Rolava, Sokolov dist., Karlovy Vary Region

Mining plant and prisoner of war camp

(Second World War)

Panoramatic picture of the ore treatment plant.

Panoramatic picture of the ore treatment plant.

Photo Z. Kačerová, 2014.

Remnants of a mining plant and prisoner of war camp of the Second World War, an impressive, yet so far publicly unknown memorial to slave labour. The Ore Mountains became a major area for mining non-ferrous metals by the Middle Ages at the latest. Tin and tungsten were already important in the war economy of the First World War; in 1940 underground mining operations began and a camp was created for French and (later) especially Soviet prisoners. After the war, both the personnel and prisoners fled. The industrial facilities and machines were taken over by the ‘Rudné doly Příbram’ company and transferred to the Příbram region, where they were used for ore extraction during the following years. The site also serves as a model example of the way archaeological sites are formed, including the varied decay of different types of built structures.

References: Rojík 2000; SOA Plzeň, f. Cínové doly Rolava.

Navigation points: N 50°23'49.01", E 12°37'48.43".

Map notes: A – mine with processing area; B – POW camp; C – deserted village of Rolava (Sauersack); 1 – gatehouse; 2 – stables; 3 – administrative building with labs; 4 – tin warehouse with loading ramp; 5 – forge with locksmith workshop; 6 – miners’ locker room and washroom; 7 – compressor room with concrete-foundations for machinery; 8 – substation; 9 – mining tower above shaft; 10 – ore mill; 11 – silos for the storage of ground ore; 12 – ore treatment plant; 13 – sludge condenser; 14 – loading ramp at truck turnabout; 15 – delousing station; 16 – relief edge demarcating the original area of the POW camp; 17 – remains of simple constructions; 18 – trenches for uncompleted sewerage line; 19 – spillway for drainage of surface water. Map symbols are available in the Downloads section.

Selected fulltext articles and reports for further reading. Complete bibliographical records are available in the Downloads section as the List of publications.

Archeologický atlas Čech – Rolava