The approximately 2.5 million year old cave is a natural geological monument. Jox Mellmann discovered the cave in 1584 after a cow had fallen into it. The local population avoided the cave for a long time as they believed it was inhabited by the Devil. The first negotiation took place in 1830 when the papermaker journeyman Walter from Steinau allowed himself to be abseiled into the cave.
From 1905 onwards a tunnel was dug over a period of three years allowing easy access and the cave was fitted out for public admission. The electrically illuminated show cave was opened in 1927. It is accessible up to a length of 174 metres and contains three large chambers of which one contains speleothems.
The renewal of the lighting in the Teufelshöhle was instigated by the town administration of Darmstadt. To be more exact, it was first and foremost a matter of nature conversation - bat protection. A comprehensive study proved the cave to harbour up to 200 hibernating bats. This led to the reduction of operation by two months. As compensation, the nature conservation authorities granted a considerable investment in new LED-lighting.
Following several meetings and presentations Cave Lighting received the contract for the renewal of the illumination.
The old installation was removed and replaced with a modern Cave Lighting system within four weeks. The work was carried out with the assistance of the Gewerbe- und Verkehrsverein Steinau e.V. and the firm of W. Weitzel (proprietor Michael Fuchs).
The new lighting system will certainly not only reduce running costs but also attract more visitors to the cave now that the new LED-illumination has greatly increased its fascination.
Further information can be found under: http://www.gvv-steinau.de
Teufelshöhle (Devil’s Cave) Steinau a.d.Strasse
|position:||50°20′17,2″ N, 9°27′18″ O|
|show cave since:||1927|
|renovated:||September - October 2012|
|equipped with:||123 lamps with approx. 400 watts in total|