• Wind Cave National Park - Two Worlds

    Wind Cave

    National Park South Dakota

Alvin McDonald's Diary (Text) 1892 - 1893

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1892 - 1893
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Miscellaneous Discovery Records

 

1892
INTRODUCTORY
(To Whomsoever may it read)

On the first day of January 1891 I saw fit to keep a record of the inside workings at Wind Cave, and, acting with the thought, I started a daily record which I called (perhaps familiarly) "The Private Account Of A.F. McDonald, Permanent Guide of Wind Cave". It was attended to pretty regular until (through negligence) it was not attended to but little, and, as a consequence I will be obliged to describe some of any exploring trips taken last year to make a connection with trips made this year and those of last year that are recorded. My intention this year is to keep a correct account of the development and explorations of Wind Cave or any other caverns that fortune favors me to be exploring in. By the work "exploring" I mean "finding cavities that no human beings have yet discovered.

Respectfully yours,

Z. U. Q.

P.S. For the meaning of these initials or any other initials used in the pages of this book, inquire of the guide of any of the Celebrated Caverns of America.

Castle Garden Route January 15th
About 9 o'clock Y.X.J. and I started to the Chamber of Bells for a load of geodes, mostly small to medium. The Chamber of Bells is the room in which the left arm of the route Branches. In the first room the other side of the Chamber of Bells Y.X.J found a crevice leading to the South east. I went in as far as my piece of candle would permit and not only found a beautiful little room but found that the passage had good indications of being extensive. I went in the new place about 200 feet as near as I could judge. The specimens were mostly box work.

The High Route January 17th
At 9:45 A.M. my father, my smaller brother & I started to Grand View after frost work. At the east end of the Diamond Mine I found a passage leading to the main circle near the Recovered Paradise, by making this discovery I am now enabled to make a complete circle around "Grand View". I also discovered a passage leading from the "White Rose Chamber" but I did not have time to explore it to my satisfaction for we had no more than enough lights to last us to the entrance.

Crystal Route February 14th
I been was very busy for the last 8 weeks improving the Sampson's Route & had no time to explore. While blasting in the north Dressing Room yesterday I opened a hole that seemed very deep because as I could not hear a stone strike bottom for quite a while a long time after I threw it down. There is a strong current of air going down it. My curiosity was excited & this morning I & 3 companions took over 100 feet of rope & explored it. I went down first and found a water work channel leading north west on the main crevice & found it to be very pretty but difficult to explore on account of small holes.

 

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March 12th Sampson's Palace Route
Father & I finished the "oven" this evening. I am not a bit sorry that it is through with, in fact I had begun to get tired or it for it hindered the progression of further development for about 5 weeks. We now have the "oven" so that we can walk through it by stooping & it may needs more improvement at some future date, but at present it is very good in good shape considering other passages farther on.

Crystal Route March 19th
George A. Stabler & I made an exploring trip in the Crystal Route this afternoon. Our object was to find another pocket of quartz crystals, similar to those between the second & third division of Crystal Palace. We first went to the north west end of Crystal Palace & turned to the right on the largest circle of the Crystal Route. When we came to the first room we turned to the right, into the passage that Bill Pope & I discovered on the 25th day of November 1890. From this room we tried to find a passage leading to the right & after searching thoroughly, we found no new passage leading to the right none until we got to the farther end of the room. We found had lots of crawling through "oven" shaped passages & one small room, when we came to a place I knew was about one-third the distance between Crystal Palace & the large Stalactite rooms on the main circle of the Crystal Route. We then started to the Stalactite rooms on the "main circle" after we went through two rooms we found a place that we wanted to explore. After following this passage for about half an hour it came out where our first part of the trip ended. We were out entirely discouraged with two defeats & determined to try it again before we went to the entrance. We started back in the passage through which we came & soon found a passage leading to the left. This passage was a little like a crevice & led N.W. & S.E. After going about 50 feet we found a hole leading upward. I went up about 30 feet & found that it was wedged full of rock. It looked very much like as if there was a large opening above but we could not get up so followed the passage on to the South East & soon came to a place that I recognized. We came to a room just below the Sawmill Hopper. We then went to the entrance by way of Crystal Palace. I will give an illustration of the inscription that we put in the that we discovered on this trip

G.A. Stable
A.F. McDonald
First Discovery Mch 19th, l89l

March 20th Coliseum Route
It has been bad weather on the exterior part of this country all day. We expected a load of visitors from Hot Springs today, but the weather has been so bad that they did not come. About 10 o'clock G.A. Stabler J.D. McDonald, E.L. McDonald & myself started in the cave on an exploring trip to explore. At first we hardly knew where to go as there are so many places that need exploring, but I suggested that there was a good chance to explore in the Coliseum Route and we decided to explore there as I was the only one of the party that had seen it, so the rest of the party were curious to see it and explore it.

