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Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 6, page 130, September 30, 1853

@ Missouri Historical Society


Describes a free mulatto guide for Mammoth Cave named Stephen Bishop. Transcription: reigned in his stead. Quite away out of the track of the world is the place [Mammoth Cave], no town or hamlet for a score of miles, Kentucky wild wood, mountain and brake engirdling you. Southern folk crowd the place during the sultry summer months, but we’re in the tail of the season, and but a handful of visitors here. The long porticos were all uncrowded, the sunlight basked on the luxuriant lawn and fine trees, and a little knot of idlers had collected at the portal. Two or three negroes guides, or waiters, a wooly-headed, black-velvetty skinned boy with his large white eyes, and four or five dogs, little and big, were waiting the advent of any chance visitors. In an arm chair, with its back tilted against the wall, sat a good-looking young Southerner [Oliver Kellam], idly cracking his whip, or critiscising the horsemanship of an Irish retainer of the establishment, who was attempting to leap a horse over a fence, in the field in front. Inscribing our names on the hotel books, we borrowed from a colored waiter, (yclept St Clair,) flannel jackets, of a yellow hue & caps, and were put under charge of Stephen [Bishop], for the descent in the Cave. Now this same guide is a notable fellow in his way, and has identified himself with the place to such an extent that folk inquire for him in special, esteeming themselves happy...
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