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On the north side of Adventfjord, opposite Longyearbyen, are the remains of Hiorthamn, a small mining settlement from the early 20th century. The British company The Spitsbergen Coal and Trading Company had aquired the mining rights already in 1902 and started mining in 1904 in Advent City, but had to give up after only a few years.

Hiorthhamn in the polar night

First some impressions from the polar night (early January), with the moon on the sky and Longyearbyen’s big city lights on the other side of the fjord 🙂

The Spitsbergen Coal and Trading Company started activities in Hiorthhamn in 1917. Some of the old buildings from Advent City were moved to Hiorthhamn. The actual coal mine is high up on the slope of Hiorthfjellet.

But mining was abandoned again already in 1921. A few attempts were made to revive it, but 1940 was the last year of the final activities in Hiorthhamn.

Some of the buildings still exist. The large coal shipping facility next to the fjord is the most obvious one and a fascinating bit of old technology and architecture. This is where the first series of panorama images if from.

Hiorthhamn: coal shipping facility (“first floor”)

Hiorthhamn: coal shipping facility (“second floor”)

Here we are on the second floor of the coal shipping facility:

Hiorthhamn: blacksmith’s shop

The blacksmith’s shop was right next to the coal shipping facility:


last modification: 2020-09-17 · copyright: Rolf Stange