Archaeological excavations focused on a collapsed house mound are in progress at Makala Kataa "Station 10." Archaeologists have left "balk" walls between 2 x 2 meter units as a way to study the mound's stratigraphy. Headpans for carrying excavated soil to nearby screens for sieving sit beside the excavation units. Scattered around the sides of the units are short-handled hoes which the excavation team uses to carefully scrape the soil as they dig. Graduate students Maria Dores Cruz and Leith Smith direct the excavation team while Tolԑԑ Kofi Dwuru III (Nana Millah), visiting the site from Ahenkro, stands to the right in black cloth. Makala Kataa, July 1994.
Members of the 1994 archaeological excavation team at Makala Kataa. Team members included a National Service and a staff member from the Ghana National Museum, American graduate students and Banda men from Ahenkro and Makala. Back row (L-R): Kwame Bio, Samuel Babatu, __, Kwame Anane, Donkor Johnson, Timothy Fordjour, Daniel Mensah, __, Yaw Francis, __, __, Kwadwo Manu. Middle row (L-R): __, Kwame Abrifa, Kwasi Peter, Amos Bediako, Kwabena Mensah, Kofi "Photo" Manu, Yaw Frimpong, Alex Ababio. Front row (L-R): Caesar Apentiik, Ann Stahl, Maria Dores Cruz, Obour Bartholomew, Kwasi Ali, Obimpeh Blorpor, Leith Smith, Victor Mattey, Osei Kofi, Brian Thomas. Also pictured are Frank Osei Kofi, Seth Tahara, Kwame Menka, Kwame Okyei, and Thomas Bio. Makala Kataa, July, 1994.
A Makala elder pours libations at the site of Makala Kataa to open work on a Friday. He is accompanied by two members of the 1994 Banda Research Project excavation team, both from Makala. L-R: __, __, __. Makala Kataa, 1994.
The interior of a courtyard house surrounded by thatch-roofed rooms. Houses like this were often built over time, with rooms added as needed, gradually enclosing the interior courtyard. The compound in this photo is fully enclosed, with a doorway to the exterior visible in the center, back. Four hearths are visible in the courtyard, surrounded by a variety of metal vessels used in food preparation and other daily activities. Left, a pestle lies on the ground surrounded by groundnut (peanut, boŋgrɛ in Nafaanra) shells. Makala, July, 1994.
Large stones, some used as grindstones, are placed about the corner of this courtyard. Groundnut (peanut, boŋgrɛ in Nafaanra) shells lay on the ground at the feet of a child. A carved wooden stool appears alongside stools made from sawed boards, the latter typical of those taken to school by children each day and those used by women as they sit hearth-side while cooking. Two calabash bowls (chrԑgbͻͻ in Nafaanra) sit nearby. Makala, July, 1994.
A youngster helps a woman remove a loaded headpan as she approaches the thatch-roofed veranda of a room in a compound house. A variety of metal containers used to prepare food and for other household tasks are placed about, along with several calabash bowls and low stools used in this kitchen area. A headpan containing dishes rests on a cluster of hearth stones, lower right. Makala, July, 1994.
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Headloading; Metal pots; Headpans
Stools; Thatched roofs; Gourd, Calabash; Courtyards; Lifting and carrying
The exterior of a compound house made of adjoining rooms oriented around a rectangular courtyard. These were often built over time, with rooms added as needed, gradually enclosing the interior courtyard. The compound in this photo is open on one side, rooms surrounding the other three sides of the courtyard. Atakpame walls are visible as are the gabled thatched roofs that protect walls from erosion by rain. Makala, July, 1994.
Exterior wall of a compound house covered by a thatched roof. The coursed earth (atakpame) wall was built in stages as rooms were added. An exterior roof support pole is visible to the left. A coconut palm, an unusual tree in this area of savanna woodland far from the coast, is visible in the background. Houses and surrounding streets are kept clear of grass and other plants. Makala, July 1994.
The exterior wall of an atakpame (coursed earth) house. Atakpame is a technique for building durable earthen walls that can stand for many decades. The thatched roof is supported by interior and exterior posts and does not rest on the walls. When covered by well-maintained thatched roofs, the walls are protected from erosion by rain. A goat walks on the street outside. Makala, July, 1994.
A woman sifts flour in the foreground as two women in the background pound maize (corn, bledju in Nafaanra) in wooden mortars. The women are sheltered from the sun by the thatched roof that covers this entrance to the house compound. View to the street beyond. Makala, July, 1994.