The Batcave has always been the home, sanctuary and base of the Batman and his family. Located directly underneath Wayne Manor the cave was first discovered by a young Bruce Wayne when he was four years old, stumbling and falling into one the of the many grottoes on the estate. Years later he would begin to use the caves to store his equipment secretly as the vigilante Batman, eventually transforming the cave itself into a base of operations for his continuing war on crime.
With the catacombs long been the home of the Miagani Tribe since the prehistoric era, the cave systems were later abandoned due to the tribe's disappearance and rediscovered and used by Bruce Wayne's ancestors as a storehouse as well as a means of transporting escaped slaves during the Civil War era. The 18th century frontier hero Tomahawk also once discovered a gargantuan bat (owned by Morgaine le Fey of Arthurian legend) inside what can be assumed will become the Batcave before Bruce Wayne himself rediscovered them when he fell through a dilapidated well on his estate.
Upon his initial foray into crime-fighting, Bruce Wayne used the caves as a sanctum and to store his then-minimal equipment. As time went on, Wayne found the place ideal to create a stronghold for his war against crime, and has incorporated a plethora of equipment as well as expanding the cave for specific uses.
Due to the Gotham Cataclysm, an earthquake that leveled the majority of Gotham City, the cave systems were restructured by the quake, forcing Batman to rebuild and update the cave into a larger, even more formidable lair than before.
Marked as a priority target by Brainiac following the JLA Watchtower in digitizing Earth, the Batcave comes under attack as Brainiac's Forces and Brother Eye locate and infiltrate the cave systems and begin converting the cave into a Brainiac Construct, consuming the Bat Family with OMAC technology in the process.
While initially entering Batcave: Outer Caverns following a lack of contact from Batman, new heroes meet up with Batman in combating Brother Eye in Batcave: Inner Sanctum before being commanded by Superman following Batman being turned into an OMAC by Brother Eye upon the latter's defeat. They must confront Brainiac in the final raid, Batcave: Brainiac Sub-Construct.
- The Batcave first appeared Detective Comics #83 (January 1944)
- The giant T. Rex comes from an adventure on "Dinosaur Island" (Batman #35, 1946).
- The giant penny was originally a trophy from Batman's encounter with a penny-obsessed villain named the Penny Plunderer (World's Finest Comics #30, 1947). The penny weighs 216 pounds, although in most of its appearances its size would imply a much greater mass, as real American pennies are mainly made of zinc, which is more than 7 times as dense as water (or humans for that matter). An accurately scaled 2 meter tall penny would weigh over 6000 pounds.
- After regaining leadership of the Outsiders team, Batman built a "Batcave West" within a mountain in Los Angeles to house the team.
- After his defeat at the hands of Bane, Bruce Wayne created a series of Satellite Batcaves around Gotham City. These caves would prove useful during the city's No Man's Land when the primary cave was destroyed.
- As a running gag, Ambush Bug sometimes teleports into the Batcave and lowers Batman's chair at the Mainframe by 6 inches.