STRANGE PHENOMENA

A SOURCEBOOK OF UNUSUAL NATURAL PHENOMENA
Compiled by
W I L L I A M R. C O R L I S S

VOLUME

G-1

P R I C E : $6.95

Published and Distributed by R.Corliss Glen A r m , Maryland 21057

C o p y r i g h t © 1974 b y W i l l i a m R .

Corliss

L i b r a r y of Congress Catalog Number:

73-91248

ISBN

0-9600712-1-0

F i r s t P r i n t i n g : J a n u a r y 1974

P r i n t e d i n the U n i t e d States o f A m e r i c a by CUSTOM COPY CENTER, Baltimore, Maryland INC.

PREFACE
I h a v e a l w a y s b e e n i n t r i g u e d w i t h the t a i l i n g s f r o m the m i n e o f s c i e n c e . I m e a n t h o s e f a c t s that d o not fit the m o l d , t h o s e a n o m a l i e s that should not e x i s t , t h o s e s p o r t s , t h o s e w i l d p o i n t s that l i e f a r o f f the c u r v e . One of my hobbies is c o l l e c t i n g and o r g a n i z i n g t h e s e h o m e l e s s f a c t s . T h e s e w a i f s a r e c u r i o u s and m o s t intriguing. E i t h e r they a r e f a l s e o r s c i e n c e s t i l l has m u c h fundamental w o r k t o d o . But I l e a v e such p r o b l e m s t o the r e a d e r . A l l I h a v e done i s c o l l e c t , c a t e g o r i z e , and r e p r i n t t h i s a n o m a l o u s i n f o r m a t i o n . T h e result is this first v o l u m e of geophysical curiosities. P e r h a p s y o u c a n m a k e s o m e t h i n g out o f t h e m . At the v e r y l e a s t , I h o p e y o u w i l l b e e x c i t e d b y the unknown t e r r i t o r y that s t i l l l i e s ahead o f u s . I h a v e d e v o t e d a g r e a t d e a l o f thought t o the o r g a n i z a t i o n o f t h i s v o l u m e . The format is flexible. M o r e m a t e r i a l m a y b e added w i t h i n the f r a m e w o r k o f c a t e g o r i e s f r o m any s o u r c e and any p e r i o d . S e e m i n g l y d i s p a r a t e data a r e c o r r e l a t e d t h r o u g h the i n d e x e s and a n n o t a t i o n s . W h o l e new c a t e g o r i e s can b e added i f i t appears necessary. The l i t e r a t u r e d e a l i n g with m y s t e r i o u s g e o p h y s i c a l phenomena has been m e r e l y scratched. V o l u m e G l , the p r e s e n t v o l u m e , r e p r e s e n t s o n l y a s m a l l p o r t i o n o f m y c o l l e c t i o n . V o l u m e G 2 i s w e l l a l o n g i n p r e p a r a t i o n , a s a r e v o l u m e s i n the f i e l d s o f a n c i e n t m a n and u n r e s o l v e d g e o l o g i c a l p r o b l e m s . T h e data i n c l u d e d h a v e b e e n f i l t e r e d o n l y s l i g h t l y . D o u b t l e s s s o m e h o a x e s and h o n e s t m i s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s w i l l b e found i n the p a g e s that f o l l o w . This is unavoidable i n a p r o j e c t o f t h i s s c o p e . I n d e e d , i t i s u n a v o i d a b l e i n all p h a s e s o f i n q u i r y , e s p e c i a l l y t h o s e r e l y i n g h e a v i l y upon o b s e r v a t i o n a l e v i d e n c e . Data w e r e s e l e c t e d f o r i n c l u s i o n a c c o r d i n g t o t h e i r " s t r a n g e n e s s " and t h e i r t e n d e n c y t o c o n t r a d i c t current scientific hypotheses o r stretch t h e m beyond t h e i r present bounds. There h a s a l s o b e e n a d e l i b e r a t e e f f o r t t o g a t h e r i n o b s e r v a t i o n s f r o m the 19th C e n t u r y that h a v e g a t h e r e d dust t o o l o n g o n l i b r a r y s h e l v e s . Anomalous events are too r a r e t o l e t t h e m b e d i s c a r d e d m e r e l y b e c a u s e t h e y a r e o l d o r m o n e y cannot b e found t o put t h e m i n t o c o m p u t e r i z e d d a t a s y s t e m s . T h e c o l l e c t i n g net I flung into the l i t e r a t u r e w a s a b r o a d o n e . I t had t o b e b e c a u s e : (1) v a l i d data and g o o d t h e o r i e s a r e often p u b l i s h e d o u t s i d e the m a i n s t r e a m o f s c i e n t i f i c thought; and (2) p e o p l e w e r e j u s t a s o b s e r v a n t a c e n t u r y o r t w o a g o a s they a r e t o d a y . Q u o t a t i o n s i n t h i s v o l u m e w i l l d e m o n s t r a t e that t h e y v i e w e d the w o r l d w i t h g r e a t c u r i o s i t y and i f t h e y s o m e t i m e s m i s i n t e r p r e t e d t h i n g s p e r h a p s they a l s o s a w the c o s m o s t h r o u g h l e s s b i a s e d e y e s . S o m e o f the m a t e r i a l i n c l u d e d h e r e w i l l b e l a b e l l e d " p s e u d o s c i e n c e , but s o m e o f the data s o c a s t i g a t e d w i l l b e l e g i t i m a t e s c i e n c e a d e c a d e h e n c e . Meteorites are, of c o u r s e , a c l a s s i c c a s e in point. T h e r e a d e r should b e a r i n m i n d that m a n y i t e m s a r e i n s e r t e d w i t h the e x p r e s s p u r p o s e o f " r o c k i n g the b o a t . " I should a l s o add that I h a v e d e l i b e r a t e l y i n t r o d u c e d d a t a p e r h a p s 25% of the whole f r o m o u t s i d e the s c i e n t i f i c l i t e r a t u r e . T h i s w a s not d o n e b e c a u s e o f any l a c k o f m a t e r i a l but r a t h e r t o i n s u r e the w i d e s t p o s s i b l e s p e c t r u m o f o b s e r v a t i o n s .
1 1

Gl-iii

B e i n g that t h i s i s a s o u r c e b o o k , I m u s t a c k n o w l e d g e the m a n y w r i t e r s o f p a p e r s , b o o k s , l e t t e r s - t o - t h e - e d i t o r , and sundry p u b l i c a t i o n s that f o r m the foundation o f the b o o k . W h e r e lengthy quotations are taken f r o m publications still p r o t e c t e d by c o p y r i g h t , p e r m i s s i o n has been obtained f r o m the c o p y r i g h t h o l d e r .

William R. Glen A r m , Maryland O c t o b e r 4, 1973

Corliss

Gl-iv

CONTENTS

Pa O R G A N I Z A T I O N OF THE SOURCEBOOKS ELECTROMAGNETIC FALLING MATERIAL* PHENOMENA* G l - •1 G l - -3 G l - -7 G l - -19 G l --181 G l - -205 G l - -249 Gl--259 INDEX INDEX Gl--269 Gl- -271 Gl--273 Gl- -275

LUMINOUS PHENOMENA* CRUSTAL MOVEMENTS* SOUND PHENOMENA* PHENOMENA* INDEX

WEATHER SUBJECT

DATE-OF-EVENT PLACE-OF-EVENT AUTHOR INDEX SOURCE INDEX

* A b r e a k d o w n o f the s u b s e c t i o n s w i t h i n t h e s e c a t e g o r i e s f o l l o w s . U s e t h e h e a d i n g s a t t h e t o p s o f the p a g e s t o l o c a t e s p e c i f i c s u b s e c t i o n s and e n t r i e s .

S e c t i o n C o d e and T i t l e GE E l e c t r o m a g n e t i c phenomena

S u b s e c t i o n C o d e and T i t l e GEB *GEG *GEM *GER *GET *GFA *GFB GFC GFF GFG *GFI GFL *GFT Brocken Spectres, glories, etc. Radar angels Unusual m i r a g e s Planetary resonances T r a n s m i s s i o n phenomena W e b s and " a n g e l h a i r " Falls of birds Chemicals Fish, reptiles, insects Gelatin Ice falls L e a v e s , hay, pollen Thunderstones

GF

Falling material

Gl-v

GG

G r a v i t a t i o n a l and t e m p o r a l phenomena Hydrospheric anomalies

*GGG *GGT *GHG *GHP *GHS *GHT *GHW *GIC *GIF GLA GLB GLD GLL GLM GLN GLW *GMA *GME *GMG *GOS *GOT GQE *GQF *GQG *GQS GSD GSG GSH GSM *GVT *GVV *GWC *GWD *GWF GWP *GWR *GWS *GWT +GWW

Gravity anomalies T i m e anomalies G e y s e r s and w e l l s W h i t e and " m i l k y " s e a s Lake oscillations Anomalous tides Unusual w a v e s Unexplained fires Firestorms A u r o r a - l i k e phenomena B a l l lightning Electric discharge Lightning M e t e o r - l i k e phenomena Nocturnal lights Light wheels Atmospheric electricity Earth currents Magnetic anomalies Sulfurous o d o r s U n e x p l a i n e d stenches Earthquake phenomena Fault phenomena Geographical correlations S o l a r and lunar e f f e c t s S t r a n g e detonations I n f r a s o n i c sound Hums, hisses, etc. Music, bells, etc. G e o t h e r m a l phenomena V o l c a n i c phenomena S t r a n g e clouds D a r k days Peculiar fogs Precipitation oddities Temperature oddities S o l a r and lunar e f f e c t s T o r n a d o e s and w a t e r s p o u t s W h i r l w i n d s and dust d e v i l s

GH

GI

I n c e n d i a r y phenomena

GL

L u m i n o u s phenomena

GM

M a g n e t i c and e l e c t r i c a l phenomena

GO

Odors

GQ

Crustal movements

GS

Sounds

GV

V o l c a n i c phenomena

GW

W e a t h e r phenomena

* T h i s s u b s e c t i o n not r e p r e s e n t e d i n V o l u m e G l .

Gl-vi

ORGANIZATION OF THE SOURCEBOOKS
A l l s o u r c e b o o k e n t r i e s a r e l a b e l l e d w i t h t h r e e l e t t e r s and a n u m b e r ; v i z . , G L B - 0 1 2 . The three letters indicate a c a t e g o r y of phenomena. G L B , for example, designates a s u b s e c t i o n o f the b o o k c o n t a i n i n g a c c o u n t s o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g . T h e n u m b e r f o l l o w i n g the l e t t e r s i s s i m p l y a n a c q u i s i t i o n n u m b e r w i t h i n that s u b s e c t i o n . Thus, entry G L B 012 i s t h e 12th e n t r y i n t h e b a l l l i g h t n i n g c a t e g o r y . T h e i n d e x e s a t the b a c k o f e a c h s o u r c e b o o k and a l l c r o s s r e f e r e n c e s a r e k e y e d t o the e n t r y n u m b e r r a t h e r than p a g e number. T h e r e is a plan to the a s s i g n m e n t of l e t t e r c o d e s . The first letter indicates a broad, g e n e r a l f i e l d o f s c i e n c e , such a s g e o p h y s i c s , G . T h e s e c o n d and t h i r d l e t t e r s a r e a s s i g n e d t o s e c t i o n s and s u b s e c t i o n s w i t h i n t h i s g e n e r a l f i e l d , a s i l l u s t r a t e d b e l o w : Geophysics (a m a j o r field of science) Luminous phenomena (a section) G L B Ball lightning (a subsection)

T h e s e c t i o n s d e n o t e d b y the s e c o n d l e t t e r s a r e b a s e d upon the p r i m a r y p h y s i c a l s e n s a t i o n e v o k e d b y t h e p h e n o m e n o n a t hand. B a l l lightning is p r i m a r i l y a luminous e v e n t and thus b e a r s t h e G L l a b e l . Of course, ball lightning also makes noise on o c c a s i o n and s o m e t i m e s l e a v e s a n o d o r b e h i n d , but t h e s e a r e s e c o n d a r y a t t r i b u t e s . T h e s u b s e c t i o n s ( t h i r d l e t t e r s ) a r e n a r r o w e r i n s c o p e than the s e c t i o n s . Experience, h o w e v e r , h a s s h o w n that s u b s e c t i o n s m u s t b e b r o a d t o e n c o m p a s s t h e g r e a t v a r i e t y o f phenomena in a reasonable number of c a t e g o r i e s . T h e y cannot b e t o o b r o a d , though, or a structureless hodgepodge results. T h e s u b s e c t i o n s h a v e b e e n s e l e c t e d and n a m e d with g r e a t c a r e to avoid suggesting explanations of the phenomena. A c o m p l e t e l i s t of s e c t i o n s and s u b s e c t i o n s n o w i n u s e p r e c e d e s t h i s p a g e and a l s o functions a s a t a b l e o f contents. D e t a i l e d d e s c r i p t i o n s o f the s u b s e c t i o n s a r e p l a c e d a t t h e b e g i n n i n g s o f the sections. W h e n s e a r c h i n g f o r a s p e c i f i c e n t r y , s c a n t h e running h e a d s a t t h e t o p s o f t h e p a g e s ; t h e y g i v e the e n t r y n u m b e r s a s w e l l a s the s u b s e c t i o n t i t l e s . T h e p e r s o n w h o r e a d s f o r c u r i o s i t y ' s s a k e w i l l find that e a c h s u b s e c t i o n i s m u c h l i k e a c h a p t e r , w i t h m a n y related items grouped together. S o m e l a r g e r w o r k s , e s p e c i a l l y b o o k s , c o v e r s o m u c h g r o u n d that t h e i r c o n t e n t s h a v e b e e n split up into the a p p r o p r i a t e subsections. T h e l o o s e - l e a f f o r m a t o f the s o u r c e b o o k s m a k e s i t p o s s i b l e t o c o m b i n e m a t e r i a l subsection by subsection as new v o l u m e s are issued. E a c h v o l u m e i s i n d e x e d b y s u b j e c t , b y t i m e - o f - e v e n t , b y p l a c e - o f - e v e n t , b y author, and b y data s o u r c e . E a c h v o l u m e i s s e l f - c o n t a i n e d . W i t h the i s s u a n c e o f future v o l u m e s , c u m u l a t i v e i n d e x e s w i l l b e c o m p i l e d . T h e r e w i l l b e n o n e c e s s i t y t o hunt t h r o u g h s e v e r a l i n d e x e s t o find s o m e t h i n g . Because some major fields are interr e l a t e d , i t w i l l d o u b t l e s s p r o v e useful t o c u m u l a t e i n d e x e s f r o m v o l u m e s o n g e o p h y s i c s , a s t r o n o m y , g e o l o g y , and s o o n .

Gl-1

O R G A N I Z A T I O N OF THE S O U R C E B O O K S
R e f e r e n c e s , a n n o t a t i o n s , and C o m p i l e r ' s S u m m a r i e s a r e p r i n t e d f u l l - w i d t h , all d i r e c t quotes a r e indented. while

B e i n g a s o u r c e b o o k , t h e c o r e o f t h i s v o l u m e c o n s i s t s o f the d i r e c t q u o t a t i o n s f r o m e y e - w i t n e s s e s and k e y i n v e s t i g a t o r s . T h e t e x t h e r e i n f a i t h f u l l y r e t a i n s the o l d s p e l l i n g s , p u n c t u a t i o n s , and e v e n a f e w t y p o s . A f t e r a l l , o n l y the e y e - w i t n e s s ' o w n w o r d s c o n v e y the f a c t s a s h e p e r c e i v e d t h e m . R e g u r g i t a t i o n s and s u r v e y s , s o c o m m o n t h e s e d a y s , a r e a l r e a d y o n c e o r t w i c e r e m o v e d f r o m the e v e n t . The whole object of these s o u r c e b o o k s i s t o g i v e t h e r e a d e r and r e s e a r c h e r a n o r g a n i z e d c o l l e c t i o n o f o r i g i n a l w r i t i n g s o n the unusual f a c e t s o f n a t u r e . M u c h o f t h i s unique i n f o r m a t i o n i s b e i n g l o s t as l i b r a r i e s b e c o m e m o r e highly computerized. D a t a s e l e c t e d f o r the data banks m u s t h a v e c u r r e n t r e l e v a n c e and b e a c c e p t a b l e t o the s c i e n c e o f the d a y . Hopefully, t h e s e s o u r c e b o o k s w i l l p r e s e r v e s o m e t h i n g o f v a l u e and h e l p f o c u s the d i v e r s e , w i d e l y d i s p e r s e d a n o m a l i e s on the frontiers of s c i e n c e . T h e y should a l s o b e i n t e r e s t i n g reading.

Gl-2

SECTION 6E: ELECTROMAGNETIC PHENOMENA
Included h e r e a r e t h o s e unusual g e o p h y s i c a l phenomena that apparently depend upon the r e f l e c t i o n , r e f r a c t i o n , and t r a n s m i s s i o n o f e l e c t r o m a g n e t i c r a d i a t i o n . The d e s c r i p t i o n s of the s u b s e c t i o n s that f o l l o w e l a b o r a t e on what is and what is not i n c l u d e d . GEB B r o c k e n S p e c t r e s , g l o r i e s , and s i m i l a r phenomena. The following are not included: h a l o e s , sun p i l l a r s , m o c k suns, and m o c k m o o n s . These phenomena a r e c o n s i d e r e d c o m m o n and f a i r l y w e l l understood. R a d a r a n g e l s . Unexplained r a d a r e c h o e s , including studies o f i n s e c t s and t e m p e r a t u r e a n o m a l i e s a s p o s s i b l e c a u s e s . Unusual m i r a g e s . F a t a M o r g a n a , c i t i e s i n the sky, m a r c h i n g t r o o p s , e t c . , with e x p l a n a t i o n s , w h e r e p o s s i b l e . M o s t m i r a g e s a r e e a s i l y e x p l a i n e d and w i l l not b e included. Planetary resonances. B e h a v i o r o f e l e c t r o m a g n e t i c w a v e s i n the e a r t h ' s ionospheric cavity. W h o l e - e a r t h as a r e s o n a t o r . T r a n s m i s s i o n phenomena. Unusual r a d i o r e c e p t i o n . Delayed echoes.

*GEG

*GEM

*GER

*GET

• T h i s s u b s e c t i o n i s not r e p r e s e n t e d i n V o l u m e G l .

Gl-3

ELECTROMAGNETIC PHENOMENA

This page is reserved for the expansion of the preceding categories in future volumes.

Gl-4

BROCKEN SPECTRES, G L O R I E S , ETC.
GEB-001 SPECTRE OF THE BROCKEN AT HOME

GEB-003

R o g e r s , J . I n n e s ; N a t u r e , 22:559, O c t o b e r 14, 1880. H a v i n g o c c a s i o n ten d a y s a g o t o g o into m y g a r d e n about h a l f past ten o ' c l o c k at night I found t h e r e w a s a t h i c k w h i t e f o g , through w h i c h , h o w e v e r , a s t a r c o u l d be s e e n h e r e and t h e r e . I had an o r d i n a r y b e d r o o m c a n d l e s t i c k in my hand with the c a n d l e l i g h t e d , in o r d e r to find the o b j e c t I w a n t e d . To my g r e a t s u r p r i s e I found that the l i g h t e d c a n d l e p r o j e c t e d a fantastic i m a g e of m y s e l f on the f o g , the shadow b e i n g about t w e l v e f e e t high, and of an oddly d i s t o r t e d c h a r a c t e r , just a s the s p e c t r e o f the B r o c k e n i s said t o b e . I t i s of c o u r s e usual on g o i n g into the open a i r to u s e a l a n t e r n with a s o l i d b a c k f o r any l i g h t that m a y be wanted, and with t h i s , of c o u r s e , such a shadow would not b e s e e n ; but i n t h i s c h a r m i n g l y f o g g y v a l l e y o f the T h a m e s , and i n t h e s e d a y s of " P h y s i c s without A p p a r a t u s , " the e f f e c t I saw can p r o b a b l y be s e e n only t o o often. M a y not the g i g a n t i c s p i r i t s of the O s s i a n i c h e r o e s , w h o s e f o r m i s c o m p o s e d o f m i s t , through which the s t a r s can b e s e e n , b e d e r i v e d f r o m the fantastic i m a g e s t h r o w n upon the mountain f o g s f r o m the c a m p f i r e s of the ancient G a e l s ? T h e famous B r o c k e n S p e c t r e is a s i m i l a r p h e n o m e n o n s e e n on the B r o c k e n , a m o u n tain peak i n E u r o p e . See a l s o G E B - 0 0 3 .

