The workers are cutting and smoothing the slate ready for sale. The railway at Blaenau Ffestiniog opened in 1836, to carry slate to the port of Portmadog. This helped the local economy as the town was able to sell its slate all over Britain. The slate industry reached a peak in the 1890s but by this time this photograph was taken was going into decline. The railway closed to slate traffic in 1946.
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