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Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 6, page 143, October 1, 1853

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Identifier: DX04160559

Title: Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 6, page 143, October 1, 1853

Description: Regarding the slave guides at Mammoth Cave owned by Dr. Croghan.


before it the Cooling Tub, a water filled basin, deep and long enow for a bathe. The Cinder Banks, a mass of cinder-like heap, dark colored, just below the Forge of Vulcan, above. Lake Purity ends this Avenue. ‘Tis a clear, fresh water pool, shallow, but 12 or 15 feet in length, and in its pure waters swims a solitary eyeless fish, here brought from the Echo River, — the most solitary thing I fancy in this world; equalling I fancy “the Man who first discovered himself to be an Atheist.” This Avenue extends for about the space of a mile from the entrance from the Main Cave. And now, retracing our steps to the Deserted Chambers and Richardson’s spring, we there took dinner, the basket containing which having, this time, been hung from a projecting rock ledge, was unapproachable by the rats, two or three of which we saw as we sate, eating. They ran about in side holes and winding crevices, and though assailed by Stephen [Bishop] were uncaptured. Mutual cigars finished our meal, and lights approaching soon intimated another party, under the convoy of guide Alfred. A clergyman and his wife, from the banks of the Hudson, another woman, and two or three men. They wished for Stephen’s company, but he after some hundred yards and a latin quotation or so, turned back towards daylight and the upper world, I keeping on with the party. Nothing new was however visited, excepting a low arched cave avenue adjacent to, (if I recollect rightly) Penseco Avenue, where crawling under for some space, we procured pieces of ochre.

At the Cave Hotel by 4 in the afternoon, quite a party assembled around the well furnished supper table. Mr Miller, the landlord, had returned, a true gentleman, quietly courteous in everything, and to an accurate knowledge of the Cave equaling that of any Guide adding much and varied information far above their dubiously reliable traditions. There are four guides, all niggers, but three of them are still slaves, but will all, by Croghans will, sooner or later be transmitted to Liberia, whither Stephen will

Rights: NoC-US


Dates: 1853-10-01

Type(s): Diary

Maker/Creator: Gunn, Thomas Butler, 1826-1903

Subjects: African Americans
Mammoth Cave (Ky.)


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