History

 

Courniou les grottes le trou de découverteThe entry hole of the cave was discovered during the construction of the Mazamet-Bédarieux railwayline in 1886-1887. The natural entry of the cavity is a circular opening located in the Northeast angle of the station courtyard. It’s a kind of fireplace dug in the cliff at seven meters above the ground.

According to E. Martel in « Les Abysses », the miners have already browsed the cave and had plundered many concretions when on January 9th, 1893, Messrs. Bourguet, Armand and Martel investigated it at their turn. The first one draws up in the evening the plan and geological layered model published in the same book. It is necessary to mention that these works, executed very quickly are far away from reality.

The exploration is taken back many years later in 1928-1929 by mister Milhaud and his team. In 1930 an important discovery rewarded their efforts : the upper rooms of the cave and the Jewellery room. Numerous nooks and the lower network are also investigated.

Courniou les grottes la ligne de chemin de fer dont la construction a permis la découverte du trou de la Devèze

The most richly decorated part of the cave is fitted out in 1932-1933 by the Spéléo-Club de la

Montagne Noire et de l’Espinouse (first speleologist club of France) including cavers from regions around Mazamet and Saint-Pons de Thomières. The first rooms to be visited actually were fitted out later and opened in 1939 in the presence of the emminent French speleologist Norbert Casteret.

This development allows to make a complete tour and to discover the wealth and the diversity of the concretions, the Georges Milhaud room being unquestionably the most beautiful of the cave.

To know more about it come visit the Underground Educational Space and its 3D projection.