• Landshofd

Plans of Reykjahlíð Mines, Krafla Mines and Fremri Mines in Þingeyjarsýsla

Frederick Johnstrup 1871

These plans were made by Frederick Johnstrup, professor in mineralogy at the University of Copenhagen in the summer of 1871. The plans were intended as data for a planned lease on the mines to a businessman called Alfred G. Lock who intended to start a major sulphur production in the area. The following spring, in April 1872, a lease for 50 years was finalized.

The contract references these plans regarding codes of conduct in the mines. The seams of the mines, the areas from which the sulphur is extracted, are marked with green dots in the maps. According to the lease it was forbidden to trample down the soil in these areas to prevent damaging the mines. The yellow dots indicated hot springs where steam would rise from the ground. Lock later subleased the mines to an English limited company called The North of Iceland Sulphur Company Ltd but the company never went into production. The company's advocate was Lock's son, C.G. Warnford Lock, better known as Sulphur-Lock who came to Iceland in 1876. The company did not hold their end of the deal and in 1885 the mines were taken back into the care of the Icelandic government.

 

Johnstrup's report on the mines was later published in a little book in Copenhagen in 1886 and these three maps can be found in this book: Frederick Johnstrup, Om de vulkanske Udbrud og Solfatarerne i den nord ø stlige Del af Island. Kjøbenhavn 1886.

 

ÞÍ. 5/50-1871

The National Archives of Iceland