Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Cave Pearls, aren't they pretty?

I am not sure where this picture of some cave pearls was taken, but I seem
to recall, in my undocumented memory, that it was Lower Cave. But I
cannot confirm this. I do know that it is one of my favorite pictures in the

Has anyone else seen this picture somewhere? If so, please let me know;
Avelina has my e-mail address.

Bob Hoff

Monday, November 14, 2011

Two More Pictures of the Dome Room

As you can see in the second photo by noted caverns photopher Ray V. Davis,
the Dome Room was also called the Chapel. The larger photo format for these
pictures was suggested by reader Christa C.

Years ago I was lucky enough to find a few miniature RVD postcards at Ebay.

Bob Hoff

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Dome Room

The Dome Room located near the Big Room. This is one of my favorite pictures
even though I have not visited there.

Many years ago the park sent this picture to be included in a Life Magazine
volume on the history of national parks. I selected this picture for inclusion
in their book.

Who is that way in the back in the white shirt?

Bob Hoff

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Governors' Day 1924 in King's Palace

Don't know when Governors Day was or who participated. Extra credit for
anyone who does know. b(*o*)b  I do know that on several occasions a
New Mexico governor showed up. In 1932 when the new elevator system
began, Governor Arthur Selignmann delighted in being the honorary
elevator operator, refusing to yield to other operators a turn or two to
run it. Glory Hog, no?

Bob Hoff

Sunday, November 06, 2011

At the City Musuem--Jim White's Purported Guano Bucket.

I know that this bucket was on display in White City for a while because
I saw it, but I don't remember when. Before that I heard that someone
had it in their garage. I don't know anything about its' origin or
authenticity, and except for the fact that I recall personally seeing the
bucket I cannot document anything else.

I do have a name of the owner of the garage, but since I am only about
60% sure that I remember the name accurately, I am not going to
share it. My documentation is too weak for that.

I find it difficult to imagine two humans fitting in this bucket as they are
lowered 170' (17 stories) into the cavern (or lifted the other way for that

Bob Hoff

Thursday, November 03, 2011

A 3D View of Carlsbad Caverns

This picture, a personal favorite, appeared in the October 1953
writer explained, "using no exaggeration, (the map) uses an extreme
width of 2400' and a depth of 900'. It shows three miles of paved
trails but omits 20 miles of obscure, seldom visited passages.

This 58-year old magazine also contains many excellent and famous caverns pictures
by photographer E. "Tex" Helm. Two of my relatives by marriage are included in these
photographs; in fact, they graciously gave me a copy of the magazine. (Thanks Mario and
Helen S.)

Did you notice the comparison to the Washington Monument on the right side of the

Bob Hoff

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Some Cavern Supply Company Developments

The Cavern Supply Company served as a valued partner
with Carlsbad Caverns National Park--first as a National
 Monument--in serving the visitors with various needs.
 By the late 1920's they served visitors out of tent facilities
 at the Natural Entrance. Later Cavern Supply constructed
a store across the parking lot and near the Park Service
ticket office.

Cavern Supply provided lunches for sale for tour groups
 and later constructed an underground lunchroom. In the
late 1950's they added a number of facilities to the park's
 visitor center which had been constructed in the early
1950s (food services on the surface, gift shop, nursery,
 and kennels) The Coffee Shop Soda Fountain was
 finished in February 1958; the Cavern Supply surface
Gift Shop, a month later.

A incredibly significant labor-saving device for both the
surface/cavern logistics of both the Cavern Supply Company
and the National Park Service was the installation in 1932
of two 75 story (750 ") shafts and elevators. Prior to that
pivotal event, all supplies in and trash out required human

Think of that.

Bob Hoff

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Goodbye Party for a Great Guy--GUMO's Fred Armstrong

Fred and Kathy
When I arrived at the Caverns in January 1986 to become a cave crew supervisor, I met Fred Armstrong a member of my inherited crew. He clearly strove to do his best for his co-employees and himself. No one doubted Fred's dedication to do what was right for all concerned from the visitors, the CAVE staff, and the  Mission of the National Park Service.

He obviously prided himself in making the outstanding effort in
everything that he was charged with doing. He became my assistant supervisor for over three years, always doing more than his share of high quality work, again, for everybody concerned.

Fred with GUMO staff
I was glad to have Fred for a friend and I still am. At his going away party on Friday, 10/21/11 I again realized that many others had seen the extra special qualities in Fred, and like me, appreciated him for those and his willingness to befriend and help others, ever the positive friend and mentor as needed.

Fred now heads for Zion NP in Utah after serving so well the two national parks in this area (and several other park areas in between). We all salute you, Fred, for your contributions and inspirational example to us, your friends: the value of doing your best at all times and leading by example.

Fred and I
We, of course, will miss you, but are happy we were able to work and interact with you. Thanks for everything, Fred, and best regards to you and your family (Lori and Forrest)as well.

Stay in touch and visit when you all can.

Bob Hoff
Pictures by Chris Hoff