The AMAES Photo Archive

Bill Jobling (left) and project assistant Richard Morgan (right) study a boulder carved with an elaborate hunting scene and Thamudic inscriptions. Photo courtesy of AMAES.

The AMAES photo archive contains more than 10,000 color and B&W images, covering nine seasons of field survey. These photos document primarily the several thousand inscribed stones and rock faces that the AMAES recorded across the Wadi Ramm region and therefore are (and were always intended to be) the survey’s primary data and documentation. In addition, the photographs document the desert landscapes/environments in which the inscriptions were found, as well as key archaeological sites and off-site features the AMAES visited throughout the region (especially rock shelters/overhangs, cisterns, dams, springs, stone circles/walls, etc.). Select photos also document aspects of traditional desert/Bedouin life in Wadi Ramm, aspects of the survey’s methods and “camp life,” and visits the survey team made to other sites around Jordan during the 1980s (i.e., Petra, Kerak, Aqaba, Amman). As such, the AMAES photographic archive is a major contribution to the study of Wadi Ramm’s cultural heritage and needs to be preserved, digitized, and made accessible to scholars and the public.

Other Records and Documentation of the AMAES

A scanned image of a page from one of Bill Jobling’s AMAES fieldbooks in which he recorded his initial notes about the survey’s findings.

While the photographic archive represents the primary data of the AMAES, the survey did produce other important documentation that is also being stored, registered, digitized, and selectively made accessible as part of the digital archive. This documentation includes:

  • William Jobling’s fieldbooks: contain preliminary on-site transcriptions/readings/translations of inscriptions, as well as miscellaneous notes on landscape, features, and progress of survey
  • Richard Morgan’s fieldbooks: Jobling was joined for several seasons by University of Sydney undergraduate Richard Morgan who kept very valuable notes on the progress of the survey, the location of sites, and measurements/descriptions of key features
  • Gazetteer and Field Maps: the AMAES produced a fairly complete gazetteer of all sites/locations visited by the survey, based on the 1:250,000 map series used in the field.
  • Rubbings/Tracings: the AMAES made several large format, to-scale rubbings of select inscribed stone surfaces

Other Materials

  • AMAES Publications (Drafts & Offprints): Jobling published preliminary reports on the survey’s seasons in numerous journals including ADAJ, Syria, and Liber Annuus, as well as thematic papers in several edited volumes and conference proceedings. The archives contains offprint copies of these works, together with the copious notes and drafts Jobling created in writing the final versions.
  • Jobling’s research/study notebooks: unlike the fieldbooks, which were written down in the field, these notebooks appear to capture Jobling’s thoughts throughout the rest of the year, as he researched topics, prepared drafts of papers, and planned upcoming seasons.
  • Miscellaneous papers and documents: documentation/memos/communications related to research, season planning, grant applications, planned publications, scholarly correspondence, etc.

To learn more about the AMAES project archive or to inquire about access, please email:

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