Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

3/24/2014 (6 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Gin bottles, spent cartridges found in desert encampment

Almost 100 years before T. E. Lawrence returned to civilian life, a secret desert camp used by him - under his more famous nom de plume of "Lawrence of Arabia" has been found intact. Located in modern-day Jordan, the encampment was still littered with spent cartridges and broken gin bottles. Thanks to an RAF pilot's vaguely-sketched map, a team of archaeologists were able to find it - along with all of its historical treasures.

Almost 100 years before T. E. Lawrence returned to civilian life, a secret desert camp used by him - under his more famous nom de plume of 'Lawrence of Arabia' has been found intact.

Almost 100 years before T. E. Lawrence returned to civilian life, a secret desert camp used by him - under his more famous nom de plume of "Lawrence of Arabia" has been found intact.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

3/24/2014 (6 months ago)

Published in Middle East

Keywords: T.E.Lawrence, Lawrenceof Arabia, World War I, encampment


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Used as a vital base by Thomas Edward Lawrence, who was the British intelligence officer who would pass into legend for his guerilla raids against Turkish forces in the First World War. The camp would have been lost to the ages, had it not been for a chance discovery in the National Archives.

This photograph of an armored Rolls-Royce helped researchers track down a desert camp (pictured) fro

This photograph of an armored Rolls-Royce helped researchers track down a desert camp (pictured) from which Lawrence of Arabia launched guerilla attacks on German-allied Turks.


An archaeologist at Bristol University, John Winterburn Found a loosely-sketched map from 1918 by a pilot who recalled the camp from memory after a reconnaissance flight.

Light a virtual candle -- by going here!


Scouring through Google Earth, Winterburn sought to find a part of the desert which matched the drawing in a 10-year investigation called the "Arab Revolt Project."

Peter O

Peter O'Toole (left) played the war hero in the 1962 blockbuster Lawrence of Arabia.


Winterburn found the small camp, which Lawrence described as "behind the toothed hill facing Tell Shahm station," in November 2012 exactly where he predicted it would be.

Winterburn along with his colleagues found ashes still in a camp fire and broken biscuit boxes strewn across the 100-yard square. "When you're talking about the field of modern conflict archaeology, it's the closest we can get to finding Tutankhamun's tomb," project director Neil Faulkner said.
 
The archaeologists found a spark plug from one of the armored Rolls-Royces driven across the desert.

The archaeologists found a spark plug from one of the armored Rolls-Royces driven across the desert.


"What was extraordinary was that we didn't expect to find anything on site. Our assumption was that we'd go there and find nothing but at least we knew where it was.

"We were looking up at the landscape rather than down, then suddenly John said: "I think that looks like a broken rum jar . The whole site was meticulously excavated and recorded and we pieced together fragments of the rum jar into a whole.

"It was incredibly exciting to be there and so very, very close to where Lawrence himself was.

"In his book, 'Seven Pillars of Wisdom,' he has this very vivid description of eating bully beans and biscuits and drinking tea with condensed milk, watching the sparks rising into the night from the brushwood fire. We even found the ashes from that fire. It was astonishing."

Another relic from the camp, which TE Lawrence would go on to describe in his memoirs.

Another relic from the camp, which TE Lawrence would go on to describe in his memoirs.


Winterburn says that finding the camp took him four years from start to finish. The breakthrough came, he said, when he combined the sketch map with a photograph of soldiers standing with armored Rolls-Royces next to a distinctive hill.

"I immediately recognized what it could be and put the pieces together," he said. "I then used Google Earth to find a location precisely, and we logged the co-ordinates.

The archaeologists tracked down the ashes from the soldiers

The archaeologists tracked down the ashes from the soldiers' brushwood campfire, pictured.


"We punched the data into a GPS receiver and marched across the desert, and there it was, exactly where we predicted. It's easy when you know how."

British forces had crossed the remote desert in an armored Rolls-Royce, pictured.

British forces had crossed the remote desert in an armored Rolls-Royce, pictured.


"This camp had been used as a staging post for many for the epic raids on the Hejaz Railway at Tel Shahm and Mudawwara," Winterburn said. "Scattered in the desert floor was the remains of their last meals of rusty tin cans from Lowestoft and fragments of rum jars and gin bottles."

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for October 2014
Peace:
That the Lord may grant peace to those parts of the world most battered by war and violence.
World Mission Day: That World Mission Day may rekindle in every believer zeal for carrying the Gospel into all the world.



