The small town is best known for its historic silver mine, which dates back to at least Medieval times, and was in operation until 1908. In 1624, the town of Sala was moved to its current location close to the mine, receiving its royal charter from King Gustavus Adolphus.
The silver was important for Sweden's economy and the base for coin production. A total of 400 tonnes of silver was extracted, and 40,000 tonnes of lead; with at most 3-5 tonnes of silver during a year.
The mine eventually reached a depth of 300 meters, and a total heading length of 20 kilometers. It is today a popular attraction.
Sala silver mine, main office
The impressionist painter Ivan Aguéli was born in Sala in 1869. There is a small museum and a park dedicated to his memory in the center of the town. Sala is also the domicile of the former Swedish Minister of Foreign Affairs and former Deputy Prime Minister Lena Hjelm-Wallén. She held several ministerial posts in the Social Democratic government in the 1980s and 1990s and has despite her career in politics remained in Sala and is still active in local life.