The trade of forging is known to date back to at least 4000BC, some scientists argue it even pre-dates 4500BC. This ages the forging process at over 6,000 years old! It’s fair to say that production processes have changed quite significantly over that time but the basic principles of the process largely remain the same.
In the early ages of mankind, fire was often feared due to its destructive powers and the devastation that can be caused if it is not controlled properly. Once techniques had developed techniques to tame fire, the benefits of it could be utilised. The earliest uses of fire were to provide warmth, cook and scare away animals to reduce the risk of attack.
Over time, mindsets towards fire changed from a thing to be fearful of towards a useful resource and subsequently early humans became more experimental of its use. They found that metals such as gold, silver and copper could be reshaped using the heat provided from small wood fuelled fires and heated rocks to heat the metals. This discovery in the land of Mesopotamia (between the Tigris and Euphrates) gave birth to the forging process.