• Speleothems in Miller's Chapel.

    Oregon Caves

    National Monument Oregon

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  • Cave Creek Campground Closed

    Cave Creek campground located at Mile Marker 16 is currently closed due to hazard trees.

Oregon Caves Cavemen

Dad Reingate as a grocery store owner (left) and as a Caveman.

Dad Reingate as a grocery store owner and as a Caveman.

The Oregon Caves Cavemen began in 1922 when a group of businessmen in Grants Pass, Oregon came up with a novel way of promoting tourism in Josephine County. They did this by dressing up as cavemen, pretending to be descendents of the Neanderthals. (The Neanderthals became extinct in Europe thousands of years ago and had no descendents). With their unusual attire, and zany antics they promoted Oregon Caves and Josephine County by bringing thousands of additional tourist to visit Oregon Caves.

Dad Reingate was one of the original seven cavemen. He owned a grocery store, and when he donned his wig, skins and picked up his club he became a Caveman known as the Flame watcher.

 
A wedding in Joaquin Miller's Chapel.

A wedding in Joaquin Miller's Chapel.

This is a Caveman wedding in 1936. This was a promotion thought up by the president of the Redwood Empire to promote tourism along the Redwood Highway from San Francisco, California to Grants Pass,Oregon.

This event was a tremendous success in terms of news reels, writers, and photographers from several news organizations attending. Many cities paying thousands of dollars for publicity would have gladly traded what they spent on publicity for the nationwide coverage that the Cavemen provided for free.

Did You Know?

Old growth trees at Oregon Caves National Monument

Fire suppression on the Monument for the past century changed the environment of Oregon Caves. It reduced the amount and altered the chemistry of the water entering the cave.