Juutila Foundry

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Juutila Foundry (Juutilan valimo)
TypeGeneral partnership[1]
GenreSand casting foundry
FounderMr Heikki Juutilainen
Key people
Mr Eljas Juutilainen (–2019)[2]
ProductsChurch bells, jingle bells, sleight bells, reliefs, grave crosses, family crests, business gifts
WebsiteJuutila Foundry
Juutila Foundry Museum
LocationKaavi, Finland
Coordinates63°04′18″N 28°26′25″E / 63.071667°N 28.440278°E / 63.071667; 28.440278
WebsiteJuutila Foundry Museum

Juutila Foundry is the oldest working bell foundry in Finland. Juutila foundry was founded in 1881.

Juutila Foundry (Juutilan valimo or Metallivalimo H & E Juutilainen in Finnish) is situated in the village of Vehkalahti in Kaavi, Northern Savonia.

Juutila Foundry Museum is in the old foundry building. It is a unique museum in the Nordic countries introducing the traditional sand casting method of the foundry.[3]


Juutila Foundry casts products out of bronze and brass. The foundry can make single pieces up to 500 kg (about 1100 lb).

The different kinds of bells and mortars and pestles were one of the main products in the early history of the foundry. The products of Juutila were originally sold as far as in Vyborg and Sortavala in Karelia.[4] Some of the products found their way even to St. Petersburg.[5]

In the 1940s the foundry made a large number of school bells. Five men were working in the foundry then. In the 1960s Juutila Foundry started to make church bells, which became the main products in the 1980s and 1990s.[6] Nowadays Juutila Foundry manufactures about half a dozen church bells annually.[7]

For its first hundred years the foundry operated in an old workshop. The new foundry building of brick was built in 1982.

Craftsmanship since 1881[edit]

Mr Eljas Juutilainen (August 4, 1947 – March 6, 2019[2]) carried on the tradition of his forebears by sand casting. The craft of casting and foundry work came to Juutila farm with Juutilainen's grandfather's uncle from nearby Juankoski ironworks. The history of Juutila Foundry dates back to 1881.

Mr Eljas Juutilainen was a third-generation craftsman. He worked at the foundry more than 40 years. Juutilainen was awarded Finnish State Award of Industrial Arts in 1975.[5][7][8] The Finnish Chambers of Commerce has given him the Golden Medal of Merit. The Cross of Merit of the Order of the Lion of Finland was awarded him by the President of Finland.[9]


Juutila Foundry makes many kinds of bells (church bells, jingle bells, sleigh bells), candlesticks, reliefs, grave crosses, business gifts, etc.[8]

In the 21st century Juutila Foundry has also been casting the medallions of Cranbrook chairs (new production) designed by Eliel Saarinen.[9][10]


Hartola Church in Päijänne Tavastia
Kontiolahti Church in North Karelia

Juutila Foundry has manufactured church bells e.g. of these churches in Finland:

The Venehjärvi Orthodox Chapel in Republic of Karelia, Russia,[26] and a church in Koltuši (Колтуши), Russia, have bells from Juutila Foundry. Juutila bells have also been exported to Australia,[9] Bolivia, Kenya, Namibia, Senegal, Tanzania, and Uruguay.[5][7][8]

Juutila Foundry Museum[edit]

At the beginning of the new millennium they decided to establish a foundry museum to preserve the foundry's history. With the expertise of the Finnish National Board of Antiquities the items of the old foundry were counted. They listed almost 2,000 objects from the foundry.[5]

The old foundry got a new location in the other side of the yard, and it became a museum introducing especially the traditional sand casting method of the foundry.[3][27]

Juutila Foundry Museum was opened in 2004. It is open in summer.[3][6]


