Schaubergwerk „Gnade Gottes Erbstollen“

Useful Information

Location: Olbernhau.
(50.660315, 13.367145)
Open: MAR to SEP after appointment.
Fee: after appointment.
Classification: MineTin Mine MineCopper Mine MineIron Mine
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Guided tours: L=180 m.
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Address: IG Bergbau & Mineralien Olbernhau e.V., Blumenauer Str. 4, 09526 Olbernhau, Tel: +49-37360-35036, Cell: +49-174-4402380, Fax: +49-37360-35270. E-mail:
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.


1714 Gnade-Gottes-Erbstollen started.
1854 Beginning of hard coal mining.
1924 End of coal mining.
~1944 Adit blown up.
20-NOV-1996 Interessengemeinschaft Bergbau und Mineralien Olbernhau und Umgebung e.V. founded.
2000 Start of renovation.
2003 Renovation completed.
2007 Huthaus inaugurated.
2008 Show mine opened.


The general geology of the Erzgebirge (Ore Mountains) is metamorphic rocks with cracks filled with polymetallic hydrothermal deposits. The width of the ore veins and its content differ greatly. Here at Olbernhau the veins are not very thick and contain mostly tin and iron, metals of lower value.

There is also a small coal deposit in the Olbernhauer Talwanne. It consists of four seams, the strongest only 70 cm thick. It was only worth mining for a brief time, namely on the Bohemian side underground in the Gabriela mine. The coal was transported to Olbernhau by cable car, washed, sorted and loaded onto the railway.


Schaubergwerk „Gnade Gottes Erbstollen“ (show mine Grace of God Adit) is run by the Olbernhau Mining Association. They have renovated several tunnels which now serve as bat roosts. Finally, they have made 200 m of the Gnade Gottes Erbstollen accessible, the entrance to which had been blown up in the last years of the Second World War. There were regular opening days until a few years ago, but currently the show mine seems to be closed. We suspect that this is due to Corona and will return to normal.

As early as 1168, extensive silver veins were discovered in the Freiberg area. Silver mining was very successful and ore was also increasingly sought in the surrounding area. Traces of mining can be found in the area around Olbernhau, in the Hüttengrund, in the Gründelbach area and in the Bärenbachtal valley. However, hardly any silver ore was found near Olbernhau; here the search concentrated on tin, iron and copper. But mining was not very productive and already ended completely in the 15th and 16th century. So people had to acquire new skills.

The processing of the ores developed over time, and with a new technology for processing the copper ores, there was also an upswing in Olbernhau. Hans Leonhardt built a Saiger smelter in the wooded and water-rich landscape near Grünthal, the local black copper was saigered here. Saiger is a local mining term and means vertical, saigering describes the process of sinking components of a smelting mixture with a specifically higher weight compared to those with a specifically lighter weight. Thus, a completely new branch of industry was introduced in the upper Erzgebirge. The fact that from then on all black copper could only be smelted in Grünthal certainly contributed to its success. The monopoly led to an economic boom. The Saigerhütte Grünthal is an interesting mining related sight and well worth a visit, but as it is not a show mine it is not listed on

Iron ore was also processed, and pipe forges were built in the Rungstock valley, which in turn led to an upswing in the gun industry. Gunsmiths settled in the area and worked in the Olbernhauer Gewehrmanufaktur. The quality of the weapons produced was very high, so that rifles for the Saxon army were manufactured in Olbernhau.