Littell's Living Age/Volume 143/Issue 1847/Result of the Eruption of the Kalauea Vulcano
Result of the Eruption of the Kalauea Vulcano
One feature of the last eruption of the remarkable volcano of Kilauea, in the Sandwich Islands, is the fact that the great molten lake of lava, occupying a huge caldron nearly a mile in width, and known as the "South Lake," was drawn off subterraneously, giving no warning of its movements and leaving no visible indication of its pathway or the place of its final deposit. "Other eruptions," writes Dr. Coan to Prof. Dana, in a letter dated June 20, "have blazed their way on the surface to the sea, or while on their subterranean way have rent the superincumbent beds, throwing out jets of steam or of sulphurous gases, with here and there small patches or broad areas of lava. But as yet no surface-marks of this kind reveal the silent, solemn course of this burning river. One theory is that it flowed deep in subterranean fissures, and finally disembogued far out at sea. Our ocean was much disturbed during those days, and we had what might be called a tidal wave of moderate magnitude." The old process of replenishment which had gone on since the last eruption in 1868, is reported to have begun again, and after another decade another disgorgement may take place.