1908 AD

The order to down all tools came in late summer 1908. The miners now abandoned Advent City, and coal would never be extracted here again. At the end of August, the midnight sun touched the horizon, counting down the last mild days of an Arctic autumn. Soon, ferocious storms of the polar night would claw at the forlorn buildings.

Our digital visualisation pinpoints that moment when the last ship of the season had steamed out of Adventfjorden to return the British and Scandinavian pioneers of Advent City to their respective homes. Did they know they would not be coming back? The small mining settlement would soon be dismantled and reused elsewhere. Svalbard was after all industrialising quickly now.

Our fly-through passes the company’s proud claim sign on the shore and the large engine house for the gas producer plant before reaching the prefabricated wooden buildings of the mining settlement. The construction of the manager’s house, the workers’ barracks, the store, and others began in 1905. The piggery was among the last to be erected, while some like the surgery were never put up. The double-acting incline transported materials to and coal from the mine that lay ca. 110 m above sea level. The small smithy was essential for repairs to keep the work going.

You will probably spot the notice boards here and there on which we pinned some historical photographs. The fly-through does not allow time to linger, but additional details will be accessible in the Virtual Reality (VR) of Advent City, which we are bringing to Longyearbyen in August 2019. Feel free to contact us for more information.