GEB-002

THE GREEN RAY

B o t l e y , C . M . ; W e a t h e r , 26:354-357, 1971, C o m p i l e r ' s S u m m a r y : Known b y the ancient E g y p t i a n s , the s o - c a l l e d " g r e e n r a y " has a l w a y s e x c i t e d g r e a t c u r i o s i t y . S o m e b e l i e v e i t a s i g n o f good w e a t h e r ; o t h e r s , bad; the Scots b e l i e v e that t h o s e w h o a r e fortunate enough t o s e e i t w i l l n e v e r f a i l i n a f f a i r s o f the h e a r t . T h e g r e e n r a y o r f l a s h i s s e e n just b e f o r e s u n r i s e and r e q u i r e s a v e r y p u r e a t m o s p h e r e . W h e n the a t m o s p h e r e i s e x t r e m e l y p u r e , the flash m a y b e a " g l o r i o u s v i o l e t " instead o f g r e e n . B l u e i s a l s o seen o n o c c a s i o n . F o l l o w i n g a h i s t o r i c a l r e v i e w o f v a r i o u s o b s e r v a t i o n s o f this phenomenon, B o t l e y c o n c l u d e s that a b n o r m a l a t m o s p h e r i c r e f r a c t i o n , including m i r a g e e f f e c t s , p l a y a g r e a t p a r t i n p r o d u c i n g the g r e e n flash.

GEB-003

MIRAGE ON SNOWDON

W e t e n h a l l , H . J . ; N a t u r e , 12:292, August 12, 1875. D e s p i t e the t i t l e , t h i s l e t t e r p r o b a b l y d e s c r i b e s the B r o c k e n S p e c t r e phenomenon. On M o n d a y , July 12, I, w i t h a p a r t y , a s c e n d e d Snowdon. T h e a t m o s p h e r e w a s c l e a r until we had r e a c h e d within h a l f a m i l e of the s u m m i t , when a l i g h t cloud r i s i n g s t e a l t h i l y f r o m a m o n g s t the southern p e a k s e n v e l o p e d it. D r i f t i n g t o w a r d s us, w h e n v e r y n e a r , the cloud d r o p p e d o v e r the e a s t e r n shoulder o f

Gl-5

GEB-004

BROCKEN SPECTRES, GLORIES, ETC.

the mountain just w h e r e i t d i p s t o w a r d s C a p e l C u r i g . A s w e stood w a t c h i n g , g r e a t w a s o u r s u r p r i s e and d e l i g h t a s w e b e h e l d painted upon i t , not the a r c - e n c i e l w i t h which w e a r e f a m i l i a r , but a c o m p l e t e and b r i l l i a n t p r i s m a t i c c i r c l e , a p p a r e n t l y about t h i r t y f e e t i n d i a m e t e r , i n the v e r y c e n t r e o f which w e o u r s e l v e s w e r e d e p i c t e d , the i m a g e b e i n g s o m e w h a t e n l a r g e d but c l e a r l y d e f i n e d ; a s w e a r r a n g e d the p a r t y i n g r o u p s , o r b o w e d t o e a c h o t h e r , e v e r y f o r m and m o v e m e n t w a s faithfully r e p r o d u c e d in t h e p i c t u r e . It w a s now about 8 o ' c l o c k , with the sun n e a r l y in a l i n e with u s . O u r g u i d e , w h o had m a d e s o m e hundreds of a s c e n t s , had n e v e r w i t n e s s e d such a sight b e f o r e .

GEB-004

METEOROLOGICAL PHENOMENON CALLED CROWN FLASH
231:258, M a y 23, 1971.

G r a v e s , Maurice, et. a l . ; Nature,

G a l l and G r a v e s d e s c r i b e d a gound o b s e r v a t i o n of a sudden b r i g h t e n i n g e f f e c t around the t o p of an a c t i v e c u m u l o n i m b u s c l o u d . Each b r i g h t e n i n g b e g a n c o n c u r r e n t l y with a lightning s t r o k e in the m a i n c l o u d m a s s and r i p p l e d u p w a r d and o u t w a r d d u r i n g a substantial f r a c t i o n of a s e c o n d . Subsequent t o t h i s r e p o r t , b r i e f p r i o r d i s c u s s i o n s o f unusual o p t i c a l phenomena o f this kind have b e e n noted i n the l i t e r a t u r e . These observations d e a l w i t h the sudden d i s a p p e a r a n c e s o f apparent cloud s t r e a m e r s which s o m e times s e e m to r e f o r m . References to e a r l i e r "flachenblitz" observations imply that such r e p o r t s m a y h a v e a l o n g h i s t o r y . A v e r y t e n a b l e explanation o f this c l a s s o f v i s u a l sighting w a s p r o p o s e d b y Vonnegut i n t e r m s o f c h a n g e s i n o r i e n t a t i o n o f i c e c r y s t a l s , with t h e i r m i r r o r l i k e r e f l e x i o n s , around the c r e s t s o f thunder c l o u d s . Such c h a n g e s a r e p o s t u l a t e d t o o c c u r when a r e l a t i v e l y s t r o n g e l e c t r i c f i e l d induces e l e c t r i c d i p o l e s i n the i c e c r y s t a l s , w i t h t h e i r r e s u l t i n g t i l t i n g f o r c e s . F o r e x a m p l e , i f the v i s u a l e f f e c t is a s t r e a m e r d i s a p p e a r a n c e , a r a p i d , l i g h t n i n g - i n d u c e d change i n i c e c r y s t a l o r i e n t a t i o n has taken p l a c e , d e s t r o y i n g a s l o w l y built u p e l e c t r i c f i e l d and i c e c r y s t a l a l i g n m e n t . The possible orientation of atmospheric i c e c r y s t a l s by electrostatic forces is a conc e p t which m a y apply t o the v a r i o u s g l o w s and l i g h t b e a m s p r e s e n t e d i n Section G L D .

Gl-6

SECTION GF: FALLING MATERIAL
F a l l s o f fish, l a r g e chunks o f i c e , "manna, " and o t h e r m a t e r i a l s h a v e b e e n r e p o r t e d f o r thousands o f y e a r s . S o m e o f t h e s e m a t e r i a l s a r e unquestionably p i c k e d up and l a t e r d e p o s i t e d by a t m o s p h e r i c d i s t u r b a n c e s ; o t h e r substances m a y h a v e m e t e o r i c o r i g i n s . B e t h i s a s i t m a y , many f a l l s a r e not e a s i l y e x p l a i n e d , a s t h i s s e c t i o n w i l l d e m o n s t r a t e . T h e subsection d e s c r i p t i o n s f o l l o w . *GFA W e b s and " a n g e l h a i r . " I n c l u d e s unusual c o n c e n t r a t i o n s of g o s s a m e r and w e b - b o r n e s p i d e r s . H a i r - l i k e d e p o s i t s l e f t behind b y g e o p h y s i c a l phenomena. Falls of birds. Chemicals. F a l l s o f l a r g e n u m b e r s o f b i r d s , usually dead o r d y i n g .

*GFB GFC GFF GFG

Salt, sulfur, sand, dust, and o t h e r i n o r g a n i c substances. F a l l s o f any a n i m a l s not n o r m a l l y a i r - b o r n e . often a s s o c i a t e d with

Fish, reptiles, insects.

Gelatin. G e l a t i n o u s m a s s e s and d r o p l e t s m e t e o r - l i k e phenomena.

*GFI

I c e f a l l s . L a r g e chunks o f i c e apparently not a s s o c i a t e d with h a i l s t o r m s or other atmospheric disturbances. L e a v e s , hay, p o l l e n . Unusual f a l l s o f o r g a n i c m a t e r i a l frequently f r o m a c l e a r sky and unexplained deposits, such as "manna. " P o l l e n , of c o u r s e , i s s o m e t i m e s a s s o c i a t e d with the y e l l o w and r e d r a i n s a p p e a r i n g in G W P . T h u n d e r s t o n e s . Strange c o r r e l a t i o n s o f s t o n e s ( p o s s i b l y m e t e o r i t e s i n s o m e i n s t a n c e s ) with t h u n d e r s t o r m s .

GFL

*GFT

* T h i s s u b s e c t i o n not r e p r e s e n t e d i n V o l u m e G l .

Gl-7

FALLING M A T E R I A L

T h i s p a g e r e s e r v e d f o r the expansion o f the p r e c e d i n g c a t e g o r i e s i n future v o l u m e s .

Gl-8

CHEMICALS
GFC-001 HAILSTONES OF SALT AND SULFIDE OF IRON
1872.

GFC-003

A n o n y m o u s ; A m e r i c a n Journal of S c i e n c e , 3:3:239,

P r o f . K e n n g o t t , o f Z u r i c h , s t a t e s that i n a h a i l s t o r m , l a s t i n g f i v e m i n u t e s , o n t h e 20th o f l a s t A u g u s t , the s t o n e s , s o m e o f w h i c h w e i g h e d t w e l v e g r a i n s consisted e s s e n t i a l l y of c o m m o n salt, m a i n l y in i m p e r f e c t cubical c r y s t a l s . H e s u p p o s e s that the s a l t had b e e n t a k e n u p f r o m t h e s a l t p l a i n s o f A f r i c a , and brought o v e r the M e d i t e r r a n e a n . H a i l s t o n e s containing each a s m a l l c r y s t a l of sulphide of i r o n a r e r e p o r t e d as having fallen recently, by Prof. Eversmann of Kasan. The crystals w e r e p r o b a b l y w e a t h e r e d out o f s o m e r o c k s i n the v i c i n i t y . T h i s i t e m was taken f r o m Nature, J a n u a r y 1 1 , s u p p o s e d l y 1872.

GFC-002

REPORT ON OBSERVATIONS OF LUMINOUS METEORS DURING THE YEAR 1873-1874
e t a l ; R e p o r t o f the B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , 2 6 9 - 3 5 9 , 1874.

Glaisher, James,

[June 17, 1873; H u n g a r y and A u s t r i a ] I t i s r e m a r k a b l e that p e r f e c t l y authentic s t a t e m e n t s w e r e r e c e i v e d o f the d e p o s i t i o n , s o o n a f t e r , o r about the t i m e o f , the m e t e o r ' s e x p l o s i o n o v e r Z i t t a u and i t s n e i g h b o r h o o d , o f a m a s s o f m e l t e d and b u r n i n g sulfur t h e s i z e o f a m a n ' s f i s t , o n the r o a d w a y o f a v i l l a g e , P r o s c h w i t z , about 4 m i l e s south of. R e i c h e n b e r g , w h e r e the m e t e o r e x p l o d e d n e a r l y i n the z e n i t h . I t w a s s t a m p e d out b y a c r o w d o f t h e v i l l a g e r s , w h o c o u l d g i v e n o o t h e r e x p l a n a t i o n o f i t s a p p e a r a n c e o n the s p o t than that i t had p r o c e e d e d f r o m the m e t e o r ; o n e x a m i n a t i o n a t B r e s l a u s o m e r e m n a n t s o f the s u b s t a n c e p r o v e d t o b e pure sulfur. W i t h r e g a r d t o the c a l c u l a t e d c o u r s e , the m e t e o r m u s t , h o w e v e r , h a v e p a s s e d q u i t e 1 2 o r 1 4 m i l e s s o u t h - w e s t w a r d s f r o m the p l a c e w h e r e t h i s e v e n t i s s a i d t o h a v e o c c u r r e d ; and i t s q u e s t i o n a b l e c o n n e x i o n w i t h the f i r e b a l l i s a c c o r d i n g l y r e n d e r e d v e r y doubtful f r o m the g r e a t d i s t a n c e o f t h e l o c a l i t y i m m e d i a t e l y b e l o w t h e m e t e o r ' s c o u r s e . I n C h l a d n i ' s w o r k o n F i e r y M e t e o r s and S t o n e f a l l s , only one s i m i l a r instance i s r e c o r d e d , f r o m ancient c h r o n i c l e s , w h e r e b u r n i n g sulfur f e l l a t M a g d e b u r g , o f t h e s i z e o f a m a n ' s f i s t , o n the c a s t l e - r o o f a t L o b u r g , 1 8 m i l e s f r o m M a g d e b u r g , i n June o f t h e y e a r 1642. T h e fact of this l a r g e f i r e b a l l h a v i n g d e p o s i t e d any s t o n y o r o t h e r a e r o l i t i c m a t t e r cannot t h e r e y e t b e r e g a r d e d a s d e c i d e d l y e s t a b l i s h e d , ( p . 272)

GFC-003
Olmsted,

OBSERVATIONS ON THE METEORS OF NOVEMBER 13TH, 1833
Denison; A m e r i c a n Journal of S c i e n c e , 1:26:132-174, 1834.

T h e St. P e t e r s b u r g A c a d e m i c a l G a z e t t e , c o n t a i n s the f o l l o w i n g a c c o u n t o f a n e x t r a o r d i n a r y p h e n o m e n o n f r o m a l e t t e r d a t e d M o s c o w , M a y 2 , 1832. "In M a r c h l a s t , t h e r e f e l l i n the f i e l d s o f t h e v i l l a g e o f K o u r i a n o f , t h i r t e e n v e r s t s f r o m Solokolamsk, a combustible substance of a y e l l o w i s h c o l o r , at l e a s t t w o i n c h e s t h i c k , and c o v e r i n g a s u p e r f i c i e s o f b e t w e e n s i x and s e v e n h u n d r e d square feet. T h e i n h a b i t a n t s , a t f i r s t , thought i t w a s s n o w , but o n e x a m i n a -

Gl-9

GFC-004

CHEMICALS

tion, i t a p p e a r e d t o h a v e the p r o p e r t i e s o f c o t t o n , h a v i n g , o n b e i n g t o r n , the s a m e t e n a c i t y ; but, on b e i n g put into a v e s s e l full of w a t e r , it a s s u m e d the consistence of rosin. O n b e i n g put t o the f i r e , i n i t s p r i m i t i v e state, i t burnt and sent f o r t h a f l a m e l i k e s p i r i t s of w i n e ; but in i t s r e s i n o u s state, it b o i l e d o n the f i r e , without b e c o m i n g i n f l a m e d , p r o b a b l y b e c a u s e i t w a s m i x e d with s o m e p o r t i o n of snow, f r o m which it had b e e n taken. A f t e r a m o r e minute e x a m i n a t i o n , the r o s i n had the c o l o r o f a m b e r , w a s e l a s t i c l i k e Indian rubber, and s m e l t l i k e p r e p a r e d o i l , m i x e d with w a x . " T h e a b o v e i t e m w a s taken f r o m the Annual R e g i s t e r f o r 1832.

GFC-004
Hermann,

ON A SUBSTANCE CALLED INFLAMMABLE SNOW
M . ; A m e r i c a n Journal o f S c i e n c e , 1:28:361, 1835.

( A n n . d e P o g . t o m e 28. p . 5 6 6 . ) J . G . T h i s substance f e l l f r o m the sky on the 11th A p r i l , 1832, 13 w e r s t e s f r o m the t o w n of W o l o k a l a m s k , and c o v e r e d to the t h i c k n e s s of 1 to 2 i n c h e s a s p a c e of 8 to 10 s q u a r e r u l t r e s . I t w a s o f a w i n e y e l l o w , t r a n s p a r e n t , soft, and s m e l l i n g l i k e r a n c i d o i l . I t s s p . g r . w a s 1 . 1 . I t m e l t e d i n a c l o s e v e s s e l , and y i e l d e d the c o m m o n p r o d u c t s of v e g e t a b l e substances, l e a v i n g a b r i l l i a n t c h a r c o a l . It burnt with a blue f l a m e , without s m o k e . It is i n s o l u b l e in c o l d w a t e r , but m e l t s in b o i l i n g w a t e r , and then s w i m s o n the fluid. B o i l i n g a l c o h o l d i s s o l v e s i t . I t d i s s o l v e s a l s o i n c a r b o n a t e o f soda, and the a c i d s s e p a r a t e f r o m the s o l u tion a y e l l o w v i s c o u s substance, s o l u b l e in c o l d a l c o h o l , and w h i c h contains a peculiar acid. The analysis, by oxide of copper, gave Carbon 0.615 Hydrogen 0.070 Oxygen 0.315 1.000 w h i c h c o r r e s p o n d s t o the f o r m u l a 10CH plus 4 0 H . e l a i n e , w h i c h s i g n i f i e s sky o i l .

I g a v e i t the n a m e o f d ' r a l

GFC-005

[ANALYSIS OF BLOOD RAIN]

S i l v e s t r i , O . ; C h e m i c a l N e w s , 25:300, June 21, 1872. C h e m i c o - M i c r o s c o p i c R e s e a r c h o f a P e c u l i a r Substance which A c c o m panied the M e t e o r i c Dust which F e l l in S i c i l y on 9th, 10th, and 11th M a r c h L a s t . — T h e p e c u l i a r substance, d e s i g n a t e d p o p u l a r l y a s b l o o d - r a i n , w a s found t o c o n sist of 100 p a r t s of r e d i r o n o c h r e , 7 5 . 1 ; c a r b o n a t e of l i m e , 11. 7; o r g a n i c m a t t e r , 13.2.

Gl-10

FISH, R E P T I L E S , INSECTS
GFF-001

GFF-002

NOTICE ON THE APPEARANCE OF FISH AND LIZARDS IN EXTRAORDINARY CIRCUMSTANCES
Joseph E . ; A m e r i c a n Journal of S c i e n c e , 1:16:41-44, 1829.

Muse,

The late notice in an English paper, of a s h o w e r of h e r r i n g s witnessed by a Major M c K e n z i e , as he t r a v e r s e d a field on his f a r m , leads me to communic a t e t o y o u a m o s t s i n g u l a r i n s t a n c e o f the a p p a r e n t l y p l a y f u l a b e r r a t i o n s o f n a t u r e f r o m t h o s e l a w s , w h i c h she had p r e s c r i b e d f o r h e r s e l f , and u n d e r w h o s e i n f l u e n c e , she m o s t u s u a l l y , and m o s t w i s e l y o p e r a t e s . I n t h e c o u r s e o f the l a s t s u m m e r I o r d e r e d a d i t c h t o b e cut o f l a r g e d i m e n s i o n s , o n a l i n e o f m y f a r m n e a r C a m b r i d g e : the l i n e w a s a p l a n e , t e n f e e t a b o v e the l e v e l o f the n e i g h b o r i n g r i v e r , and a t l e a s t o n e m i l e f r o m i t , a t the n e a r e s t p o i n t o f the l i n e ; a p o r t i o n o f the d i t c h b e i n g d o n e , the w o r k w a s i n t e r r u p t e d b y r a i n f o r t e n o r t w e l v e d a y s ; w h e n the w o r k w a s r e s u m e d , o n e x a m i n i n g the p e r f o r m a n c e , I d i s c o v e r e d that t h e r a i n w a t e r w h i c h had f i l l e d the d i t c h , thus r e c e n t l y cut, c o n t a i n e d h u n d r e d s o f f i s h , c o n s i s t i n g o f t w o k i n d s o f p e r c h w h i c h a r e c o m m o n i n o u r w a t e r s the "sun p e r c h " and the " j a c k p e r c h ; " the usual s i z e o f the f o r m e r i s f r o m s i x t o t w e l v e i n c h e s , the l a t t e r v a r i e s f r o m t e n t o f i f t e e n i n c h e s l o n g ; t h o s e i n the d i t c h w e r e f r o m f o u r t o s e v e n i n c h e s : b y what p o s s i b l e m e a n s c o u l d t h e s e f i s h h a v e b e e n t r a n s p o r t e d s o f a r f r o m t h e i r n a t i v e w a t e r s ? T h e r e i s n o w a t e r c o m m u n i c a t i o n o n the s u r f a c e , t o c o n d u c t t h e m t h e r e ; the e l e v a t i o n and e x t e n t o f the p l a n e , i n r e g a r d t o the r i v e r s , u t t e r l y p r o h i b i t the i d e a ; the e g g s , i f p l a c e d t h e r e b y a w a t e r - s p o u t , c o u l d not h a v e s u f f e r e d s o r a p i d a t r a n s m i g r a t i o n ; n o such p h e n o m e n a had b e e n o b s e r v e d , and the a d j a c e n c y o f the l i n e t o the d w e l l i n g , w o u l d h a v e r e n d e r e d the o c c u r r e n c e , i m p o s s i b l e , without n o t i c e . A s i m i l a r o c c u r r e n c e a f e w y e a r s a g o , I w i t n e s s e d o n the s a m e f a r m ; i n a v e r y l a r g e d i t c h , cut o n l o w e r l a n d s , o n a l i n e e q u a l l y u n c o n n e c t e d w i t h any r i v e r , pond, o r other s u r f a c e - w a t e r , t h e r e w e r e , under v e r y s i m i l a r c i r c u m stances, numerous p e r c h , which afforded fine angling to my c h i l d r e n . On a d i a r y w h i c h I k e e p , I h a v e e n t e r e d , that s e v e r a l o f t h e m m e a s u r e d a s m u c h a s t w e l v e i n c h e s i n l e n g t h , and that the t i m e s i n c e t h e i r a r r i v a l t h e r e , c o u l d not possibly have e x c e e d e d a fortnight. T h e f a l l o f m e t e o r o l i t e s f r o m the h e a v e n s h a s b e e n r e c o r d e d b y the h i s t o r i a n , f r o m the e a r l i e s t a g e s , and a s often d i s credited, from philosophic vanity. T h e frequent r e c u r r e n c e of this s e e m i n g p h y s i c a l p a r a d o x , h a v i n g b e e n f i n a l l y e s t a b l i s h e d o n the f u l l e s t e v i d e n c e , should g u a r d the p h i l o s o p h e r a g a i n s t v a i n p r e s u m p t i o n , and f o r t i f y h i m i n o t h e r c a s e s , i n the h o p e o f s u c c e s s f u l r e s e a r c h .

