San Finx Mining Museum

Una oportunidad extraordinaria de viajar en el tiempo y en la memoria de un pueblo

The recreation of a mining town, with museum spaces and a great respect for personal stories make up a unique space that will allow you to travel back in time through the history of mining, discovering all its ups and downs, its contrasts, its feverish periods and with the common denominator of the effort of some people to obtain the valuable mineral from the depths of the earth. This is undoubtedly one of the most curious industrial tourism products in Galicia.

The mining site of San Finx is present in the universal history of mining since the Bronze Age, with an essential role in the trade of the Phoenicians. In the late Middle Ages, the exploitation of tin continued to be recorded, probably destined for the workshops of tin and silver goldsmiths in Santiago de Compostela. However, it was at the end of the 19th century that San Finx acquired greater historical importance, with the creation of the British-owned company The San Finx Tin Minies Limited: the first tungsten mining operation in Spain and one of the first in Europe. The mine was equipped with the most advanced technical facilities and provided stable employment for 400 people. In 1940, the mine became the property of the Spanish capital company Industrias Gallegas S.A. In World War II, with the so-called tungsten fever, San Finx became an industrial focus of strategic interest. After the war, production normalised and continued until 1990, when mining was suspended and resumed in 2015.

The San Finx deposit was declared a Point of Geological Interest by the Spanish Geological Mining Institute, and its surroundings represent a natural area of great beauty and biological interest. It is an area made up of quartz seams that extend for about two kilometres. Its composition indicates relatively low formation temperatures (200ºC to 300ºC) and it is rich in tin and tungsten, which are rare in European deposits.

With respect to the industrial mining heritage, San Finx consists of a set of workings, equipment and installations that reflect the evolution of the mine over more than a century of activity. In addition to the surface workings from ancient times and the more recent shafts, the preserved constructive elements (warehouse, gravimetric wash house, compressor building and electrical hook-up, framework of the new shaft…) are also of note. In this industrial archaeology, it is also worth noting the existence of equipment, some of which is still in perfect use, such as cross-belt magnetic separators, a tin smelting furnace and a compressor, among others.

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