The Coliseum Route (as it is explored at the present date) mostly overlies the Castle Garden Route. There are three entrances to it from the Castle Garden Route that are already discovered. They are near the places named. The first one is between the Sceneries of Wicklow on the Castle Garden Route & the Garden of Gods on the Coliseum Route. The second entrance is between the Council Chamber on the Castle Garden Route & the Fair Grounds our latest discovery on the Coliseum Route. While the third is between the Tennis Court on the Castle Garden Route & the Marble Quarry on the Coliseum Route We entered the Coliseum Route V.I.A. the Sceneries of Wiclow & from there we went through a winding passage to the Garden of Gods. Here we found the finest scenery in the cave. The roof is a series of beautiful arches, finer and more beautiful than any production of art. After looking through the room for a while we took a passage at the North West corner and proceeded to explore it. We went through two small rooms & past a cataract of water formation before we got in any place that I had not explored before. From here we turned to our left and three of us explored while the other stayed with the string. The passage that George Stabler followed and the one that I followed came together so we joined and explored it together. I went through a small hole to the right and soon found a crevice shaped room that I thought I recognized so I called to the rest of the party & we proceeded to explore this new room as I found I was mistaken about ever being discovering in the room before. We found that the room that I had discovered was of good size and had an opening at the top and one at the bottom. Elmer & I went down in the bottom and explored for about 20 minutes but found nothing so we returned to the remainder of the party. We tried the compass and found the crevice extended East and West. We then tried the passage that led from the upper part of the room & had more better success. After climbing up we turned to the North West and found a chamber about 15 x 20 feet and about 8 feet high. In this room G.A. Stabler and I placed the following inscription smoked on the roof.
Y.X.J.
Z.U.Q.
March 20th, 1892
G.A. Stabler
J.D. McDonald

From this room Elmer found a passage leading to the right and he soon came on a string that was partly decayed with age. I found the string to be one that R.N. Norecutt, William Ranger & I stretched on the 17th day of July 1891. That was at the same time that the Coliseum was discovered. We then went to the Coliseum by way of the string that we had found & after looking through the room for a while we decided to go to the Marble Quarry & explore from there. We started from the West End of the Coliseum & went by the place that Mr. Ranger left a fine specimen of pop-corn work. That place was at the bottom of a small hole that led down from near the west end of the Coliseum. From there we went through a very long low passage to the marble Quarry, arriving there at 2:30 P.M. Here we took a taste of lunch for that was all of it and after a rest we started to explore for new cave for fresh adventure. We went out of the Marble Quarry by way of the North Entrance & after going for about a hundred yards through an airy passage we arrived at the third entrance of the Coliseum Route . that is the one that comes up from the Council Chamber. I had thought of leading the party to explore to the North East of the entrance but saw a passage leading to the West and I told the party to wait until I saw if it would pay to explore it.

I then went in the passage and found that it soon turned to the North West and kept getting larger until I concluded that it would pay to explore and then I returned to the remainder of the party. We had got gone a little farther than I had got went when George H. Stabler noticed a large hole in the roof. We were all looking up the hole & wondering how we could get up there when I suggested that we could follow that long rock and climb up from the other end of it. I did not know that we could get up there at the time that I made the suggestion, but only said so to break the monotony. The rock was about 40 feet long and laid North West and South East, the South East end was toward us. We started up the rock which was about 15 feet higher at the other end and when we got where the stone stopped that lay above us and on all sides of us an enormous cavern. We went up in the room where we could see it better and we were on one side of the it but we could see neither the other side or either end of it. We found that the room extended North & South by the compass. G.A. Stabler & I explored to the North & F.L. McDonald staid by our candles and string near the entrance of the room. After we had explored through it for about an hour we found the room to be of this shape, that is the shape of the illustration. George A. Stabler named the room the "Fair Grounds" and the name is very appropriate for the floor is unusually level and it contains nearly every kind of specimens that are found in the cave. We took special notice of the beautiful Argonite frost of which some parts of the room are elaborately decorated. We estimated the length of the room to be about 65 rods while the breadth of it will average about 5 rods making an area of over 2 acres. The average height is about 15 feet although in some places it is fifty. The Fair Grounds contains by a careful estimate 88481.25 cubic feet. We explored a hole in the North end of the Fair Grounds leading down and found a room lying to the North East. In the South end of this room I recognized a passage as the one the led to the North East and then to the North West of the third entrance of the Coliseum Route. This of course added another circle to our list which is already large. We explored for a while longer and found a hole that leads to the third tier of chambers somewhere near the College. The upper end of it was near the north end of the Fair-grounds. We could drop a large stone down the hole and the effect was surprising. I would first strike the side about 20 feet below and then hit first one side and then the other until it got about 50 or 60 feet below. We could then hear it ring in the box-work and the next we heard was a thump on what we supposed was the floor of a room. By this time the sound was faint but we listened close and found that it rolled down an incline and completely out of hearing. In all my experience in the cave that was the first hole that I could find no bottom to by dropping a stone down. We had no rope with us and as we considered it dangerous to climb down without one we returned to the "Fair Grounds and then prepared to go the entrance of the cave. We went out of the Coliseum Route by way of the Council Chamber. Then from there we went to the Vestibule by way of the Saint Dominic Chamber. There we left our packages and went to see the Tabernacle which is second only in size when compared with all of the different rooms in the cave so far as explored at the present date. We returned to Vestibule and there prepared for a trip out to the entrance. I guess the majority of the party were tired for when I suggested that we would go and see the Sailors Delight they said that they would rather use their muscle to get to the entrance with. We went to Castle Garden by way of the College and Chamber De Norcutt. We went from the South end of Castle Garden to Monte Cristo's Palace & from there to the Chamber of Bells. We arrived at the entrance at 7:30 P.M. We were tired and hungry but never the less we were well satisfied with our trip. I will give an illustration of an inscription in the North West end of the Fair Grounds by George A. Stabler.

