2 Oct 2017
The Science of Archaeology
Excavations at Hollis Croft in Sheffield revealed significant evidence of city’s post-medieval expansion and, in particular, unique remains relating to steel making.
The large site was the location of two remarkably well preserved remains of cementation furnaces which survived ever expanding development of the city. The furnaces, shown on the 1850s OS Town Plan map were within Hollis Croft Steel Works and then the Globe Forge and Rolling Mills; one of them may relate to the original Kenyon Steel Works.
Elsewhere on the site were elements of a crucible furnaces, Exchange Works (Cutlery) named on 1890s Town Plan, two pubs – The Cock Public House and Orange Branch Public House and the remains of the 18th century courts/small works off Hollis Croft.
Alongside this was a network of flues, tunnels, arches and other remains of steel industries which continued into the late 20th century.
The talk will focus on early steel making, will include boffin names for various parts of the furnaces and materials used and will illustrate the remarkable transformation of the steel sector in the British Isles in the 17th, 18th and 19th century.
Mili Rajic (Wessex Archaeology, Sheffield) has worked as an archaeologist since 1993. She excavated sites in continental Europe, Ireland and the UK. Her current interests include Romans, late antiquity, a bit of Anglo-Saxons and Industrial Archaeology. She gave up on Byzantine art. Mili is an outspoken supporter of human ingenuity, anarchism, gay rights, animal rights and promotes importance of science, grassroots and communities.