Different methods in archaeology are used to aid in reconstructing the evidence of history based of artifacts and ecofacts revealed on an archaeological site. It is also important to employ different methods in order to open the study of different interpretation until such evidence is supported and proven. Each interpretation is accompanied with logical facts based primarily on physical evidences from historical facts. It has been proven that Archaeology is important in rebuilding history, especially if written records are not available. As such, Pre-historic data are primarily provided by Archaeological information.
Excavation is considered an effective form of archaeological method. However even without the actual activity of digging up artifacts, archaeologist could still use other forms of archaeological methodology to look for evidences and study them. It may involve walking on the exposed surface of an archaeological site or large regions of the stratified ground pattern. This method is called Pedestrian Survey, and also called as Surface Survey or Reconnaissance Survey.
First, this form of archaeological method offers ease and efficiency as it may not require actual excavation as evidences are immediately available and exposed. These artifacts may reveal themselves through natural events such as wind, erosion and water perpetration. As these artifacts are on the surface, archaeologists can easily review and examine the physical evidence and the environment as it relates to them. Another benefit of the pedestrian survey is it requires less investment compared to excavating sites that may need further funding for an excavation expense that includes physical labor and appropriate tools.
Unlike excavation, pedestrian survey is less labor intensive, and time may also be another issue as careful excavation needs to be systematically done in order to record a stratigraphy to study layers of soil. Pedestrian survey is also important as it may give out a lead prior to excavation. Underneath the surface artifacts may lead to more discoveries and oftentimes older artifacts and equally substantial to those found at the surface. This kind of methodology is used in the urban study of Phlius, a Greek city in modern Corinthia (Alcock). The study evaluates the modern city of Phlius as it gives clues to the ancient city that existed prior to the modern changes. It also narrates the importance of topological features of the city as it relates to the city arrangement and construction.
The study also manages to study the structural components of the architectural structure of the different places in Phlius. Additionally, the study also tries to reconstruct the architectural losses of the area due to the modern settlement or the recessive downfall of the settlement. Using a pedestrian survey, Alcock manages to generalize conclusion and fill-in missing gaps pertaining to the ancient history of Phlius. Pedestrian survey allows establishment of historical data on occupancy and analyze them within their regional setting.
Alcock, Susan E. 'Urban Survey and the Polis of Phlius'. Hesperia (1991): 421--463. Print.