Möhkö Ironworks Museum

Ilomantsi, Finland

Möhkö Ironworks was built in the middle of wilderness in the eastern part of Ilomantsi, by Möhkönkoski rapids of Koitajoki river. Ilomantsi born Carl G. Nygren was granted to build the ironworks in 1838. After him the factory was built by Adolf von Rauch from St. Petersburg between 1847 and 1849. Industrialist Nils Ludvig Arppe modernised the ironworks.

The conditions for the foundation of ironworks were lake ore lifted from the bottom of approximately a hundred lakes, cheap charcoal, water routes for transport and hydro power of the Möhkönkoski rapids. Möhkö was the one of the largest ironworks in Finland and it employed 2000 people. Thanks to the ironworks, Möhkö grew into a village of 600 people. The factory maintained a shop, a school, a library and a reading room.

The ironworks was closed down in 1908 because of distant location and the falling of the rocky ore prices. W. Gutzeit & Co. bought the factory and the forests. After the ironworks had been shut down, lumbering and log floating work provided a living for the people of Möhkö and Ilomantsi.

The Second World War destroyed Möhkö badly. It took away approximately a third of the territory of Ilomantsi. The automatisation of lumbering and migration to towns quitened Möhkö in the 1960’s and 1970’s.

Today Möhkö ironworks area functions as the factory museum. The ruins of blast furnace, massive waterwheel and unique, restored channels tell the stories of Möhkö ironworks. Pytinki Museum Shop serves customers. Several events are held in the area in summer season.

Reference: Möhkö Ironworks Museum

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Founded: 1838-1908
Category: Industrial sites in Finland
Historical period: Russian Grand Duchy (Finland)

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