GFF-002

FALL OF FISHES FROM THE ATMOSPHERE IN INDIA

P r i n c e p , M . ; A m e r i c a n J o u r n a l o f S c i e n c e , 1 : 3 2 : 1 9 9 - 2 0 0 , 1837. A s f o r m y s e l f , m y c r e d u l i t y i s c o m p e l l e d t o y i e l d t o the d i s c o v e r y I m a d e one d a y o f a s m a l l f i s h , i n m y p l u v i o m e t e r , w h i c h w a s s i t u a t e d o n a n i s o l a t e d p i l e o f s t o n e s about f i v e l e e t h i g h , i n m y g a r d e n a t B e n a r e s . A note f r o m M. C a m e r o n i n f o r m s m e that a r a i n o f f i s h e s o c c u r r e d o n the 19th o f F e b r u a r y , 1830, n e a r F e r i d p o o r . This fact was a s s e r t e d b e f o r e a m a g i s t r a t e , by many o c u l a r w i t n e s s e s , and i t w a s t h e i r c o n c u r r i n g t e s t i m o n y that t o w a r d s noon o f the a b o v e m e n t i o n e d d a y , the s k y w a s o b s c u r e d , the r a i n c o m m e n c e d t o f a l l ,

Gl-11

GFF-003

F I S H , R E P T I L E S , INSECTS

and s h o r t l y a f t e r , f i s h e s o f v a r i o u s s i z e s f e l l f r o m the a t m o s p h e r e . A large n u m b e r w e r e c o l l e c t e d b y s e v e r a l w i t n e s s e s ; s o m e w e r e found d e s t i t u t e o f a h e a d , and had c o m m e n c e d t o p u t r e f y ; o t h e r s w e r e e n t i r e and f r e s h , but n o o n e dared to eat them. B i b . U n i v e r s e l l e , N o . 3 , M a r s , 1836.

GFF-003

EXTRAORDINARY PHENOMENON AT DERBY

A n o n y m o u s ; T h e A t h e n a e u m , 542, July 17, 1841. On Thursday w e e k , during a heavy thunderstorm, the rain poured down in t o r r e n t s m i x e d w i t h h a l f - m e l t e d i c e , and, i n c r e d i b l e a s i t m a y a p p e a r , h u n d r e d s o f s m a l l f i s h e s and f r o g s i n g r e a t abundance d e s c e n d e d w i t h the t o r r e n t s o f rain. T h e f i s h w e r e f r o m half a n inch t o t w o i n c h e s l o n g , and a f e w c o n s i d e r ably l a r g e r , o n e w e i g h i n g t h r e e o u n c e s ; s o m e o f the fish h a v e v e r y h a r d p o i n t e d s p i k e s o n t h e i r b a c k s , and a r e c o m m o n l y c a l l e d s u t t l e - b a c k s . Many w e r e picked up a l i v e . T h e f r o g s w e r e f r o m the s i z e o f a h o r s e - b e a n t o that o f a g a r d e n - b e a n ; n u m b e r s o f t h e m c a m e d o w n a l i v e , and jumped! a w a } ' a s f a s t a s t h e y c o u l d , but the bulk o f t h e m w e r e k i l l e d b y t h e f a l l o n the h a r d p a v e m e n t . We h a v e s e e n s o m e a l i v e t o d a y , w h i c h a p p e a r t o enjoy t h e m s e l v e s , i n a g l a s s w i t h w a t e r and l e a v e s i n i t . Sheffield P a t r i o t .

GFF-004

SNOW WORMS

A n o n y m o u s ; S c i e n t i f i c A m e r i c a n , 64:116, F e b r u a r y 21, 1891. A p u z z l i n g p h e n o m e n o n has b e e n noted f r e q u e n t l y i n s o m e p a r t s o f V a l l e y Bend D i s t r i c t , R a n d o l p h County, V a . , t h i s w i n t e r . T h e c r u s t o f the s n o w h a s been c o v e r e d two o r t h r e e t i m e s with w o r m s , r e s e m b l i n g ordinary c u t w o r m s . W h e r e they c o m e f r o m , u n l e s s they f a l l w i t h the s n o w , i s i n e x p l i c a b l e . The s n o w i s t w o f e e t d e e p , and the c r u s t i s t o o s t r o n g f o r t h e m t o h a v e c o m e u p out o f the g r o u n d . A s q u a r e foot o f s n o w c a n s c a r c e l y b e found s o m e d a y s without a dozen of these w o r m s on it.

GFF-005

[SHOWER OF FROGS]

A n o n y m o u s ; S c i e n t i f i c A m e r i c a n , 29:17, July 12, 1873. A s h o w e r o f f r o g s , w h i c h d a r k e n e d the a i r and c o v e r e d the g r o u n d f o r a l o n g d i s t a n c e , i s the r e p o r t e d r e s u l t o f a r e c e n t r a i n s t o r m a t K a n s a s C i t y , M o .

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GELATIN
GFG-001 A CATALOGUE OF OBSERVATIONS OF LUMINOUS METEORS

GFG-004

P o w e l l , B a d e n ; R e p o r t s o f the B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , 9 4 , 1855. 1844, O c t o b e r 8th, n e a r C o b l e n t z , a G e r m a n g e n t l e m a n ( a f r i e n d o f M r . G r e g ' s ) , accompanied by another p e r s o n , late in the evening, after dark, walking in a d r y ploughed field, saw a luminous body descent straight down c l o s e t o t h e m (not 2 0 y a r d s o f f ) , and h e a r d i t d i s t i n c t l y s t r i k e t h e g r o u n d w i t h a n o i s e ; t h e y m a r k e d the s p o t , and r e t u r n i n g e a r l y t h e n e x t m o r n i n g a s n e a r l y a s p o s s i b l e w h e r e i t s e e m e d t o f a l l , t h e y found a g e l a t i n o u s m a s s o f a g r e y i s h c o l o u r s o v i s c i d a s " t o t r e m b l e a l l o v e r " w h e n p o k e d w i t h a s t i c k . I t had no appearance of being organic. T h e y , h o w e v e r , took no further c a r e to preserve it.

GFG-002
Olmsted,

OBSERVATIONS ON THE METEORS OF NOVEMBER 13TH, 1833
Denison; A m e r i c a n Journal of S c i e n c e , 1:26:132-174, 1874. 24:488.

T h e f o l l o w i n g i t e m w a s c r e d i t e d t o the L o n d o n Q u a r t e r l y J o u r n a l ,

3 . G e l a t i n o u s m a t t e r f e l l w i t h a g l o b e o f f i r e , i n the i s l e o f L e t h y i n I n d i a , i n 1718. A v i s c o u s m a t t e r f e l l i n L u s a t i a , i n 1796, a l o n g w i t h a m e t e o r . A b o u t the f i r s t o f A p r i l 1826, the a t m o s p h e r e b e i n g v e r y c l e a r and the sun s h i n i n g b r i g h t l y , a n o i s e r e s e m b l i n g r o l l i n g t h u n d e r , w a s h e a r d a t S a a r b r u c k , and the environs. D u r i n g the sound, a g r e y i s h o b j e c t about t h r e e f e e t and a h a l f i n h e i g h t , w a s s e e n i n the a i r , r a p i d l y a p p r o a c h i n g t h e e a r t h , and t h e n e x p a n d i n g i t s e l f l i k e a s h e e t ; t h e r e w a s then s i l e n c e f o r about a m i n u t e ; a f t e r w h i c h a n o t h e r sound r e s e m b l i n g thunder w a s h e a r d , a s i f i t had o r i g i n a t e d a t t h e p l a c e w h e r e the m e t e o r f e l l . N o r e s i d u u m , o r d e p o s i t w a s found.

GFG-003

A CATALOGUE OF METEORITES AND FIREBALLS
R e p o r t o f the B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , 6 2 - 6 3 , I 8 6 0 .

Gregg, R. P. ;

J a n u a r y 21, 1803. S i l e s i a . A s h o o t i n g s t a r , g o t l a r g e r and l a r g e r until i t fell to earth. B e t w e e n B a r s d o r f and F r e i b u r g . S e e m e d t o p a s s c l o s e t o ground; a w h i z z i n g n o i s e w a s h e a r d , then i t s e e m e d t o l i e b u r n i n g o n the g r o u n d ; n e x t day a j e l l y - l i k e m a s s found o n the s n o w . Curious, if true.

GFG-004
Graves,

ACCOUNT OF A GELATINOUS METEOR
R u m s ; A m e r i c a n Journal of S c i e n c e , 1:2:335-337, 1819.

O n the e v e n i n g o f the t h i r t e e n t h d a y o f A u g u s t , 1819, b e t w e e n the h o u r s o f e i g h t and nine o ' c l o c k , w a s s e e n i n the a t m o s p h e r e , a t A m h e r s t , M a s s a c h u s e t t s , a f a l l i n g m e t e o r o r f i r e b a l l , o f the s i z e , a s r e p r e s e n t e d b y a n i n t e l l i g e n t s p e c t a t o r , o f a m a n ' s hat, o r a l a r g e b l o w n b l a d d e r , o f a b r i l l i a n t w h i t e l i g h t r e -

Gl-13

GFG-004

GELATIN

s e m b l i n g burnished s i l v e r . T h e p o s i t i o n o f this s p e c t a t o r b e i n g i n a d i r e c t l i n e o f the s t r e e t w h e r e the luminous b a l l a p p e a r e d , and at the distance of not m o r e than f i v e hundred y a r d s , with the sight bounded by the b u i l d i n g s , t h e r e could be no d e c e p t i o n r e l a t i v e to the d i r e c t i o n that i t t o o k . I t s altitude, a t i t s f i r s t d i s c o v e r y , w a s t w o o r t h r e e t i m e s the height of the houses; it f e l l s l o w l y in a p e r p e n d i c u l a r d i r e c t i o n , e m i t t i n g g r e a t l i g h t , t i l l i t a p p e a r e d t o s t r i k e the e a r t h i n front o f the b u i l d i n g s , and w a s instantly extinguished, with a h e a v y e x p l o s i o n . At the s a m e instant, as a p p e a r e d f r o m the r e p o r t , and f r o m the r i n g i n g of the church b e l l , an unusually w h i t e l i g h t w a s s e e n a f e w minutes a f t e r w a r d s , by t w o l a d i e s in a c h a m b e r o f M r . E r a s t u s D e w e y . W h i l e they w e r e s i t t i n g with t w o c a n d l e s burning in the r o o m , a b r i g h t luminous c i r c u l a r spot suddenly a p p e a r e d on the side w a l l o f the c h a m b e r n e a r the upper f l o o r i n front o f t h e m , o f the s i z e o f a two feet stand-table leaf. T h i s s p e c t r u m d e s c e n d e d s l o w l y with a t r e m u l o u s m o t i o n n e a r l y t o the l o w e r f l o o r and d i s a p p e a r e d . I n c r i t i c a l l y e x a m i n i n g the c h a m b e r w h e r e the f o r e g o i n g phenomenon w a s o b s e r v e d , it a p p e a r e d that the l i g h t must h a v e e n t e r e d through the e a s t front w i n d o w in a d i a g o n a l d i r e c t i o n , and i m p i n g e d on the north w a l l of the c h a m b e r back of the l a d i e s , and thence r e f l e c t e d to the south w a l l in front of t h e m , f o r m ing the c i r c u l a r s p e c t r u m , with the c o r r e s p o n d i n g t r e m u l o u s m o t i o n o f the m e t e o r , and d e s c e n d i n g with it in the s a m e d i r e c t i o n , a c c o r d i n g to the f i x e d l a w s o f i n c i d e n c e and r e f l e c t i o n . E a r l y o n the ensuing m o r n i n g , w a s d i s c o v e r e d i n the d o o r y a r d o f the a b o v e mentioned E r a s t u s D e w e y , at about twenty f e e t f r o m the front of the house, a substance unlike anything b e f o r e o b s e r v e d by any one who saw i t . T h e situation in which it w a s found, b e i n g e x a c t l y in the d i r e c t i o n in which the luminous body w a s f i r s t s e e n , and i n the only p o s i t i o n t o h a v e t h r o w n i t s l i g h t into the c h a m b e r , (as b e f o r e r e m a r k e d , ) l e a v e s no r e a s o n a b l e doubt that the substance found w a s the r e s i d u u m o f the m e t e o r i c body. T h i s substance when f i r s t s e e n b y the w r i t e r w a s e n t i r e , n o p a r t o f i t h a v i n g b e e n r e m o v e d . I t w a s i n a c i r c u l a r f o r m , r e s e m b l i n g a sauce o r s a l l a d dish b o t t o m u p w a r d s , about eight i n c h e s in d i a m e t e r , and s o m e t h i n g m o r e than one in t h i c k n e s s , of a b r i g h t buff c o l o u r , with a fine nap upon it s i m i l a r to that on m i l l e d c l o t h , which s e e m e d t o defend i t f r o m the action o f the a i r . O n r e m o v i n g the v i l l o u s c o a t , a buff c o l o u r e d pulpy substance of the c o n s i s t e n c e of g o o d soft soap, of an o f f e n s i v e , suffocating s m e l l a p p e a r e d ; and on a n e a r a p p r o a c h t o i t , o r when i m m e d i a t e l y o v e r i t , the s m e l l b e c a m e a l m o s t insupportable, p r o d u c i n g nausea and d i z z i n e s s . A f e w m i n u t e s e x p o s u r e to the a t m o s p h e r e changed the buff i n t o a l i v i d c o l o u r r e s e m b l i n g v e n o u s b l o o d . I t w a s o b s e r v e d t o a t t r a c t m o i s t u r e v e r y r e a d i l y f r o m the a i r . A h a l f - p i n t t u m b l e r w a s n e a r l y h a l f f i l l e d w i t h t h e substance. It soon b e g a n to l i q u i f y and f o r m a m u c i l a g i n o u s substance o f the c o n s i s t e n c e , c o l o u r , and f e e l i n g o f s t a r c h when p r e p a r e d f o r domestic use. T h e t u m b l e r w a s then set i n a safe p l a c e , w h e r e i t r e m a i n e d undisturbed f o r t w o o r t h r e e d a y s ; and when e x a m i n e d a f t e r w a r d s , the substance w a s found t o h a v e all e v a p o r a t e d , e x c e p t a s m a l l d a r k c o l o u r e d r e s i d u u m , a d h e r i n g t o the b o t t o m and s i d e s o f the g l a s s , w h i c h , when rubbed b e t w e e n the f i n g e r s , p r o d u c e d a f i n e a s h - c o l o u r e d p o w d e r without t a s t e o r s m e l l ; the w h o l e of which m i g h t h a v e b e e n included in a l a d y ' s t h i m b l e . T h e p l a c e w h e r e the substance w a s f i r s t found w a s e x a m i n e d , and nothing w a s to be s e e n but a thin m e m b r a n o u s substance a d h e r i n g to the ground s i m i l a r to that found on the g l a s s . T h i s s i n g u l a r substance w a s submitted t o the a c t i o n o f a c i d s . W i t h the m u r i a t i c and n i t r i c a c i d s , both c o n c e n t r a t e d and diluted, no c h e m i c a l action w a s o b s e r v e d , and the m a t t e r r e m a i n e d unchanged. W i t h the c o n c e n t r a t e d

Gl-14

GELATIN

GFG-005

sulphuric a c i d a v i o l e n t e f f e r v e s c e n c e ensued, a g a s e o u s b o d y w a s e v o l v e d , and n e a r l y the w h o l e substance d i s s o l v e d . T h e r e b e i n g n o c h e m i c a l apparatus a t hand, the e v o l v i n g gas w a s not p r e s e r v e d , o r i t s p r o p e r t i e s e x a m i n e d .

GFG-005

OBSERVATIONS ON THE METEORS OF NOVEMBER 13TH, 1833

O l m s t e d , D e n i s o n ; A m e r i c a n Journal of S c i e n c e , 1:25:363-411, 1834. 9. M A T T E R SUPPOSED T O C O M E F R O M T H E M E T E O R S . —In s e v e r a l i n s t a n c e s , m a t e r i a l substances w e r e supposed b y the o b s e r v e r s t o f a l l upon the e a r t h ; and in a n u m b e r of c a s e s , m a t t e r w a s found which w a s supposed to h a v e p r o c e e d e d f r o m the m e t e o r s . (1.) We have r e c e i v e d a communication f r o m M r . H. H. Garland, of Nelson C o . , who s t a t e s , that o n h e a r i n g a l a r g e d r o p o f w a t e r f a l l o n the r o o f o f a c o o p , he i m m e d i a t e l y l o o k e d , and d i s c o v e r e d a substance of about the c i r c u m f e r e n c e of a twenty five cent p i e c e , of the c o n s i s t e n c e and a p p e a r a n c e of the w h i t e of an e g g m a d e hot, o r p e r h a p s , animal j e l l y b r o k e n into f r a g m e n t s would b e a b e t t e r comparison. (Richmond E n q u i r e r . ) ( 2 . ) P e r s o n s i n this town s a w p a r t i c l e s o f " f i e r y r a i n " s t r i k e the g r o u n d , and o n e x a m i n a t i o n , d i s c o v e r e d l u m p s o f j e l l y , a s they t e r m t h e m . (Rahway, N e w Jersey Advocate.) ( 3 . ) A f t e r s u n - r i s e , a m a s s o f g e l a t i n o u s m a t t e r w a s found, which, f r o m its s i n g u l a r t e x t u r e , i s supposed t o h a v e f o r m e d one o f the l a r g e m e t e o r s . I t s a p p e a r a n c e r e s e m b l e d soft s o a p . I t p o s s e s s e d l i t t l e e l a s t i c i t y , and o n t h e a p p l i c a t i o n o f heat, e v a p o r a t e d a s r e a d i l y a s w a t e r . T h e m a n n e r i n which this substance f e l l o f the ground, i n d i c a t e d that i t had f a l l e n with p r o d i g i o u s f o r c e . (Newark, N, J. paper.) ( 4 . ) A w o m a n at this p l a c e ( W e s t P o i n t ) who w a s m i l k i n g about s u n r i s e , on the 13th, s a w s o m e t h i n g c o m e down " w i t h a s p l o s h " b e f o r e h e r . On l o o k i n g she found a round flattened m a s s , about a t e a cup or c o f f e e cup full, l o o k i n g l i k e b o i l e d s t a r c h , s o c l e a r that she could s e e the ground through i t . A t 1 0 o ' c l o c k , she went out to show it to s o m e p e r s o n s , and no v e s t i g e of it r e m a i n e d . A boy o b s e r v e d s o m e minute w hite p a r t i c l e s o n the spot, a s l a r g e a s s m a l l shot, o r p i n ' s h e a d s , o f i r r e g u l a r shape, and f a l l i n g t o p o w d e r , and d i s a p p e a r i n g when h e went to take t h e m up. I went to the spot with the w o m a n and b o y , and c o n c l u d e d that if I h e a r d of any analogous facts f r o m o t h e r q u a r t e r s , I would c o n s i d e r this a s e n t i t l e d t o n o t i c e , but not o t h e r w i s e . ( M r . A l e x a n d e r C . T w i n i n g t o P r o f . Olmsted.)
T

(5.) window.

