Archaeology of Finnish wetlands: With special reference to studies of Stone Age stationary wooden fishing structures

Satu Koivisto

Forskningsoutput: AvhandlingDoktorsavhandlingSamling av artiklar


This study seeks to draw attention to the lack of knowledge of and the small amount of research dealing with archaeological cultural resources in Finnish wetlands, as well as to demonstrate its huge scientific and interpretative potential. To this end, the study presents a compilation of Finnish wetland archaeological sites, contextualizes and evaluates them with the help of archaeological, environmental, and ethnographic data, and offers an assessment of areas with the highest potential for encountering new sites. The scientific and interpretative potential of Finnish wetland archaeological resources is then illustrated with the help of two case studies representing stationary wooden fishing structures associated with Stone Age fishery sites. The prehistoric fishing theme involves a detailed examination of the fishing structure types and the estuary fishing methods, as well as their contextual circumstances, which provide an analytical framework explicating and illuminating this as yet unexplored archaeological evidence. Finally, the study seeks to further our knowledge concerning the detection and prospection of archaeological sites situated in demanding wetland settings with the help of geophysical testing and trial excavations conducted within stationary wooden
fishing structures.

The total number of wetland sites has multiplied in the course of this study, even though it is still very low when compared to the extensive area of Finnish wetlands. The areas with the highest wetland archaeological potential in Finland are located in river estuaries, coastal areas affected by strong isostatic rebound, and terrestrialized lakes. Today, stationary wooden structures associated with fishing sites represent the most typical wetland archaeological resource in Finland. The case studies described in this work demonstrate that these wooden archaeological remains yield valuable evidence for investigating fishing methods, technological adaptations, and modes of subsistence among prehistoric populations. The lack of viable techniques for the detection and prospection of sites has been hindering wetland archaeological research in Finland. The most crucial threats to the preservation of our organic archaeological resources situated in wetland landscapes are drainage, peat extraction, acidification, and climate change.
Tryckta ISBN978-951-51-3612-1
Elektroniska ISBN978-951-51-3613-8
StatusPublicerad - sep. 2017
MoE-publikationstypG5 Doktorsavhandling (artikel)


  • 615 Historia och arkeologi

Citera det här