Museum took name after professor Mieczysław Radwan, a prominent metallurgist, regionalist, museologist and an academic lecturer.
He was born in 1889 in Żarnów. During the Period of Partitions in Poland he was punished for his patriotic activity and sent by tsar’s administrations to inland Russia, where he finished University of Technology in Kijów in today’s Ukraine. When Poland regained its independence in year 1918, Mr Radwan returned to the country and settled down in Ostrowiec Świętokrzyski town where he worked in Smeltery. Among his many activities was a designing a train carriage, that was named after him – Radwan.
As a person interested in saving relics of Old-Polish Industrial Region he was responsible in 1934 for registering the first polish industrial monument – a plant in Sielpia Wielka. Mieczysław Radwan also took care of protection and popularization of knowledge about prehistoric mines of striped flint in Krzemionki. He was a first custodian of Ostrowiec Świętokrzyski’s museum and an active member of Polish Sightseeing Society.
Even before Second World War, Mr Radwan started research of numerous slags that remained after a smeltery process and could be found in an area of the Łysogóry Mountain Range and the Kamienna River basin. After the war he went to Silesia, and finally settled down in Kraków, where he became a lecturer on Akademia Górniczo-Hutnicza (University of Science and Technology in Cracow). He returned to research of slags with Kazimierz Bielenin, an academic from Museum of Archeology in Kraków. A vast excavations led to a discovery of the biggest ancient iron production site outside the borders of Roman State.
Mieczysław Radwan became one of the fathers of archeometallurgy and cofounder of Museum of Ancient Metallurgy of the Świętokrzyski region opened in 1960 as well as a organiser of a event called Dymarki Świętokrzyskie, where experiments of reverse engineering of ancient iron metallurgy took place. It happened in slag-pit furnaces, the kind of furnaces used by people from Przeworsk culture who lived in today’s swietokrzyski voivodeship. Mieczysław Radwan died in 1968. In the same year his name was added to an official name of our museum.