Digitisation of a Catalana de Gas y Electricidad collection

24 December 2015
The collection, which can be consulted via the Museum website, contains 2,000 snapshots

The mNACTEC has completed the digitisation and documentation of a photographic holding of the former utilities company Catalana de Gas y Electricidad. It comprises 2,000 snapshots essentially documenting the construction of the Ribagorça hydroelectric power plants in Aragon between 1913 and 1930.

The photographs show the challenges faced by the engineers who planned the first hydroelectric power plants, and above all the harsh working conditions suffered daily by the workers building them in such a challenging environment as the Aragonese Pyrenees in the early 20th century. The images are likewise of particular interest from the strictly technical perspective, as they show civil engineering construction methods of the era, along with the earliest hydroelectric energy generation and distribution equipment, a technology that had only just been created, and which was expected to deliver a bright future.

The photographic collection comprises the prints that have been preserved from the original plates used by photographers and engineers of unknown identity who worked for the company during the process of constructing the hydroelectric plants. The originals are held in the photographic archive of the mNACTEC under controlled conservation conditions. The photos are now available in the Museum's online photography archive, accessible from the photography archive section of the mNACTEC website. 

Related links