In the presentation of the mining history of northern Östergötland the hut of Gruvstugan is central. There you can see models of scenery and constructions of houses from the 17th century and of old machines used in the mining.
There are also samples of minerals and rocks containing iron-ore from this part of Sweden.
There are two walking tours starting at Gruvstugan: a shorter one of 1 kilometre marked with yellow colour, running around the pit of Storgruvan, and another walk of 4 kilometres marked with red colour which takes you through the deep forest to interesting places where you can see traces of the mining in the area.
The leaflet you are holding in your hand tells the story of the local mining in pictures showing different situations of mining farmers' life and work.
In this part of Sweden mining in an organised form is known 700 years back. People living in the forests worked the mines, melted the ore and exchanged it for rye and oats at the local markets visited by farmers coming from the plains and the agricultural area. Bread was our ancestors' most important food, but the farming land in the forest area was not enough to feed the people living there.
In the 17th century Dutch finance families were called in to Sweden to develop the mining work. The leading financier Louis de Geer came up with the idea to found cannons of iron ore instead of using bronze which had been the most common material for cannons earlier.
Alla gruvor är numera vattenfyllda. Inflödet av vatten var genom historien bergsböndernas största problem.
In Sweden everyone is allowed to wander about free in forests and in the open landscape. Here at Gruvstugan you are also welcome inside the gate and to use the parking area, the tables and seats and to visit the upper floor of Gruvstugan to see the exhibition of different minerals from the area.
In the old cellar you will get an idea of the working conditions in the mines of the 17th century from a model in natural size of the working space, and by the light of a torch you can see submarine photos from the mines now filled with water.
I äldsta tider gjorde bergsbönderna smidbart järn direkt ur smältorna.
När bergslagen upphörde på 1820-talet styckades bergsallmänningarna upp, såldes på auktion och uppodlades.Torpet Skogalund är en sådan nyodling från år 1840.