1898 Hurricane Killed All Plant And Animal Life On St. Vincent

ScreenHunter_194 Nov. 10 21.06

Published: November 13, 1898

THE WEST INDIAN STORM
Results in the Island of St. Vincent Worse Than Reported.

WHOLE COUNTRY SWEPT BARE
Distress of the People Described as • Exceeding That Caused by the Great Famine in India.

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Nov. 2.—The results of calm investigation have proved conclusively that so far from being exaggerated the first reports of the destruction wrought by the cyclone at St. Vincent were rather short of the actual facts. The island was literally swept absolutely bare of vegetation, the experience of 1780 being repeated, but the full extent of the devastation was not at first realized, owing to the difficulty of communication through the destruction of the roads and the coastal shipping.

The Governor of the Windward Islands has now sent out an appeal to the neighboring islands stating the facts, and asking that roots, slips, and seeds of potatoes, cassava, yams, peas, and ‘other economic plants be forwarded as soon as possible to enable cultivation to be restored. His Excellency declares in a brief but significant descriptive paragraph that the whole aspect of the landscape has been changed. Instead of the pervading green common to all tropical prospects, it is now a uniform dirty brown color, only relieved by long white poles—the decapitated columns of palm and cocoanut trees. Nothing in the way of vegetation escaped the sweep of the wind and the subsequent scouring out by the deluge of water, and the island is practically a desert.

Perhaps the most Impressive feature, the Governor adds, is the absolute stillness that prevails not only through the absence of the familiar rustle of vegetation as the trade wind sweeps over it, but-also because of the absence of animal and even insect life. Birds, lizards, beetles, snakes, and, in fact, every form of animal life, seems to have been blown away or drowned out.

Copyright © The New York Times

THE WEST INDIAN STORM – Results in the Island of St. Vincent Worse Than Reported. WHOLE COUNTRY SWEPT BARE Distress of the People Described as Exceeding That Caused by the Great Famine in India. – View Article – NYTimes.com

Photographs of the Philippines storm show nothing resembling that level of damage, indicating once again that Jeff Masters is lying through his teeth.

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4 Responses to 1898 Hurricane Killed All Plant And Animal Life On St. Vincent

  1. Karl W. Braun says:

    Coconut palms inhabit the coastlines of nearly all tropical regions. That they are well adapted to the climatic conditions there is an understatement. If a storm should render them as mere sticks and stumps in its passage, that storm must be considered a true mother indeed.

  2. TomC says:

    Best Track puts the 1898 storm in St.Vincent as a category 2 storm. I guess those category 2 storms from the 1800’s were really nasty…or maybe just a bit underestimated.

  3. Bill says:

    Wow, a newspaper that reported the results of a careful investigation.

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