Lehigh University
The Vault at PfaffsAn Archive of Art and Literature by the Bohemians of Antebellum New York
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Text for Page 137 [09-30-1853]

              tion of my own could I have made the discovery.   These so-called rivers
and Luke are but deep pools, in the very lowest parts of the cave; they
rise and fall with Green River, though how, or through what cranny and
fissure communicating is not known.  But their level varies not above two
feet from that of Green River, ever.  /      A party were on ahead, exploring 
the wonders beyond the Rivers, and on I should at once have proceeded, but that
my companions could spare but limited time, and wished to return by the stage
of this same afternoon.  So I postponed troglodyzing further, ad turning back
we sought the Deserted Chambers, for lunch.  But reaching Richardson�s
Spring, and Stephen examining his basket, l! the cold fowl therein deposited
had vanished, and naught but fragmentary bread-scraps remained.  The rats
were the thieves. (I then imagined, either that the said fowl was a myth, or
that Stephen had made catspaws of apochyrphal rats for the occasion; with injus-
tice however, for on subsequent occasions I saw rats at this very place.)  Some
laughter and drollery and a few niggerish impreciations followed; and then we
rose to see further, for an hour or so yet remained ere stage departure.
Back to the Main Cave we sped, reaching it where heretofore we had branched
off by the Giant�s Coffin.   An abrupt, Acute Angle of rock passed the road turning 
sharp to the left we, after
duly noting gypsum incrustations in fancifully shaped Giant and Pigmy on the
ceiling enter the Sick Room.       Two roofless huts, stone-built, stand
here.  And here, and in some dozen others, (frame built and now pulled down for
hotel uses,) fifteen years back did consumption-smitten mortals live, in hope
to �scape the King of Terrors; it being hoped and asserted that the Cave
atmosphere might prove beneficial.  From differing states they came, in various
stages of disease, some abiding months here, one two years in dreary torchlight
hope.     But one died, the faith in darkness and cave atmosphere with him,
and they all fled to live or die as might be in the sunlight and air above.
Naught remains but the two roofless huts and the story.       Now we enter on
the Star Chamber.      A long lofty hall, perhaps 60 feet high, the mossy               
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