The Huddersfield Archaeological & Topographical Association was formed in the spring of 1863 with the aim of promoting "interest in the history and archaeology of the Huddersfield area". The founding members were John Nowell of Farnley Tyas, Rev. Thomas James of Netherthong, and Henry James Morehouse of Stoney Bank. The group reportedly initially met at Rev. James' vicarage in Netherthong.
The first public meeting was held on 8 July 1864 at the Philosophical Hall on Ramsden Street in Huddersfield.
The association soon expanded to cover the whole of the county of Yorkshire and was renamed the Yorkshire Archaeological & Topographical Association following a General Meeting held at Pontefract on 31 August 1869.
As of 2015, it is known as the Yorkshire Archaeological & Historical Society.