by Louie Bond
|In January 1980, Dibble attempted to seal off the depths of the well by building a grate of rebar and quick-set concrete at the entrance to the third chamber. Six months later, Dibble found the grate dismantled. Divers not only dove with the proper tools to pull off the grate, they also left a note for Dibble. "You can't keep us out," was written on a plastic slate.
Austin writer Steve Harrigan says that while working on a Texas Monthly article, he dove into Jacob's Well at least 20 times back in the late 1970s and early 80s, including a dive to help Dibble install the grate.
"It's a very mysterious place, a place of constant sensation," says Harrigan, who centered a novel around the well in 1984. One of the main characters, a scuba instructor, perishes after venturing too deeply, perhaps as a suicide, or perhaps due to the mind-altering effects of nitrogen narcosis.