FIRST DISCOVERY
March 20th, 1892
J.D. McDonald E.L. McDonald
A.F. McDonald G.A. Stabler

High Route March 29th
At 8 o'clock this morning Ernest A. Knight, William Ranger & I started in the cave on an exploring trip. We started to explore from the Fallen Flats on the Sampson's P. Route & took the passage leading to the South West of the room. After going through a low passage for about 50 feet we came into a very pretty room that was about 30 feet in diameter. After crawling over two shelves on the side of the room until we got to the bottom we found that it was about 25 feet deep & decorated with the finest quality of box-work. From there we went through a small hole in the west side of the room and came into a room that Elmer discovered on the 2nd day of August 1891. This room is about 100 feet long by 35 feet wide and has an average height of 12 feet. The rock is generally bare although there is a few geodes and some very nice box-work in the room. In the North west corner of this room there is 6 or 8 large rocks piled up length wise with the room. From there is a hole leading up about 55 or 60 feet. I could see a well developed passage leading from the top of this hole but I could not get to it on account of dangerous climbing so I thought that the hole would still be there when I got to be a better climber and then I would explore it. We then went to that small hole that leads from the west side of the chamber with the intention of going through it and exploring for new chambers on the other side. The hole is noted for being a hard one to get through but all three of us got safely through that 12 feet of passage in about ten minutes. We found ourselves in a chamber that had loose rock in the bottom of it. This room was about 25 x 50 feet & about 25 feet in height. As we were but a little ways from the Lake Side Scenery we determined to make an effort to find a passage leading to it from this room so as to avoid the small hole that we had just came through. The Lake Side Scenery lay to the South of us and as we could find found no passage leading in the desired direction we tried & a passage that led from the west side of the room. It soon turned South east and after we crawled around for about 20 minutes we found a direct passage leading to the fourth room or the Lake Side Scenery. We then returned to the room that we started to explore from and tried to find a passage leading to an upper room but after I crawled through loose rock for nearly half an hour we gave it up. We then took a passage leading to the west and after taking three or four angles we came into a very pretty, oblong room which was about 40 feet in length. From there I found a passage leading to the west through some loose stone and we had to move several of them before I could get through. I found the room to be much the same shape as the one that I had just left but I could find no passage leading from it so I returned to the remainder of the party then. Ernest Knight & I found a passage leading to the South of the room which soon led us into a small chamber about 7 x 10 feet. From there I discovered a hole leading East and after crawling on my hands and knees for about 15 feet I came into an irregular room about 40 feet across. Here I sent word by Ernest to Mr. Ranger to bring everything if he had to use a pack mule.

When he came we left him with the string and tried to find our way out of the room. I explored the west side of the room while Ernest explored to the south. We both came back unsuccessful but Ernest soon found a good passage leading to the East. Will Ranger & I followed him and we soon came into a very large room which I recognized as the Cathedral which is near the Diamond Mine. This room was discovered the 5th day or July l891 which is the same time that the Diamond Mine was discovered. Here we ate our lunch and after resting awhile we went to the Diamond Mine and then to Grand View which is one or the finest chambers in the cave. We climbed up the west side of Grand View for about 50 feet where we reached the ceiling. Here we found the following inscription smoked on the roof ceiling.

