The Minett Park Fond-de-Gras is an open-air museum dedicated to Luxemburgian history of the iron ore mining, which has resulted, among other, the development of the railway.
Presentation

Presentation

The Minett Park Fond-de-Gras comprises the Fond-de-Gras, the old open pit mine “Giele Botter”, the Celtic Oppidum of the “Titelberg” as well as the village of Lasauvage.

Two historical trains circulate in between these places.

The “Train 1900” runs on the old “Mining Line” between Pétange and Fond-de-Gras which was opened in 1874 by the Railway and Mining Society Prince Henry (PH). At the time, this line was used to transport the iron ore minded in the surrounding hills.

The Mining Train “Minièresbunn” circulates between Fond-de-Gras and Lasauvage. The association “Minièresbunn” has an impressive collection of locomotives (steam, diesel and electric) which were used at the time of mining to get the train cars loaded with iron ore  from the mine (narrow gauge of 700mm).

The iron ore found in the south regions of Luxembourg belongs to one of the biggest ore depots in Europe and is about 110.000 hectares. However, there are only 3.700 hectares on Luxembourgian ground. The biggest part of the ore deposit, called "Plateau de Briey", after a town in Lorraine, applies in France to Nancy.

At the end of the 19th century, the exploitable volume had nearly approached 5 billion tonnes; in this time the Luxembourg State granted concessions for the exploitation of the iron ore.

The termination of the ore exploitation does not coincide with the exhaustion of the deposit. One of the characteristics of the iron ore is its low iron content, rarely over 30%. Yet, iron ore with a higher iron level of about 70% is found in Brazil, Sweden, and Mauritania. Thanks to the improvement of the means of transport in the second half of the 20th century, it became most cost-effective to import foreign iron ore.