ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Tamboran Volcano - Year Without A Summer. This cold period caused death, famine, migrations, Frankenstein and Karl Marx.

Updated on June 6, 2020
Christofers Flow profile image

Christofer spent 10 years in family counseling. Later he obtained a Psy. D.. His focuses: Health, History, Astrology, Politics and Fables

With 70% Water Covering Our Surface, Unexpected Volcanic Activity Can Affect Watery Air Flow

In 1816 --- The “Year Without A Summer” Was Caused By Volcanic Outbursts

To sum it up: The Tambora was the largest eruption in recorded history. It blew its top on April 10, 1815.

Between 1812 and 1815 - Eruption deposits indicate the volcano had been active.

While the April 10 eruption was catastrophic;

all of the other effects of the multiple volcanic outbursts, enough ash was put into the atmosphere to cause GLOBAL COOLING.

Historic Moments-These Events Seemed Also To Affect Economies and Revolutions

There are several reasons the "Year Without A Summer" occurred. We were having the "Dalton Minimum" - a period of low sunspot activity causing cold in general and there were four other volcanoes which preceded the Tambora one.

Not Only Tambora, But Four Other Volcanoes From 1812 to 1814

The big Tambora volcano on the Island of Sumbawa, of the Dutch East Indies, was one dramatic "blow" with an explosivity index of 7. But what probably directly contributed, along with the "Dalton Minimum", were the more minor Tambora volcanoes between 1812 and 1814 and 4 other earthquakes with explosivity indexes of 4 in the below.

What About The Caribbean and The Northern Pacific?

In the Caribbean, in 1812, on the Island of Soufriere there was a volcano. Indonesia experienced a volcano on the Sanghihe Islands in 1812.

The Ryukyu Islands in Japan experienced one in 1813, and then the Phillippines on Mayon in 1814. These were not as immense as Tambora, but they were not lightweights either. There was much accumulated ash by the time Tambora blew.

American Western Expansion Commences - Joseph Smith's Family Leaves Vermont

The crop failures of the “Year Without A Summer” forced the family of Joseph Smith to move from Sharon, Vermont to Palmyra, New York. From western New York, the Mormons then began a series of migrations that took them to the mid west, and then they finally fled to Utah, in a kind of Exodus to a "promised land", under the leadership of Brigham Young, a man whose family also came from the western New York area.

The Biggest Migration Not Caused By War, in All of History

Western New York became an important destination from New England because of this weather. People decided to pick up and move since they were contemplating moving west anyway. The cold weather combined with a sense of "population explosion" or "feeling crowded", if you can believe it, moved upon the settlers and farmers in New England. 15 years later, in the 1830's, with many New Englanders already having left their original homes, because of the volcano, there began the biggest migration not caused by a war, in all of history.

The area of the mid west was absolutely wide open and there for the settling. Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa, Minnesota all began to be settled by this "puritan" population which was originally from the New England area. Ultimately the entire northern tier of the west, all the way to Seattle, was settled by this same peaceful migration of New England "puritans".

Europe is Frigid

Europe, at this time, was still recovering from Napoleon and the destruction his last "Waterloo" brought to the whole area.

And don't think it was over because of the "Year Without A Summer". Precipitating famine, disease, lack and hardship caused a typhus epidemic between 1816 and 1819. Probably over 200,000 people perished during this period; (Ireland and Switzerland being the most impacted with population mortality).

Brown Snow, Red Snow, and "Frankensteinian" Weather

The eruption of Tambora also caused the Hungarian region to experience brown snow during the summer. Not too far away, Italy got something akin to brown snow. Red snow, throughout the year, was said to have fallen there. Of course the accumulation of five volcanoes in the recent past is believed to have been the cause for the "ash-colored" snow.

Partying in Rainy Stormy Switzerland Forces Literary Friends to a Writing Contest

In July of 1816 Mary Shelley, Lord Byron, John William Polidori and friends were forced to stay inside and stare through the windows at soggy, cold, unfriendly Switzerland. It drove them a bit batty. Amidst boozy boredom, they came up with the idea of a writing contest. Byron came up with a poem: "Darkness". Polidori, "The Vampyre"; and Shelley a story about a "Modern Prometheus", who would be fashioned by the now famous fictional "Dr. Frankenstein". Though it was finished and published in 1818, it was spawned at that place, during the "Year Without A Summer".

Frankenstein, Now a Horror Movie, Then a Feminist and Anti-Scientific Tome

Mary took the opportunity to make several profound points in her tale. She made arguments concerning science and its abuses and many undertones and symbols that had to do with feminism. Shelley’s mother, Mary Wollenstonecraft was the author of a well-known feminist text and undoubtedly influenced her daughter.

Mary Wollenstonecraft Godwin married Percy Bysshe Shelley, a poet and member of an established English family. He died relatively soon after they married in Italy. Her life was filled with struggle, but she wrote and wrote, and established herself after that strange summer in Switzerland, where her writing fame was born. Mary wrote a novel, which ended up being her best-known after "Frankenstein".

A Notable Dark Decade

The decade from 1811 to 1820 was heavily marked by real and powerful socioeconomic impacts. Malnutrition, poor agricultural production and spreading mild to severe regional and local epidemics had punishing effects on European and Mediterranean countries. With the end of the Napoleonic conflicts to boot, this was a very difficult decade, especially in Europe. With post war economic collapse and historic cold and famine, it was a dark and poverty-filled decade.

Ironically Dickens and Marx Born During This Time

Both of these men were born during this decade. One in England, the other in Germany. Charles Dickens, the English Author, wrote about heroic struggle with poverty. Karl Marx came up with an entire political philosophy for dealing with poverty. His ideas and work can be said to have affected millions of people in the early 20th century and today.

Both of these men grew up in poverty and carried on their adult lives constantly and profoundly addressing the social and political and personal effects of poverty. While Tambora and the time of Volcanoes and the Dalton Minimum can not be said to directly affect these two gentlemen, inasmuch as multiple societal, political and industrial factors were all at play at this time, there is still a strong symbolic case of irony that can make one infer that this "Volcano Time", Tambora, the Dalton Minimum and the "Year Without A Summer" still affect us today.

If There Were Weather Reports Back Then:

In May of 1816, the cold weather jumped on the young plants in the northeast and killed the crops.

June 4 was the big dramatic day; frosts were reported in Connecticut and New England. A cold front had a hold on the entire area.

On June 6, snow fell in upper state New York and Maine.

Farther north in Quebec City, a foot of snow fell and finished off most of their crops.

The malnutrition, starvation and epidemic that followed was called a "famine".

Volcanic Activity Tied to Planetary Movements?

© 2010 Christofer French

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 

      10 years ago from London, UK

      Thank you for a great hub and I also read an article about this. I have a feeeling that it will happened again. Oh well, here we go.

    • sheila b. profile image

      sheila b. 

      10 years ago

      I'm familiar with the year there was no summer, having heard about it soon after moving to Vt. I like the way you explained it and the reverberations still influencing the world.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://maven.io/company/pages/privacy

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)