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Mining Culture

The Mining Culture Outside of the Shift

“With all of my heart and soul, I am a miner. It is the cultural values which makes the mining profession something special. The miner songs, the Barbara parties, the soccer matches… it was all of this which made up my life.” – A. Us, former miner from a German coal region close to the Dutch border

Life inside the mines was hard, dangerous and dark. The shifts were long. While many sources describe life in the mines, there has been less emphasis on life outside the mines. A miner is more than just a worker with the black soot in his face who spends most of his day without daylight. He is also…


…a father

…a brother

…a husband

…a friend

These are aspects which are sometimes forgotten. Therefore, this section highlights Life Outside of the Mines.

Life outside of the mines was deeply shaped by the cultural values of the mining profession. This exposure to danger – which feeling dominates when working in the pit -, the daily seclusion, the darkness, the dirt and much more led to a strong sense of community and camaraderie among the miners. It is certainly a culture of its own, which emanates from the work itself. It is a culture that was prevalent throughout the times of the mines with a legacy until today (Deutschlandfunk Kultur, 2007). Out of these values and mindsets, miners’ clubs, miner soccer clubs, choirs and marching bands emerged – shaping the mining culture and the life outside of the mines (Menschen im Bergbau, 2018).

Find out more about family life, music, football clubs and leisure time

If you think you are an expert about mining culture – test your knowledge with this quiz! Good luck.

Ontdek meer op de website van het Nederlands Mijnmuseum.

Hebt U vragen over het museum, deze website, over het project van de Universiteit van Maastricht of een andere vraag, stuur dan even een bericht.