Research in Progress Meeting

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Tuesday 29th November 2016
University of Birmingham
Eleanor Blakelock

 

This meeting is aimed at a wide variety of contributors, from historical and archaeological metallurgists to excavators, historians and economists. If you are working, or have just finished working, on a project related to archaeological or historical metallurgy, we would like to hear from you. We are particularly interested in bringing together contract and public sector archaeologists with academic researchers, and in fostering links between the different disciplines studying metallurgy and related activities. Whether you are a student, a researcher, an interested non-specialist, or a professional excavator, we invite you to meet others working in this field and present your research to an interested community.

A prize is awarded for the best presentation by a student (or recent graduate within 12 months of graduation) at the meeting as chosen by those members of HMS Council present.

NEW! In addition to the prize, The Historical Metallurgy Society is offering a small number of travel bursaries for students presenting papers. If you are a student and would like to be considered please indicate with your submission.

The event will be held in room GC 17 in Metallurgy and Materials Building. This is building G6 on the University campus map, the event is taking place in C Block. A link to the map can be found here.

Link to provisional programme is available here

Online booking for this event is now closed, as there are limited places available. If you wish to attend please contact me using the email below to ensure there is a seat available.

For more information please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Research in Progress Meeting

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Thursday 9th November 2017
University of Liverpool
Dr Matthew Ponting

 

This meeting is aimed at a wide variety of contributors, from historical and archaeological metallurgists to excavators, historians and economists. If you are working, or have just finished working, on a project related to archaeological or historical metallurgy, we would like to hear from you. We are particularly interested in bringing together contract and public sector archaeologists with academic researchers, and in fostering links between the different disciplines studying metallurgy and related activities. Whether you are a student, a researcher, an interested non-specialist, or a professional excavator, we invite you to meet others working in this field and present your research to an interested community.

A prize is awarded for the best presentation by a student (or recent graduate within 12 months of graduation) at the meeting as chosen by those members of HMS Council present.

NEW! In addition to the prize, The Historical Metallurgy Society is offering a small number of travel bursaries for students presenting papers. If you are a student and would like to be considered please indicate with your submission.

 

For the call for papers or more information please visit the university event website

The provisional programme is now out and is available on the university website, or to download here

 Online bookings for this event are now open here, or you can download a form here

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Archaeometallurgy Conference 2009ConferencePhoto
10th-12th November 2009
University of Bradford
Organised by Eleanor Blakelock


The conference was conceived as an opportunity to celebrate Gerry McDonnell's contribution to archaeometallurgy over the years, to wish him well for his future career and to give him the send-off from Bradford that he deserved. Current students presented research alongside former ones, but other presentations were provided by his many friends and colleagues from the field. Despite, or perhaps because, of its origins, the conference was not the slightest bit sombre but instead looked to the future, and provided an opportunity for a much larger HMS Research in Progress meeting than normal, encouraging contributions from around the globe.

The conference abstract book can be downloaded using this link.

Photo gallery

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Conference Review

There was an impressive turnout for the Bradford conference with a packed auditorium and an equally full line up of speakers and poster presentations. The programme began with a presentation by Juilien Fang, who presented her findings on alloying and colour change. It was a particularly interesting subject being relevant to current research themes in material culture studies and one worthy of the prize for best Student Presentation. Jane Cowgill followed with a presentation on a particular type of slag known as “Iron Age Grey” that seems to be present only between 400-300 BC. It is thought to be so characteristic that it can be used to date a site. Despite its limited chronology, it is found at almost every British Iron Age site of every size, and despite its resemblance to them, it is never found with fuel ash slag.

Jim Brophy updated the audience on the Nidderdale Iron project, an impressive community based project which is going from strength to strength with an impressive range of sites now documented. Ed Kendall looked at usewear on Roman and Medieval knives. In common with Jui-Lien Fang’s paper this approach ties directly to current concerns such as artefact biographies in Material Culture Studies and demonstrates the health of metal-centred studies. Samantha Rubinson presented aspects of her recently completed PhD and looked at how the analysis of iron alloys could be used to reconstruct economic patterns in the medieval period. HMS Chairman, Tim Young, presented his work on Irish smithing slags questioning their size and formation whilst Susan La Niece reported her recent study of an English medieval jug that appears to have been the product of sideline activities in bell foundries. Rachel Hewitt and David Starley looked at compositional and typological variation in arrowheads used during the War of the Roses. They concluded that shape was more important than composition. Day One was concluded by Jane Wheeler who argued that the impact of medieval and early modern iron working on woodlands in North Yorkshire could be understood through pollen analysis, and that it was apparent that the area was carefully managed for production of hardwoods for charcoal.

