Archaeologist steps up to protect heritage
ARCHAEOLOGIST Charles Dortch has ensured a new staircase at Little Armstrong Bay was built around ground where a chert artefact that is more than 12,000 years old was found.
Mr Dortch discovered the artefact, that likely came from a spearhead or rock used for cutting, on the cliffs at the bay in 2011 and it is on display in the Island’s museum. The archaeologist also found emu egg shells at the bay.
The Rottnest Island Authority built the new staircase late last year to formalise access to the popular bay.
Aboriginal heritage officer Ezra Jacobs-Smith, of Fremantle, said the staircase made from composite fibre was built around the spot where the artefact was found because it was important to protect it.
Mr Jacobs-Smith said the workers also scoured the sand around the staircase to ensure it did contain pieces of chert.
Ezra Jacobs-Smith at Little Armstrong Bay.