Russegger IV chamber

A dominating element in this chamber is an old hauling machine – a horse-powered hauling gear from the 18th century, so called the Saxon horse gear.
Originally, this mechanism was used above the Tworzyjanki shaft on level I. It consists of three parts: a vertical axle with rope drum, four mounted arms with attachments for horses and a brake. An integral part of the horse gear is the “kunszt” with two wheels situated over the opening of the shaft. Between the horse gear and the “kunszt” there is a transmission pulley which facilitates the movement of ropes. The machine was set in motion by four pairs of horses and an output of 1.5-2 tons could be hauled at a time. The extracted salt was taken aside, and the opening of the shaft was covered with a safety flap. A special tool was used to record the amount of extracted salt.

On the opposite side of the chamber one can see various chests and shaft cages, as well as carts for horizontal transport (so called “Hungarian dogs”).

The exposition also includes technical drawings of haul gears, the Wodna Góra (Water Mountain) shaft in Wieliczka and the Floris shaft in Bochnia, as well as the oldest books about mining: G. Agricola’s work De re metallica… (from 1580) and F.L. Cancrinus’s work Erste Gründe der Berg und Salzwerkskunde… (from 1778). Over the glass case hangs a signal bell.

Deep in the chamber there is a display of ropes made of linden fibres and hemp used in horse gears until the half of the 19th century when they were replaced by steel ropes. Next to the rope collection there are Alfons Długosz drawings that illustrate the method of transporting people and horses down the mine in plaited saddles.