German Journal Industriekultur 4.23: Portrait of four ERIH Anchor Points

The last issue of this year's Journal Industriekultur focuses on the "Archaeology of Modernity" and includes current exhibitions on this topic at the Ruhr Museum at Zollverein in Essen and at the State Museums in Herne and Bonn. On the "ERIH pages", four Anchor Point portraits provide an exciting overview of the range and diverse tourist attractions of the European Route of Industrial Heritage.

The Light Factory. Museum of Energy in Ponferrada, Spain, symbolises a new, promising technology: light as first application in the history of industrial power generation. Built in 1919, the thermal power station initially provided electricity only to the coal briquette factory and other industrial and administrative facilities of Minero Siderurgica de Ponferrada (MSP). This corporation subsequently emerged as the region's dominant economic driver, with its power plant supplying Ponferrada's general electricity grid from 1930 to 1971. The fascinating thing about the industrial museum is that it tells the story of the light factory consistently through the eyes of the people who worked there. Thanks to its careful restoration, it is now considered a gem of Spanish industrial heritage.

The National Railway Museum at Lousado, Portugal, also boasts a reputation as a precious relic of Portuguese railway history. The extensive rolling stock with exhibits ranging from luxurious passenger carriages and an ambulance wagon to open freight wagons, which were operated by a total of eight railway companies in six countries, spans the nine decades between 1875 and 1965 and includes Portugal's oldest narrow-gauge engine, the CF PPV 6, which was imported from England in 1874. The museum's opening in 1979, together with other branches, owes a lot to the Portuguese railway engineer Armando Ginestal Machado (1913 - 1991), who worked hard to transform historic railway facilities into museums.

The Fortuna visitor mine in the woodlands north of Solms-Oberbiel near Wetzlar, Germany, was the penultimate iron ore mine in Germany to cease operations. This was in 1983 and marked the end of more than 2000 years of iron ore mining in Hesse. Today, the former Fortuna red ironstone mine is Hesse's first ERIH Anchor Point. Highlights such as the rope ride in the pit cage to a depth of 150 metres, the ride in the mine train and the large number of original machines provide visitors and school classes with exciting impressions and experiences. A large part of this is due to the dedicated staff, which includes a geologist for the first time this year. He stands for the additional role of the visitor mine as a geo-information centre in the National GEOPARK Westerwald-Lahn-Taunus.

Monfalcone, Italy's northernmost harbour, is closely linked to the name of the industrialist Cosulich family. Together with the local shipbuilding industry, that family is at the centre of the MuCa - Museum of the Shipbuilding Industry. It is housed in a grand Viennese Art Nouveau building, which was formerly known as the "workers' hotel" and formed part of the garden city-like factory estate that the Cosulich family had built for their welders, mechanics, electricians, engineers, carpenters and interior designers. For the foundation of the shipyard at the beginning of the 20th century, transforming the small coastal town into the world-famous home of elegant luxury liners and cruise ships, was accompanied by an extraordinary commitment to the well-being of the workforce. With its sophisticated use of multimedia technology, the museum takes visitors back to the "golden age" of local shipbuilding and its historical living and working conditions.