Open-air mining open-air museum
Although Gotland consists almost exclusively of limestone, in addition to the ubiquitous limestone, sandstone was also mined in the vicinity of Kettelvik. The local „stone“ open-air museum shows how this relatively simple mining took place in the Middle Ages. There are maintained mining pits and grooves, from which the broken stone was lifted by simple cranes. Everything is freely accessible and with a wonderful view of the Balt.
The mining itself took place in relatively shallow pits, in which the rock was manually broken into large blocks. Beneath the limestone layers is sandstone, which was very suitable, and therefore also in demand, for the subsequent production of millstones.
The broken stone blocks were then lifted from the pits using simple cranes to the surface.
Detail of a simple winch that actually carried the main weight of the lifted stone blocks.
The stone has been mined here since the Middle Ages
The mined limestone was most often used as a building and decorative stone, and lime was also burned from it. Lime and lime mortar were a great export item, which in the 15th century traveled on sailboats throughout the Baltic, especially to northern Germany.
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