HAUNTED FLOYD COLLINS SAND CAVE Mammoth Cave National Park, Kentucky

Investigation Team: Dave Miller
Investigation Date: 2016

After camping with family and participating in the six hour Wild Cave Tour where we crawled, climbed and wedged through tight openings on this challenging five mile spelunking trip, I stopped by the former cave site where caver Floyd Collins died in February 1925. The saga of his exploration and being trapped in the cave was a top news story in 1925. President Coolidge called daily for updates on his rescue attempts.

HISTORY: At this site local cave owner and well-known caver Floyd Collins descended alone underground in this small cave called Sand Cave searching for a cave in a better location. The Collins family’s cave, Crystal Cave, lay too far off the main route to attract many tourists. He entered the cave with a single kerosene lantern. Crawling through a very tight squeeze on his way back to the surface, Collins dislodged a large 27 pound rock loose behind him, pinning his leg. Collins was trapped sixty feet below the surface. After locating Floyd the following morning, family, friends and local authorities tried in vain for five days to free him. As word of his plight spread fast, help came from engineers and geologists throughout the region. When conventional means failed, miners began digging a shaft to reach him. All rescue attempts proved useless and on the 18th day of entrapment, Collins was pronounced dead of exposure. The National Park bought the cave and closed it to the public.

PARANORMAL CLAIMS: Visitors have heard voices and machinery sounds coming from the closed cave. While walking the path around the cave, several reports have surfaced where adults have encountered the apparition of a man in dirty clothes.

INVESTIGATION: I spent 30 minutes hiking the path around the cave, sitting, listening, taking EVP’s and resting after my day of caving at Mammoth Cave. Only a couple of other tourists came by. I took photos but heard no evidence of voices or sounds from the cave other than a nice breeze on a sunny day. The history of this sad event to find a commercially rewarding cave is depicted in a fascinating book on Floyd Collins including the unsuccessful rescue attempt. I highly recommend you to read this dramatic book.

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