KOMÉ TO EBOMÉ: ARCHAEOLOGICAL RESEARCH FOR THE CHAD EXPORT PROJECT, 1999-2003

In: Journal of African Archaeology
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  • 1 Université Libre de Bruxelles
  • 2 Department of Sociology and Anthropology Bowdoin College
  • 3 Faculté des Lettres et Sciences Humaines Université de N'’Djaména
  • 4 Université Libre de Bruxelles
  • 5 Université Libre de Bruxelles
  • 6 Esso Exploration & Production Chad, Inc.
  • 7 Université Libre de Bruxelles

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Over the past five years, archaeological survey and excavation has been undertaken in southern Chad and Cameroon, as the result of a cultural heritage management agreement between the governments of the two countries, the World Bank and a consortium of international oil companies. These initiatives were undertaken as part of the Chad Export Project, which involved the construction of an oil pipeline from Komé in southern Chad to the Atlantic coast of Cameroon near Ebomé. Research by archaeologists associated with the project has resulted in location and excavation of cultural remains along a 1070-kilometre transect, in part through regions of Africa where little research had previously been undertaken. This preliminary report examines the results of this research. Major results include: (1) the discovery of 470 sites in Chad and Cameroon; (2) the excavation of a mid- to late-Holocene stratified sequence in southern Cameroon; (3) the discovery of sites containing pit features in the forests of southern Cameroon between the Atlantic coast and Nanga Eboko, a larger area than had been indicated by previous research, and (4) the discovery of evidence for significant ironworking activity in the wooded savanna environments of northeastern Cameroon and southern Chad.

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