Settlement Archaeology in Former East Prussia

The long-term project Continuity of Research and Research of Continuity – Basic Research on Iron Age Settlement Archaeology in the Baltic Region focuses on the reconstruction and re-evaluation of the many historical archaeological investigations made in the regions of former East Prussia. This archaeological tradition went into an extended hiatus in the political and territorial restructuring that took place in the wake of the Second World War and the disintegration of the Prussia Museum in then Königsberg. With the successive rediscovery of the Museum’s archival holdings and archaeological finds since the 1990s in what is now Kaliningrad, in Olsztyn and in Berlin, an extensive archive of material that was long thought lost is now available again.

The project is based in Berlin and Schleswig, employing three researchers and an IT professional, and has 18 PhD candidates. Its focus is researching and making sources accessible to researchers, relocating and confirming the sites where the materials were found, and the investigation and dating of selected monuments. Close ties exist with institutions in Poland, Russia and Lithuania (the countries that make up the territories of what was East Prussia) as well as with other countries. The collective goal of the project is to recover this dense archaeological landscape, and at the same time to permanently safeguard the unique cultural heritage of this region, reintegrating it onto European research.


Run by: Museum für Vor- und Frühgeschichte (Prof Dr Matthias Wemhoff) and the Zentrum für Baltische und Skandinavische Archäologie in Schleswig (Prof Dr Claus von Carnap-Bornheim)
Funding: Akademie der Wissenschaften und der Literatur Mainz
Contact person: Dr Heidemarie Eilbracht, research associate, Museum für Vor- und Frühgeschichte
Duration: since January 2012 (due to run for 18 years)
Website: www.akademieprojekt-baltikum.eu