One o f o u r c i t i z e n s w a s awakened b y a b a l l o f f i r e f a l l i n g against h i s (Hartford T i m e s . )

9 . I t s e e m s d i f f i c u l t t o d e t e r m i n e w h e t h e r o r not any substance w a s found, that w a s p r o b a b l y a d e p o s i t o r r e s i d u u m f r o m the m e t e o r s . T h e fact, h o w e v e r , that the supposed d e p o s i t s w e r e s o u n i f o r m l y d e s c r i b e d a s g e l a t i n o u s substances, f o r m s a p r e s u m p t i o n in f a v o r of the supposition that they had the o r i g i n a s c r i b e d t o t h e m . T h i s q u a l i t y , i t i s w o r t h y o f r e m a r k , w a s mentioned b y o b s e r v e r s o f v e r y d i f f e r e n t c l a s s e s , s o m e o f w h o m ( a s i n the i n s t a n c e m e n t i o n e d b y M r . T w i n i n g , p... 396) could h a r d l y be supposed to h a v e e v e r h e a r d , that to fire-balls of this d e s c r i p t i o n had b e e n a s s i g n e d such a c h e m i c a l constitution. T a k i n g it as e s t a b l i s h e d , that such a r e s i d u u m as has b e e n m e n t i o n e d , w a s d e p o s i t e d b y the m e t e o r s , w e m a y i n f e r , that the m a t t e r o f which the m e t e o r s

Gl-15

GFG-006

GELATIN

w e r e c o m p o s e d w a s both h i g h l y v o l a t i l e and t r a n s p a r e n t , — q u a l i t i e s that a r e apt to be united in v e r y i n f l a m m a b l e substances. W e k n o w o f h a r d l y any t h i n g e l s e , e x c e p t b o d i e s a n a l o g o u s t o the m e t a l l i c b a s e s o f the a l k a l i e s , p o t a s s i u m f o r e x a m p l e which could h a v e undergone combustion under the c i r c u m s t a n c e s in which the m e t e o r s appeared to undergo this p r o c e s s . C o u l d b o d i e s c o n s t i t u t e d l i k e the k n o w n a e r o l i t e s , f a l l i n g f r o m any s u p p o s e d h e i g h t i n s p a c e i n t o t h e a t m o s p h e r e , g e n e r a t e heat sufficient, by the abrasion or condensation of the a i r , to d i s s i p a t e them in a cloud of s m o k e b e f o r e they r e a c h e d the e a r t h ? I f w e c o u l d e s t a b l i s h the a f f i r m a t i v e o f t h i s q u e s t i o n , w e should a t o n c e b e a b l e t o t r a c e t h e g r o u n d o f c o n n e x i o n b e t w e e n p h e n o m e n a o f t h i s kind and m a g n e t i s m , s i n c e a e r o l i t e s a r e known t o c o n s i s t i n a g r e a t m e a s u r e o f n a t i v e iron. A number of other v e r y i n t e r e s t i n g r e s u l t s would f o l l o w , r e s p e c t i n g the aurora b o r e a l i s .

GFG-006

JELLY RAIN

H i l l , M. D. ; N a t u r e , 87:10, July 6, 1911. O n the m o r n i n g o f S a t u r d a y , June 24, t h e g r o u n d h e r e w a s found t o b e c o v e r e d w i t h s m a l l m a s s e s o f j e l l y about a s l a r g e a s a p e a . T h e r e had b e e n h e a v y r a i n o n F r i d a y night, and it w a s r a i n i n g at 7 a. m . , w h e n , so f a r as I c a n a s c e r t a i n , the phenomenon was first seen. On b e i n g e x a m i n e d m i c r o s c o p i c a l l y the lumps of j e l l y t u r n e d out t o c o n t a i n n u m e r o u s o v a o f s o m e i n s e c t , w i t h a n a d v a n c e d e m b r y o in each. T h e e g g i t s e l f is v e r y minute an elongated oval 0. 04 m m . in length. Y e s t e r d a y and t h e d a y b e f o r e m a n y l a r v a e e m e r g e d , and w e r e o b v i o u s l y t h o s e o f s o m e s p e c i e s o f C h i r o n o m u s , though c o l o u r l e s s , h a v i n g n o h e m o g l o b i n , a s i s the c a s e with the l a r v a e of C. p l u m o s u s . Not b e i n g an e n t o m o l o g i s t , I am at a l o s s t o u n d e r s t a n d h o w t h e s e e g g - m a s s e s c o u l d h a v e a p p e a r e d w h e r e t h e y did u n l e s s they w e r e c o n v e y e d b y the r a i n , a s i t d o e s not s e e m l i k e l y that the m i d g e s w o u l d h a v e l a i d t h e i r e g g s o n p a v e m e n t s , g r a v e l p a t h s , t o m b s t o n e s , & c . , e v e n had they b e e n w e t ; n o r h a s any l a r g e n u m b e r o f adult i n s e c t s b e e n s e e n i n t h e l o c a l i t y . It w o u l d b e i n t e r e s t i n g t o h e a r w h e t h e r the s a m e thing w a s o b s e r v e d e l s e w h e r e , and w h e t h e r t h e p h e n o m e n o n often o c c u r s . S h o w e r s o f a l g a e , s m a l l s n a i l s , and e v e n f r o g s h a v e b e e n r e c o r d e d f r o m t i m e t o t i m e , but I cannot r e c a l l a l i k e i n s t a n c e t o the a b o v e . A l t h o u g h t h i s e n t r y i s p r o p e r l y a n " i n s e c t fall',' i t i s i n c l u d e d h e r e b e c a u s e i t m a y b e a r s o m e r e l a t i o n t o the f a l l s o f gelatinous m a t t e r .

Gl-16

L E A V E S , H A Y , POLLEN
GFL-001 SHOW OF RED MATTER LIKE BLOOD AND MUSCLE
1841.

GFL-002

A n o n y m o u s ; A m e r i c a n J o u r n a l o f S c i e n c e , 1:41:403-404,

We a r e indebted to P r o f . Troust, of N a s h v i l l e , T e n n e s s e e , for an i n t e r e s ting notice of a r e m a r k a b l e event. It appears f r o m communications made to that g e n t l e m a n , that o n F r i d a y , A u g u s t 17, b e t w e e n o n e and t w o o ' c l o c k , p . m . , t h e n e g r o e s o f M r . C h a n d l e r , n e a r L e b a n o n , W i l s o n County, T e n n e s s e e , c a m e i n and r e p o r t e d that i t had b e e n r a i n i n g b l o o d i n t h e t o b a c c o f i e l d w h e r e t h e y had b e e n a t w o r k ; that n e a r noon t h e r e w a s a r a t t l i n g n o i s e l i k e r a i n o r h a i l , and d r o p s o f b l o o d , a s t h e y s u p p o s e d , w h i c h f e l l f r o m a r e d c l o u d w h i c h w a s f l y i n g o v e r . I n t e l l i g e n t m e n v i s i t e d t h e g r o u n d , and o b s e r v e d d r o p s a p p a r e n t l y o f b l o o d o n the u p p e r s u r f a c e o f the t o b a c c o l e a v e s , and p o r t i o n s o f f l e s h and fat o n e p i e c e o n e and a h a l f i n c h e s l o n g , e m i t t i n g a v e r y o f f e n s i v e s m e l l o v e r the f i e l d . The drops evidently fell perpendicularly o v e r a space from forty to sixty y a r d s b r o a d , and s i x o r e i g h t h u n d r e d y a r d s l o n g . Some particles appeared to h a v e been c l e a r b l o o d uncombined with anything e l s e ; o t h e r s , blood united w i t h m u s c u l a r f i b r e and f a t . D r . T r o o s t , a f t e r v i s i t i n g the p l a c e , i s d e c i d e d l y o f the o p i n i o n that i t w a s a n i m a l m a t t e r , but h e thinks not b l o o d ; although h e d i s t i n c t l y distinguished m u s c u l a r f i b r e s , o r m a c e r a t i o n o f the m a t t e r i n w a t e r , which s e p a r a t e d longitudinally, as in the c a s e of d r i e d beef; they w e r e of a reddish brown c o l o r . T h e p i e c e s s u p p o s e d t o b e b l o o d w e r e b r o w n and r e sembled glue. T h e r e w a s a d i s t i n c t s m e l l o f a n i m a l m a t t e r i n a state o f putrefaction. B o t h the m u s c u l a r p a r t and that w h i c h had b e e n c a l l e d b l o o d , w e r e h e a t e d i n a g l a s s t u b e , and w e r e s i m i l a r l y a f f e c t e d a s b e e f w o u l d h a v e b e e n i n t h e s a m e c i r c u m s t a n c e s ; t h e r e w a s a m o v e m e n t i n t h e m a s s , a b r o w n fluid r o s e , and a b l a c k a n i m a l c h a r c o a l r e m a i n e d . D r . T r o o s t c o n c l u d e d , that w i t h o u t doubt t h i s i s a n i m a l m a t t e r , and b e l o n g s t o o u r g l o b e . He cites many instances o f r e d r a i n , r e d dust, r e d sand, r e d s n o w , s h o w e r s o f b l o o d , s o c a l l e d , & c . i n v a r i o u s c e n t u r i e s f r o m 472 o f o u r e r a t o 1814, and g i v e s the a u t h o r i t i e s . There i s n o w n o r o o m t o r e l a t e o r d i s c u s s t h e s e s t a t e m e n t s , and i t r e m a i n s o n l y t o g i v e the c o n c l u s i o n o f D r . T r o o s t . A f t e r a l l u d i n g t o t h e w e l l known p o w e r o f w i n d t o r a i s e m a t e r i a l s h i g h i n t o the a t m o s p h e r e and t o t r a n s p o r t t h e m t o the d i s t a n c e o f m a n y m i l e s , (and e v e n in s o m e c a s e s , as in volcanic eruptions, hundreds of m i l e s , ) he o b s e r v e s : "Such a w i n d m i g h t h a v e t a k e n u p p a r t o f a n a n i m a l w h i c h w a s i n a s t a t e o f d e c o m p o s i t i o n , and h a v e b r o u g h t i t i n c o n t a c t w i t h a n e l e c t r i c c l o u d , i n w h i c h i t w a s kept in a state of p a r t i a l fluidity or v i s c o s i t y . In this c a s e , the cloud which w a s s e e n by the n e g r o e s , as w e l l as the state in which the m a t e r i a l s w e r e , is accounted f o r . " D r . T r o o s t g i v e s m a n y c a s e s o f t r a n s p o r t e d s e e d s , p o l l e n , and s i m i l a r things which h a v e b e e n taken f o r s h o w e r s o f sulphur. When we r e m e m b e r that e v e n f i s h e s h a v e f a l l e n i n s h o w e r s , w e c a n n o t doubt that w h i r l w i n d s m a y e l e v a t e and t r a n s p o r t p a r t s o f a n i m a l s and d e p o s i t t h e m i n d i s t a n t p l a c e s .

GFL-002

YELLOW SHOWERS OF POLLEN
1:42:195-197, 1842. sent

B a i l e y , J. W . ; A m e r i c a n Journal of Science,

L a s t June o u r r e s p e c t e d c o r r e s p o n d e n t , M r . W . H . B l a k e , o f B o s t o n ,

Gl-17

GFL-002

L E A V E S , H A Y , POLLEN

us an account of a s h o w e r of y e l l o w m a t t e r which f e l l on board a v e s s e l in P i c t o u h a r b o r , on a s e r e n e night in June, and w a s c o l l e c t e d by the b u c k e t full and t h r o w n o v e r b o a r d ; s o m e s m a l l p o r t i o n s c a m e i n t o M r . B l a k e ' s hands, and was by him examined chemically. I t w a s found, o n s u b j e c t i n g i t t o d e s t r u c t i v e d i s t i l l a t i o n , t o g i v e o f f n i t r o g e n and a m m o n i a , and a n a n i m a l o d o r ; t o f o r m h y d r o c y a n i c a c i d b y p a s s i n g t h r o u g h h y d r o c h l o r i c a c i d , and t o l e a v e a c o n s i d e r a b l e amount o f phosphate o f l i m e o n i n c i n e r a t i o n . F r o m these facts, M r . B l a k e w a s i n c l i n e d t o i n f e r that i t m i g h t b e o f a n i m a l o r i g i n p e r h a p s the o v a of some insect. F r o m the o c c u r r e n c e o f t h e s e s h o w e r s a l w a y s i n M a y o r June, o r about the t i m e o f the i n f l o r e s c e n c e o f t r e e s , w e w e r e i n c l i n e d t o b e l i e v e that t h e y w e r e due t o the p o l l e n o f p l a n t s , w h i l e the f a c t that n i t r o g e n e x i s t s a l w a y s i n the a l b u m i n o u s p a r t s o f p l a n t s , s e r v e d t o a c c o u n t s u f f i c i e n t l y f o r the c h e m i c a l o b s e r v a t i o n s o f M r . B l a k e . W e t h e r e f o r e sent t o our f r i e n d , P r o f . J . W . B a i l e y , both the p o w d e r s o f T r o y and P i c t o u , that h e m i g h t e x a m i n e t h e m b y his powerful m i c r o s c o p e s . I n r e t u r n w e r e c e i v e d the f o l l o w i n g s a t i s f a c t o r y letter, addressed to the junior editor. W e s t P o i n t , S e p t e m b e r 2 2 , 1841 M y d e a r S i r - : — I r e c e i v e d a f e w d a y s s i n c e , y o u r l e t t e r o f the 17th, and i t s e n c l o s u r e s , which I hastened to subject, as you r e q u e s t e d , to m i c r o s c o p i c examination. The powder which fell at Pictou, p r o v e d to be, as you suggested, o f v e g e t a b l e o r i g i n , b e i n g w h o l l y c o m p o s e d o f the p o l l e n o f s o m e s p e c i e s o f pine. T h a t t h i s i s i t s r e a l n a t u r e , t h e r e c a n b e n o doubt; t o c o n v i n c e y o u o f t h i s , I send y o u the f o l l o w i n g c o m p a r a t i v e s k e t c h e s .

Grains of the yellow powder that fell at Pictou. They closely resemble the pollen grains of Pinus rigida. (Adapted from GFL-002, Fig. 2)

Gl-18

SECTION GL LUMINOUS PHENOMENA
Unusual l i g h t s i n the sky a r e r a t h e r c o m m o n . Such l i g h t s w e r e the p r i m a r y b a s i s o f the U F O r a g e o f t h e 1950s and 1960s. Although most strange lights are simple reflections or misinterpretations of c o m m o n events, t h e r e a r e still many luminous p h e n o m e n a that a r e not r e a d i l y e x p l a i n e d i n c o n v e n t i o n a l t e r m s . It is in this s e c t i o n that t h e s e s t r a n g e l i g h t s , g l o w s , f l a s h e s and o t h e r l u m i n o u s s t r u c t u r e s a r e gathered. GLA A u r o r a - l i k e p h e n o m e n a . G l o w s , b a n d s , and shafts o f l i g h t s e e n i n the sky, s o m e t i m e s v e r y c l o s e t o the e a r t h ' s s u r f a c e , but w i t h c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s not found in the usual a u r o r a . Ball lightning. E l e c t r i c d i s c h a r g e . G l o w s , f l a m e s , s p a r k s , and s p h e r e s o f l i g h t that a p p a r e n t l y , but not n e c e s s a r i l y , o r i g i n a t e i n e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e s . Inc l u d e d a r e m o u n t a i n - t o p g l o w s , St. E l m o ' s f i r e , e a r t h q u a k e l i g h t s , and tornado lights. L i g h t n i n g . Unusual f o r m s o f l i g h t n i n g ( e x c l u d i n g b a l l l i g h t n i n g ) . S i l e n t l i g h t n i n g and l i g h t n i n g w i t h o u t c l o u d s . The "pranks" of lightning. M e t e o r - l i k e p h e n o m e n a . S l o w f i r e b a l l s ; f i r e b a l l s that c h a n g e c o u r s e o r follow anomalous t r a j e c t o r i e s . Supposed " m e t e o r s " that c a u s e u n e x p e c t e d g e o p h y s i c a l e f f e c t s , such a s s t r a n g e s o u n d s , o d o r s , and p r e c i p i t a t i o n . N o c t u r n a l l i g h t s . M a n e u v e r i n g l i g h t s a p p e a r i n g i n s p e c i f i c l o c a t i o n s , often o v e r p e r i o d s o f m a n y y e a r s . I n c l u d e d a r e " s p o o k l i g h t s " and w i l l - o ' - w i s p s (ignis fatuus). Light wheels. Indian O c e a n . T h e l u m i n o u s w h e e l - l i k e s t r u c t u r e s s e e n m o s t o f t e n i n the

GLB GLD

GLL

GLM

GLN

GLW

Gl-19

LUMINOUS PHENOMENA

T h i s p a g e r e s e r v e d f o r the expansion o f the p r e c e d i n g c a t e g o r i e s i n future v o l u m e s .

Gl-20

A U R O R A - L I K E PHENOMENA
GLA-001

GLA-002

A REMARKABLE PHENOMENON SEEN AT SULFUR SPRINGS, OHIO

A n o n y m o u s ; S c i e n t i f i c A m e r i c a n , 50:97, F e b r u a r y 16, 1884. A c o r r e s p o n d e n t i n Sulphur S p r i n g s , O h i o , r e f e r s t o T h e S c i e n t i f i c A m e r i c a n o f t h e 19th o f J a n u a r y , w h i c h c o n t a i n e d a n a c c o u n t o f a r e m a r k a b l e p h e n o m e n o n s e e n i n P o r t o R i c o o n the 2 l s t o f N o v e m b e r . H e a l s o d e s c r i b e s a w o n d e r o f t h e s k y s e e n about that t i m e i n Sulphur S p r i n g s , though h e i s not c e r t a i n a s t o t h e exact date. The phenomenon w a s witnessed by s e v e r a l o b s e r v e r s besides h i m self. T h e object w a s seen in the southwest in a v e r t i c a l position. It consisted o f a b r i g h t n u c l e u s i n the c e n t e r w i t h t w o t a i l s , o n e p o i n t i n g d o w n w a r d and t h e other upward. T h e nucleus, o b s e r v e d in a four-inch refracting t e l e s c o p e , under a p o w e r o f 20, w a s r u d d y i n c o l o r and q u i t e b r i g h t , Our correspondent incloses a s k e t c h , g i v i n g t h e g e n e r a l v i e w a s i t a p p e a r e d t o t h e naked e y e , though t h e nucleus is r e p r e s e n t e d as it w a s seen in the t e l e s c o p e . S o l i t t l e i s r e v e a l e d about t h i s o b j e c t that i t c o u l d b e c l a s s i f i e d a s e i t h e r a u r o r a l o r astronomical.

GLA-002

THE LUMINOUS PORTENTS OF EARTHQUAKES
1 8 : 9 0 - 9 2 , N o v e m b e r 1965.