A.F. Mc DONALD
July 12 1891

Here we took a passage leading to the East and after going about 50 feet we climbed up through a small hole and turned directly back into a very nice room that was about 20 feet in diameter and 30 feet high. Will Ranger explored to the left while Ernest & I explored to the right. We climbed up into a hole in the side of this room & slipped down into a pretty little room that was ornamented with white sandstone. We named it the Carriers Roost. On the wall I placed the following with a lead pencil

Ernest A.. Knight
March 29th, 1892

We heard Ranger calling to us and as we could get no farther, we went to him. He had found some beautiful aragonite frost and also found the Bottomless pit. I think that this pit opens out in the cathedral and there fore has not bottom. According to my judgement it must be over 125 feet deep. After exploring around for an hour we found several small rooms that were completely lined with beautiful frost work. In one place within 50 feet of the top of the Bottomless Pit we found a seam of Black Hill Diamonds but they were small and we did not try to take any to the entrance with us. We returned to Grand View and after packing a few pieces of frost-work that we brought with us we started on around the circle. We passed through 2 large rooms that were not named and then we came to the Largest chamber on the route which is Paradise Regained. From the largest end of this room we found a passage leading South West. After we went about 300 feet through difficult passages we came to a large room with irregular shape and about 75 feet in diameter. The ceiling was about 9 feet high. We went on about 200 feet in a South westerly course and came unexpectedly into the Cathedral. We then made our way back to the Paradise Regained. We then started to the White Rose Chamber but after we got into the third large room we found a passage leading to the North East that aroused what little curiosity we had left, so E.A.. Knight & I started to explore it. It was oven shaped and led straight ahead for 150 feet without a break. It then opened out into a small, low room with a passage leading to the right & one leading to the left. I took the passage leading to the left and Ernest took the one that led to the right. Both passages came together in about 60 feet and then I left Ernest and went on to see whether or not it would pay to put a string in the passage. It sloped gently down for about 200 feet and came to an abrupt stop. As there was a crevice cross-cutting the bottom of the passage about 4 feet from the end I began to hunt a way down. I soon found the desired passage and found the bottom of the crevice in about ten feet. I tried to work to the left but could not and had no other show but go to the right.

This I did and soon found that it opened into a good passage. Here I called to Ernest and He and Ranger came with the string. We went South East for about 150 feet from where they overtook me when I recognized the passage and told Ranger to burn the String off for we had no use of for it. Here we rested a while and also noted two peculiarities in the place. The first was the floor which resembled the waves on water and the second was the wind breeze or air was going toward the entrance. I went to the passage that we had just came through and found that the air was moving out the other way. This showed that there was a passage some where near that the air came out of, so we started to hunt for it. I found it in about 5 minutes and it led South East according to guess-work for we had no compass with us. I crawled the in hole which was about 35 feet in length and named it Dago Misery. {Mr. Ranger then named the passage that he stretched the string through the Dutch Misery.}* From there we went * about 50 feet through an irregular passage and arrived at a large room with about the same formation as Recovered Paradise. It was about 250 feet long with a very irregular shape and the ceiling was about 10 feet from the floor. Ranger staid with the string while Ernest & I explored the surroundings. We found several small chambers to the left & also a large passage leading straight ahead which we all followed. It was open for about 100 feet and then it became smaller and turned gradually to the left. We were soon in another large chamber but not large as the one we had just left. We again left Mr. Ranger with the string and I found a large passage leading North West. While Ernest found a smaller but more important passage leading to the South East. After taking a few loose rock from the passage that Ernest found I was soon able to get through it. We found it to be a room with regular dimensions and the floor was covered with great boulder like rocks. The room was about 80 feet long by 25 feet wide and 30 feet high. At the farther end of the room Ernest found a hole about 4 or 5 feet in diameter and much the shape of a well which led up out of sight. Excited by curiosity he climbed up it and found the top in about 60 feet but he had a harder climb to get down than he had getting up but he reached the bottom with safety in a few minutes. I found a hole leading down near the bottom of the hole that Ernest had just came from but it was so small to get through so we all looked for another way to get down. Mr. Ranger found a passage leading down from the East side of the room so we went down it to see what we could find. We went to the South East and soon came into a room which was about the size of the one that we had just left. We looked around for 15 or 20 minutes and found nothing so we decided to start for the entrance. We were then about four miles from it and as we did not have an over supply of light there was some compulsion about it so we started immediately.
We went to the Garden of Eden by way of the hole in the floor and arrived at the entrance at 6:00 P.M. being 10 hours and 30 minutes on the trip. We were all three tired and hungry but for all of that we did not regret the trip.

 

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Coliseum Route Monday June 19th, 1892
At 9 o'clock last evening I started in the cave with A.J. Vagg of Hot Springs & 5 other gentlemen as visitors. Our trip was intended to be on the Coliseum Route with the "Fair Grounds" as the special object of view. Instead of going the upper way to the "Fair Grounds" we went most of the distance on the Castle Garden Route going up into the Coliseum Route V.I.A. The Alpine Way. When we got to that small room at the top of the Alpine way I proposed an exploring trip to the North East. As I had not visited that part of the cave for a while I was anxious to make a trip there in order to keep myself familiar with the cave.

