The Cobalt Works and Mines in Norway


In 1772, a miner called Witloch found cobalt in Modum. This was the beginning of an industrial fairytale. The first half of the 1800s the Cobalt Works was the most modern and successful mining and refining cobalt industry in Europe.

The Cobalt Works and Mines in Norway met an amazing 80% of the world’s demand for cobalt blue pigment, which was used for coloring porcelain and glass.

The Royal Cobalt Works of Modum, Norway was established in 1773 to extract ore from the cobalt mines. The cobalt was used in the production of cobalt blue pigment for the world’s porcelain and glass industry.

Today it is a museum stretching 8 km (nearly five miles) mixing art, culture and beautiful nature, offering recreation and experiences for all generations with:

  • Daily guided tours in the mines from the 19th century
  • The mining museums show the mining technology????????
  • Hiking areas around the quarries with great viewpoints
  • Cheese matured in the mine
  • Koboltkoia – The Norwegian Trekking Association’s cabin at the Cobolt Mines????????
  • Three new art exhibitions every year
  • Six exciting museum shops with many specialities and Scandinavia’s best selection of cobolt blue glass products????????
  • Three inviting cafés where traditional homemade Norwegian dishes are served
  • Haugfossen waterfalls (with its 39 m drop and the source of hydroelectric power), scenic viewpoints by the Cobalt Works????????

Be sure to visit The Th. Kittelsen Museum. Theordor Kittelsen (1857 – 1914) was one of his time’s most interesting and beloved Norwegian artists. His magnificent interpretations of nature, forest, mountains and trolls are presented with authentic works in oil, mixed techniques, watercolors, drawings and personal belongings.



All Photos: Tor Kjolberg