human powered machine - drive shaft - casa de la moneda - potosi (bolivia)

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human powered machine - drive shaft - casa de la moneda - potosi (bolivia)

The giant wooden gears of the minting machine.­ This is the oldest mint in a near perfect state of preservation.­

This photo shows one of the drive shafts located one story under one of the roller press machines.­ The power source was either animals or indigenous slaves (depending on availability).­

Casa de la moneda museum, Potosí (Bolivia)

casa de la moneda
casa nacional de moneda
cobblestones
drive shaft
historical
mint
museum
potosí
wood gears
wooden gears
wooden machine
March 3, 2010
Route Quijarro, Potosi, Bolivia

Casa de la Moneda - Potosí (Bolivia)

This is the old Spanish mint where the silver from the mines of Potosí was transformed into coins.­

The original minting machines are preserved in a near-perfect state.­ The oldest machines were made of huge wooden gears and powered by slaves or animals (depending on availability).­

Later they used steam-powered machines, but luckily they kept the old machines untouched (just in case!).­

This huge building is now a national museum.­

Bolivia 171 photos

Photos taken in Bolivia in February and March 2010.­

Related series:

- Uyuni Train Cemetery (Bolivia).

- Silver Mine - Potosí (Bolivia).

- Argentina.

- Chile.