We first started on a peculiar oval shaped passage and after we followed it for about 150 feet we came into the large room that was discovered in August 1891 by Z.U.Q. We were in the south east end of the Chamber when we entered it so we turned to the left to get into the main part of the room which lies over North West to the South East. After looking at the room for about 10 or 15 minutes I discovered a good sized passage leading North from about the center of the East side. We then proceeded to investigate it. After following it for about 20 feet we discover a room of extraordinary importance. Its greatest length is about 90 feet while I should judge that its greatest width is about 35 feet. The ceiling is nearly horizontal but the floor is so irregular that it is hard to get an average height of it. The greatest height of the ceiling is about 30 feet while the minimum in the center of the room is about 7 feet.
At the north end of this room and on the right is a great mass of rock that has the appearance of having tumbled in at some time. This fall must have been very long ago because the rocks are covered with a sediment of that has cemented the greater part of them together. I tried to find a way beyond this mass of rock but failed so I began to explore for other reasons. I looked around for awhile and finally found an open passage leading up ward from the west side of the room. As the passage looked promising I had great expectations of getting over the mass of rock, that I failed to any way through, but all my hopes were blasted when I climbed up the passage and found a round smooth pocket in the rock. There was no h...... out of it big enough for a ...... to squeeze through except ..... one that I came in by. I had enough courage left to try again and after I climbed down out of my roost I discovered a peculiarity that was new to me without exception. There is a great depression or hole in the floor of the north end of the room and into this the rocks had tumbled until they had formed the side of a mountain. I went down into this depression and noticed that the fall had filled it about half full. At the foot of the Mountain I discovered a passage leading down. After going through this I came into a good sized room but waited for help before I made any further explorations. When two of the came through the hole I left one at the entrance of the room with instructions to wait there until we got back. I then told my assistant to look into the passage to the right or East while I looked into the one leading to the left. I went out 30 feet through a narrow room and found a lead going nearly straight down. I went down this hole for about 20 feet and ...n found another one leading ..st. This one soon got so small that I was obliged to crawl in it but after a hard tug for about 30 or 40 feet I got into a neat little room of about 25 feet in diameter. I had some beautiful ornaments of lattice & bracket work and also a very smooth floor. I was getting nearly out of hearing of the guard I started back, and arrived at the station in about half the time that it took me to get away from it. I soon found that my assistant was stuck so I hurried to him to see what was the matter. When I had gone about 50 feet I came across him unexpectedly. He was perplexed because he had found a hole leading downward that he was afraid to go into. I began to climb down and soon found that the passage was not as bad as it looked. The hole went straight down at first but soon became sloping and by the time I had climbed down 50 feet I was on the floor of a large room. In estimating the dimensions I would calculate the length to be about 60 feet while the width will average 25. The ceiling is very irregular and in some places it is 30 feet high but the average height is about 16 feet. We explored for a ... rooms for about half an hour but found none so we returned to the remainder of the party who claimed to be two thirds frozen. We then started for the Fair Grounds and arrived at the entrance at sun-up.

July 23rd, 1892
At 4 o'clock this last evening I started in the cave with Ewin H. Barbour (State Geologist of Nebraska and 5 other gentlemen. I asked them which Route they preferred and Mr. Barbour replied "We want to see the best that you have to show us in as short a time as possible". We went on the Castle Garden Route from the Confederate Cross Roads. When we arrived at the assembly room we decided to go to Council Chamber by way of the Star Chamber Circle. When we got to the North end of Sculptor's Dream I placed a candle in the floor and left it burning. We then went on ... Council Chamber and entered ... Coliseum Route V.I.A. the Alpine Way. At the top of the Alpine Way we went North East through an unnamed avenue to ... large Room mentioned in the ... exploring trip. Just after ... got to the room I took the party one by one and showed them the sight that I left in the North end of Sculptor's Dream 75 feet below us. The visitors were very well pleased with this sight and we named it the "Height of Fame".

 

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Miscellaneous Discovery Dates

On the 12th day of June 1891. The Coliseum Route was discovered, by climbing up in the first part of the Sceneries of Wicklow. Albert Henault & A.F. McDonald were the explorers.

On the 22nd day of June 1891 the Marble Palace, Parlor and Sitting Room was discovered. There was also a deep crevice discovered in the East end of the Parlor and as it could not be explored without a rope, the trip was postponed indefinitely. M.E. Crookam & A.F. McDonald, Explorers

On the third day of July 1891, G.W. Lee, Willie Crookam, M.E. Crookam & A.F. McDonald went in the cave prepared to explore the crevice that was discovered June 22nd, 91. Willie Crookam was let down by means of a rope. The Crevice has since been christened "Alpine Way". The "Height of Fame" was discovered the same trip. Also Odd Fellows Hall.

