Mining in the Siegerland region has a history spanning more than 2,500 years. Traces of iron smelting during the early Iron Age (around 600 BC) have been unearthed. Without doubt, mining of the iron ore typical of Siegerland enjoyed its heyday in the 19th century as industrialisation gained pace.
The most important drainage tunnel in the district (and at over 7,500 metres, also the longest) was, and remains, the ‘Reinhold Forster Erbstollen’. The tunnel started a new life as an exhibition mine in 1983, impressively showcasing the absorbing underground world and evoking memories of a branch of industry that was once vitally important.
In the company of professional guides, visitors enter an underground tunnel system more than 200 years old to discover the tools used and the mining and extraction methods applied across various mining eras. Former stables that once accommodated draught animals now house an incredibly comprehensive collection of minerals. Historical and recent films also reveal how and why the tunnel closed down as early as 1902, shortly after the plant’s machine shafts had been connected to the Eisern-Siegen railway line.
Reinhold-Forster-Erbstollen exhibition mine
Tel. 0271 354899