RAMM holds a wide range of archaeological objects discovered in Devon from the 19th century onwards. They include the earliest stone tools made by humans including:
- a remarkable collection of 350,000-year-old flint handaxes from the gravel pits at Broom near Axminster
- huge collections of stone tools found by field-walking
- the dramatic earthworks at Hembury
- burials at Farway and Upton Pyne,
- a mysterious wooden figure from Kingsteignton
All tell about life and death in Prehistory.
Flint knapper Karl Lee is pictured. Based in the Forest of Dean, he teaches bushcraft and produces handling collections for museums. Karl has been knapping for 22 years and has demonstrated flint knapping at RAMM’s exhibitions and family activity days since 2008.
“Flint knapping was a lost art which had to be re-learnt using archaeological evidence. The name was taken from the last flint workers who made flints for guns. Quarterers would break up the big flint nodules, the coreman would produce long, thin blade cores then the knapper would break them into rectangular sections ready for use or sale. From the medieval period gunflint production was an important industry especially in East Anglia where they have some of the best flint. Locally, Beer was famous for the quality of it’s flint but supplies have been short since the quarry closed.”