On the 17th day of July, 1891, Chamber D'Ranger, Winding Way, Fair Maid's Pathway, Chamber of Horrors, Winsdor Gallery and Coliseum were discovered by Wm. Ranger, Robert W. Norcutt and A.F. McDonald.

On the twenty-third day of Jul 1891, the Garden of Gods, McBride's Tumble and entrance from the Castle Garden Route at Sceneries of Wicklow. Chas. E. Holmes, C.F. McBride and A.F. McDonald were the explorers. Flower Garden and Mammoth Falls were discovered on same trip.

On the twentieth day of March 1892, Pilgrims Progress, Knights Assembly, Nina's Cavern, Ticket Office, Fair Grounds and several adjacent rooms were discovered. G.A. Stabler, J.D. McDonald, E.L. McDona1d and A.F. McDonald explorers.

On the 19th day of June 1892, the "Picnic Grounds" were discovered by A.J. Vagg, B. Madden, H.D. Worat, J. Coldvion and A.F. McDonald. (D.H. McVay)

On the 24th day of September 1892 Saint's Rest was discovered by R. C. Herbert and A. F. McDonald.

On the 20th day of October 1893, 4 new rooms were discovered over the "Chamber of Bells" on the Castle Garden Route and near Winsdor Gallery by John Stabler, E.L. McDonald and A.F. McDonald.

On the 27th day of April 1893, the Mausoleum Route and the Mausoleum was discovered by John Stabler and A.F. McDonald.

On the 5th day of May 1893, John Stabler, and A.F. McDonald discovered Colombian Hall, Gallery, Waiting Room, Crystal Grotto and the Blue Diamonds.

On the 24th day of May 1893, John Stabler and A.F. McDonald discovered 10 chambers in the left branch of the Colombian Hall Passage.

On the 29th day of September 1893, John Stabler and A.F. McDonald discovered Stabler Lake, Mamie's Pool, the Nursery and 5 chambers from a passage leading to the left and upward from the North West end of the Mausoleum.

On the 26th day of November 1890 the route, Summer Avenue, Irish Misery and Sceneries of Wicklow were discovered by R. B. Moss and A.F. McDonald.

On the 28th day of November 1890, Chamber of Bells and the Left Branch were discovered by J.D. McDonald and A.F. McDonald.

On the 29th day of December 1890 the Blacksmith Shop was discovered by Prof. Elke (?), Assayer, Harney Peak Tin Mining, Milling and Manufacturing Company, and Alvin F. McDonald.

On the 8th day of January l89l, Whitney Avenue, Shadowey Depths, was discovered by Ed. S. Grantham, Chas. Ostrum, Isaac J. Williams, Mr. & Mrs. R. B. Moss, Josie Moss, W.S. Bisbee, J.S. Downs, J.D. McDonald and A.F. McDonald.

On the 12th day of January 1891, Monte Cristo's Palace, Milliner's Avenue, Castle Garden, Assembly Room, Mound Builder's Rest and Vesper Rock were discovered by Melvin A. Moore, E.L. McDonald and A.F. McDonald.

On the 23rd day of January The Natural Dump and about a dozen adjacent chambers were discovered by Walter Striling Frank Stirling and A.F. McDonald.

On the 10th day of February 1891 the Tennis Court and South Circle were discovered by J.M. Moore and A.F. McDonald.

On the 3rd day of July 1891, Lottie's Pride, Crown Chamber, Saint Peter's Dome, Art Gallery, Sculptor's Dream, Council Chamber, Saint Dominic Chamber, Stabler Pass, Artist's Ideal, Vestibule, Union College, Chamber D'Norcutt, Centennial Gallery, Blue Grotto, Perilous Pit, Crown Chamber circle, Star chamber circle and Art Gallery circle were discovered by M.E. Crookam, Willie Crookam, Geo. W. Lee and A.F. McDonald.

On the 23rd day of July 1891 the Catacombs, Tabernacle, Loron's Highway Pearly Gates and State Room were discovered by Chas. E. Holmes, C.F. McBride and A.F. McDonald were the explorers.

On the 29th day of July 1891 Solomon's Temple, Reception Room, Sailor's Delight, Mammoth Dome, Dante's Inferno and the Reception room circle were discovered by A.C. McBride and A.F. McDonald.

On the 3rd day of August 1891 Serpent's Heads, Council Chamber circle and Union College circle were discovered by M.C. Crookam, Willie Crookam and A.F. McDonald.

On the 15th day of January 1892, Whitney Avenue circle was discovered by E.L. McDonald and A.F. McDonald.

On the 23rd day of July 1892 the Arena and several adjacent chambers were discovered by Erwin H. Barbour, T.H. Marsland, J.C. Haines, F.C. Kenyan, H.H. Everett, A.C. Morri, E.L. McDonald and A.F. McDonald.

