The Jakarta Post
The East Kalimantan Cultural Heritage Preservation Center (BPCB) found items such as ceramics, clay jugs and even gold. (Shutterstock/File)
A historic site has reportedly been found in Mount Totek, Dusun Kecil village, Pulau Maya district, North Kayong regency, West Kalimantan, by the East Kalimantan Cultural Heritage Preservation Center (BPCB).
"Based on our investigation of the prehistoric findings in Mount Totek, we have discovered data in the form of a stupa relief that has catra on it. We have also identified reliefs that are probably from a map carved in stone," said agency head Budhy Sancoyo in North Kayong on Tuesday as quoted by Antara.
The BPCB team has communicated with local residents to find more information and look for antique items. They successfully discovered heritage items, like ceramics, kendi (clay jug) and even gold later on.
"We have also secured some artifacts, such as beads, earrings, rings, pendants and other items that haven't been identified yet," Budhy said.
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The items are said to be left behind by Chinese merchants who were set to trade with Java Island, but instead stopped by Maya Island and spent a few months there while waiting for the weather to clear, before continuing their journey.
"This is a very interesting fact, actually. Was Mt. Totek a hub visited by the Chinese merchants, or were the locals already there? We need to study this," he added.
Accompanied by North Kayong regency's culture agency, the BPCB team has further secured the location by adding fences and roofing.
"Trading in Indonesia started in the 6th century and went on until the 16th and 17th centuries. So did [the merchants] come during those eras, or during the Sriwijaya and Majapahit eras? These are some of the things that we'll investigate. But based on the ceramics that we found, they came from the 13th and 14th centuries," said Budhy. (kes)