants was made available online.

MAAST participants sort creamware pottery from America Square