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New England's Dark Day - May 19, 1780

This Day in History Class

02:59 min | 2 years ago

New England's Dark Day - May 19, 1780

"Day was may nineteenth seventeen. Eighty this guy. In New England and parts of Northern Canada turned unusually dark in an event remembered as the dark day several days before may nineteenth people in New England notice that the sky appeared smokey and the Sun and the moon appeared read on the morning of May Nineteenth. The Sky was cloudy and still had a reddish you throughout the morning. This guy continued to get darker by noon. People were using candles for light. The darkness stretch from the skies over Portland Maine to the southern coast of New England. It was so unusual that many people paint some people went to church while others went to taverns birds reportedly suffocated from the smoke and ash. Some people noted that the air smelled like sit the Connecticut legislature even move to adjourn Abraham Davenport. A member of the Governor's council opposed joining the legislature. He said that quote the day of judgement is either approaching or it is not if it is not there is no cause of an adjournment if it is to be found doing my duty. Harvard Professor Samuel Williams collected observations about the darkness and wrote about the day's events. According to his account the darkness continued until the middle of the next night. He said the following candles were lighted up in the houses. The birds having some their evening songs disappeared and became silent fouls retired to roost. The were crawling all around as at break of day objects could not be distinguished but at a very little distance and everything for the appearance. In Gloom of Night Williams reported that people saw a layer of scum on the surface of water that appeared to be the ashes of burnt leaves from his observations. He determined the likely cause of the darkness. He suggested that fires had caused favors to rise in collect in the air since the weather had been clear the air heavy in the wind quote small invariable but many people dismissed the idea that wildfires caused the darkness in the weeks after may nineteenth people proposed different theories about the origins of the event. Some thought that sunlight was being blocked by a huge mountain others believe that biblical prophecy being fulfilled later. Research suggested that distant forest fires cost the darkness researchers from the University of Missouri and US Forest Service examined tree rings and fire scars and determined that a major fire occurred in seventeen eighty in Algonquin provincial. Park in Ontario Canada. They concluded that a low pressure weather system curate smoke from the West or north to New England. The fires in the Algan highlands were the most likely cause of New England's dark day but fires burning in the eastern. Us could have also contributed to the darkness.

New England Samuel Williams Algan Highlands Abraham Davenport Northern Canada Ontario Canada Portland Connecticut Maine Us Forest Service Harvard Professor University Of Missouri