Zabytkowa Kopalnia Srebra w Tarnowskich Górach

Muzeum w Tarnowskich Gorach - Ancient Mining Museum


Useful Information

Location: Tarnowskie Góry, ul. Szczesc Boze 52. South of the city center.
(50.425455, 18.849452)
Open: JAN to MAY Tue-Sun 9-15.
JUN to AUG Tue-Fri 9-15, Sat, Sun 9-17.
SEP to DEC Tue-Sun 9-15.
Foreign language tours: after appointment.
Closed 01-JAN, 06-JAN, Easter Sunday, 01-NOV, 24-26-DEC, 31-DEC.
[2021]
Fee: JUL to AUG: Adults PLN 45, Children (2-16) PLN 37, Children (0-1) free, Students (-16) PLN 37, Seniors (65+) PLN 37, Disabled PLN 37, Family (2+1) PLN 119.
SEP to JUN: Adults PLN 43, Children (2-16) PLN 35, Children (0-1) free, Students (-16) PLN 35, Seniors (65+) PLN 35, Disabled PLN 35, Family (2+1) PLN 113.
Foreign language tours:
JUL to AUG: Adults PLN 58, Children (2-16) PLN 48, Children (0-1) free, Students (-16) PLN 48, Seniors (65+) PLN 48, Disabled PLN 48.
SEP to JUN: Adults PLN 53, Children (2-16) PLN 43, Children (0-1) free, Students (-16) PLN 43, Seniors (65+) PLN 43, Disabled PLN 43.
Package with Black Trout Adit.
JUL to AUG: Adults PLN 70, Children (2-16) PLN 57, Children (0-1) free, Students (-16) PLN 57, Seniors (65+) PLN 57, Disabled PLN 57.
SEP to JUN: Adults PLN 66, Children (2-16) PLN 54, Children (0-1) free, Students (-16) PLN 54, Seniors (65+) PLN 54, Disabled PLN 54.
[2021]
Classification: MineLead Mine MineZinc Mine MineSilver Mine
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Dimension: T=10 °C.
Guided tours: L=1,740 m, VR=40 m, D=90 min. Boat: L=270 m. Max=45.
Black Trout Adit: L=600 m, VR=30 m, D=60 min.
Foreign language tours after appointment Deutsch - German русский - Russian Česky - Czech Español - Spanish
Photography:  
Accessibility: yes, special tour
Bibliography:  
Address: Historic Silver Mine, ul. Szczęść Boże 81, 42-600 Tarnowskie Góry, Tel: +48-32-285-4996. E-mail:
Association of Tarnowskich Gory - Tourist service, 42-600 Tarnowskich Gory, ul Gliwicka 2, Tel/Fax: +48-32-285-4996 or +48-32-285-2981.
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.

History

1526 Lord of the manor Prince Johann the Good grants the town of Tarnowskie Góry a town charter.
1528 Lord of the manor Prince Johann the Good issues the Ordunek Gorny, one of the first European mining laws.
17th century Downfall of mining due to 30 Years War and the plague.
18th cty mining revived by discovery of new ore.
1788 one of the first steam engines in Europe installed for the drainage of the mines.
1912 end of mining.
1976 opened to the public.
2017 inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Description

The Zabytkowa Kopalnia Srebra (Historic Silver Mine) located in Tarnowskie Góry in Silesia was lately added to the UNESCO World Heritage List [2017]. The mine is located in the area which, before World War II, was German and called Oberschlesien (Upper Silesia), the town was named Tarnowitz at that time. That's the era when the silver mine was actually a working mine, from the 17th to 19th century. At this time the Silesian plateau was one of the main mining areas of central Europe.

The main feature at the Tarnowskie Góry mines is the underground water management system, which was developed by the miners out of need. The terrain was flat, gently undulating at an elevation between 270 m and 300 m asl. Medieval mines used adits to drain the mine by gravity, a tunnel was dug from a deep valley nearby, which was slowly but continually going uphill. When it reached the mine all water could flow out, just by gravity. But here was no deep valley, it was necessary to pump the water out of the mine without engines, like diesels or even steam engines, which were invented much later. What they did was using water power, which was restricted too, because of the lack of relief there were not many places where a waterwheel could be installed. And finally, the worst, Tarnowskie Góry experienced up to three times the volume of water inflow compared to other major European metal mines at the time. The mine collected water from a huge area, the tunnels worked like collectors.

Any mine visit starts at the Mining Museum which is located inside the pithead building. Then the visitors are equipped with helmets for the underground tour- A mine elevator goes down 40 m the Angel mine shaft into the mine. Mine tunnels, transport galleries and huge chambers of Friedrich King’s Ore Mine from the turn of the 19th century. This part was created from 1784 onward, because of the high age there is a passage which is only 140 cm high and requires stooping. The tour connects three former mine shafts: Angel, Viper and God Bless. The adit between God Bless and Viper shafts is flooded by ground water, the tour is made by boat. The tour is offered in several foreign languages, but only after appointment at least 2 days in advance. This is necessary to make sure a guide speaking the required language is available. The mine tour may be completed by ride on the narrow-gauge mine railway.

In addition to the normal tour it is possible to make an appointment of a package with Sztolnia Czarnego Pstrąga (Black Trout Adit). This tour takes place at a different place nearby. Visitors descend on a spiral staircase 30 m down Sywester Adit, then a 600 m boat ride through Black Trout Adit and back to the surface on a spiral staircase 20 m through Ewa Shaft. This tour is offered only for groups. The exit of the adit and the subsequent canal were renovated some years ago and are accessible without restrictions.

Lead and Silver ores were mined here during the 17th to 19th centuries. The tourist route takes you on a journey 40 m under the ground along a 1700 m long passage which includes a 270 m boat ride. On the surface there is an interesting collection of old mining machinery and brightly painted old railway engines which one website describes as "garish colours".


Text by Tony Oldham (2002). With kind permission.