A Local Hero: John Robert Mortimer and the Birth of Archaeology in East Yorkshire

From the Bulletin of the History of Archaeology Vol 19 No 1 (2009)

A Local Hero: John Robert Mortimer and the Birth of Archaeology in East Yorkshire
Stephen Harrison

Abstract

John Robert Mortimer (1825–1911) dominated archaeological activity in the East Riding of Yorkshire during the second half of the nineteenth century, devoting much of his adult life to the systematic and careful examination of large numbers of prehistoric barrows on the chalklands of the Yorkshire Wolds (Harrison 1996a). So thoroughly was this objective pursued that he was later able to write that it would not be possible ‘to make another collection from the barrows of this district … as they are practically exhausted’ (Mortimer 1898:141). He can, with justification, be described as the last of the great barrow-diggers.

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ISSN 2047-6930 (online); 1062-4740 (print) | Published by Ubiquity Press
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