Social Philosophy

Excavating Engels: exploring the archaeology of Manchester’s industrial housing

Dr Mike Nevell
Tuesday, 19 January 2016 - 7:00pm

Since 2001, archaeological work ahead of redevelopment within the city of Manchester, and central Salford, has been targeting the excavation of workers’ housing from the 18th and 19th centuries. Over 20 sites have been looked at and the remains of several hundred houses excavated, or more rarely, recorded as standing structures. Some of the worst areas of slum housing in Britain have been studied, such as Angel Meadow, Ancoats, and in Salford the New Islington area.

This talk will examine the excavated material, looking at issues raised by contemporary social commentators led by Engels but including other national and local observers. It will be a discussion of how far archaeology can contribute to the debate about the issues raised by Engels , specifically over-crowding, immigration, poor construction, poor ventilation, disease and sanitation problems.

About the Speaker

Dr. Mike Nevell is Head of Archaeology at the University of Salford, where he runs the Centre for Applied Archaeology which focuses on landscape and industrial archaeology research, community engagement, and professional training and consultancy.

Mike is a landscape and industrial archaeologist with more than 26 years experience. He is co-editor of the international journal Industrial Archaeology Review, Chair of the IfA Buildings Archaeology Group and chair of CBA North West. He is also the author of many books on a wide variety of archaeological topics (including industrial archaeology and the archaeology of Manchester), and an occasional contributor to Channel 4’s Time Team.