Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Floyd Collins stuck in a cave....1925.

 Floyd Collins hoped to find another entrance to the Mammoth Caves or possibly a new cave along the road to the Mammoth Caves and to draw some of the visitors to them.

On January 30, 1925, Collins managed to squeeze through several narrow passageways; he claimed he had discovered a large chamber, though this was never verified. Because his lamp was dying, he had to leave quickly before exploring the chamber. He became trapped in a small passage on his way out. He accidentally knocked over his lamp, putting out the light, and in the dark he dislodged a rock from the ceiling, pinning his left leg.

After being found the next day by friends, crackers were taken to him, and an electric light was run down the passage to provide him light and some warmth. Collins survived for over a week while rescue efforts were made: when he was finally reached  he was already dead from exposure.  They left his body in place and filled the shaft with debris. A doctor estimated he had died three or four days before he was reached, with February 13 the most likely date.

Two early radio stations gave updates about Floyd Collin's rescue.  This was a time when early radio stations had the power to "telescope" a case into one that played out on the national stage.