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Cave-In-Rock in Hardin County, Illinois — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

Geologic Wonder

 
 
Geologic Wonder Marker image. Click for full size.
By TeamOHE, January 26, 2020
1. Geologic Wonder Marker
Inscription.  
The impressive limestone cave located along the Ohio River is one of the most compelling features of Cave-in-Rock State Park. With a reputation as a robber's den and outlaw hideout, the cave looms large in popular folk tales of the Illinois frontier.

Mystery and Intrigue
Although no evidence exists that can directly tie this cave to nefarious criminals such as the ruthless Mason gang or the. murderous Harpe Brothers, who operated in this area during the late 1700s and early 180os, it's possible that opportunists who preyed upon lone travelers took shelter in the cave or lured people here so they could rob them in the dark.

While we can only speculate about these sensational stories, we do know for a fact that by the mid-1800s, pioneers heading west stopped at the cave to rest and that steamboats docked nearby so tourists could visit this intriguing cave.

1729
Discovered

The first European explorer to encounter this cave was M. De Lery of France, who came here in 1729 De Lery named it caverne danse Le Roc

1864- 1865
Mason Gang

Robber Samuel
Geologic Wonder Marker image. Click for full size.
By TeamOHE, January 26, 2020
2. Geologic Wonder Marker
Mason and his gang became infamous in the late 19th century for pretending to offer guidance to lost travelers Some victims did not survive the Mason gang's offers of "help"

Mid-Nineteenth Century
Robbery on the High "River"

Before the mid-nineteenth century, lone travelers risked robbery or even death when floating with valuable goods along the Ohio river. 1929
Early Beginnings

In 1929, the State of Illinois acquired 64 5 acres for a park. The surrounding forest and hills joined with the rugged bluffs along the river to become 204 acre Cave in Rock State Park. 1962
Featured in a Film

The epic 1962 blockbuster. How The West Was Won includes a scene filmed at the cave.
 
Erected by Illinois Natural Resources.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Arts, Letters, MusicEntertainmentIndustry & CommerceNatural Features.
 
Location. 37° 28.033′ N, 88° 9.583′ W. Marker is in Cave-In-Rock, Illinois, in Hardin County. Marker is on Park Avenue 0.1 miles east of East Park Avenue, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 420 Park Ave, Cave in Rock IL 62919, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 10 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Lewis and Clark in Illinois (approx. 0.4 miles
Geologic Wonder Marker image. Click for full size.
By TeamOHE, January 26, 2020
3. Geologic Wonder Marker
away); The Cave (approx. 0.4 miles away); Civil War Action (approx. 7.1 miles away in Kentucky); The Elizabethtown First Baptist Church (approx. 8.2 miles away); Fueling The Furnace (approx. 9˝ miles away); A Community Comes Alive (approx. 9˝ miles away); Illinois Iron Furnace (approx. 9˝ miles away); U. S. Treasurer (approx. 9.9 miles away in Kentucky). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Cave-In-Rock.
 
Geologic Wonder Marker image. Click for full size.
By TeamOHE, January 26, 2020
4. Geologic Wonder Marker
Geologic Wonder Marker image. Click for full size.
By TeamOHE, January 26, 2020
5. Geologic Wonder Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on November 30, 2020. It was originally submitted on November 30, 2020, by TeamOHE of Wauseon, Ohio. This page has been viewed 35 times since then and 4 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on November 30, 2020, by TeamOHE of Wauseon, Ohio. • Devry Becker Jones was the editor who published this page.
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Mar. 1, 2021