The Yumuktepe Tumulus Located within the city limits of Mersin, Turkey, the Yumuktepe Tumulus was originally on the outskirts of the city in 1936. However, due to urbanization and population growth over time, the tumulus now falls under the jurisdiction of the Toroslar municipality of Mersin. The site was excavated between 1936-1938 by British archaeologist John Garstang (1876-1956), who uncovered evidence of a neolithic settlement that continued to exist throughout the medieval ages. Unfortunately, excavations had to be halted during World War II, and some documents stored at Liverpool University were lost in an air raid. After the war, Garstang, along with Veli Sevin from Istanbul University and Isabella Caneva from Sapienza University in Rome, resumed the excavation. The site reveals 23 levels of occupation, dating back to at least 6300 BC. Garstang's book, Prehistoric Mersin, listed the tools uncovered during the excavations, which ranged from stone to ceramic. Evidence of agriculture and animal husbandry, including sheep, cattle, goats, and pigs, were also identified as economic activities at the site. The Yumuktepe site in Mersin, Turkey is home to one of the earliest known fortifications in human history, dating back to 4500-3500 BC. Excavations conducted by Isabella Caneva revealed the use of an early Copper Blast furnace during the Chalcolithic period. Once a coastal settlement, the mound is now located 2.5 kilometers (1.6 miles) away from the sea due to alluvial deposits from the nearby Efrenk River, which covered the area to a depth of 2 meters (7 feet). Yumuktepe was part of the Kizuwatna vassal kingdom of the Hittite Empire and is mentioned in documents from 1440 BC, where it is referred to as Pitura, though recent research suggests its original name was Elipru. The settlement was attacked by the Sea Peoples from Europe during the 13th century BC and later by the Assyrian Empire from Upper Mesopotamia. During the Roman Empire, the city of Zephyrium was established to the south of Yumuktepe, later renamed as Hadrianapolis by Emperor Hadrian (reigned 117-138). However, Yumuktepe's status declined during the early Byzantine era with the rise of the nearby settlement of Soli, located 10 kilometers (10 miles) to the west.