Minneapolis' loose sandstone is both a boon and a curse to caves. The benefit is that caves are easily constructed by hand tools or simple hydraulic tools. The downside is that later underground construction often damages or destroys delicate and historic caves. There are at least a dozen cases where sewer tunnels ran roughshod into pre-1900s caves, either natural or artificial. In many cases, the sewer construction workers or "Sandhogs" found these caves a convenient place to dump the spoil they had just excavated, and as the passed through, under, over, or near various caves they callously slurried them full of wet sand from their mining operation. This fate befel Channel Rock and possibly Fountain's cave. Schieks and Stahlmann's suffer from sewer leaks into their otherwise clean environments. In this case, it appears that the cave once again became a convenient dump for sand, almost completely backfilling the entire space as the North Minneapolis Tunnel passed just to the Southwest in the 1930s. The workers probably didn't know or care what they were destoying, as the brewery was long closed and maps of the time are simply marked "cave?" at the point where the sewer and cellars intersect. It was interesting to note that this careless attitude still exists today, as reports tell of sewer workers blasting dust and spraycrete into University steam tunnels through a long-forgotten interconnection.
This cave has some history, but it would let stoned party kids find it and knock over stalactites. If you want to know more you can bloody well go to the library.
Coming from the entrance, there are very few places where one can stand upright in this cave.
The majority of chambers and passages now look like this, with backfill almost to the original ceiling level, and the present cieling slowly creeping upwards as more material flakes off and slowly erodes.
Two other former entrances, buried by road construction in the 1950s.
The impressive natural formation (speleothem) in a distant corner of the cave.
Such features are very fragile and shouldn't be disturbed. As a former party cave, I'm surprised the
drip curtain is this intact. If anyone damages it I'll track you down and feed you a dead racoon. I can do that.
Here's the dead raccoon. Or possibly a dead alien or sewer mutant.
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