Boomplaas Cave is the southern Cape’s only deep sequence inland archaeological site to preserve stratified Middle Stone Age and Later Stone Age deposits with rich botanical preservation.
Excavated by the late Hilary Deacon between 1974 and 1979, Boomplaas is important in terms of the archaeology and occupation history of southern Africa because it is one of only a few inland sites humans occupied across multiple climate cycles with several invaluable archives of cultural and environmental importance (i.e. lithics, ochre, ostrich eggshell, charcoal, pollen, micro and macro fauna, and paleobotanical materials).
The site is also one the few in Africa for which these site-specific data are available within close proximity to several off-site terrestrial paleoenvironmental archives.
The Cango Valley Archaeology and Paleoscape Project (CAPP) starts a new phase of research at Boomplaas and in the surrounding Cango Valley. The project aims to:
Reopen excavations at Boomplaas Cave to better contextualize the site’s existing excavated materials.
Generate new data from these excavations to address specific questions about the region’s evolving paleohydrology.
Integrate these findings into a paleoscape model to better understand the evolution of prehistoric humans’ land use strategies.
Assimilate Boomplaas’ rich botanical, material culture, and paleoenvironmental records to better understand the southern Cape’s evolving inland socio-environmental systems.
Click on the two images to the left of the map below to access the CAPP's published work at Boomplaas Cave.