The permanent exhibition with originals from the local archaeological excavations is located in Longhouse I.
A lot has happened since the open-air museum opened in 1990. Where there once were pits, ditches and huge piles of sand and earth during the excavations, today visitors can experience three Bronze Age longhouses, whose construction is based on the results of the excavation. As the construction of an open-air museum is never finished, a pit house and a so-called house of the dead, a typical burial construction of northeast Lower Saxony, as well as a wicker labyrinth were added later. In order to give visitors a clear impression of the Bronze Age environment and vegetation, a nature trail, a working agricultural field for earliest crops, a pond habitat and a herbal spiral were constructed.


Longhouse I

Longhouse I dates to the younger period of the Bronze Age and was the first building to be opened in the open-air museum in 1990. The Longhouse is approximately 22.40 m long, with a width of 6,0 m and a maximum hight of 5,0 m and is constructed as a four-aisled house. The central posts are arranged in pairs which form seven joists with the crossbars. The walls consisting of wattle and daub panels in between evenly placed wall studs with small trenches along the outside walls. The hipped roof-construction was given a soft roof covering with thatch.

Special features:

The entire construction took about a full year, with at least 5 – 6 people working from the procurement of the building materials, the preparation of the wood to the clay application to the walls and floor. The connections of the joists were made with stone and bronze replicas as part of experimental archeology. The builders experimented with various binding materials (e.g. knotweed, willow, leather, etc.) for binding the roof purlins to the rafters.

Longhouse Phoenix

The youngest building in the museum grounds is Longhouse Phoenix, which also dates to the younger period of the Bronze Age, was opened to the public in 2010. With its dimensions of 27,0 m by 7,0 m and a height of 6,0 m it corresponds to Longhouse II, which was burnt down in 2008. It is constructed as a two-aisled longhouse. The walls were designed in three different versions: palisade walls, waddle and daub walls and a split timber plank wall. There is a hipped roof-construction on the high walls in the west and the eastern end of the building is a straight gable with a protruding roof.

Special features:

The construction of a passage divided the house into two areas. This passage resulted from discovery of two opposite house entrances in the archaeological record. It corresponds to the axle widths of wagons, which were used during the Bronze Age. The attic shows the possibility of gaining additional space in gable roofs. The roof has been pulled forward to the east and offers a bright and weather-protected work area. A recess for a window opening was made into the split timber plank wall of the smaller room.

New permanent exhibition (in planning)

Today the time without writing, in which the Bronze Age falls, disappears into a obscurity for most people today. Nobody wrote about the people and they themselves left no written sources behind – yet it was people “like you and me” who were confronted with the joys and sorrows of everyday life. From these we can draw analogies to current situations.
Three main themes are each based on different questions:

1. How

do archaeologists arrive at their results? Archeological methodology and the interpretation of the excavation results are explained, the creation of the life-sized house models is illustrated and how developments in research leads to new results is shown.

2. What

have archaeologists discovered about the world of the early settlers? Original exhibits are integrated into their context and explain the everyday life of the early settlers.

3. Why

did the social context change? Socially relevant topics (e.g. migration, environmental changes) are taken up and related to (pre-)historical processes.

The information in the permanent exhibition are conveyed through various media. In addition to texts, this also includes images, maps, games, listening devices and so-called “experiment stations”. The scientific findings are made understandable in a playful way and the opportunities for active participation are highlighted for visitors.

In addition to imparting knowledge about the settlement history of Lower Saxony, the examination of past problems and the coping strategies the early settlers developed allows the visitor to establish a connection to current issues and gain new insights.

Site plan

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April 1st – October 31st
daily 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m