They worked together. Two of the them swing the sledgehammer on the iron nail while the third man held the nail. He held it with two hands and turned it a quartz turn with every blow from the hammers. They took turns working the hammers and the nail. There was a special rhythm in the hammering and sometimes they busted out in chanting or even singing.
Now and then they stopped to drink and to look for cracks in the rock. When the hole was deep enough they started with the next. And so the days went on. When the holes was ready they turned to Alfred Nobels invention. The dynamite! It was gently put into the holes. Before igniting the foreman checked that nobody was in the danger zone. With his deep, but loud voice he shouted “Eld i berget” (fire in the hole), lit the fuse and gently walked away.
The foreman walked up as soon as the blast went of to see the result. All the worker followed a few steps behind. They were smoking their pipes and chat with each other. A few meters before, the foreman suddenly stopped. Raising his hands backwards as a sign to stop. The babbling stopped and everybody quickly turned around to walk away. One dynamite was not exploded! A bucket of water over the hole with the undetonated dynamite defused the situation and soon the work could be resumed.
It is not often I see these drilled hole still in the granite rock. It triggered this little story. The stonemasons work was hard and dangerous in the turn of the century twentieth century. More about this in the post Changes. Hope you like, subscribe and comment. Ha de Gött!