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-06-10. Retrieved 2013-01-13.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) Taloussanomat, January 13, 2013
  2. ^ a b "Eljas Juutilainen 1947-2019". Retrieved 2020-12-30. Helsingin Sanomat, March 26, 2019 (in Finnish)
  3. ^ a b c [1] Juutila Foundry, Municipality of Kaavi, January 12, 2013
  4. ^ Historic ironworks in Savo, 1999
  5. ^ a b c d [2] Salminen, Anja: Valumestari Eljaksen kellot kaikuvat jouluna kautta maan, Taloussanomat, December 24, 1998, (in Finnish)
  6. ^ a b [3][permanent dead link] Pohjois-Savon kulttuuriympäristöselvitys, Kaavi, Pohjois-Savon liitto, 2009 (in Finnish)
  7. ^ a b c d Kaavin kellot kumajavat Hangossa asti, Savon Sanomat (newspaper), March 7, 2012, page 3 (in Finnish)
  8. ^ a b c Leskelä, Hilkka: Kaskenviertäjien ja kivenraivaajien Kaavi, Jyväskylä, 1998, ISBN 952-910-451-0 (in Finnish)
  9. ^ a b c d Molempikätisyys, lehmän hermot ja pikkutarkkuus ovat hyvän valajan ominaisuuksia, Koillis-Savo (newspaper), November 19, 2015, page 11 (in Finnish)
  10. ^ Tetrimäki: Eliel Saarinen Collection, Boyschool Chair and Armchair
  11. ^ [4] Luikonlahden ortodoksinen tšasouna, Ortodoksi.net, January 12, 2013 (in Finnish)
  12. ^ [5] Archived 2015-06-10 at the Wayback Machine Lapinsalon hautausmaa, November 16, 2013 (in Finnish)
  13. ^ [6] Seurakunnan pääkirkko, Kontiolahden seurakunta, January 12, 2013 (in Finnish)
  14. ^ a b [7] Lappalainen, Katja, Arkipäiväisistä katseilta suojatuiksi – Nilsiän emäseurakunnan alueen kirkonkellot, pdf, 2006, University of Jyväskylä, January 12, 2013 (in Finnish)
  15. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-08-21. Retrieved 2013-01-12.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) Juankosken ortodoksinen kirkko, Ortodoksi.net, January 12, 2013 (in Finnish)
  16. ^ [8] Archived 2013-10-19 at the Wayback Machine Murtolahden kyläyhdistys, Murtolahden kyläyhdistys, January 12, 2013 (in Finnish)
  17. ^ [9][permanent dead link] Murtolahden siunauskappeli, Nilsiän seurakunta, January 12, 2013 (in Finnish)
  18. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-09-25. Retrieved 2013-01-12.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) Alapitkän kirkko, January 12, 2013 (in Finnish)
  19. ^ Etelä-Saimaa: Ortodoksikirkko saa lahjoituksen uuden kirkonkellon, September 30, 2016 (in Finnish)
  20. ^ Yle: Kellonsoittajalla jo seitsemän kelloa – ortodoksikirkon kaikki kellot soivat käsipelillä, October 14, 2016 (in Finnish)
  21. ^ Karvoskylä Village, Facebook (in Finnish)
  22. ^ [10] Pinsiöön rakennetaan kellotapuli talkoilla, December 22, 2011, Yle, January 12, 2013 (in Finnish)
  23. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-02-17. Retrieved 2013-01-12.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) Kotikirkkomme, December 17, 2005, Raahelainen (newspaper), January 12, 2013 (in Finnish)
  24. ^ [11] Toimitilat, Kirkko ja kellotapuli, Ristijärven seurakunta, January 13, 2014 (in Finnish)
  25. ^ [12] Ristijärven kirkko 200 vuotta - Ristijärvelle rakennettiin kirkko kesällä 1807, Ristijärvi tiedottaa, pdf, 2007, Ristijärven kunta, January 13, 2014 (in Finnish)
  26. ^ a b "Haukiniemen tsasouna (Haukiniemi Orthodox Chapel)" (in Finnish). Haukiniemen kulttuurikyläyhdistys ry. 15 October 2013. Retrieved 15 October 2013.
  27. ^ [13] Kaavi, Juutilan kellovalimon siirto, Finnish National Board of Antiquities, January 12, 2013 (in Finnish)

See also[edit]