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Archaeology and Business in Partnership Exhibition

The National Institute of Archaeology and Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences and the Balkan Mineral and Mining EAD present the results of the excavation project of Ada Tepe ancient gold mine from the Late Bronze and Early Iron Age.

You can visit the exhibition at Central Hall of the Museum of Archaeology, open 10.00 to 17.00 (January 25th to March 11th 2012).

Over the past few years, the name of the Ada Tepe hill near Krumovgrad has frequently been mentioned in the media. Ada Tepe also became popular as a result of the geological exploration and registration of a commercial discovery (Khan Krum deposit) by Balkan Mineral and Mining EAD (BMM EAD). In addition, Ada Tepe gained popularity with the archaeological discoveries made on the hill between 2001 and 2011.

Ada Tepe is an example that modern mining industry and preservation of cultural heritage can productively coexist, provided there is dialogue and consideration on both sides. The National Institute of Archaeology and Museum with the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences and Balkan Mineral and Mining demonstrated how the business and archaeology can work together as partners.

The history of the archaeological research on Ada Tepe started in 2001. A small Thracian sanctuary on the hill was studied between 2001 and 2006. The exploration of the traces of gold mining on the slopes of the hill stared in 2005. These archaeological works were fully funded by BMM EAD. Three years later, a joint Bulgarian-German team of archaeologists made new discoveries within the framework of a project funded by Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. The team established that gold mining on the hill was going on as early as the mid second millennium BC, at the time where the ancient Mycenae and Troy flourished, which means that Ada Tepe was the earliest known gold mine in Europe.

Since 2010, BMM supported the comprehensive study of the ancient gold mine on Ada Tepe and the dissemination of the results of the rescue excavations conducted on the site. Today, the project financed by Balkan Mineral and Mining are the largest privately funded single-site excavation archaeological project on the Bulgarian territory.

With this exhibition we are pleased to present the results obtained by the end of 2011. The focus here is on archaeology, but also on the positive example of a successful partnership with a modern business enterprise, since those results would not have been achieved without BMM's involvement and understanding.