In the 1890s it was disco­ve­red that a mine­ral cal­led kolm, found in alum sha­le from Bil­ling­en, con­tai­ned uranium.

When it was later disco­ve­red that the rare and sought-after ele­ment radi­um could also be extrac­ted from kolm, plans were drawn up to extract and refi­ne the mine­ral on an indust­ri­al sca­le. In spring 1909 a com­pa­ny cal­led AB Kolm was for­med, with the aim of mining kolm at Lil­la Sto­lan and extracting ura­ni­um and radi­um from it. A limesto­ne quar­ry­ing ope­ra­tion would be run in parallel.

The­re was a gre­at deal of opti­mism about the com­pa­ny ini­ti­al­ly, but it soon ran into pro­blems when the met­hod for extracting radi­um was found to be unre­li­ab­le. The kolm mine­ral also had a sig­ni­fi­cant­ly lower radi­um con­tent than was first esti­ma­ted. Mining at Lil­la Sto­lan was clo­sed down just two years later.

Apart from the mining tun­nels in the mountain­si­de the com­pa­ny buil­ding at Lil­la Sto­lan is the only remai­ning tra­ce of the grand plans. A wal­king trail that starts from Sotar­li­den takes you past the old mines and the kilns.

Hit­ta Hit