R e i d , Frank J.; F a t e ,

C o m p i l e r ' s S u m m a r y : R e i d ' s a r t i c l e i s w e l l - r e s e a r c h e d and b a s e d m a i n l y o n studies r e p o r t e d in the Japanese Bulletin of the Earthquake Institute. R e i d notes, h o w e v e r , that m a n y s c i e n t i s t s s t i l l d o not r e c o g n i z e e a r t h q u a k e l i g h t s a s p h y s i c a l l y r e a l , b e l i e v i n g t h e m t o b e i n d e p e n d e n t n a t u r a l p h e n o m e n a , such a s l i g h t n i n g o r m e t e o r s , o r p e r h a p s a r i s i n g f r o m e l e c t r i c p o w e r l i n e s d a m a g e d d u r i n g the s h o c k . I n c o n t r a s t , t h e J a p a n e s e s c i e n t i s t T o r a h i k o T e r a d a f e e l s that e a r t h q u a k e l i g h t s may b e s o m e " p s e u d o - a u r o r a " c r e a t e d when earthquakes generate l a r g e e l e c t r i c a l c u r r e n t s w h i c h , i n turn, g r e a t l y i n c r e a s e the a t m o s p h e r i c e l e c t r i c a l potential gradient. The phenomenon of t r i o o l u m i n e s c e n c e , which is light generated when solid surfaces are violently separated, may also play a r o l e . T h e b l u e f l a s h that o c c u r s when a sugar cube is b r o k e n apart in the dark is a p r a c t i c a l i l l u s t r a t i o n of triboluminescence. The only c a s e h i s t o r y i n R e i d ' s a r t i c l e i s s u m m a r i z e d b e l o w . N o v e m b e r 2 5 , 1930; T a n g o , J a p a n . A s t r a n g e , u n s e a s o n a b l e " r a i n b o w " i s s e e n i n the c l e a r m o r n i n g s k y . T h e next m o r n i n g a n e a r t h q u a k e h i t s t h e Idu P e n i n s u l a . W i t n e s s e s o f t h e e a r t h q u a k e r e p o r t e d f l a s h e s o f l i g h t , b l u i s h f l a m e s , and a u r o r a l i k e a f t e r g l o w s . N e a r the e p i c e n t e r , f i r e b a l l s , light b e a m s , funnel-shaped l i g h t s , and m o v i n g c o l u m n s o f l i g h t w e r e s e e n . " W h e n the q u a k e w a s a t i t s h e i g h t , " a n o t h e r w i t n e s s a t t e s t e d , " a s t r a i g h t r o w o f round m a s s e s o f l i g h t w a s s e e n t o w a r d M a n p u k u z i T e m p l e . E a c h o f these luminous bodies was seen to be r e v o l v i n g in motion. The brightness was c o n s i d e r a b l e . "

Gl-21

GLA-003
GLA-003

A U R O R A - L I K E PHENOMENA

A WONDERFUL LIGHT IN THE SKY

R i g e l ; E n g l i s h M e c h a n i c , 104:71, A u g u s t 18, 1916. T h e f o l l o w i n g l e t t e r f r o m " A n O b s e r v e r , " B a l l i n a s l o e , a p p e a r s i n the I r i s h Independent: "Sir, On t h e night of July 31 a w o n d e r f u l l i g h t a p p e a r e d in the s k y just a b o v e t h e h o r i z o n . I s a w it a l i t t l e a f t e r 11 p. m . , and it l o o k e d l i k e an i m m e n s e f i r e . A t 11.15 p . m . the l i g h t m o v e d a l o n g the sky t o the N o r t h e a s t , and t h e n i t a p p e a r e d a s a g r e a t l u m i n o u s s t a r . At 12 p. m. it m o v e d b a c k a g a i n i n a N o r t h e r l y d i r e c t i o n , and s h o w e d a s a g r e a t b l a z e o f f i r e i n the s a m e p l a c e a s I f i r s t s a w i t , and t h e r e i t shone until 4 a . m . the f o l l o w i n g m o r n i n g , w h e n i t d i s a p p e a r e d . I t w a s a m a r v e l l o u s p h e n o m e n o n , the l i k e of which I n e v e r beheld b e f o r e last night. " T h e t i m e o f the y e a r i s w r o n g f o r a t r u e a u r o r a . around t h e h o r i z o n . A r e a l f i r e w o u l d not m o v e

R e the l i g h t s e e n b y " A n O b s e r v e r , " B a l l i n a s l o e , I h a v e just c o m e upon s o m e o l d n o t e s w h i c h s h o w that I s a w a s i m i l a r but f a i n t e r l i g h t on the night o f D e c e m b e r 24, 1909. O n the night I s a w i t the w h o l e s k y w a s c l o u d y . A t 8. 30 p. m. I o b s e r v e d a ball of light, which w a s n e a r l y as bright as Jupiter, r i s e f r o m t h e N o r t h - e a s t e r n h o r i z o n and s l o w l y m o v e t o the South. A t 8 . 5 0 p . m . i t r e a c h e d i t s h i g h e s t p o i n t i n the s k y . A t that t i m e i t w a s due E a s t about 3 0 f r o m t h e z e n i t h . A t 9 p . m . I e x a m i n e d i t w i t h a t e l e s c o p e , and did not find any d i f f e r e n c e b e t w e e n it and a s t a r or r a t h e r a p l a n e t . At 9. 20 p . m . i t a g a i n s l o w l y d e s c e n d e d i n the N o r t h - e a s t and d i s a p p e a r e d b e n e a t h the h o r i z o n i n the s a m e p l a c e f r o m w h i c h i t r o s e . T h e nature of this light still r e m a i n s a m y s t e r y .

GLA-004

AURORA AND METEOR DISPLAY OF SEPTEMBER 14

P a c k e r , D . E . ; E n g l i s h M e c h a n i c , 88:211, O c t o b e r 2 , 1908. 1908. S e p t e m b e r 14, 8:40 p . m . Sky c l e a r g e n e r a l l y , and f a i n t l y luminous, owing to m o o n r i s e in N. E. A bright, horizontal cloud o b s e r v e d s t r e t c h i n g a c r o s s t h e f o r e p a r t o f I r s a M a j o r and s u p e r p o s e d upon a d a r k c l o u d o r d a r k n e s s , s o i n t e n s e a s t o a p p e a r a l m o s t b l a c k i n the g e n e r a l twilight. T h e b r i g h t cloud w a s in a constant state of fluctuation, flashing u p and f a d i n g w i t h a l m o s t the s a m e r a p i d i t y a s the w e l l - k n o w n s c i n t i l l a t i o n effect o b s e r v e d in bright stars. T h e c o l o u r w a s a p a l e w h i t e , and, a s f a r a s c o u l d b e j u d g e d , the c l o u d w a s s t a t i o n a r y o v e r the m a g n e t i c m e r i d i a n d u r i n g the w h o l e p e r i o d o f o b s e r v a t i o n . A t 8:45 a m e t e o r f r o m P e r s e u s a p p r o a c h e d i t , and o n e n t e r i n g the c l o u d a t i t s e a s t e r n e x t r e m i t y b u r s t out w i t h e x t r a o r d i n a r y s p l e n d o u r , f a r s u r p a s s i n g V e n u s i n l u s t r e ; and e x h i b i t i n g a s t r i n g o f m a n y s m a l l e r n u c l e i o n e a c h s i d e o f the m a i n n u c l e u s . At 8:50 the c l o u d at t h i s p o i n t had t h r o w n out a s t r e a m e r , w h i c h w a s t r a c e a b l e b e t w e e n A u r i g a and P e r s e u s i n t o A r i e s . A t 9 p . m . the s t r e a m e r had f a d e d , and the c l o u d s h o w e d s i g n s o f d i s r u p t i o n i n t o t w o s e p a r a t e m a s s e s , united by a n a r r o w neck; a l s o t h e r e now appeared e v i d e n c e s of other clouds f o r m i n g i n t h e n e i g h b o u r h o o d , l e s s l u m i n o u s than the m a i n c l o u d , and m o r e d i f f i c u l t o f o b s e r v a t i o n , o w i n g t o the i n c r e a s i n g m o o n l i g h t . Subsequently

Gl-22

A U R O R A - L I K E PHENOMENA

GLA-005

the m a i n c l o u d b e c a m e m o r e c o m p a c t a s a t f i r s t , t h e f l u c t u a t i o n s b e c a m e l e s s p r o n o u n c e d , and b y 9:30 n o t r a c e s o f the p h e n o m e n o n w e r e v i s i b l e . T h e above o b s e r v a t i o n o c c u r r e d i n England. T h r e e phenomenon, generally c o n s i d e r e d i n d e p e n d e n t , o c c u r t o g e t h e r h e r e : a n a u r o r a , a m e t e o r , and a c l o u d that m a y b e o f the n o c t i l u c e n t t y p e .

GLA-005
Olmsted,

OBSERVATIONS ON THE METEORS OF NOVEMBER 13TH, 1833
D e n i s o n ; A m e r i c a n J o u r n a l o f S c i e n c e , 1:25:363-411, 1834.

B e l o w a r e r e p o r t e d a u r o r a - l i k e a p p e a r a n c e s a s s o c i a t e d w i t h the g r e a t 1833 m e t e o r display. M e t e o r s m a y b e e l e c t r i c a l l y c h a r g e d and i t i s k n o w n that t h e y c r e a t i o n i z e d t r a i l s h i g h i n t h e a t m o s p h e r e , but w e r e t h e y the c a u s e o f the c o i n c i d e n t auroral phenomena mentioned by Olmsted? 11. A U R O R A L A P P E A R A N C E S . — P h e n o m e n a r e s e m b l i n g m o r e o r l e s s t h e A u r o r a B o r e a l i s , w e r e v i s i b l e i n s o m e p l a c e s , although i n m a n y o t h e r p l a c e s n o a p p e a r a n c e s o f the kind w e r e o b s e r v e d . ( 1 . ) A bank o f a u r o r a l l i g h t , r e s e m b l i n g d a y - b r e a k , w a s o b s e r v e d a t N e w H a v e n , b y M r . P a l m e r the g r e a t e r p a r t o f the n i g h t . ( 2 . ) T h e r e w a s a v a p o r i n the a t m o s p h e r e , v i s i b l e r o u n d the h o r i z o n , w h i c h , i n the s o u t h e a s t , a s s u m e d a v e r y beautiful a p p e a r a n c e h a l f a n h o u r b e f o r e sun r i s e . (4.,) A t D o v e r , ( N . H . ) t h e r e w a s a n a p p e a r a n c e o f the A u r o r a B o r e a l i s , e a r l y i n the p r e c e d i n g e v e n i n g , w h i c h c o n t i n u e d until 4 o ' c l o c k i n the m o r n i n g , w h e n i t suddenly b r o k e out i n t o s t r e a m s o f s t r o n g l i g h t , s p r e a d i n g i n t o c o l u m n s , c h a n g i n g i n t o a thousand d i f f e r e n t s h a p e s , v a r y i n g t h e i r c o l o r s t h r o u g h a l l t i n t s o f the r a i n b o w , and s h o o t i n g f r o m the h o r i z o n a l m o s t t o the z e n i t h . This scene was followed by a splendid exhibition of f i r e w o r k s . Luminous balls might be seen d a r t i n g about w i t h g r e a t v e l o c i t y , l e a v i n g b e h i n d t h e m a t r a i n r e s e m b l i n g that o f a comet. T h e w h o l e w a s c l o s e d b y the f o r m a t i o n o f a t r i u m p h a l a r c h w h i c h vanished b e f o r e the c o m i n g light of m o r n i n g . Of the s e v e r a l facts c o l l e c t e d under the head of concurrent p h e n o m e n a , p o s s i b l y n o o n e m a y p r o v e o f any i m p o r t a n c e ; and y e t the c o n t r a r y i s a l s o possible. T h e f a l l of rain without clouds at H a r v a r d , w a s an i n t e r e s t i n g m e t e o r o l o g i c a l f a c t , and m a y h a v e had a s t r i c t c o n n e x i o n w i t h the m e t e o r s , a c o n n e x i o n w h i c h m a y b e m o r e f u l l y d e v e l o p e d w h e n the c a u s e o f m e t e o r s s h a l l b e b e t t e r understood. T h e luminous appearances in the w e s t f o l l o w i n g twilight, a r e a l s o remarkable. T h e s a m e appearance has b e e n exhibited as late as the evening of D e c e m b e r 29th, i n a f o r m m u c h m o r e i m p o s i n g than o n e i t h e r o f the p r e c e d i n g o c c a s i o n s . It w a s o b s e r v e d i m m e d i a t e l y after the twilight, (which ended at e i g h t e e n m i n u t e s a f t e r s i x , ) and l a s t e d until f i f t e e n m i n u t e s b e f o r e e i g h t . I t i l l u m i n a t e d a l l t h e w e s t e r n s k y and s t r o n g l y r e s e m b l e d the t w i l i g h t , b e i n g b r i g h t e r than the z o d i a c a l l i g h t , not l e n t i c u l a r l i k e that, and not e x t e n d i n g a l o n g the Z o d i a c , but h a v i n g i t s a p e x i n a v e r t i c a l c i r c l e n e a r A l p h a P e g a s i . R i d g e s o f d a r k c l o u d s , ( c u m u l o - s t r a t u s ) w i t h i n t e r v a l s o f c l e a r sky, c o n t r i b u t e d t o h e i g h t e n t h e e f f e c t b y c o n t r a s t ; and h i g h e r than t h e s e , w a s a thin v a p o r that b e c a m e v i s i b l e a s i t c r o s s e d J u p i t e r , w h i c h w a s n e a r the m e r i d i a n , b e i n g i l l u m i n a t e d i n a c i r c u l a r s p a c e around t h e p l a n e t , and p r e s e n t i n g m u c h the s a m e

Gl-23

GLA-006

A U R O R A - L I K E PHENOMENA

appearance as the l i g h t in the w e s t , a c i r c u m s t a n c e which..led to the c o n j e c t u r e that the l a t t e r w a s o w i n g t o the s a m e v a p o r e l e v a t e d s o high a s t o f a l l into the s u n ' s l i g h t , a f t e r the o r d i n a r y c a u s e o f t w i l i g h t had c e a s e d t o o p e r a t e . The v a p o r w a s s o thin a s h a r d l y t o d i m i n i s h the l i g h t o f J u p i t e r . W a s this v a p o r such as r e m a i n e d f r o m the c o m b u s t i o n of the m e t e o r s ? A n a u r o r a b o r e a l i s o f m o d e r a t e height w a s v i s i b l e i n the north a t the s a m e t i m e , and faded away s i m u l t a n e o u s l y with t h e w e s t e r n a u r o r a . T h e f a l l o f r a i n a t H a r v a r d and v a p o r s , both apparently a s s o c i a t e d with the m e t e o r s should be c o n n e c t e d w i t h r e c e n t attempts to c o r r e l a t e r a i n f a l l with lunar p o s i t i o n and i t s e f f e c t s o n m e t e o r i c influx. (See G W P - 0 0 4 . )

GLA-006

OBSERVATIONS ON THE METEORS OF NOVEMBER 13TH, 1833

O l m s t e d , D e n i s o n ; A m e r i c a n Journal of S c i e n c e , 1:26:132-174, 1835. T h e f o l l o w i n g o b s e r v a t i o n w a s printed in the Annual R e g i s t e r in Olmsted's article, of 1832 and r e p r i n t e d

7. "Soon a f t e r s i x o' c l o c k in the m o r n i n g of the 14th of N o v e m b e r , 1832, ( s a y s a l e t t e r f r o m B r u n e c k , in the T y r o l ) a b r o a d s t r e a m of light suddenly d e s c e n d e d f r o m the c e n t e r o f the f i r m a m e n t n e a r l y d o w n t o the ground, and w a s then d r a w n g r a d u a l l y up again to the m i d d l e of the sky, w h e n c e , f o r s e v e r a l s e c o n d s , it s t r e t c h e d i t s e l f out t o w a r d s the north in a l o n g t r a i n of l i g h t , which f i r s t a p p e a r e d in a s t r a i g h t , and then changed into a w a v y l i n e ; a f t e r t h i s , it g a t h e r e d into a l i g h t o r b r e s e m b l i n g a w h i t e c l o u d , and r e m a i n e d s t a t i o n a r y in the c e n t e r of the f i r m a m e n t f o r a full q u a r t e r of an hour, when it d i s a p p e a r e d with the b r e a k o f d a y . T h e a p p e a r a n c e w a s a c c o m p a n i e d with s o v i v i d a d e g r e e o f i l l u m i n a t i o n that the s m a l l e s t p e b b l e i n the r o a d w a s r e a d i l y d i s t i n g u i s h a b l e , and t h o s e w h o w e r e abroad a t this t i m e , w e r e c o m p l e t e l y panic s t r u c k . T h e sky, instead of b e i n g muddy with v a p o r , as is c o m m o n at this s e a s o n , and at this t i m e i n the m o r n i n g , w a s c l e a r and c l o u d l e s s , and the a i r r e m a r k a b l y s e r e n e and t r a n q u i l . B e t w e e n five and s i x o ' c l o c k , h o w e v e r , an unusual numb e r o f f a l l i n g s t a r s w e r e o b s e r v e d i n v a r i o u s p a r t s o f the h e a v e n s . "

GLA-007

THE MAGNETIC STORM AND AURORA

C a p r o n , J. Rand, et a l ; N a t u r e , 27:82-87, N o v e m b e r 23, 1882. F r o m the many l e t t e r s sent t o N a t u r e r e p o r t i n g the s t r a n g e a t m o s p h e r i c phenomenon of N o v e m b e r 23, a f e w of the m o s t i n t e r e s t i n g and d e s c r i p t i v e a r e quoted b e l o w : I happened to turn to the south, w h e r e the m o o n (with a v e r y pronounced l u m i e r e c e n d r e e on i t s dark p a r t ) w a s n e a r l y on the m e r i d i a n , when I saw a s p i n d l e - s h a p e d b e a m o f g l o w i n g w h i t e l i g h t , q u i t e unlike a n a u r o r a l r a y , had f o r m e d i n the e a s t . A s I l o o k e d this s l o w l y mounted f r o m i t s p o s i t i o n , r o s e t o the z e n i t h , and p a s s e d i t , g r a d u a l l y c r o s s i n g a p p a r e n t l y a b o v e the m o o n , and then sank into the w e s t , s l o w l y l e s s e n i n g in s i z e and b r i l l i a n c y as it did s o , and fading away a s i t r e a c h e d the h o r i z o n . T h e p e c u l i a r l o n g spindle shape, s l o w g l i d i n g m o t i o n and g l o w i n g s l i v e r l i g h t , and the m a r k e d i s o l a t i o n o f this cloud

