A final report on the archaeological investigation and reconstruction of a late iron age stone walled settlement on the farm Kleinkopje 15 is, near Witbank, Mpumalanga Province


Archaetnos cc was requested by BHP BILLITON ENERGY COAL SA LIMITED
to carry out the 2nd Phase archaeological investigation and reconstruction of a Late Iron Age stone walled settlement located on the farm Kleinkopje 15 IS near Witbank in Mpumalanga. This site is located on a narrow stretch of weathered sandstone terraces overlooking the Olifants River. The investigation and reconstruction form part of the EMPR Implementation of BHP Billiton?s DMO Project.

This work was the result of recommendations put forward in a Phase 1 Heritage Impact Assessment conducted by Archaetnos cc during 2008, and supported by SAHRA in their Archaeological Review Comment (ARC) on the report.

After a permit was obtained from SAHRA, archaeological investigations at the site commenced during early October 2008 for a two week period. One settlement unit, comprising a primary enclosure and a secondary enclosure (hut) was investigated and excavated. Mapping and drawing of all features and individual settlement units, making up the settlement complex, was also conducted, and a layout plan produced.

The reconstruction of stone walling on the site concentrated on Settlement Unit 2, with both circular stone walled enclosures being reconstructed. This part of the project was done during May 2009. As part of this phase of the work the information plaques recommended for the site was researched and designed, while the fencing was also planned.

We believe that the work conducted, and the data retrieved through it, during both October 2008 and May 2009 was adequate enough to enable us to make the necessary deductions and reconstructions. The implementation of the Cultural Heritage Management Plan (See ‘AE928b’), as part of the Environmental Management Program Report, can therefore be completed.

Report by

A.J. Pelser & A.C. van Vollenhoven