Archaeological materials

The collection of archived archaeological materials comprises administrative materials as well as research reports, drawings, maps, photographs and materials related to collections of archaeological artefacts, for example. In addition to materials produced by our organisation, the archives also include archaeological research conducted by other bodies.

Key materials related to the collections of archaeological artefacts are the Artefact Register, the Main Index, verifications and card indices as well as photographs and drawings. Key archived materials related to ancient monuments include inventory, excavation and inspection reports as well as maintenance plans and reports. The systematic inventory of ancient monuments began in the 19th century, when scholarship holders of the Finnish Antiquarian Society travelled around making a record of ancient monuments, ecclesiastical items and old buildings, for example. These travels were recorded in district reports, some of which have been published. More recent inventories have usually been carried out separately in each municipality or in the impact area of a large-scale land use project. Excavation reports include information on examining the ancient monument in question and any observations and findings made in connection with this examination. Inspection reports are short reports about on-site visits.

The research reports on archaeology and the built environment are catalogued in their own sections in the Database of research reports on the cultural environment. Most of the archaeological research reports are digitised and can be viewed in the service window.

The responsibility for managing the picture materials of the Finnish Heritage Agency was transferred to the Picture Collections of the Finnish Heritage Agency in 2011, in connection with organisational restructuring. At present, the archives only manage photographs related to archaeology. The picture materials are related to both artefacts and ancient monuments. The oldest pictures are drawings, but the materials also began to include photographs taken by officials of the State Archaeological Commission from the 1890s onwards.

The archives of the Finnish Heritage Agency also include a great number of maps and drawings. These materials are mainly related to archaeology and the built environment. Most of the maps included in the archaeological materials are related to archaeological field work.