Oven Room Smokestacks
These five 50-foot high smokestacks were designed as vents for the ovens, or ornos (OR nos). The ovens melted the gold ore so it could be shaped into bars. When in use, the ovens' temperature was over 200 degrees Fahrenheit. The constant smoke from the melting process left thick soot on the walls of the smokestacks, which required them to be cleaned frequently.
You will notice that the stacks are very narrow. Children were often sent to clean the stacks, as their size afforded them more mobility within the small confines. After several accidents had occurred and a few children lost their lives here, workers believed these stacks were haunted by their ghosts.
Long after the mine was closed, childlike voices pleading for help and crying have been heard from the stacks when no one was present. In recent years, several villagers of Tlalpujahua have reported seeing smoke coming from these stacks. When they investigated the stacks, there were no signs that they had been used. Some villagers believe that these stacks are still haunted--both by the ghosts of the children that died here, and by some unknown force causing the ovens to light when no one is around.