Ludvika gammelgård & gruvmuseum
Ludvika Homestead and Mining museum from the 1920’s. First open-air museum of industrial heritage in the world.
Well sign posted. Homestead, Mining museum and café open during summer. Old farm, herb garden, mining museum. Self-guided tours. For details and to book a guided tour please call +46 (0)240-100 19. The Mineral museum open daily during summer,
phone+46 (0)240-150 69. The Ecomuseum Bergslagen office: phone +46(0)240-66 30 82.
Tourist office +46 (0)771-626262. Info www.visitsodradalarna.se
Back in the 1920s, author Karl-Erik Forsslund managed to acquire this former homestead, which dates back to the 16th century. He bought it on behalf of the local heritage association and today the building is used as a heritage site and museum. The house has fascinating interior decorations, and there are also historical outbuildings.
But Herr Forsslund had more in mind than this. With the help of a qualified engineer by the name of Gustav Björkman, he started a collection of historical buildings, machinery and equipment from disused mines in the area. Indeed, most of these artefacts were obtained just in time, before they were lost altogether. Hence the existence of what is now the Ludvika Mining Museum. When it was opened in 1938, it was the first open-air museum of industrial history in the world.
This is the place to come to view some truly fascinating mechanical gear, such as a draught engine, which comprises an assembly of reciprocating-rods (wooden poles) that is driven by a water-wheel and has a ship’s wheel, suspended horizontally. The spokes of the wheel can be lashed to the shaft, so that it can fork off in different directions to supply different power needs. The main purpose was to provide mechanical power to the drainage pumps at the mines.
The museum also has a timber pithead and hoist gear, complete with wooden skips in which the ore was lifted to the surface. The emblem adopted by the museum is in fact after a giant water-wheel, which has a diameter of some 15 metres. Inside various sheds in the area are collections of old hand tools for drilling and loading.
Mining in the 20th century was characterized by the use of compressed air and pneumatic tools. The museum has a wide collection of drilling machines, loading machines, wagons and engines for underground transport. This was also the era when low-grade ore was crushed to make ore concentrate, or dressed ore as it is also called. The largest building in the museum houses the ore dressing plant and equipment. There is also an exhibition of iron and steelworks and the technology used.