On the 19th day of June 1892 the Bed Room was discovered by A.J. Vagg, B. Madden, H.D. Worst, J. Coldvion and A.F. McDonald.

On the 24th day of September 1892 a branch of passages and rooms were discovered leading North from the Arena and reaching to the Bed Room. R.E. Herbert and A.F. McDonald explorers

On the 13th day of June 1891 the route was discovered by A.F. McDonald. Cliff-climbers Delight and Five Points were the only place discovered at the time.

On the second day of July 1891, Becon Heights was found by A.F. McDonald.

On the fourth day of July 1891, the Omaha Bee Office, first and second rooms of Lake-side Scenery, Cathedral, Piano, Silent Lake, Royal Pilasters, Toboggan slide, Washington Boulevard, Luray Dome, Imperial Dome, Nebraska Dome, Cupula, Luray Cavern and Lincoln Falls were discovered. G.W. Lee, Willie Crookam, M.E. Crookam and A.F. McDonald were the explorers.

On the fifth day of July 1891, King Solomon's Mines, The Academy were discovered by M.E. Crookam, C.F. McBride and A.F. MCDonald.

On the seventh day of July 1891, the Garden of Eden was discovered by A.F. McDonald. It was thoroughly explored and on the 8th by C.F. McBride and A.F. McDonald.

On the eleventh day of July 1891 there was a pit found under a rock in the middle of the Garden of Eden. It was explored and found to lead to a new part of the cave. The White Rose Chamber, Bonapart's Retreat, Stephenson's Hall, Chamber of Commerce and Custer's Walks were discovered at the time. C.F. McBride, C.S. McDonald and A.F. McDonald were the explorers.

On the twelfth day of July 1891 the Paradise Regained, several large chambers east of it, Milwaukee Beer Garden, Ruby Peak, School room, Grand View, Snowy Arch and the Grand View Circle were discovered. A.C. McBride and A.F. McDonald were the explorers.

March 29th, 1892 the passage between Clopetra's Chamber on the Sampson's Palace Route and the 2nd room of Lake Side Scenery was explored. There were also about 15 rooms, west of Grand View, a series of passages and chambers between the Academy and Paradise Regained, Dago Misery, Knights Well and 9 or 10 chambers in the vicinity discovered the same trip. Wm. Ranger, Ernest A Knight and A.F. McDonald, Ex.

On the 27th day of January 1893 there were 8 rooms discovered South west of the Imperial Dome, Hollow Dome being one of them and seven rooms discovered near the top of the Toboggan Slide. John Stabler, C.W. Stabler, G.A. Stabler J.D. McDonald and A.F. McDonald, Explorers.

On the 28th day of January 1893 one room was discovered near the top of the toboggan slide and one room nearly under the second room of Lake-Side Scenery. C.W. Stabler and A.F. McDonald were the explorers.

On the sixth day of February 1893 ten rooms were discovered East of Imperial Dome and North of Five Points. A.F. McDonald Explorer.

On the seventh day of February 1893 John Stabler and J.D. McDonald discovered the "Zebra Chamber" East of Imperial Dome.

On the ninth day of July 1891, the Mammoth Gallery Branch of the High Route was discovered from the top of Sceneries of Wicklow (Castle Garden Route) to the top of "Berlye Heights (Sampson's Palace Route). Flat Top Chamber was one of the rooms discovered. Two visitors from near Fairburn So. Dak and A.F. McDonald were the explorers.

On the tenth day of August 1892 the "Mammoth Gallery Branch" was connected with the Main Route by discoveries which led from the top of "Beryle Heights" (Sampson's Palace Route) to the "Imperial Dome" near Lake-side-scenery. Miss E.A. Stabler and A.F. McDonald were the explorers.

On the 5th day of June 1884, C.W. Roe, L.C. Faris, Frank Halden and 3 other persons (all residents of the Black Hills) discovered "Monument Hall" Route from "Devil's Lookout" to "Monument Hall. No other explorations were made until 1890.

On the second day of January 1891, "Coral Crevice" was discovered by A.J. Watt, Frank Lally and A.F. McDonald.

On the eleventh day of February 1891 the Potters shop and a large room beyond (South east) was discovered by J.M. Moore and A.F. McDonald.

The Route (Sampson's Palace) was discovered during the year 1884 or at the time the cave was discovered. The first discovery reached, only, to Devil's Lookout.

On the sixth day of August 1890 the discoveries were extended to what is now known as Giants Causeway. Two unknown visitors & A.F. McDonald were the explorers.

On the 25th day of November 1890 the route was explored to a point a few rooms beyond the Hospital. T.L. McAdam, R.A. McAdam and A.F. Mcdonald were the explorers.

