The museum at Nancy has one of the most comprehensive collections in Europe illustrating the history of iron-making, with displays that incorporate artefacts, works of art and extracts from literature. The displays take an historical rather than a technological approach, and show the progress of iron-making in all parts of Europe from earliest times, with a particular emphasis on the emergence of the blast furnace.
The museum was founded by Edouard Salin (1889-1970), president of the Lorraine Archaeological Society, whose ancestors had been forge masters in Lorraine. He donated a plot of land on the edge of Nancy where a spectacular building in steel and glass, designed by Jacques and Michel Andre, was opened in 1966. The museum has a strong scientific emphasis, and its founder established an archaeometallurgical laboratory as early as 1950.