Tim Taylor started the second day with a paper which looked at how prehistoric communities envalued metals and developed concepts of materiality when there was a conspicuous absence of metals. This was followed by Alan Doust who argued for a contextual approach to archaeometallurgical projects. Christina Clarke-Nielsen gave an impressively detailed account of raised vessel manufacture drawing largely on her experience as a metalworker. Giovanna Fregni looked at the effects of remelting on copper alloy composition noting the surprising stability of tin over remelting cycles. Burkart Ullrich presented his geophysical work on quantifying quantities of ferrous slags at archaeometallurgical sites. Roger Doonan presented a paper on the relationship between iron smithing and literacy in EIA Greece and noted that literacy and craftwork are both skills requiring dexterity and may be more related than is often thought. David Dungworth asked why archaeometallurgists have dismissed the idea of a bowl furnace for iron smelting and suggested that evolutionary accounts of technology may well be to blame. Peter Halkon updated the conference on his work in East Yorkshire looking at Iron Age production sites and associated paraphernalia and their relation to the continent. Janet Lang reported on her metallographic analyses on the iron rimmed chariot tyres in East Yorkshire burials with particular focus on one piece iron bands or tyers. Reference was made to rural American blacksmithing and descriptions of how to fit the metal tyer to a wooden rim.

The final day began with Maxime L'Héritier speaking about experiments using saiger prozess, a technique developed in 14th Century Europe for parting silver from copper. This was followed by Marie-Pierre Guirado also reporting experimental work in silver refining but this time by cupellation with particular attention given to the formation of litharge cakes. Peter Claughton continued the precious metal theme with a discussion of late Medieval lead/silver smelting slag and their apparent absence in the archaeological record. Litharge cakes received further attention from Justine Bayley, HMS Journal editor, presenting further work on their structure and composition. Patrice de Rijk detailed the ongoing work at the Stanley Grange Medieval Iron Project and the exploitation of ironstone in the 13th Century. Peter King spoke about the politics associated with the development of ironworks in the 1720's and the context of innovations. Eleanor Blakelock concentrated on Viking knife manufacture and how discrete fabrication traditions can be identified. Arne Esplund presented a total of two papers with his second on a two step iron process from Norway. The conference was concluded with Tim Young speaking on the formation of spherical hammerscale before making the closing remarks. All in all a great success and fitting honour to Gerry.

 

 

Anniversary of Cyfarthfa Ironworks

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17th-19th June 2016
Merthyr Tydfil
Tim Young

 

 This meeting celebrates two separate anniversaries

  • 250th anniversary of the construction of Cyfarthfa Ironworks (1765-7)

  • 225th anniversary of the first successful commercial implementation of the puddling process (1791)

Based in the Merthyr Tydfil area, this conference will discuss a range of related toptics including the story of puddling (technology, economics, social history, engineering implications, international adoption), as well as the wider story of iron conversion technology and the broader development, social history and context of the iron industry in Merthyr Tydfil and South Wales from 1750 to 1950. There will also be discussion of the development of Cyfarthfa Ironworks and its people (Bacon, the Homfrays, the Crawshays, their engineers and partners).

On Friday before the conference starts there is a rare opportunity to visit Ffos-y-fran opencast coal mine (book early as numbers limited). On Sunday there will be another excursion through the sites of the Taff Valley in Merthyr, excursion on foot (approx 7km) but transfer between many of the sites may be made by car. Sites to be visited include:

  • Merthyr (Penydarren) Tramroad tunnel,
  • Ynysfach Ironworks,
  • Chapel Row,
  • Cyfarthfa Ironworks

More information about the anniversaries, and ironworks and the call for papers is available here.

The provisional programme is here and details of the presentations here.

Link to booking form is here (this also includes travel and accommodation information). Online bookings are now open, if you are attending the AGM this is free but if you would like lunch get in touch with Tim Young.

Accommodation is not provided by the society and it is suggested that delegates book into the Premier Inn adjacent to the conference venue, as early as possible to receive cheaper prices.

For more information please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Research in Progress Meeting

 

 

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Friday 13th November 2015

Newton Room, Hamilton Centre,
Brunel University.

Organised by Lorna Anguilano

 

This meeting is aimed at a wide variety of contributors, from historical and archaeological metallurgists to excavators, historians and economists. If you are working, or have just finished working, on a project related to archaeological or historical metallurgy, we would like to hear from you. We are particularly interested in bringing together contract and public sector archaeologists with academic researchers, and in fostering links between the different disciplines studying metallurgy and related activities. Whether you are a student, a researcher, an interested non-specialist, or a professional excavator, we invite you to meet others working in this field and present your research to an interested community.

The HMS prize is awarded for the best presentation by a student at the meeting was awarded to William Hawkes for his presentation 'Polishing our performance and winning silver'.

Link to programme is available HERE and the abstract book is HERE.

Photo gallery

2015 RinP prize

 

2015 tour1 2015 tour2

 

 

Review

Coming soon