A term coined by Donald Dudley in the 1950s to describe an emergent branch of archaeology that at the time was explicitly concerned with the archaeology of industry, with a particular focus on the surviving monuments and structures of the Industrial Revolution and later. Since then its scope has broadened to cover an interest in the industry and communications of any period in the past. Because of its interests there is a substantial input from related subjects such as engineering, architecture, building craftsmen, and experts in particular fields of craft or production (e.g. mining, metalworking, shipbuilding, and weaving). Although it shares many methods of fieldwork with other areas of archaeology its overall aims remain grounded in description and investigation and there is relatively little use of general archaeological theory to develop insights into the meaning and wider social implications of the material remains.
Subjects: Archaeology — British History.