Gl-24

A U R O R A - L I K E PHENOMENA

GLA-007

f r o m the o t h e r p o r t i o n s o f the a u r o r a m a d e i t a m o s t r e m a r k a b l e o b j e c t , and I d o not r e c o l l e c t i n any f o r m e r a u r o r a t o h a v e s e e n a n y t h i n g s i m i l a r . About 6 o ' c l o c k the a u r o r a g r a d u a l l y d i e d a w a y , t o r e v i v e a g a i n a t 9 i n the shape o f a w h i t e s e m i c i r c l e o f l i g h t i n a p o i n t n o r t h b y w e s t , w h i c h did not l a s t l o n g . Owing to m o o n l i g h t , but l i t t l e c o u l d b e d o n e w i t h the s p e c t r o s c o p e w i t h a w i d e s l i t o n the m o s t g l o w i n g p a r t s o f the r e d p a t c h e s o n l y t h e usual g r e e n l i n e , w i t h a faint continuous s p e c t r u m t o w a r d s the v i o l e t c o u l d b e m a d e out. A t t i m e s I thought I caught t r a c e s o f o t h e r l i n e s , but w i t h n o c e r t a i n t y a t a l l . The spindle-shaped beam was also e x a m i n e d w i t h t h e s p e c t r o s c o p e , but o n l y g a v e t h e g r e e n l i n e . E v e n i n the b r i g h t e s t p a r t s o f the r e d g l o w , the r e d l i n e c o u l d not b e m a d e out. The peculiarity of the m o v i n g b e a m o f l i g h t w a s i t s a b s o l u t e s o u t h e r n p o s i t i o n . Its apparent p a s s a g e a c r o s s the sky w a s o n l y a f e w d e g r e e s a b o v e t h e m o o n , then a t a c o m p a r a t i v e l y l o w altitude. (J. R a n d C a p r o n ) A t 5 . 2 5 a g r e e n a r c h s u d d e n l y s h o t a c r o s s south o f the c r i m s o n a r e a s , v e r y d e f i n e d 1-1/2° t o 2 ° b r o a d , f r o m w e s t - s o u t h - w e s t t o e a s t - s o u t h - e a s t , p a s s i n g just o v e r the m o o n . I t l a s t e d h a r d l y a m i n u t e ; the c r i m s o n c l o u d w a s then b r i g h t . Just such a " b a r " " s h o t out" f r o m the s o u t h - e a s t a t S t r e e t , s o o n a f t e r 6 , " o f y e l l o w i s h l i g h t ; i t q u i c k l y i n c r e a s e d i n s i z e and b r i l l i a n c y , and w e n t r i g h t a c r o s s the h e a v e n s t o the s o u t h - w e s t , " p a s s i n g a c r o s s i n l e s s than f o u r m i n utes. I t p a s s e d south o f the m o o n ( i . e . a p p a r e n t a l t i t u d e r e a l l y the s a m e a s that a t 5 . 2 5 , L e e d s b e i n g n e a r l y 3 ° , 6 d i a m e t e r s o f the m o o n , north o f S t r e e t ) . M y c o u s i n c o n t i n u e d : — " T h e r e s e e m e d t o b e a d a r k s o m e t h i n g b e f o r e the b r i g h t b a r , w h i c h s h o w e d the path i t w o u l d t a k e , a l s o a d a r k s t r e a k w h e r e i t p a s s e d . T h e p o s t m a s t e r t e l l s m e that the t e l e g r a p h - n e e d l e w o r k e d v e r y b a d l y t h i s a f t e r n o o n , t u r n i n g t o the r i g h t hand c o n s t a n t l y . " ( J . Edmund C l a r k ) T h e sky w a s e v e r y w h e r e v e r y c l e a r , e v e n c l o s e t o the h o r i z o n , and the a u r o r a l a r c h w a s v e r y conspicuous in the north; its summit l y i n g b e t w e e n the s t a r s D e l t a and E p s i l o n i n t h e G r e a t B e a r . At 3 minutes past s i x o ' c l o c k a b r i l l i a n t e l o n g a t e d p a t c h o f g r e e n i s h w h i t e l i g h t a p p e a r e d suddenly i n the e a s t , b e l o w Saturn and t o the r i g h t o f i t , the c e n t r e o f the p a t c h b e i n g about 8 d e g r e e s f r o m Saturn o n a l i n e d r a w n t h r o u g h the p l a n e t a t a n a n g l e o f 4 5 ° w i t h the h o r i zon. W h e n f i r s t s e e n the patch w a s about 6 d e g r e e s i n l e n g t h and h a l f a d e g r e e i n w i d t h and the e n d s had a r o u g h s p l i n t e r e d a p p e a r a n c e . It r a p i d l y i n c r e a s e d i n l e n g t h and l e s s r a p i d l y i n t h i c k n e s s , t i l l i t c l o s e l y r e s e m b l e d i n g e n e r a l a p p e a r a n c e the g r e a t N e b u l a i n A n d r o m e d a a s s e e n w i t h a g o o d t e l e s c o p e , and the l e n g t h o f the c o n s p i c u o u s l y l u m i n o u s p o r t i o n w a s a p p a r e n t l y about a s g r e a t a s the d i s t a n c e b e t w e e n the s t a r s A l p h a P e g a s i and D e l t a A n d r o m e d a e , i . e . , about 2 7 d e g r e e s . T h e b r e a d t h a t the c e n t r e s e e m e d about e q u a l t o t w i c e t h e moon's diameter. I e x p e c t e d i t t o l e n g t h e n out i n t o a n a r c h a c r o s s the s k y l i k e o t h e r f a i n t e r o n e s , w h i c h w e r e v i s i b l e a t the t i m e b e t w e e n i t and the a r c h t o w h i c h I h a v e a l r e a d y r e f e r r e d , but i n s t e a d o f d o i n g s o the p a t c h b e g a n t o shift r a p i d l y a c r o s s the s k y end f o r e m o s t , a s i f a s c e n d i n g the e a s t e r n s l o p e o f t h e a r c h w h i c h I had e x p e c t e d i t t o f o r m , t h e n a f t e r r e a c h i n g the s u m m i t w h e r e i t s l e n g t h w a s h o r i z o n t a l , i t r a p i d l y d e s c e n d e d t h e w e s t e r n s l o p e and d i s a p p e a r e d n e a r the h o r i z o n , p a s s i n g c l o s e u n d e r t h e m o o n a t a d i s t a n c e w h i c h I e s t i m a t e d i m m e d i a t e l y a f t e r w a r d s a s r a t h e r l e s s than t h r e e t i m e s the m o o n ' s d i a m e t e r , ( m e a s u r i n g f r o m the c e n t r e o f the l u m i n o s i t y t o the m o o n ' s l o w e r c u s p ) . The d u r a t i o n o f the p h e n o m e n o n w a s h a r d l y a m i n u t e and i t s b r i l l i a n c e f a r e x c e e d e d that o f any o t h e r p o r t i o n o f t h e d i s p l a y . ( A . M. Worthington) A t 6h. 5 m . , w h e n the d i s p l a y w a s a t i t s m a x i m u m , a r e m a r k a b l e p h e n o m enon w a s s e e n a b r i g h t g r e e n i s h - w h i t e band o f a l e n t i c u l a r f o r m , about 2 0 ° i n l e n g t h and 5 ° b r o a d ( i t s a x i s b e i n g p a r a l l e l t o the h o r i z o n i n the s o u t h ) , p a s s e d f r o m the s o u t h - e a s t t o the s o u t h - w e s t h o r i z o n , attaining a n a l t i t u d e , w h e n due south, o f about 2 0 ° . I t o c c u p i e d about s i x s e c o n d s i n p a s s i n g f r o m

Gl-25

GLA-007

A U R O R A - L I K E PHENOMENA

h o r i z o n t o h o r i z o n , and i t s b r i g h t n e s s s e e m e d t o b e but s l i g h t l y a f f e c t e d b y the l i g h t o f the m o o n , w h i c h w a s s h i n i n g i n the south, and b e l o w w h i c h i t m o v e d . (Thos. Gwyn E l g e r ) I b e g t o hand y o u a n a c c o u n t o f the e x t r a o r d i n a r y a p p a r i t i o n o f F r i d a y e v e n i n g l a s t , N o v e m b e r 17, a s s e e n a t C l e v e d o r , d u r i n g a b r i l l i a n t r o s e - c o l o u r e d aurora. T h e t i m e w a s about 6 . 1 5 p . m . T h e r e r o s e s u d d e n l y , t h r o u g h the h a z e i n the e a s t , a b e a m o f l i g h t , a t a n a n g l e o f s o m e 6 0 ° w i t h the h o r i z o n . I t c r o s s e d the c l o u d l e s s sky r a t h e r b e l o w the m o o n , and sank i n the w e s t , o c c u p y i n g about e i g h t y s e c o n d s i n t h e t r a n s i t . T h e t r a j e c t o r y w a s m u c h f l a t t e r than that o f the s t a r s , & c . , but w a s a t r i g h t a n g l e s t o the m e r i d i a n , w h i c h w a s c r o s s e d a t a n a p p r o x i m a t e altitude o f 2 2 ° . I e s t i m a t e d the l e n g t h o f the b e a m a t 3 5 ° , and the b r e a d t h a t the m i d d l e t o b e 3 ° ; f r o m w h e n c e i t t a p e r e d g r a d u ally to a point at each end. The colour was uniform throughout—a v e r y pale y e l l o w i s h w h i t e , w i t h o u t c o r u s c a t i o n o r c h a n g e ; and t h e r e w a s n o i n d i c a t i o n o f a t r a i l , o r o f any s o r t o f a t m o s p h e r i c d i s t u r b a n c e . The impression conveyed t o m e w a s that the b e a m w a s s t a t i o n a r y i n s p a c e , and c o m p a r a t i v e l y n e a r , and that w e w e r e b e i n g c a r r i e d p a s t i t b y the r o t a t i o n o f the e a r t h . The major a x i s l a y o n the a p p a r e n t path, but i n the e a r l i e r and l a t t e r p a r t s o f the c o u r s e i t w a s m u c h f o r e s h o r t e n e d ; and a s the w e s t e r n h o r i z o n w a s a p p r o a c h e d , a f o r m a t i o n o f a s i m i l a r c h a r a c t e r , p e r h a p s 7 ° n o r t h w a r d , and running o n a p a r a l l e l t r a c k , w a s v i s i b l e f o r s e v e r a l s e c o n d s b e f o r e both w e r e l o s t i n the trees. T h i s second object was also noticed by others whose v i e w westward w a s l e s s i n t e r r u p t e d . I w a t c h e d the w h o l e e v e n i n g w i t h o u t s e e i n g any t e n d e n c y t o a r e p e t i t i o n o f the p h e n o m e n o n . T h e s k y r e m a i n e d c l o u d l e s s , w i t h the t e m p e r a t u r e a t the f r e e z i n g p o i n t . T h e r e w a s n o w i n d ; and the a u r o r a , w h i c h c o n tinued o f f and o n until p a s t e l e v e n o ' c l o c k , a t n o t i m e t h r e w out any c o n s i d e r a ble rays or streamers. The strange v i s i t o r caused great c o m m o t i o n among the m a n y w h o w e r e out o f d o o r s l o o k i n g a t t h e a u r o r a , s o m e o f t h e m f e a r i n g that the s u p p o s e d r u n a w a y c o m e t w a s c o m i n g i n t o c o l l i s i o n w i t h the m o o n , then h a l f a n h o u r p a s t the m e r i d i a n , and r e l i e v e d w h e n i t p a s s e d b e l o w i t . (Stephen H. Saxby) I a m u n a b l e t o e x p l a i n the f o l l o w i n g o c c u r r e n c e w h i c h I o b s e r v e d t h i s e v e n i n g a t 6h. 5 m . p . m . I t a p p e a r e d t o b e a w e l l - d e f i n e d s p i n d l e - s h a p e d b o d y o f a cloudy consistency, having a brilliant white colour. It subtended a v i s u a l a n g l e o f about 2 0 d e g r e e s . I f i r s t o b s e r v e d i t due e a s t , and i m m e d i a t e l y n o t i c e d that i t w a s m o v i n g w i t h v e r y g r e a t r a p i d i t y , a s i n l e s s than one m i n u t e i t had d i s a p p e a r e d b e l o w the h o r i z o n i n the s o u t h - s o u t h - w e s t . T h e r e was a r o s y a u r o r a v i s i b l e a t the t i m e i n the n o r t h , w h i c h , h o w e v e r , w a s i n n o w a y connected with it. T h e a t m o s p h e r e w a s p e r f e c t l y c l e a r i n that p a r t o f the h e a v e n s t r a v e r s e d b y the p h e n o m e n o n , though i n o t h e r p a r t s o f the sky t h e r e w e r e a few stationary clouds v i s i b l e . ( A . S. P . ) A t about 6 . 5 p . m . o n F r i d a y a b r i g h t , w h i t e , c l o u d - l i k e o b j e c t , i n shape l i k e a f i s h - t o r p e d o o r a w e a v e r ' s shuttle, w a s o b s e r v e d t o c r o s s the h e a v e n s f r o m east to w e s t . I t s l e n g t h w a s r o u g h l y about 3 0 ° , and i t s b r e a d t h about 4 ° . I noted it f i r s t s h o o t u p , l i k e a s t r o n g e l e c t r i c r a y in a f o g , a l i t t l e south of A l d e b a r a n , and s l o w l y , a s i t w e r e , s l i d e a l o n g a t the s a m e N . P . D . a c r o s s the f a c e o f the m o o n ( w h i c h w a s s h i n i n g b r i g h t l y a t the t i m e ) , and d i s a p p e a r i n the west under A t a i r . I t s s u r f a c e had a m o t t l e d a p p e a r a n c e ; i t s c o l o u r w h i t e ; i t s motion was slow, being v i s i b l e , from horizon to horizon, upwards of 50 s e c o n d s ; i t s b r i g h t n e s s w a s s t r o n g , and d i d not s e e m t o f a d e , e v e n when c r o s s i n g the m o o n , and i t s e e m e d p r e c e d e d and f o l l o w e d b y a s t r o n g b l a c k m a r g i n ; though t h i s I s u p p o s e w a s the e f f e c t o f c o n t r a s t and s u b j e c t i v e o n l y . (John L . Dobson) S e e f u r t h e r d i s c u s s i o n s o f t h i s e v e n t i n G L A - O l l , G L A - 0 1 2 , G L A - 0 1 4 , and G L A - 0 1 5 .

Gl-26

A U R O R A - L I K E PHENOMENA
GLA-008 THE LUMINOUS BEAM OF AUGUST 18

GLA-010

P a c k e r , D a v i d E . ; E n g l i s h M e c h a n i c , 82:88, S e p t e m b e r 1 , 1905. O n the night o f A u g u s t 18, a t 12.30 p . m . , a l u m i n o u s b e a m w a s s e e n t r a v e r s i n g the e a s t e r n p a r t o f the s k y . A t the t i m e w h e n i t w a s f i r s t s e e n , t h e s k y e v e r y w h e r e w a s v e r y c l e a r , and the m o o n s h i n i n g b r i g h t l y . The b e a m r e s e m b l e d g . n e a r l y h o r i z o n t a l r a y o f p e a r l y w h i t e l i g h t , about 8 0 ° i n l e n g t h and 1/2 in breadth, stretching a c r o s s the constellation P i s c e s Australis^above^ Fomalhaut), through Cetus to Eridanus, or f r o m 330° 25 to 50 10 . It m o v e d s l o w l y south by e a s t , and at 12.45 t r a n s i t e d Fomalhaut, which shone through it with undiminished b r i l l i a n c y . As its altitude d e c r e a s e d , it b e c a m e m o r e p a r a l l e l to the h o r i z o n . Its southern b o r d e r w a s m o r e d e f i n e d than i t s n o r t h e r n , and i t s p r e c e d i n g t e r m i n a t i o n i n E r i d a n u s w a s s l i g h t l y b r o a d e r and l e s s d e f i n e d than i t s f o l l o w i n g t e r m i n a t i o n . I t b o r e a g r e a t r e s e m b l a n c e t o the t a i l o f a c o m e t . No nucleus o r d e c i d e d c o n d e n s a t i o n w a s s e e n a t e i t h e r end t o j u s t i f y a c o m e t a r y o r i g i n , although i t i s w e l l k n o w n that s e v e r a l l a r g e c o m e t s n o t a b l y , the g r e a t c o m e t s o f 1880 and 1887 h a v e been seen without nuclei as m e r e r a y s s i m i l a r t o the a p p e a r a n c e a b o v e - m e n t i o n e d . T r a c e s o f the b e a m w e r e v i s i b l e a t 13h. 2 0 m . p . m . I t c o u l d not h a v e b e e n a c i r r u s c l o u d , a s i t s a p p e a r a n c e w a s t o o r e g u l a r and d e f i n e d , n o r w a s i t due t o a s e a r c h l i g h t , as it r e v e a l e d distinct motion along its entire length. I hope it may have been observed elsewhere.

GLA-009

A SINGULAR PHENOMENON

G a p e , C h a r l e s ; E n g l i s h M e c h a n i c , 21:488, July 2 3 , 1875. On F r i d a y e v e n i n g , June 25th, b e t w e e n 9 and 10 o ' c l o c k , I o b s e r v e d in the E . S . E . v e r y f r e q u e n t f l a s h e s , o r r a t h e r v e r y n a r r o w s t r e a k s o f a p a l e b l u e c o l o u r , k e e p d a r t i n g u p f r o m the e a r t h t o w a r d s the h e a v e n s , s o m e thing l i k e those of an A u r o r a B o r e a l i s . T h e day had b e e n r a t h e r d u l l , hot, and c l o s e , and t h e r e had b e e n d i s t a n t t h u n d e r . I m e r e l y w e n t out t o s e e i f I c o u l d d i s c e r n any s h e e t l i g h t n i n g , but s a w the a b o v e i n s t e a d . I n the E . S . E . i t w a s r a t h e r d a r k , but o v e r h e a d , and e v e r y w h e r e e l s e i t w a s c l e a r and starry. F l a s h e s , such a s t h o s e r e p o r t e d a b o v e , earthquakes. a r e s o m e t i m e s s e e n d u r i n g a u r o r a s and

GLA-010

AURORA

V e e d e r , M . A . ; N a t u r e , 35:54, N o v e m b e r 1 8 , 1886. L a s t e v e n i n g ( N o v e m b e r 2 ) , b e t w e e n the h o u r s o f s e v e n and e i g h t o ' c l o c k , a b r i g h t a u r o r a w a s v i s i b l e in this v i c i n i t y . A t i n t e r v a l s l a t e r i n the e v e n i n g , p a t c h e s o f c i r r u s c l o u d s i n t h e n o r t h e r n sky b e c a m e l u m i n o u s . The disturb a n c e o f the s u s p e n d e d m a g n e t w a s a t i t s h e i g h t e a r l y i n the e v e n i n g , w h e n the a u r o r a w a s b r i g h t e s t . I t i s i n t e r e s t i n g t o n o t e the fact that t h i s a u r o r a

Gl-27

GLA-011

A U R O R A - L I K E PHENOMENA

w a s t w e n t y - s i x d a y s r e m o v e d f r o m that o f O c t o b e r 7 and 8 , c o r r e s p o n d i n g t o the t i m e o f the r e v o l u t i o n o f the sun o n h i s a x i s . I t i s n o t e w o r t h y , a l s o , that v e r y n e a r t o t h e t i m e o f the a p p e a r a n c e o f e a c h a u r o r a t h e r e w a s a s l i g h t r e n e w a l o f e a r t h q u a k e a c t i v i t y i n South C a r o l i n a and o t h e r l o c a l i t i e s . T h e c o i n c i d e n c e o f a u r o r a s and e a r t h q u a k e s m a y d e r i v e f r o m a c o m m o n c a u s e ; i . e . , the sun.

