Archaeological excavations of Mound 6 at Ngre Kataa in 2009 expose a workshop where blacksmiths produced iron and copper-alloy tools and ornaments. The mound is being excavated in 2 x 2 meter units named for the coordinates of their northeast corner. In unit 50N 0W (foreground), an area of burned soil marks the location where blacksmiths heated metals. A pottery jar sits in place to the right. In surrounding units (50N 2W, 48N 0W, 48N 2W) are large anvil stones where the hot metals would have been hammered and shaped through forging. The mound's stratified deposits suggest that the workshop area was used for many decades, and perhaps centuries, between the years of about 1350 and 1520 CE (Common Era). View across the mound from the northeast looking towards the southwest. Site Ngre Kataa. 27 June, 2009.
Skilled craftsmen at the Centre for National Culture in Kumasi, Ghana demonstrate techniques of lost wax casting by making souvenir items like the brass bottle opener pictured here (bottom left). To the right (and top left) is a discarded lost-wax-casting mold that has been broken open to remove the finished objects. This mold produced two bottle openers. The inside of the mold shows the impressions left by the original wax models when they were encased in ashy clay (black matrix). Visbile toward the base of the casting mold are impressions of the tubes, out of which the melted wax drained and through which the molten brass was poured to fill the mold. Brass bottle opener height: 9 cm. Kumasi, Ghana. 4 July 2009.