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The treasures of the Earth: European Theme Route Mining

Coal from European and American collieries was the universal fuel during the Industrial Revolution. Nonetheless technical inventions in mining played a relatively insignificant role. The main cause was the ongoing abundance of workers. Colliery owners were able to attain higher outputs simply by employing more workers. For the same reason they were able to postpone any improvements to the catastrophic working conditions for a long time.

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Abbadia San Salvatore | Abbadia San Salvatore Mining Museum
Piazzale R Rosare 2 | Abbadia San Salvatore | Italy
Abbadia San Salvatore is a town of about 7,000 people, 70 km south of Sienna and west of the Autostrada and railway from Florence to Rome. It was founded in the mid-8th century, and takes its name fro...
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Aberdare | Cynon Valley Museum and Art Gallery
Depot RoadGadlys | CF44 8DL Aberdare | Great Britain
The Museum tells the story of the social history of the Cynon Valley from 1800 to the present. Audio visual presentations in the gallery include films on the iron industry around 1830 and the Miner’...
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Abies Alba | Siele mercury mine
Vicolo di Castello, 12- | 12 Abies Alba | Italy
The Siele Mine, like that at Abbadia San Salvatore, was used to extract cinnabar, the mineral from which mercury is obtained, from deposits within Mount Amiato, an extinct volcano that rises to a heig...
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Aiseau-Presles | Trail of Pit Heaps
Rue du Centre 78 | 6250 Aiseau-Presles | Belgium
Aisneau is a small community about 6 km east of Charleroi which is the headquarters of La Chaine des Terrils, an organisation that protects, conserves and interprets pit heaps across Wallonia from Ber...
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Alcoutim | Parque Mineiro da Cova dos Mouros
Vanquiros | Alcoutim | Portugal
Copper has been mined since prehistoric times in the region of Alcoutim, a Portuguese town on the River Guardiana, which is the frontier with Spain, 65 km north-east of Faro. Exploitation on an indust...
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Almadén (Cuidad Real) | Mining Park of Almaden
Cerco de San Teodoro | 13400 Almadén (Cuidad Real) | Spain
Almaden is a town located 589 m above sea level, 200 km south of Madrid and about the same distance north-east of Seville. For more than two millennia it has been one of Europe’s principal sources o...
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Amay | Les Maitres du Feu - Route du Feu
Rue de Bende 5 | B-4540 Amay | Belgium
The contrast could scarcely be greater: the little town of Amay, with its old town centre, narrow alleyways, mansions and cloisters situated idyllically in the Mass valley, in the shadows of the massi...
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Amlwch | Mynydd Parys and Porth Amlwch
The Sail Loft, Porth Amlwch | LL68 9DB Amlwch | Great Britain
As long ago as the Bronze Age people knew that the North Wales mountain of Mynydd Parys contained copper. Just how much was lying untouched in the ground, however, only came to light in 1768. This had...
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Arc-et-Senans | La Saline royale d’Arc-et-Senans
Saline royale | F 25610 Arc-et-Senans | France
The saltworks at Arc-et-Senans is one of the most spectacular industrial monuments in Europe. It was built between 1775 and 1779 on the fringe of the forest of Chaux, since supplies of wood for fuel w...
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Argentella | Argentella Silver Mine
Argentella | France
The Argentella silver mine lies on the bay of Crovani on the west coast of Corsica, within the district of Calinzana. The mine was a source of argentiferous galena (i.e. silver-bearing lead ore) and w...
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Ashington | Woodhorn Northumberland Museum and Archives
Queen Elizabeth II Country Park | NE63 9YF Ashington | Great Britain
The museum at Woodhorn Colliery houses one of the most significant collections in Europe of paintings by workers who had no formal training in art. In the early twentieth century some miners from pits...
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Aumetz | Iron ore-mine museum of Aumetz
Rue Saint Léger de Montbrillais | 57110 Aumetz | France
There´s no steel without coke. It was only when coke began to be used in 1769 that "Minette" (iron ore with a relatively small proportion of iron) really began to pay off as a raw material for making...
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Bad Bleiberg | The Terra Mystica and Terra Montana show mines
Bleiberg-Nötsch 91 | 9531 Bad Bleiberg | Austria
There is evidence that lead (with some zinc) was mined at Bleiberg [‘Blei’ is the German word for lead] 10 km west of Villach, from the early 14th century. From the late 15th century the mines wer...
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Bad Dürrenberg | The Graduation Tower and the Borlach Museum
Borlachplatz 1 | 06231 Bad Dürrenberg | Germany
The director of the Electoral State of Saxony Saline Baths in Dürrenberg, Johann Gottfried Borlach, was a stubborn man. He had people drilling for saline sources for 19 years. Finally, on 15th Septem...
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Bad Gastein | Altböckstein Montanmuseum
Schareckstraße 7 | 5640 Bad Gastein | Austria
Böckstein which lies south of Bad Gastein and north of the Tauern Tunnel has been important for the mining of gold and silver and for salt extraction since the middle ages. As in other mining enterpr...
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