GLA-011

THE AURORA

T a y l o r , C h a r l e s J . ; N a t u r e , 27:99-100, N o v e m b e r 30, 1882. A t I I f o r d , E s s e x , o n the 17th instant, a t 6h. 4 m . p . m . b y a w a t c h w h i c h w a s w i t h i n 2 m . o f G . M . T . , I w i t n e s s e d d u r i n g the a u r o r a l d i s p l a y , the e x t r e m e l y singular phenomnon which has b e e n d e s c r i b e d by s e v e r a l of y o u r c o r r e s p o n d e n t s . I t l o o k e d e x a c t l y l i k e a w h i t e c l o u d , about 2 0 l o n g and 2 w i d e , t a p e r e d s o m e what f r o m the m i d d l e t o e a c h e n d ; but i t w a s m o r e l u m i n o u s than a c l o u d c o u l d w e l l h a v e b e e n a t that t i m e . W h e n f i r s t s e e n , i t s n e a r e s t end m a y h a v e b e e n 30 e a s t o f the m o o n . I t s l e n g t h w a s n e a r l y p a r a l l e l t o the h o r i z o n , and c o n t i n ued s o t i l l l o s t s i g h t o f about a s m u c h t o the w e s t o f the m o o n ; and i t s p a s s a g e o v e r an a r e a of s o m e 80 o c c u p i e d p r o b a b l y l e s s than a m i n u t e . It passed v e r y n e a r t o t h e m o o n , but I cannot s a y w h e t h e r o v e r i t o r not. B a t s o n , A l f r e d ; N a t u r e , 27:99-100, N o v e m b e r 3 0 , 1882. M y o b s e r v a t i o n a t R a m s b u r y , n e a r H u n g e r f o r d , w a s t o the e f f e c t that w h i l e watching the n o r t h e r n aurora, my attention w a s c a l l e d , at ten minutes past six, t o t h i s m o n s t e r m e t e o r , then s l o w l y a p p r o a c h i n g i n a d i r e c t l i n e t o the m o o n , which was shining m o s t b r i l l i a n t l y . I t s e e m e d t o p a s s e x a c t l y o v e r the d i s c , and r e a p p e a r e d o n the o t h e r s i d e , m u c h r e d u c e d i n s i z e , a s i f g o i n g a w a y f r o m u s ; and a t a d i s t a n c e o f about 6 f r o m the m o o n , s c a r c e l y s e e m e d t o m e a s u r e m o r e than 5 in l e n g t h , it b e i n g then about 6h. 8 m . , w h i c h c o r r e s p o n d s w i t h the p o s i t i o n o v e r S i d e m o u t h a t that t i m e . It was v e r y definite in f o r m , l i k e a t o r p e d o . I e s t i m a t e d i t s l e n g t h at 15 , and 3 in b r e a d t h

GLA-012

REMARKS AND OBSERVATIONS OF THE METEORIC AURORAL PHENOMENON OF NOVEMBER 17, 1881

G r o n e m a n , H. J. H. : N a t u r e , 2 7 : 2 9 6 - 2 9 8 , J a n u a r y 25, 1883. A f t e r s t u d y i n g d a t a f r o m E n g l a n d and the C o n t i n e n t , following: G r o n e m a n s t a t e s the

T h e c o n c l u s i o n t o w h i c h w e c o m e a f t e r a l l , r e g r e t t i n g e a r n e s t l y the want o f F r e n c h o b s e r v a t i o n s , i s that w e h a v e h e r e p r o b a b l y a m e t e o r i c o b j e c t , m o v i n g , a c c o r d i n g t o the c a l c u l a t i o n s o f M r . H . D . T a y l o r ( v o l . x x v i i . p . 140), w i t h g r e a t v e l o c i t y t h r o u g h the u p p e r s t r a t a o f the a t m o s p h e r e and a t the s a m e t i m e o f a u r o r a l c h a r a c t e r , a s the s p e c t r u m o b s e r v a t i o n o f M r . Rand C a p r o n ( v o l . x x v i i . p . 8 4 ) , m a k e s out b e y o n d any doubt. T h e s e p a r a t i o n and the f e a t h e r - l i k e f o r m s , o b s e r v e d a t U t r e c h t , m a k e i t p r o b a b l e that

Gl-28

A U R O R A - L I K E PHENOMENA

GLA-013

i t w a s a m a s s o f m e t e o r i c dust, p a s s i n g t h r o u g h o u r a t m o s p h e r e l i k e a n accumulation of little shooting stars. I n t h i s w a y the p h e n o m e n o n o f N o v e m b e r 17 b r i n g s a confirmation of my own t h e o r y of aurorae, p r o p o s e d b y m e i n the " A p p e r d i c e a l l e M e m o r i e d e l l a S o c i e t a d e g l i S p e t t r o c o p i s t i I t a l i a n i , " 1878, v o l . i i . , and r e c e i v e d w i t h s y m p a t h y b y m a n y o f the G e r m a n and Dutch a s t r o n o m e r s ; but a s i t s e e m s l i t t l e k n o w n i n E n g l a n d , though r e f e r r e d t o b y M r . Rand C a p r o n o n p . 6 4 o f his beautiful w o r k , " A u r o r a e . " I n t h i s t h e o r y m o s t o f the p r o p e r t i e s o f a u r o r a e a r e d e d u c e d f r o m c o s m i c dust e n t e r i n g i n t o t h e a t m o s p h e r e o f the e a r t h . I t a k e the l i b e r t y t o d i r e c t a t t e n t i o n t o the u n e x p e c t e d a r g u m e n t , that the b r i l l i a n t o b j e c t o f N o v e m b e r 17, 1882, h a s b r o u g h t f o r t h i n f a v o u r o f m y " T h e o r i e C o s m i q u e , " t o w h i c h I had a l r e a d y the o p p o r t u n i t y t o r e f e r i n t h i s J o u r n a l i n m y a r t i c l e " O n D u s t , F o g s , and C l o u d s " ( v o l . x x i i i . p . 195). F u r t h e r m o r e , I think that t h i s o b j e c t is not t h e o n l y e x a m p l e of such a p h e n o m e n o n . O n N o v e m b e r 2 , 1871, t h e r e w a s s e e n i n G r o n i n g e n and several places of Germany a strange, brilliant arch, striped parallel to i t s w e l l d e f i n e d s i d e s and c h a n g i n g i t s c u r v e d u r i n g i t s t w o h o u r s o f existence. T h e b e g i n n i n g o f the p h e n o m e n o n ( o f w h i c h I g a v e a d e s c r i p t i o n i n the D u t c h j o u r n a l I s i s ) w a s s e e n b y a student, M r . G r a t a m a , l i k e a n e l l i p t i c p a t c h o f l i g h t round the P l e i a d e s . D r . V o g e l , w h o o b s e r v e d the s a m e a r c h a t B o t h k a m p , d e t e r m i n e d i t s a u r o r a l c h a r a c t e r b y the s p e c t r u m . O t h e r w i s e i t r e s e m b l e d v e r y m u c h the b r i g h t spur o f a g i g a n t i c m e t e o r o r fireball. A l s o i t d i s a p p e a r e d s l o w l y , b e g i n n i n g a t the e a s t end, a s the illustration shows. A faint a u r o r a , w i t h d a r k s e g m e n t , w a s v i s i b l e i n the north. T h e h e i g h t o f t h i s a r c h w a s c a l c u l a t e d b y m e a p p r o x i m a t e l y a t 127 k i l o m e t r e s o r 7 9 m i l e s . I think that the o n l y d i f f e r e n c e b e t w e e n t h e s e t w o f e a t h e r - l i k e p h e n o m e n a o f N o v e m b e r 2 , 1871, and o f N o v e m b e r 17, 1882, c o n s i s t e d i n t h e d i f f e r e n t a p p a r e n t v e l o c i t y and i n the g r e a t e r m a s s o f m e t e o r i c dust, f o r m i n g i n the c a s e o f N o v e m b e r 17, 1882, but a s h o r t , and i n that o f N o v e m b e r 2 , 1871, a v e r y l o n g t r a i n o f i n c a n d e s c e n t m a t t e r . R e t u r n i n g t o the m e t e o r i c p h e n o m e n a , v i s i b l e s i m u l t a n e o u s l y w i t h a u r o r a e , i t s e e m s that such p h e n o m e n a w e r e s e e n d u r i n g the m a r v e l l o u s a u r o r a o f J a n u a r y 7 , 1831, d e s c r i b e d i n P o g g e n d o r f f ' s A n n a l e n o f the s a m e y e a r . W e r e a d ( p . 440) that B e r g r a t h Senff, i n C o l b e r g , a t 6 . 3 0 o ' c l o c k , s a w a b o v e the w e s t h o r i z o n a b r i g h t y e l l o w s t r e a k , r i s i n g u p w a r d w i t h a c o m m o n c l o u d - v e l o c i t y , p a s s i n g a t 3 0 ° N . Z e n . D . , and f o r m i n g a n a r c h f r o m W . t o E . , b e g i n n i n g t o d i s a p p e a r f r o m the w e s t end, a l m o s t a t the s a m e m o m e n t that i t r e a c h e d the e a s t h o r i z o n . A t p . 458 w e s e e that P r o f . R u d b e r g , a t U p s a l a , D e c e m b e r 7 , 1830, s a w a v e r y b r i g h t p a t c h o f d o u b l e the d i m e n s i o n s o f the m o o n ' s d i s c , m o v i n g w i t h g r e a t v e l o c i t y b e h i n d the c o m m o n a u r o r a l beams. F u r t h e r , P r o f . B i s c h o f f , i n B u r g b r o h l ( p . 4 6 1 ) , o b s e r v e d , o n the o c c a s i o n o f the a u r o r a o f J a n u a r y 7 , 1831, a m o v i n g c l o u d a s b r i g h t a s the milky way, f r o m E. to W . , in f i v e minutes. P r o f . M o l l saw, in Utrecht a s i m i l a r o b j e c t r i s i n g f r o m N . E . , t h r o u g h the P l e i a d e s , t o S . E . (S. W . ? ) . S i m i l a r o b s e r v a t i o n s a r e t o b e found d u r i n g the s a m e a u r o r a , p . 4 7 1 ( o n e a d v a n c i n g a r c h ) , p . 472 ( f o u r s i m i l a r a r c h e s , and a d a r k s t r e a k ) .

GLA-013

A CURIOUS PHENOMENON

N o b l e , W i l l i a m ; K n o w l e d g e , 4:173, S e p t e m b e r 14, 1883.

Gl-29

GLA-013

A U R O R A - L I K E PHENOMENA

C a n any o f m y b r o t h e r r e a d e r s o f K n o w l e d g e o f f e r a f e a s i b l e e x p l a n a t i o n o f a v e r y r e m a r k a b l e p h e n o m e n o n w h i c h I w i t n e s s e d a t lOh. 3 5 m . p . m . o n T u e s d a y , A u g u s t 2 8 ? I w a s j u s t c o m i n g out o f m y o b s e r v a t o r y w h e n , o n the E . N . E . point o f t h e h o r i z o n b e n e a t h the P l e i a d e s , I s a w a b r i g h t l i g h t . M y f i r s t thought w a s that the m o o n w a s r i s i n g , but a n i n s t a n t ' s r e f l e c t i o n s u f f i c e d t o r e m i n d m e that s h e w o u l d not b e u p f o r t h e n e x t t w o h o u r s . As I w a t c h e d the l i g h t b e c o m i n g b r i g h t e r and b r i g h t e r , I s a w that it t h r e w a kind o f r a d i a l i l l u m i n a t i o n u p w a r d , the e f f e c t o f w h i c h I h a v e t r i e d t o r e p r o d u c e i n the a c c o m p a n y i n g r o u g h l i t t l e s k e t c h . A s w i l l b e s e e n , a f e w distant c u m u l o - s t r a t u s c l o u d s , c l o s e t o t h e h o r i z o n , c r o s s e d i t . For a m o m e n t I i m a g i n e d that I w a s v i e w i n g the a p p a r i t i o n of a n e w and m o s t g l o r i o u s c o m e t ; but, a s I w a t c h e d , the " t a i l " d i s a p p e a r e d , and what w o u l d r e p r e s e n t the n u c l e u s f l a s h e d u p b r i l l i a n t l y . T h e n I m a d e u p m y m i n d that s o m e d i s t a n t h o u s e , b a r n , o r h a y s t a c k w a s o n f i r e , and r e t u r n e d t o t h e o b s e r v a t o r y f o r a 3 inch t e l e s c o p e , w h i c h I k e e p f o r l o o k i n g o v e r the l a n d s c a p e . B e f o r e I h a d t i m e , h o w e v e r , t o e n t e r the d o o r , e v e r y v e s t i g e o f i l l u m i n a t i o n d i s a p p e a r e d a s suddenly a s i t had c o m e i n t o v i e w , and a f t e r w a i t i n g i n v a i n f o r s o m e t i m e , I l e f t the o b s e r v a t o r y and c a m e i n t o the house. I have diligently inquired if there was a f i r e anywhere in this part o f S u s s e x o n the night o f w h i c h I a m s p e a k i n g , but t h e r e w a s n o n e .

A curious phenomenon.

(Adapted from GLA-013)

Gl-30

A U R O R A - L I K E PHENOMENA
GLA-014 METEOR OF NOVEMBER 17

GLA-015

T a y l o r , H . D e n n i s ; N a t u r e , 2 7 : 3 6 5 , F e b r u a r y 15, 1883. I think n o w that m o r e o b s e r v a t i o n s o f t h e r e m a r k a b l e p h e n o m e n o n o f N o v e m b e r 1 7 h a v e b e e n b r o u g h t f o r w a r d , that w e c a n n o t but c a n d i d l y a c k n o w l e d g e that t h e e v i d e n c e i s e x t r e m e l y c o n t r a d i c t o r y and i m p o s s i b l e t o r e c o n c i l e , that i s a s a p p l y i n g t o o n e and the s a m e o b j e c t . Altogether there i s s o m e t h i n g m y s t e r i o u s about i t . I t i s evident that s i n c e i t a p p e a r e d t o r e a c h t h e g r e a t e s t a p p a r e n t l e n g t h o f about 3 0 a t Y o r k , then f r o m a l l p l a c e s f u r t h e r south i t ought t o h a v e a t t a i n e d a l e n g t h e x c e e d i n g t h i s , t h e m o r e s o t h e f u r t h e r south t h e y a r e . T h e ends o f the b e a m a p p e a r e d v e r y w e l l d e f i n e d f r o m h e r e , and t h e r e w a s v e r y l i t t l e r o o m f o r e s t i m a t e s v a r y ing a c c o r d i n g t o the o b s e r v e r ' s s e n s i t i v e n e s s t o l i g h t . I f w e take the observations made f r o m Clifton, C i r e n c e s t e r , East Clevedon, Woodbridge, and W i n d s o r , a s t h e y n e a r l y , a l l a g r e e i n e s t i m a t i n g the l e n g t h a s o v e r 3 0 , s o m e c o n s i d e r a b l y o v e r , then t h e s e m a y a l l r e l a t e t o t h e s a m e o b j e c t . But i t s a p p e a r a n c e f r o m Y o r k i s f l a t l y c o n t r a d i c t e d b y M r . B a t s o n ' s o b s e r v a t i o n f r o m H u n g e r f o r d , that f r o m H a l s t e a d , E s s e x ( w h i c h s e e m s t o a g r e e w i t h M r . B a t s o n ' s ) , a l s o t h o s e f r o m L i n c o l n ' s Inn F i e l d s , G r e e n w i c h , and C a m b r i d g e . A l l these a g r e e in contradicting the others named a b o v e , by assigning a much s m a l l e r angular length. F o r o t h e r a c c o u n t s o f t h i s e v e n t , s e e G L A - 0 0 7 , G L A - 0 1 1 , G L A - 0 1 5 , and GLA-012.

GLA-015

THE AURORAL "METEORIC PHENOMENA" OF NOVEMBER 17, 1882

B a t s o n , A l f r e d ; N a t u r e , 27:412-413, M a r c h 1 , 1883. I t i s m u c h t o b e d e s i r e d that the i n c r e a s i n g i n t e r e s t c o n c e r n i n g t h i s g r e a t p h e n o m e n o n should supply t h e o n l y w a y o f o b v i a t i n g the p a u c i t y and i n c o m p l e t e n e s s o f o b s e r v a t i o n s , b y h a v i n g a m e e t i n g o f o b s e r v e r s and advanced nature-students either at London or B r i s t o l . The Utrecht observ a t i o n s a y s : " W h e n t h i s a r c h had o b t a i n e d t h e l e n g t h o f 9 0 (which lasted only a f e w s e c o n d s ) , a separation w a s m a d e in the m i d d l e of its length, " &c. I think t h i s a c c o u n t s f o r m a n y o f the d i s c r e p a n c i e s . M . G r o n e m a n w r i t e s : " T h e Dutch o b s e r v a t i o n s c o n f i r m t h e E n g l i s h , o n l y t h e p h e n o m e n o n s e e m s t o h a v e b e e n o f g r e a t e r a p p a r e n t s i z e and t h e r e f o r e n e a r e r . " I u s e d t o think t h i s f o r t h e s a m e r e a s o n h e g i v e s , but I n o w think i t p r o b a b l e that i t w a s f u r t h e r f r o m t h e e a r t h w h e n i t f i r s t a p p r o a c h e d . F r o m B o r d e a u x I l e a r n t h e sky w a s c l o u d y , but t h e a u r o r a w a s w e l l s e e n f r o m R o m e , S p e z i a , and F l o r e n c e , and I h a v e h o p e s o f o b s e r v a t i o n s f r o m the north of I t a l y . T h e l o g i c a l p o s i t i o n i s that w e m u s t l a y a s i d e a l l p r e c o n c e i v e d o p i n i o n s ; that w e m u s t b e p r e p a r e d t o r e c e i v e f r e s h i d e a s f r o m o u r n e w v i e w s o f t h e a c t i o n o f i n t e n s e h e a t o n g a s e s and m e t e o r i t e s .

Gl-31

GLA-016
GLA-016

A U R O R A - L I K E PHENOMENA

A CURIOUS PHENOMENON

B r a d g a t e , W . K . ; K n o w l e d g e , 4:207, S e p t e m b e r 2 8 , 1883._ T h e r e m a r k a b l e phenomenon which M r . Noble d e s c r i b e d in N o . 98 of K n o w l e d g e ( G L A - 0 1 3 ) w a s a l s o w i t n e s s e d by me in L i v e r p o o l on August 29, at 12 h. 40 m. a. m. I had j u s t b e e n l o o k i n g at Saturn, w h e n , f o r the f i r s t t i m e , I s a w a b r i g h t d i v e r g e n t c o n e o f l i g h t about 7 a b o v e the h o r i z o n ; t h e e n t i r e l e n g t h o f the c o n e w a s about 5 ° . T h e apex o r nucleus d i s p l a y e d such a d e g r e e of c o n c e n t r a t i o n that I thought it w a s t h e p l a n e t J u p i t e r . I t u r n e d m y t e l e s c o p e , a 2 - i n c h , a r m e d w i t h a p o w e r o f 30, o n the point w h e r e the a p e x should b e (it w a s n o w o b s c u r e d b y a c l o u d ) , w i t h t h e e x p e c t a t i o n o f b e i n g a b l e t o u n r a v e l the m y s t e r y , but w a s d i s a p p o i n t e d , as the cloud was too d e n s e . I then r a n m y t e l e s c o p e a l o n g the m a j o r a x i s o f the c o n e , and t h e f i e l d o f v i e w w a s s o f a i n t l y i l l u m i n a t e d that the b r i g h t e s t p a r t c o u l d h a r d l y b e s a i d t o equal the l u m i e r e c e d r e e s e e n u n d e r s i m i l a r c o n d i t i o n s . I t g r a d u a l l y faded f r o m v i e w , a f t e r h a v i n g b e e n v i s i b l e f o r thirteen minutes. I c o n t i n u e d w a t c h i n g the p a r t o f the h e a v e n s w h e r e i t had d i s a p p e a r e d , w i t h the c o n f i d e n t h o p e that i t w o u l d r e t u r n , but w a s a t l a s t o b l i g e d t o g i v e i t up, a s a g r e a t bank o f c l o u d s p r e c l u d e d a l l f u r t h e r observation. It could hardly have been an auroral s t r e a m e r , appeared is 67 east of North. See also G L A - 0 1 7 . a s the p o i n t w h e r e i t

GLA-017

JUPITER

-STRANGE LIGHT IN THE SKY

M e e , A r t h u r ; E n g l i s h M e c h a n i c , 81:220, A p r i l 14, 1905. D i d a n y o n e s e e a s t r a n g e l i g h t i n the s o u t h e r n h e a v e n s about t e n o ' c l o c k o n the e v e n i n g o f M a r c h 2 9 ? S e v e r a l p e o p l e i n the n e i g h b o u r h o o d o f C a r d i f f s a w a n a p p e a r a n c e l i k e a v e r t i c a l b e a m o f l i g h t , w h i c h w a s not due (they s a y ) t o a s e a r c h l i g h t o r any such c a u s e ! U n f o r t u n a t e l y , I d i d not s e e the phenomenon myself; perhaps some of your r e a d e r s may have been m o r e furtunate. It w a s on the S. E. h o r i z o n as seen f r o m Cardiff. F o r s i m i l a r e v e n t s , s e e G L A - 0 1 3 and G L A - 0 1 6 .

GLA-018

THE RECENT NOCTURNAL GLOWS
78:221, July 9, 1908.

Brauner, Bohuslav; Nature,

T h e p e c u l i a r l i g h t p h e n o m e n o n a t m i d n i g h t o n June 3 0 , w h i c h w a s s e e n , a c c o r d i n g t o the p a p e r s , o n the n o r t h e r n p a r t o f the s k y a t C o p e n h a g e n , K o n i g s b e r g , B e r l i n , V i e n n a , B i a l a , and o t h e r p l a c e s , w a s a l s o o b s e r v e d by me at P r a g u e . A t l h . 3 0 m . a . m . o n July 1 , I s a w i n the d i r e c t i o n N . E . and N . N . E . a p e c u l i a r s t r o n g o r a n g e - y e l l o w l i g h t o v e r the h o r i z o n , the

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GLA-019

c o l o u r o f w h i c h w a s m o r e o r a n g e i n i t s l o w e r p a r t s and m o r e y e l l o w i n i t s higher parts. I t s u p p e r l i m i t w a s l y i n g t w e n t y t o t h i r t y d e g r e e s a b o v e the h o r i z o n . T h e w h o l e sky w a s c l o u d l e s s . O t h e r p e o p l e s a w i t h e r e a t 1 1 p . m . o n June 3 0 . I t i s r e p o r t e d that m a g n e t i c d i s t u r b a n c e s w e r e e x p e r i e n c e d o n the t e l e g r a p h i c l i n e s , but I s a w n o t r a c e o f the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c a u r o r a l bands o r columns. I m a y b e a l l o w e d t o add that, a c c o r d i n g t o A r r h e n i u s , t h i s t i m e o f the y e a r c o r r e s p o n d s t o t h e m i n i m u m o f a u r o r a l d i s p l a y ( a c t i v i t y ) . I n t e r e s t i n g i s the f a c t that a h i g h b a r o m e t r i c m a x i m u m w a s l y i n g i n the n o r t h , and that w e had w i n d s f r o m that d i r e c t i o n f o r a w h o l e w e e k .

