Content

Ruins

GPS: 49°48'53.759"N 17°42'33.541"E – map


TECHNICAL DIVERSITY

Each slate mine and quarry at the time of its activity was a unique example of technical extraction solutions. This uniqueness primarily stemmed from the diversity of slate deposits, their direction and position, and from the very terrain geomorphology. Technical solutions were also influenced by the size of the plot owned by the owner of the mine and of course by the technological possibilities of the time when slate was mined. The same applied for the equipment of mines, which was very diverse. Throughout the Nízký Jeseník, we can see numerous traces of mining, both underground and on the surface. 

Mining sites have mostly left us ruins of operation buildings. Nearly at every mining site there were shelters for winches and later buildings for mining machinery with steam boilers and diesel engine rooms which powered vehicles such as skips, mining cars, suspended platforms, and later cages. Further away, there stood both simple wooden shelters and also complex brick buildings where slate was cleaved. In summer, cleavers also worked directly on heaps so that waste did not have to be further transported.

In the Pollak's adit, we can also find underground workshop located directly in the chamber, where miners and other workers usually laboured during winter and from where the finished product was exported to the surface. Since the introduction of blasting, we also find various solutions for storage of explosives and detonators. Storages of explosives were built both in remote, deserted corridors of the mine and also on the surface and consisted of various security elements, such as special doors, lamps, etc. Storages of detonators and detonating cords were built separately on the surface, usually from fireproof-treated fir wood.

Since the introduction of electric lights, there were also battery rooms where power sources were recharged.

 

BUILDING AND CRAFTS

Larger mines usually had their own joiner's, carpenter's, blacksmith's, and locksmith's shops. Here, the necessary tools for extracting slate were made. A mine blacksmith sharpened picks, hoes and pickaxes, forged chisel spikes, or fixed shovels, complex crankshafts and bearings of cars and machinery, etc. Carpenters prepared timber supports, repaired wooden cars, built simple shelters for cleavage shops, and performed many other activities. In later times, when electricity was introduced in mines, a new profession of a mining electrician was established, along with an electrician's shop, where various components were repaired and maintained. In larger slate mines, there were also workshops for processing slate – cutting and grinding shops – where final products were made, such as grindstones, whetstones, cut tiles, tables for writing, polished products, etc. Administrative buildings had also their typical character.

 

EXAMPLE OF CREWS AND OF PROFESSIONS IN A SLATE MINE

(according to the register of the mine Nové Těchanovice – Pollak's adit from 1950):

Mine crew: 1 mine overseer (which was also a blaster), 3 miners, 2 auxiliary miners, 2 hauliers.

Surface crew: 1 engineer, 1 guard.

Production crew: 5 cleavers.

In total, the mine was operated by 15 workers.

 

EXAMPLE OF PRODUCTION AND CONSUMPTION

For March 1950, there were 377 cars of extracted crude slate and 392 cars of waste. From which 633 fathoms of roofing slate was produced.

Associated consumption:

  • donarite 55 kg
  • detonators 200 pcs
  • gunpowder 2.5 kg
  • fuses 50 sets
  • carbide 140 kg
  • forge coal 20 kg
  • machine oil 40 l
  • diesel 250 l
  • petrol 10 l
  • bearing oil, grease, and vaseline 1 kg.

 

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