Gallery 2: First Inhabitants

Ely Museum exhibit area

The first evidence of people living in the area comes from the stone tools they left behind. While flint is not local to the Isle of Ely it was mined in great quantities in the chalk lands of Norfolk and Suffolk. Grimes Graves is a Neolithic flint mine where there was a huge and profitable local industry with an export market. Flint nodules were mined and knapped (hammered and shaped into tools) in great quantity. Undoubtedly these would have been traded with the people of the fens: for eels?

The gallery has a display of fine bronze axe heads and some ironwork showing the development of manufacturing skills. This gallery has some of the earliest pottery pieces to be found in the area from the late Neolithic/Early Roman Age.

Next Gallery: Romans and Saxons »