Wooden shovel from Wallerfangen
© Weltkulturerbe Völklinger Hütte / Hans-Georg Merkel
3rd/4th century AD
Width 28 cm
Place of origin
Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum
This wooden shovel from Wallerfangen is one of the rarer finds from Roman mines. Though fragmented, it is a true treasure. It is clear that the people who mined azurite here (a blue copper ore) looked after their tools. Indeed, it seems the miners took their tools home with them after their shifts but left the broken ones behind. This shovel was found on the floor of a winze right in front of Lower Emilianus-Stollen, one of several Roman tunnels in the mines of Wallerfangen. It is likely that the miners intended to deepen another shaft but gave up after about 1.6 metres.