old roller press powered by wooden gears

Old Roller Press powered by Wooden Gears.­ This Roller Press was used to flatten silver bars, that were then stamped and coined to produce silver coins for the Spanish colonial empire.­

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

Casa de la moneda museum, Potosí (Bolivia)

casa de la moneda casa nacional de moneda historical mint museum potosí wood gears wooden gears wooden machine
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.­

Photos taken in Bolivia in February and March 2010.­

Related series:

- Uyuni Train Cemetery (Bolivia).

- Silver Mine - Potosí (Bolivia).

- Argentina.

- Chile.