Is Crystal Cave Ohio The World’s Largest Geode?
Imagine our surprise when we learned about the incredible discovery made in 1897 on a small island in Lake Erie, called Bass Island. Workers digging a well for Gustav Heineman’s winery stumbled upon a massive cavern, lined with stunning celestite crystals, measuring 8 to 18 inches long!
Once explored, it became clear that they had discovered an impressive geode, spanning a whopping 35 feet at its widest point. This ancient treasure is estimated to be between 12,000 to 16,000 years old and is made of almost pure celestite. Some of the largest crystals found inside the geode even reached up to three feet long!
Did you know that some of these magnificent crystals are displayed in the Smithsonian Natural History Museum in Washington D.C? It just goes to show the significance of this awe-inspiring find and the impact it must have had on the Heineman family.
But, let’s journey back to the year 1920 when the prohibition of alcohol was enforced in the United States. This put Heineman’s winery at risk, prompting them to come up with an ingenious plan: giving tours of their now-famous crystal cave. This clever decision allowed their family business to stay afloat until the end of prohibition in 1933.
Another fascinating fact about this discovery was its potential use in pyrotechnics! The soft celestite crystals, when ground into a fine powder, can burn a deep crimson red, making them a highly sought-after resource for fireworks manufacturers. Due to this demand, the cave was once much smaller than it is today, with many crystals being removed and it raises the question of just how many crystals were initially found inside.
Now, back to the main question: Is this the world’s largest geode? While we may not be able to definitively say that it is without a doubt the largest geode globally, there’s no denying that this impressive cavern has played an essential role in ensuring the survival of the Heineman winery and has dazzled thousands of visitors with its captivating beauty. This extraordinary find truly adds a touch of magic to Bass Island, making it a must-see destination for geological enthusiasts!
Interested In Visiting The World’s Largest Geode?
We can’t wait to visit this amazing geode, and the fact that it’s located at a winery makes it even more appealing! The Heineman Winery offers tours of this mesmerizing cave seven days a week from early May until late September, so there’s plenty of opportunity to explore.
- Adults: $12
- Children (6-11): $7
- Monday to Saturday: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Sunday: 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Don’t miss the chance to witness this world-famous geological wonder!