Banícka a Geologická Expozícia v Nižnej Slanej

Mining and Geological Exposition in Nižná Slaná

Useful Information

Location: Nižná Slaná, okres Rožňava, Košický kraj. Letná street no. 19, opposite the bell tower, entrance from the back of the building. (48.724722, 20.406389)
Open: All year after reservation.
Classification: SubterraneaMining Museum
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Guided tours:  
Address: Banícka a geologická expozícia v Nižnej Slanej, Dušan Vandrášik, Okružná 269, 049 23 Nižná Slaná, Tel: +421-904-153-642. 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.
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22-NOV-1363 first written mention of the village of Nižná Slaná.
1474 becomes a free mining town ruled by the Bebek family.
14-OCT-1584 Turkish troops of Fiľak Pasha passed through the village.
1642 the entire Krasnohorský property was dedicated to Matej Andrássy II.
1900 Emanuel Andrássy Gejz sold the mines to the Rimamuran-Salgotarian Iron Ore Participating Company.
1922 to 1932 miners strike.
22-NOV-2008 mining museum opened to the public.



The Banícka a geologická expozícia v Nižnej Slanej (Mining and geological exposition in Nižná Slaná) is dedicated to the 700 years of mining history of the village of Nižná Slaná. Copper, silver and mercury ores were mined in the form of tetrahedrite, rumelka, chalcopyrite, pure mercury, and silver amalgane in the Holy Trinity ore deposit. The Gampel, Ignác, Mano, Gabriela, and Kobeliarovo deposits were mined for iron ores such as siderite, limonite, hematite, magnetite. The museum is located in the historic school building. It has two exhibitions, one about the local geology and one about the local mining.

The geological exhibitions shows rocks and minerals extracted in the local mines. Beneath 800 different minerals like siderite, quartz, calcite, pyrite, or sulfosalts, there is also a complete collection of local rocks. The samples are from the local mines at Nižná Slaná, but there are also some examples from the surrounding mining areas Rožňava, Dobšina, Čučma, Betliar, Gemerská Poloma, Vyšná Slaná and Vlachov. The collection has 1,500 mineral samples.

The mining exhibitions has the sections lamps, mining tools, uniforms and caps, hammers and helmets. The collection of oil and carbide lamps show the development on miners lights. The collection of mining tools from the 16th century includes shovels, picks, chisels, and hammers. The most important tools were hammer and iron, in the early years the tunnels were chiseled by hand. A collection of helmets shows how protective gear developed. A collection about festive uniforms and caps from the 20th century also includes fokoše, ceremonial walking sticks which are a local specialty. Historical maps of local mines and historical photographs from the beginning of the 20th century show much of the local mining activities. There is a collection of historic mining books and instruments for mine surveying. A highligh is a wooden mining track from St. Trinity mine.

The museum was created on the initiative of Dušan Vandrášik. He provided a third of his private collection for the museum.

The village of Nižná Slaná was first mentioned in 1363. It was a mining town, but was probably named after the salt road which led from the Polish towns of Bochnia and Wielička through this valley. Slaná means salty. Ores have been mined for a long tong time in surface mines, mostly iron, silver, pure mercury and cinnabar. In 1241 the area was plundered by the Tatars, who destroyed, plundered, and killed many people. As a result German miners from Saxony were invited by the Hungarian King to revive mining. They brought new technology and started the underground mining. Many local mining terms and many family names in the area are German. In 1474 the village became a free mining town, with the rights to mine, judge, and elect a pastor and a mayor. The were ruled by the Bebek family.

When the last descendant of the Bebek family died, King Rudolf entrusted Petr Andráši with the administration of the Krásnohorský estate. The mines had their heyday in the 19th century under Emanuel I, the Iron Count, who studied mining and metallurgy and introduced various new technologies. the tunnels of Emanuel, Gejza, Natália, Gabriela and Ignác were opened. In 1868, he had the Etelka blast furnace built and founded a mining colony.