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The Historical Educational Trail “Jáchymov Hell”

The Eduard Mine

You are in the area of the former Mine Eduard, on the working site of prisoners from the labour camp Nikolaj, now on the educational trail „Jáchymov Hell“. The trail was created by the mining association “Barbora” in Jáchymov with the support of the Confederation of Political Prisoners and the Club of Czech Tourists. The famous mining tradition in Jáchymov is half thousand years old. But the glorious mining past is marked by tragic events the last period from 1945 to the early 1660ies. Then, uranium ore was exploited. The Jáchymov was the once opened uranium ore deposits in the Soviet sphere of influence. During the years 1949–1953, 10 prison camps were established here, where political prisoners were forced into strenuous exhausting work in shafts.

The situation of the labour camps in surroundings of Jáchymov (1952)

Jáchymov is the most significant representative of the vein-type ore deposits in the Czech part of the Krušné hory Mts. The ore district lies on the southern slopes of the mountains, at altitudes from 581 (Leopold Shaft) to 1001 m ASL (Shaft Barbora 2). The lowest level was reached in the Mine Rovnost I (224 m above sea level; depth of the mine is 707.7 meters). Mined were ore veins of two main systems with historic names “midnight veins” (north-south) and “morning veins” (east-west). The uranium mineralization has been developed especially in midnight veins, forming up 7 gangue sections – Abertamy, Barbara-Eva, Rovnost, Svornost, Panorama, Bratrství and Plavno. The entire complex is usually reported as uranium deposit Jáchymov.

The Bergkittler ore vein with uranium mineralization (1882)

The ore section Rovnost (“Equality”) was the largest one in the Jáchymov uranium deposit. It included shafts Rovnost I, Elias, Eduard, Nikolaj, and part of mining field Klement. With an area of 3.25 square kilometres and a total production of about 3,180 tons of uranium represented a medium size deposit in the worldwide scale.

Uranium mines and ore sections (1946–1964)

The dump of the Eduard Mine

GPS position

N 50° 22.950', E 12° 53.633'