During December 2010, a salvage excavation was conducted at the Mevo’ot Yam School in Mikhmoret (Permit No. A-6056; map ref. 187779–804/700939–1007), prior to the installation of a sewer line. The excavation, undertaken on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority and underwritten by the ‘Emeq Hefer Regional Council, was directed by D. Masarwa (surveying, drafting and photography), with the assistance of Y. Amrani and Y. Lavan (administration), H. Ben-Ari (GPS), P. Gendelman (pottery reading) and M. Shuiskaya (drawing).
The excavation area was located c. 100 m east of the Mikhmoret harbor. Two squares were opened in the north of the area (A1, A2; Fig. 1) and two half squares in the south (A3, A4).
Initially, topsoil was removed with the aid of mechanical equipment (to a depth of 0.9–1.5 m below surface), followed by a manual excavation that exposed two strata. A foundation of a harbor road from the Hellenistic period was exposed in the early layer (Stratum I) and a drainage channel dating to the Persian period was uncovered in the later layer (Stratum II). Three excavations had been conducted at the site in the past and settlement remains dating to the Persian, Hellenistic and Byzantine periods and Middle Ages were discovered (Isserlin B.S.J, 1961. Excavation in an Ancient Port in Israel. The Leeds Oriental Society II:3–5; HA 65-66:15–16, 74-75:57 [Hebrew]).
Stratum I. Two levels of small and medium-sized kurkar stones were exposed; the upper level was discovered throughout the excavation area (L104; Fig. 2), whereas the lower one was only revealed in Squares A1 and A2 (L107, L109; thickness 0.3 m; Fig. 3). The lower level was deposited on the kurkar bedrock. Fill composed of brown soil mixed with potsherds and shells (thickness 0.3 m) was exposed between the levels in Squares A1 and A2. It seems that these two levels were the bedding of a harbor road, oriented north–south. The ceramic finds in Stratum I included an Attic fish plate (Fig. 4:1), bowls (Fig. 4:2, 3), cooking pots (Fig. 4:4, 5), and a jar (Fig. 4:6), dating to the Hellenistic period.
Stratum II. A section of a drainage channel (L120; exposed length c. 1.5 m, width 0.3 m, depth 0.53 m; Fig. 5) was uncovered in the southwestern corner of Square A2. The channel was partly hewn in the kurkar bedrock and partly built of dressed kurkar stones. This section of the channel followed a slightly curved route and it seems that at this point it turned from the south toward the west. Due to the limited excavation area, the architectural connection of the channel was not revealed; however, it is reasonable to assume that it served as a drainage channel of ancient buildings in the vicinity and led to the sea. The ceramic finds from Stratum II included a mortarium (Fig. 6:1), an Attic bowl (Fig. 6:2), a cooking pot (Fig. 6:3), an amphora (Fig. 6:4), jars (Fig. 6:5–7) and a basket handle of a jar (Fig. 6:8), all dating to the Persian period.