In the cold valley southwest of the spa park of Bad Suderode a few dozen meters below the fish pond is the "Lessing Cave". In front of the three entrances to this small underground world extends a larger open space. This course will be used during the year for various events, e.g. for celebrations for Walpurgis Night. Due to the dense tree population in the environment, the area in front of the Lessing Cave is also relatively dark during the day.
The "Lessing Cave" is not a cave in the true sense, because it is not of natural origin. The cavities should therefore be referred to more as caves, but better than galleries and shafts. In the middle of the 16th century, a mine was built here on behalf of the abbess of Stolberg, in which a mining of copper and iron ore should take place. The miners eventually extracted from the mountain into the 17th century fluorspar, copper gravel Arsenkies and galena. Whether the mine could be operated profitably or the shareholders had to make a contribution, has not been handed down. In any case, the ore mine soon fell into oblivion after its closure. As part of the extraction of gravel for road construction workers discovered in the 1870s, the access to the former mine again. The Magdeburg researcher C. F. A. Lessing explored in 1877 the cavities behind the three entrance galleries. In his surveys, he found that the part was 41 meters long and in the shafts, the water was up to 25 meters high. The henceforth "Lessing cave" called early modern mine was then filled with rock. In 1906 they set up a waterworks here to improve the supply of drinking water from the mountain with the precious water. But already three years later, this water extraction plant was destroyed by a rockfall.
December 16, 2018
A last mining exploration in the "Lessing Cave" took place in 1952. The mining company Wismut was looking here for uranium ore. In the early phase of the "Cold War" this material was of enormous strategic importance. However, the proportion of radioactive metal in the veins proved to be non-degradable, which in this case was certainly a fortunate circumstance for Bad Suderode and the Harz. In our days, the "Lessing Cave" is not open to the public. The man-made cavities are a refuge for bats and are therefore under special protection.
December 16, 2018
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