Churprinz Friedrich August Erbstolln Mine


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    Administration building of the Churprinz Friedrich August Erbstolln mine

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    Powder house

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    Guard house

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    Carpenter’s workshop

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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 preserved complex of Churprinz Friedrich August Erbstolln mine gained importance from the 18th century onwards. With a crew which sometimes exceeded 600, the mine was the Großschirma/Rothenfurth region’s most important employer in the 18th century. The mine was directly managed and closely monitored by the Freiberg mining officials. The technology used here was always state-of-the-art, meaning that it soon became a prototype for a state-owned mine, and also an important training mine for the Freiberg mining academy in the 18th and 19th centuries.

The vast quantities of water from the mine were drained using nothing but waterwheels until the second half of the 19th century. From 1852, this process was enhanced by a high-power Schwamkrug turbine, and from 1883 by a steam hoisting machine. The water was drained via various adits. The mine had several pump shafts with mine water pumping systems (Kunstgezeuge). These complexes included the Wächter (guard house), with bell towers and their pump bells (Kunstglöckchen), which were connected to the underground pumping wheels (Kunsträder) via a rod system.

Also preserved are the impressive administration and assembly (Huthaus) building from 1710 with its later minor alterations (1747/1820), the mine forge building, the carpenter’s workshop, the powder house and several other buildings dating back to the 18th century.