In 1831 Mr. Franzen, the owner of the Salahmi Ironworks was given permission to establish a blast furnace and a bar-iron forge at Jyrkkäkoski. The early years were difficult, because Jyrkkäkoski was not at any close distance of main travel routes and sufficient labour was not available. In 1856, the ironworks was obtained by Paul Wahl & Co. as part of a larger consortium. A new Scottish-type blast furnace of English brick was erected at the site in 1874.
The ironworks produced pig and bar iron, as well as nails and cast products. In the early 1900s the Ironworks even had its own small steam boat. Many prominent cultural figures were seen at Jyrkkä, including the author Juhani Aho who courted the beautiful daughter of Brax, the manager of the works. The Jyrkkäkoski Works was in operation unti1 1919.
Finland’s National Board of Antiquities carried out conservation and reconstruction works at Jyrkkäkoski in 1996-98. The old ironworks has become an architectural attraction in North Savo. The blast furnaces now have impressive protective structures. In connection with the Scottish blast furnace is Ruukintupa, a cafeteria serving snacks. "Herrala", the manager’s residence dates from the 1830s and the log buildings in the yard area are even older.
Reference: Sonkajärvi Municipality
Sirmione castle was built near the end of the 12th century as part of a defensive network surrounding Verona. The castle was maintained and extended first as part of the Veronese protection against their rivals in Milan and later under the control of the Venetian inland empire. The massive fortress is totally surrounded by water and has an inner porch which houses a Roman and Medieval lapidary. From the drawbridge, a staircase leads to the walkways above the walls, providing a marvellous view of the harbour that once sheltered the Scaliger fleet. The doors were fitted with a variety of locking systems, including a drawbridge for horses, carriages and pedestrians, a metal grate and, more recently, double hinged doors. Venice conquered Sirmione in 1405, immediately adopting provisions to render the fortress even more secure, fortifying its outer walls and widening the harbour.
Thanks to its strategical geographical location as a border outpost, Sirmione became a crucial defence and control garrison for the ruling nobles, retaining this function until the 16th century, when its role was taken up by Peschiera del Garda.