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Hitler's Fortress Builders: The Use of Non-Destructive Testing to Quantify the Differential Treatment of Labourers on Second World War Alderney

Author(s): Maxwell Meredith

Year: 2017

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Summary

World War II left behind archaeological evidence of an impressive magnitude on the British Channel Islands, and today many of these features lay untouched. It was throughout my Master's research at Glasgow University in 2013-2014 that I developed a project to enhance our archaeological understanding of these concrete relics. Using a specific set of methods, I was able to accurately and non-destructively test the compressive strength of several concrete features. Combining this raw data with the available historical material, I was able to show that features constructed by professional German engineers were markedly stronger when compared to features constructed by poorly treated conscript labourers from Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union. Overall, this discovery served as a means to quantify the extreme dichotomy in the living and working conditions of these labour classes, while simultaneously refining a methodology that could have important implications for historical archaeology.


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Cite this Record

Hitler's Fortress Builders: The Use of Non-Destructive Testing to Quantify the Differential Treatment of Labourers on Second World War Alderney. Maxwell Meredith. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 428964)


Keywords


Spatial Coverage

min long: -11.074; min lat: 37.44 ; max long: 50.098; max lat: 70.845 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 16675

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America