In the early days this roadside cave provided travelers with natural and welcome shelter for both man and beast. In 1860 it served as a Pony Express Station; later a stopping place for the Overland Mail. Joseph Toronto was one of the pioneer owners. In 1938, it was explored by a scientific group from the University of Utah, and the artifacts discovered proved to be a rich deposit of archeological material. The American Smelting Company bought it about 1905. Later it was purchase by the Garfield Improvement Group.
Update: Above are photos and historic marker text from when I first visited in 2008. Below is the replaced marker and text on the same stone from when I stopped by in 2018.
Toronto’s Cave aka Dead Man’s Cave
In the early days this roadside cave provided travelers with natural and welcome shelter for both man and beast. In 1860 the cave served as a Pony Express Station and later became a stopping place for the Overland Mail. Joseph Toronto was one of the pioneer owners. In 1905, the American Smelting Company bought the station. Later, it was purchased by the Garfield Improvement Group. In 1938, a scientific group from the University of Utah explored the cave. Artifacts which were discovered proved to be a rich deposit of archaeological material.
Deadman Cave, 42SL1
Archaeologist Elmer Smith of the University of Utah excavated Deadman Cave between 1938 and 1941. His scientific and careful excavations recovered artifacts of bone, stone and ceramics. Smith and his students, working prior to the advent of radiocarbon dating, surmised that most of the artifacts found were quite ancient, possibly as old as 10,000 years. They also recovered several Native American human burials during the excavations. Some of the human remains have recently been radiocarbon dated. These results show the cave was used as a camping location and burial site by Native Americans for thousands of years beginning about 9,500 years ago.
Check out all of the historic markers placed by the Daughters of Utah Pioneers at JacobBarlow.com/dup