Comments


More Middle East

Islamic State has infiltrated INSIDE of Turkey with attempt to kidnap Syrian leader Watch

Image of Militants have recently shot and wounded a senior Syrian rebel commander within the nation. The incident has raised questions of Ankara's commitment to defeating the terror group.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

While Islamic State fighters batter the Syrian city of Kobani near the border with Turkey, ISIS agents are apparently now currently operating within the nation of Turkey. Militants have recently shot and wounded a senior Syrian rebel commander within the ... continue reading


Jack 'the acid' Ripper: Suspects arrested in connection with acid attacks against women in Iran Watch

Image of Though the attacks have instilled fear in some women in the city, many continue to live their lives without apologies.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Iranian authorities have arrested a number of people suspected of throwing acid at women. Its' believed that the women were wearing their traditional Islamic head covering improperly. The public had grown increasingly angry over the series of attacks in the ... continue reading


Sectarian violence spreads in Yemen, where Shi'ite militia square off against al-Qaeda Watch

Image of A member of the Shi'ite military Houthi organization.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A Yemeni city was taken by al Qaeda fighters, and 33 people were killed by a suicide bombing and gun fighting during the group's challenge to the Yemeni government. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - This is just the latest bout of violence that has erupted in ... continue reading


Al Qaeda launches 'magazine war' with Islamic State in effort to attract new recruits Watch

Image of Resurgence, the new magazine for Al Qaeda.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Al Qaeda is attempting to make a comeback in the public eye following the stunning rise of the competing Islamic State. In an online publication, aimed at a global audience, the terror group is encouraging attacks at economic infrastructure. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic ... continue reading


Pope Francis - Petitions UN, Muslims and Christians to address 'ongoing genocide' in Iraq Watch

Image of An Iraqi man flees with children on a donkey amid hundreds of other refugees. Christians and other ethnic minorities have been driven from their ancient homelands and into camps.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pope Francis has once again spoken out about the atrocities being committed in the Middle East by the Islamic State, labeling them "terrorism of previously unimaginable proportions." LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Pope Francis lamented, "it seems that the ... continue reading


Islamic State takes mounting death count in Syria Watch

Image of Both Kurdish and Iraqi forces have been battling ISIS on the ground.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Islamic State has taken heavy casualties over the past several days. At least 70 fighters for the terror group have been dropped off over the past several days at a hospital in the Syrian town of Tal Abyad. The town is on the Turkey-Syrian border about 50 miles ... continue reading


Christians, Yazidis and Turkmen face genocide in Iraq Watch

Image of At least half a million people have been forced to flee their villages in Ninewa province, home to minority communities for thousands of years, according to the report, From Crisis to Catastrophe: the situation of minorities in Iraq.

By Kieran Guilbert, Thomson Reuters Foundation

More than 12,000 civilians have been killed in Iraq so far this year, mainly by Islamic State (IS), and minorities facing ethnic cleansing are the principal victims, according to a report published on Thursday. LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Minority Rights ... continue reading


Deadly Sarin bombs now in hands of Islamic State Watch

Image of Officials warned that they had witnessed equipment there being looted on CCTV whereupon the militants shut the surveillance cameras down.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

An even more alarming fact has risen to the fore in the war in the Middle East, ISIS controls a vast compound in Iraq containing 2,500 rusting chemical weapons rockets, according to the Iraqi government. While the site was bombed by the U.S. during the 1991 ... continue reading


Do you still think Islam is a 'religion of peace?' These 10 verses from the Koran will show you the truth Watch

Image of Islam is the religion of peace. Care to disagree?

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

From Christian apologist and blogger David Wood, comes more evidence, ripped directly from the pages of the Koran, that Islam is not a religion of peace. Wood located ten verses which will help readers understand the Islamic State's religious motivation for their ... continue reading


180,000 people flee Iraqi city of Hit after ISIS claims town Watch

Image of ISIS has been on the offensive in the desert province of Anbar, bordering Syria, in recent weeks. The town of Hit fell on October 2 and nearby Kubaisa on October 4.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Iraqi city of Hit fell to Islamic State earlier this month. The bloodshed in Iraq's western Anbar province has forced up to 180,000 people to flee, according to the United Nations. ISIS has been on the offensive in the desert province of Anbar, bordering ... continue reading


All Middle East News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Ephesians 3:2-12
2 You have surely heard the way in which God ... Read More

Psalm, Isaiah 12:2-3, 4, 5-6
2 Look, he is the God of my salvation: I shall have ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 12:39-48
39 You may be quite sure of this, that if the ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for October 22nd, 2014 Image

St. Pope John Paul II
October 22: Karol J. Wojtyla, known as John Paul II since his October 1978 ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter