Even in the ancient periods, water was the most cost effective means of transport for moving goods in bulk. This has resulted into the necessity to examine water transport, underwater archeology (Muckelroy 10).Typically, underwater archeology costs a great deal more than the traditional excavation on land. This is because of the ease of excavation and access of unique remains not available on land. Underwater archeology also has a scientific study base on past human life, cultures and behaviors, as well as their activities on, in, around and under estuaries, sea and rivers. This is usually affected by means of physical remains found around, in, or under fresh or salty water buried beneath sediments logged under water (Biers 200). Traditional excavation on land cannot provide information on submerged aircraft and submerged WWII sites that underwater archeology studies in form of underwater aviation archeology as a bona fide activity. In addition, a lot of information can be found on shipwrecks, local seismic events, changes in sea level, and earthquakes in underwater archeology, which cannot be provided by the traditional excavation on land. Underwater archeology also offers information on widespread climatic changes and some human occupation sites that were on dry land at some point and are now submerged. More information can also be accessed through underwater archeology on ice age, anthropological materials, and remains of animals like mammoths, which are recovered often by trawlers. Such information cannot be provided by the traditional excavation on land. Human societies previously made use of water and the remains of the structures that such human societies built under waters may be in existence up to date, and therefore underwater archeology is necessary to provide information on such structures as the harbors, bridges, and foundations of crannogs (Delgado 27).Traditional excavation on land is an archeology practiced on land. Therefore it cannot provide information on submerged sites or places where people once lived and have been subsequently covered, due to rising sea level, by water, cenotes, wells, wrecks. These are only covered by underwater archeology. Information on debris and refuse sites, remains of structures that are created in water like harbors, bridges, or crannogs, other port related structures and sites where
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Delgado, J. P., British Museum Encyclopedia of Underwater and Maritime Archaeology,
London: British Museum Press, 1997.
Muckelroy, K., Maritime archaeology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1978.
Renfrew, C. and P. Bahn, Archaeology: Theories, Methods, and Practice, New York: Thames
and Hudson, 1996
Whitley, J., The Archaeology of Greece, London: SAGE. 2001
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