a large open container for putting old bricks, rubbish/garbage, etc. in. The Dumpster is then loaded on a lorry/truck and taken away. Culture Dumpster diving is taking things, including food, from these containers, often as a way of protesting about excess and waste in modern society. Word Origin 1930s: originally Dempster Dumpster, proprietary name (based on dump) given by the American manufacturers, Dempster Brothers of Knoxville, Tennessee.