Mědník Hill Mining Landscape


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    Mědník hill

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    Entrance to Marie Pomocná adit

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    Stope in the Marie Pomocná adit

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    Entrance to Země zaslíbená adit

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    Země zaslíbená adit

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    Chapel of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary

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Historical records of ore mining in the Ore Mountains begin in 1168, when silver ores were discovered in the vicinity of today's Freiberg. More than 800 years of mining history of the Ore Mountains are based on this discovery.

The Mědník hill is situated close the former mining town of Měděnec in the central part of the Ore Mountains. The summit of this morphologically distinct hill is situated 910 m above sea level, ca. 70 m above the surrounding upland plateau. The historical landmark of the hill is the rotunda-like Baroque chapel of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary dating from 1674.

Mědník Hill (“Copper Hill”) represents an authentic mining landscape which documents various techniques of extraction of iron, copper and, to a lesser extent, silver ores over a period of more than 400 years, from the 15th to the 19th centuries. Around 1520, the mining town of Měděnec (outside the component part) was founded at the foot of the mountain as a centre of iron and copper sulphide mining from hard skarn rocks which build the Mědník hill. Various techniques of extraction of iron and copper ores from lenticular accumulations bound to the surrounding skarn rocks are documented in the landscape. Due to the exposed ground and good accessibility, the Mědník hill is an exceptional learning space where individual historical stages of deposit exposure, from minor opencast mines to shafts, adits and large underground stopes can be observed. The slope of the hill is home to more than 80 shafts and adits, visible today because of the numerous shaft depressions, adit mouths and heaps that cover the incline.

The underground is accessible by the Země zaslíbená adit with very well-preserved evidence of manual driving and enlarging of underground areas by the fire-setting. The most important adit on the Mědník Hill was the Marie Pomocná adit, now also a visitor’s mine, which represents a fairly extensive system of underground galleries and inclines of various age. The oldest drifts dating probably back to the 16th-17th centuries are situated approximately 15 m above the level of the main adit and they are accessible through a cross holing situated 42 m from the main entrance. The main adit which is more than 200 m long leads to remarkable stopes extended by fire-setting.