The volume includes contributions by Scandinavian archaeologists
who take and work with aerial photographs. It is based on the
work of airforce major and archaeologist, Esse Ericsson (1921-1996).
Ericsson, who was renowned for being unconventional, introduced
systematic aerial photography to Scandinavia in the 1950s and
1960s, 'flying archaeology'; it was during this period that
he documented the known, and hitherto unknown, cultural aspects
of the countryside of Skåne. One chapter is a brief biography
of Esaias (Esse) Ericsson; it has been written by the archaeologist
P U Hörberg. Much of the book has been devoted to an illustrated
catalogue, topographically arranged, of Ericsson's 2121 photographs.
The photographs show thousands of objects related to culture,
nature and the environment. All have been carefully documented;
the information has been compiled and edited by L Hansen. Other
chapters include a Scandinavian view of the history of 'archaeology
from the air', by Dr G Rausing (†). This chapter begins with
a photograph from a balloon taken on 7 April 1894 and ends with
a description of a digital database. An interesting and unusual
presentation of 'archaeology and aerial photography' by E Ericsson
includes a discussion about climate, a topic that few non Scandinavian
aerial archaeologists have looked at, and a presentation of
aerial photography projects related to tides and coasts; a subject
that has been neglected by most such guides. Archaeologist Jan
Norrman (†) writes about past and present work in Sweden, including
the problems and achievements.
The Esse Ericsson's aerial photograph archive is one of the
world's finest collections of a limited geographical region
- in this case Skåne in South Sweden.
Although the book - Flygspaning efter historia - is written
in Swedish, it contains a selection of unique photographs that
are of interest to non-Scandinavians.