On the 29th day of November 1890 the route was explored from the Hospital to Geode Hall. J.D. McDonald and A.F. McDonald explorers.

On the 28th day of July 1891, the Chamber of Accidents was discovered. E.L. McDonald & C.F. McBride, explorers.

On the 31st day of July 1891, Cleopatra's chamber and Saint Georges Palace were discovered by A.F. McDonald.

On the 8th day of April 1892 the East Branch was discovered as far as the first room by Minnie E. Stabler, Geo. A. Stabler, Mary McDonald, Evan McDonald, E.L. McDonald, Explorers.

On the 10th day of October 1892 T.W. Kimmer, John Stabler, E.T. McDonald and A.F. McDonald discovered 6 rooms on the East Branch and a connection with the Castle Garden Route.

On the 22nd day of October 1892 G.A. Stabler and A.F. McDonald a large room and several smaller ones in the North Western part of the East Branch. Also several upper rooms but did not know which route they belonged, the "High" or "Coliseum".

On the 20th day of November 1892 Edith A. Stabler and Alvin F. McDonald discovered 4 rooms in the upper part of the East Branch and a connection with the Castle Garden Route.

On the 14th day of February 1893 a passage connecting the Stone Quarry with Washington Bower and six rooms were discovered by C.W. Stabler, E.S. McDonald, G.A. Stabler and A.F. McDonald.

On the 15th day of February 1893, John Stabler and A.F. McDonald discovered a series of crevices above the Stone Quarry.

On the 17th day of October 1892, K.E. Herbert, W.J. Kyle and A.F. McDonald discovered 11 rooms on the North west end of the East Branch.

February 18th, 1891 J.M. Moore & A.F. McDonald discovered the route V.I.A. the upper specimen route. Turtle Room was the principle room explored.

On the 19th day of February 1891, J.M. Moore and A.F. McDonald discovered the route from Wind River Chamber to the Guide's Discovery, Guide's Discovery Route. The Wind River Chamber on the "Cataract Route" was then annexed to Wind River Circle. The name has since been changed to Wind River Route.

On the 8th day of April, 1891 J.S. Downs and A.F. McDonald discovered the "Chamber of Frost".

On the 19th day of April 1891, the Twin Chamber, Yosemite Falls and a number of rooms to the North were discovered by Joseph Duhmiel, Oscar Huff, E.L. McDonald and A.F. McDonald.

On the 8th day of January 1893 P.T.P and A.F. McDonald discovered 2 rooms between Bridge and Wind River Chamber

On the 15th day of January 1893, K.X. Herbert, John Stabler and A.F. McDonald discovered a passage leading to lower Chambers and 16 new rooms.

On the 22nd day of January 1893 Saura V. Smith, Mary McDonald, Fred Darlington and A.F. McDonald discovered 24 new rooms including Lands End, Ice Palace, Chamber of Snow, Attic, Avenue of Flowers, Catholic Church and Serpent Hall. All except one of these rooms are in the lower part of the route.

On the 29th day of January 1893 Saura V. Smith, Mary McDonald, Fred Darlington, John Stabler and A.F. McDonald discovered 10 new rooms in the lower portion of the route.

High Route
Discoveries

On the fourth day of September 1892, Mammoth Gallery, Iowa Falls, Pool of Siloam and several adjacent rooms were discovered. Alfred Gere and Alvin F. McDonald Exp.

On the ninth day of February 1893 one room north of "Imperial Dome" and four Chambers East of Mammoth Gallery were discovered by A.F. McDonald. Also date of discovery of Fisherman's Rest.

On the 14th day of February, l893, G.A. Stabler and A.F. McDonald discovered 2 rooms North West of Luray Dome.

On the 28th day of May 1893, P.A. Johnstone, M... Rice & A.F. McDonald discovered 11 chambers off the square circle.

On the 20th day of September 1893 Mr. & Mrs. John Stabler, Miss Edith Stabler, Roy McDonald & A.F. McDonald discovered 7 rooms near Grand View. Frost is the most common specimens in them.

September 23rd, 1893 Roy McDonald found 10 rooms near Grand View. Selenite is the general formation.

On the 2nd day of October 1893 L.W. Marble, E.L. McDonald, John Stabler, Roy McDonald and A.F. McDonald, discovered 5 rooms near Grand View.

Castle Garden Route
Discoveries and Dates

On the 11th day of August 1892 the Philistine Palace and Philistine Palace Circle were discovered by Sydia J. Mc........ and A.F. McDonald.

On the 24th day of April 1893 Wanderer's Goa.... and 9 other adjacent chambers were discovered by A.F. McDonald.

 

Did You Know?

A picture of Alvin McDonald in his caving hat.

Alvin McDonald was the first systematic explorer of Wind Cave. He explored the cave from 1890 until his death in 1893. More...