In 1969, archaeological excavations on the banks of the Jeetzel were carried out for the first time. No-one could have known what surprises lay underneath as they slowly dug deeper - until the first ceramic shards and soil discolouration came to light. They left no doubt that thousands of years ago people once lived here.
From the excavation …
The first archaeological excavations confirmed these suppositions. They had discovered the traces of an over 3,000 year-old house - an exciting find for northern Germany at this time. A larger-scale survey, however, had to wait a while. In 1987, a total of 16 acres south of Hitzacker (Elbe) were placed under protection, thus countering the threat of destruction posed by the expansion of the main road and the establishment of Hitzacker lake. At the same time the way was paved for the implementation of large-scale archaeological excavations.
The discoveries of the remains of further large houses, and numerous other archaeological discoveries in the following years, revealed that the site had been used by humans from a point in time 4,000 years ago over a period of 1,300 years. This surprising result inspired in us an exceptional idea, and 1990 saw the launch of the Archaeological Centre Hitzacker and Germany's first open-air Bronze Age museum was founded.
… to the Museum
A lot has happened since 1990. In place of the former excavation pits and piles of sand, now stand the three Bronze Age longhouses: reconstructions based on the results of the excavations. In addition, a little later were added a so-called “House of the Dead”– a burial chamber typical of north-east Lower Saxony – a “Grubenhaus” and a wattle maze.
To give visitors a vivid impression of the Bronze Age flora and environment, a nature trail, an agricultural area, a pond and a herbery were created. These open spaces offer numerous places for visitors, especially children and school classes to be active.
• We work in the field of "Experimental Archaeology".
• We have made a theme of the change in the relationship between humans
and the environment
• We offer "time travel" through our permanent exhibition.