Industrial archaeology (IA) is the systematic study of material evidence associated with the industrial past. This evidence, collectively referred to as industrial heritage, includes buildings, machinery, artifacts, sites, infrastructure, documents and other items associated with the production, manufacture, extraction, transport or construction of a product or range of products. The field of industrial archaeology incorporates a range of disciplines including archaeology, architecture, construction, engineering, historic preservation, museology, technology, urban planning and other specialties, in order to piece together the history of past industrial activities. The scientific interpretation of material evidence is often necessary, as the written record of many industrial techniques is often incomplete or nonexistent. Industrial archaeology includes both the examination of standing structures and sites that must be studied by an excavation.
The field of industrial archaeology de