The first map was drawn in 1811. Thirty years later, Stephen Bishop,
an enslaved tour guide, extensively mapped and named its features.
His discovery of eyeless fish brought the first scientists to the cave.
Early studies of groundwater flow came by 1925. Work in the late 20th
century helped move the cave from sport to serious science, with extensive
cave studies mapping the pathways of underground rivers using fluorescent dyes.
Other studies included cave ecology, archaeology, and hydrogeology.
Today, WKU runs the Karst Field Studies Program, which has welcomed over