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Andreas Oldeberg papers, circa 1940-1975

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Finding aid for the Andreas Oldeberg papers, circa 1940-1975

Scope and Content of Collection

The Andreas Oldeberg papers form a research archive for the study of ancient metalwork and metallurgy in Scandinavia. The archive consists primarily of Oldeberg's research data for metal artifacts from Sweden dating from the Bronze Age through the Middle Ages. There is also a small amount of analysis relating to these objects.

Oldeberg's basic research data on metal archaeological artifacts from Sweden, as well as a small number of related wooden artifacts, comprise the first series. Inventory cards form the majority of the material. This inventory, either on actual card stock or slips of plain paper, records data for each artifact and usually includes a photograph or sketch of the object. The cards provide varying combinations of data relating to current location, original findspot and context, national registration number, dimensions and description, as well as occasional information on metallurgical analysis and bibliography. A wide range of objects are documented on these inventory cards including jewelry and decorative metalwork, household and agricultural implements, weaponry and horse trappings, as well as the molds and matrices used in their production. The remainder of the research materials in this series are loose photographs of such objects, many with some data added.

Much of the data collected in Series I served as the basis for Oldeberg's three major synthetic monographs, Metallteknik under forhistorisk tid (1942-1943), Metallteknik under vikingatid och medeltid (1966), and Die altere Metallzeit in Schweden (1974-1976), and many of the images found in the archive are published within these volumes. The time frame of these publications provides a rough date for the material in Series I, and indeed for the archive as a whole.

The second, much smaller, series in the archive contains materials related specifically to the analysis of metal artifacts. The majority of the material here consists of another group of cards with data and photographs. These cards include much of the basic identifying data mentioned above, but the focus is metallurgical. Most cards include detailed metallurgical analysis and the photographs attached to each card document the metal itself, through photomicrographs or radiographs, rather than the finished object. Also included are several heavily illustrated laboratory reports on samples submitted for testing by Oldeberg.

Arrangement note

Organized in two series:
Series I. Artifact research data, circa 1940-1975
Series II. Analysis of metal artifacts, 1952-1965, undated

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