GLA-019

A STUDY OF THE REMARKABLE ILLUMINATION OF THE SKY ON MARCH 27, 1908

E l l i s , W i l m o t E . ; S c i e n c e , 28:51-53, July 10, 1908. T h e 27th o f M a r c h w a s a r e m a r k a b l y c l e a r and w a r m d a y , the t e m p e r a ture mounting w e l l above 70 d e g r e e s . T h e e v e n i n g w a s a l s o c l e a r , but decidedly cooler. T h e r e w a s n o m o o n , but V e n u s shone unusually b r i g h t i n the w e s t e r n s k y . T h i s l a s t f a c t i s m e n t i o n e d p a r t i c u l a r l y , b e c a u s e the b e s t a u t h o r i t i e s s t a t e that the l i g h t o f a b r i l l i a n t e v e n i n g s t a r i s s u f f i c i e n t t o p r e c l u d e any m a r k e d i l l u m i n a t i o n l i k e that o b s e r v e d . Everyone whom I have i n t e r v i e w e d i n f o r m s m e that h e had n e v e r b e f o r e w i t n e s s e d any such d i s p l a y . W i t h the e x c e p t i o n o f one e y e - w i t n e s s a t M i l l b u r n , N . J . , a l l o f m y i n f o r m a t i o n h a s b e e n o b t a i n e d f r o m o b s e r v e r s a t Sandy H o o k , N . J . I w a s s o u n f o r tunate a s t o w i t n e s s the l a s t p a r t o f t h e s p e c t a c l e , o n l y . Details beyond my own k n o w l e d g e a r e furnished f r o m accounts g i v e n m e b y a r m y o f f i c e r s s t a t i o n e d a t Sandy H o o k and m e m b e r s o f t h e i r r e s p e c t i v e h o u s e h o l d s . T h e i l l u m i n a t i o n w a s f i r s t n o t e d a t about 7:45 p . m . I t c o n s i s t e d o f a b r i g h t n e b u l o u s band r i s i n g n o r t h o f w e s t f r o m about t w e n t y d e g r e e s a b o v e the h o r i z o n . T h e l i g h t e x t e n d e d a c r o s s the s k y t o n e a r the n o r t h o f e a s t h o r i z o n , d i m i n i s h i n g i n b r i g h t n e s s f r o m w e s t t o e a s t , the bands i n the e a s t and w e s t b e i n g c o n n e c t e d b y t h r e e s e p a r a t e b a n d s . A t about 8:15, the i l l u m i n a t i o n f a d e d , e x c e p t t h e w e s t e r n s o l i d b a n d , w h i c h p e r s i s t e d f o r about ten m i n u t e s . B e f o r e it disappeared, h o w e v e r , a s e r i e s of short n a r r o w shafts, n e a r l y p a r a l l e l t o o n e a n o t h e r , a p p e a r e d about fifty d e g r e e s a b o v e the h o r i z o n i n a d i r e c t i o n s l i g h t l y w e s t o f n o r t h . The eastern-western i l l u m i n a t i o n w a s s t e a d y , w h i l e the n o r t h e r n shafts w e r e " t r e m b l y , " s o m e what s u g g e s t i n g the a u r o r a b o r e a l i s . I t should b e r e m e m b e r e d , h o w e v e r , that t h e r e w e r e n o l i g h t s o f w h a t e v e r n a t u r e i n the n o r t h , e x c e p t t h e s e detached shafts. I t w o u l d s e e m p l a u s i b l e o n f i r s t thought t o a t t r i b u t e t h i s d i s p l a y t o the z o d i a c a l l i g h t , o r t h e a u r o r a b o r e a l i s , o r t o a c o m b i n a t i o n o f the t w o . the z o d i a c a l l i g h t h y p o t h e s i s f a i l s t o a c c o u n t f o r the d e t a c h e d shafts high a b o v e the h o r i z o n t o the w e s t o f n o r t h . Some w r i t e r s appear to make a d i s t i n c t i o n b e t w e e n a u r o r a l d i s p l a y s ( " f i c t i t i o u s " a u r o r a s , a s i t w e r e ) , and the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c a u r o r a b o r e a l i s . R e p o r t s of the simultaneous displays o f the z o d i a c a l l i g h t and a u r o r a l p h e n o m e n a a r e m a t t e r s o f authentic record. I n the c a s e u n d e r d i s c u s s i o n , t h e r e i s a c h a n c e that t w o i n d e p e n dent p h e n o m e n a w e r e o c c u r r i n g a t the s a m e t i m e , but the c h a n c e w a s infinitesimally small. M o r e o v e r , o n e o f the m o s t p r o n o u n c e d s e n s a t i o n s

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GLA-020

AURORA—LIKE PHENOMENA

of the b e h o l d e r w a s that he w a s w i t n e s s i n g one phenomenon, with one cause. T h e only o t h e r c o m m e n t about these g l o w s and shafts of l i g h t that s e e m s r e a s o n a b l e i n the t e r m s o f p r e s e n t k n o w l e d g e i s that they a r e e l e c t r i c a l phenomena. But i n this a r t i c l e w e g o b a c k a c e n t u r y i n t i m e t o w h e n e v e r y t h i n g unusual w a s a s c r i b e d to electricity.

GLA-020

ANOMALOUS AND SPORADIC AURORAS

A n o n y m o u s ; Monthly W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 26:260-261, June 1898. T h e f o l l o w i n g o b s e r v a t i o n f r o m K e y W e s t stimulated the E d i t o r o f the Monthly W e a t h e r R e v i e w , C l e v e l a n d A b b e , t o suggest the p o s s i b i l i t y o f l o w intensity a t m o s p h e r i c e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e s a s the c a u s e s o f l u m i n o u s b e a m s and l o w altitude a u r o r a s . T h e famous A n d e s G l o w and o t h e r mountain-top luminous e f f e c t s a r e probably c l o s e l y related. I n a l e t t e r , dated K e y W e s t , N o v e m b e r 10, 1897, M r . H . B . B o y e r , o b s e r v e r , Weather Bureau, said: I h a v e the honor to r e p o r t that the f o l l o w i n g d e s c r i b e d phenomenon w a s o b s e r v e d on the 8th instant, and it is r e q u e s t e d that i t s c h a r a c t e r be d e t e r m i n e d , if possible. T h e d e s c r i p t i o n i s taken f r o m the d a i l y j o u r n a l : A s i n g u l a r phenomenon w a s o b s e r v e d b e t w e e n 9 and 10 p . m . T h i s c o n s i s t e d o f a b e a m o f w e l l - d e f i n e d light s t r e t c h i n g a c r o s s the sky, s i m i l a r t o the r a y s p r o j e c t e d by an e l e c t r i c s e a r c h l i g h t . At f i r s t it w a s thought that such it w a s , as t h e r e a r e t w o m e n - o f - w a r in the h a r b o r ; but the p o s i t i o n and p e r m a n e n c y of the b e a m p r e c l u d e d t h i s i d e a , and it w a s a f t e r w a r d s found that the phenomenon w a s noted o n the w a r v e s s e l s . T h e l u m i n o u s b e a m b e g a n at a point in azimuth 230 (counting f r o m south to w e s t ) and s t r e t c h e d southward a c r o s s the h e a v e n s to a point in azimuth 330 , with a s l i g h t upward tendency and a slight w i d e n i n g . At i t s n o r t h e r n e x t r e m i t y i t s width w a s about 1 / 2 ° , b r o a d e n i n g to about 1 at i t s southern e x t r e m i t y . It r e m a i n e d f i x e d a s r e g a r d s its p o s i t i o n r e l a t i v e t o t e r r e s t r i a l o b j e c t s , and i t w a s noted that s t a r s , i n t h e i r upward c o u r s e , w e r e p l a i n l y v i s i b l e through i t . T h e i n c l i n a t i o n and altitude m a y ' b e d e t e r m i n e d f r o m the f o l l o w i n g : A s the c o n s t e l l a t i o n of O r i o n p a s s e d the b e a m it w a s o b s e r v e d that at 9:50 p. m. the u p p e r m o s t s t a r i n the " b e l t " and " R i g e l " p a s s e d through s i m u l t a n e o u s l y ; i n other w o r d s , a l i n e d r a w n f r o m " R i g e l " t o the u p p e r m o s t s t a r i n the " b e l t " o f O r i o n c o i n c i d e d with the a x i s o f the luminous b e a m . T h e phenomenon b e g a n t o fade about 9:45 p. m . , and by 10:10 p. m. had d i s a p p e a r e d , the fading p r o c e s s b e g i n n i n g a t the n o r t h e r n end. B y s o m e the b e a m w a s s e e n t o v i b r a t e . T h e i t e m on p a g e 297 of the Monthly W e a t h e r R e v i e w f o r August, 1895, is a l m o s t a p a r a l l e l t o the c a s e r e p o r t e d b y M r . B o y e r a t K e y W e s t . I t d e s c r i b e s an a u r o r a l a r c h and s t r e a m e r , as seen at C h a r l e s t o n , S. C . , on August 26. T h e phenomenon w a s s o unusual a s t o h a v e g i v e n r i s e t o many s u s p i c i o n s , but e v e n t u a l l y it w a s s e e n t h e r e could be no doubt that this w a s a c a s e of a v e r y l o c a l a u r o r a , such as the E d i t o r c a l l s " s p o r a d i c a u r o r a s , " o c c u r r i n g b e y o n d the c o n fines o f a r e g i o n i n w h i c h t h u n d e r s t o r m s w e r e p r e v a i l i n g a t the t i m e . These s p o r a d i c and l o c a l a u r o r a s must b e c o n s i d e r e d a s one o f the m i l d e s t f o r m s o f e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e i n the a t m o s p h e r e . I t m a y b e that the e l e c t r i c i t y d i s t r i b -

Gl-34

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GLA-022

uted a l l o v e r t h e s u r f a c e o f a g l o b u l e o f w a t e r i n a c l o u d y m a s s o r i n a h a z y sky i s c o l l e c t e d a t t h e e x t r e m i t i e s o f the s p i c u l e o f i c e w h e n that g l o b u l e i s f r o z e n . T h e a u r o r a l l i g h t t h e r e f o r e e m a n a t e s f r o m d e f i n i t e p o i n t s and l i n e s l o c a t e d n e a r o r a b o v e that l a y e r i n the a t m o s p h e r e a t w h i c h f r e e z i n g t e m p e r a t u r e h a s j u s t occurred. (Small globules may cool far b e l o w 32 F. b e f o r e they f r e e z e to i c e n e e d l e s . ) T h i s m a y b e , and u n d o u b t e d l y i s a v e r y i r r e g u l a r s u r f a c e , but m u s t h a v e a c l o s e a n a l o g y t o the shape that w e s e e d e p i c t e d i n the c l o u d s and a u r o r a s themselves. T h e beautiful s t r e a m e r s o f c i r r u s h a z e , a s o b s e r v e d i n the d a y t i m e , h a v e o f t e n b e e n c o m p a r e d w i t h t h e b e a m s , a r c h e s , and f o l d s o f a u r o r a l light, as seen at nighttime. I t i s q u i t e p l a u s i b l e that both a t C h a r l e s t o n , A u g u s t 2 6 , 1895, and a t K e y W e s t , N o v e m b e r 8 , 1897, a d i s c h a r g e o f e l e c t r i c i t y w a s taking p l a c e horizontally outward in all d i r e c t i o n s f r o m an a r e a of l o w p r e s s u r e o r c y c l o n i c d i s t u r b a n c e c e n t r a l i n the O h i o and M i s s i s s i p p i w a t e r s h e d s .

GLA-021

AURORAL LIGHT

A b b e , C l e v e l a n d ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 29:512, N o v e m b e r 1901. T h e f o l l o w i n g e x t r a c t s a r e f r o m the C l i m a t e and C r o p S e c t i o n r e p o r t s , N o v e m b e r , 1901: L a p o r t e , Ind. A b o u t 5 . 3 0 p . m . o n the 28th, the o b s e r v e r n o t i c e d a p e c u l i a r l i g h t i n the w e s t e r n h e a v e n s . T h e sky w a s c o v e r e d w i t h b r o k e n c l o u d s , t h r o u g h w h i c h the l i g h t s h o n e . Huntington, I n d . — A p e c u l i a r s t r e a k o f l i g h t w a s o b s e r v e d i n the n o r t h w e s t about 6 p . m . o n the 28th. S t i f f e n v i l l e , L e w i s County, M o . A n a u r o r a o b s e r v e d o n the 28th. T h e a u r o r a b o r e a l i s appears i n e v e r y f o r m , f r o m the m o s t magnificent d i s p l a y t o the m o s t i n s i g n i f i c a n t p a t c h e s o f l i g h t that a p p e a r f o r a f e w m o m e n t s and f a d e a w a y f o r e v e r . The above phenomena may w e l l have been o f the l a t t e r a u r o r a l c h a r a c t e r . Laporte, Ind., is f r o m 50 to 75 m i l e s northwest of Huntington. A n o r t h e a s t w i n d had b e e n b l o w i n g f r o m out a n a r e a o f h i g h p r e s s u r e ; the s k y w a s c o v e r e d w i t h c u m u l o s t r a t u s c l o u d s a t L a p o r t e , but w a s p r o b a b l y c l e a r a t H u n t i n g t o n . T h e s e a r e the c o n d i t i o n s that g e n e r a l l y a c c o m p a n y a u r o r a s and w e m a y a s s u m e that t h e r e w a s a faint o n e o n t h e p r e s e n t o c c a s i o n , although i t w a s not o b s e r v e d e l s e w h e r e i n the United States or in Canada.

GLA-022

ELECTRICAL PHENOMENA; INCANDESCENT CLOUD

A n o n y m o u s ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 29:466, O c t o b e r 1901. I n a l e t t e r d a t e d B r a i d e n t o w n , F l o r i d a , A u g u s t 28, 1901, M r . H H . B r o e c k s e n d s the f o l l o w i n g a c c o u n t o f e l e c t r i c a l p h e n o m e n a o b s e r v e d b y h i m : A b o u t 9 p. m. of M a y 30, 1901, I s a w s o m e c l o u d s p u l s a t i n g w i t h l i g h t l i k e that o f a n a u r o r a . T h e y w e r e s m a l l and v e r y thin, s h o w i n g s t a r s t h r o u g h t h e m , and d r i f t i n g s l o w l y e a s t w a r d o v e r h e a d . On turning f r o m them for a few m o m e n t s t h e y b e c a m e p l a i n e r , and I s a w t h e y w e r e l a m b e n t l i k e the s t r e a m e r s o f a n aurora. I w a t c h e d t h e m f o r s e v e r a l m i n u t e s , d u r i n g w h i c h they v a r i e d i n l i g h t about e v e r y f i f t e e n s e c o n d s . I then noted a l a r g e r , m u c h d e n s e r c l o u d about w e s t - n o r t h w e s t 2 0 ° , w h i c h s h o w e d the s a m e a c t i o n o f a u r o r a l l i g h t . A bank o f

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GLA-023

A U R O R A - L I K E PHENOMENA

c l o u d s c o v e r e d the w h o l e n o r t h e r n s k y t o s o m e 2 0 a b o v e the h o r i z o n , t h e y w e r e v e r y b r i g h t , but s h o w e d n o v a r i a t i o n i n t h e i r l i g h t . A few scattered clouds in the south a l s o w e r e f r e e f r o m v a r i a t i o n . T h e r e w a s n o w h e r e any t r a c e o f streamers. A v i o l e n t s t o r m f o l l o w e d the n e x t n i g h t , w h i c h i n e i g h t e e n h o u r s d i s c h a r g e d n e a r l y 7 i n c h e s o f r a i n , a v e r y unusual a m o u n t f o r the t i m e o f y e a r . I have n o w h e r e seen i t s equal in nine y e a r s . I h a v e a l s o n o t e d m o r e l i g h t n i n g without t h u n d e r . I reported some instances a f e w m o n t h s a g o i n the M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w . I s a w a flash r e c e n t l y g o i n g f r o m o n e c l o u d t o a n o t h e r . I t w a s about t w o m i l e s l o n g and v e r y b r i g h t . I e x p e c t e d a v i o l e n t c l a p o f thunder, but n o n e c a m e . I h a v e often s e e n such d i s c h a r g e s f o l l o w e d b y l o u d thunder w h i c h s o m e t i m e s l a s t s o v e r a m i n u t e b e f o r e it dies away. The preceding observations by M r . Ten Broeck seem especially interesti n g b e c a u s e t h e y h a r m o n i z e w i t h s e v e r a l s i m i l a r e x p e r i e n c e s b y the E d i t o r . A n y o n e m a y f r e q u e n t l y o b s e r v e a t night d u r i n g a s t o r m , c l o u d s f l o a t i n g a l o n g and b e c o m i n g n o w b r i g h t and n o w d a r k t h e d i f f e r e n t p a r t s o f the s a m e c l o u d m a y b e b r i g h t and d a r k a l t e r n a t e l y . I t w i l l b e e a s y t o p e r c e i v e t h e r e b y that t h i s c l o u d l i g h t i s not r e f l e c t e d f r o m t e r r e s t r i a l s o u r c e s . T h e r e s e e m s but o n e e x p l a n a t i o n ; the c l o u d i s u n d e r the i n f l u e n c e o f a n e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e and i s r e n d e r e d luminous by it. E i t h e r the c l o u d p a r t i c l e s a r e i n c a n d e s c e n t , a s i n the o r d i n a r y i n c a n d e s c e n t e l e c t r i c l i g h t o r the a i r b e t w e e n the p a r t i c l e s i s i n c a n d e s c e n t , a s i n i n t e n s e l i g h t n i n g and the o r d i n a r y a r c l i g h t s ; i n e i t h e r c a s e w e m a y s p e a k o f a n i n c a n d e s c e n t c l o u d , a s d i s t i n g u i s h e d f r o m the " p h o s p h o r e s c e n t , " " i r i d e s c e n t , " " f l u o r e s c e n t , " " l u m i n e s c e n t " c l o u d s that h a v e b e e n o b s e r v e d v e r y h i g h i n the a t m o s p h e r e and w h i c h a p p a r e n t l y b e c o m e l u m i n o u s b y r e f l e c t i n g distant t w i l i g h t . I n h i s a n a l y s i s , the E d i t o r o f M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w p o s t u l a t e s e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e s within individual clouds. T h i s feature may be r e l a t e d to the e l e c t r i c a l activity s o m e t i m e s a s s o c i a t e d w i t h t o r n a d o e s , w a t e r s p o u t s and w h i r l w i n d s .

GLA-023

ATMOSPHERIC ELECTRICITY

T o m l i n s o n , C . ; N a t u r e , 40:102, M a y 30, 1889. T h e following o b s e r v a t i o n would probably b e r e l e g a t e d t o the U F O l i t e r a t u r e today. M r . J a b e z B r o w n , w h i l e a s c e n d i n g o n e o f the s h a r p h i l l s n e a r B o s c a s t l e , i n N o v e m b e r , a t 9 p . m . , w a s suddenly s u r r o u n d e d b y a b r i g h t and p o w e r f u l l i g h t , w h i c h p a s s e d h i m a l i t t l e q u i c k e r than the o r d i n a r y p a c e o f a m a n ' s walking, leaving it as dark as b e f o r e . T h e l i g h t w a s s e e n b y the s a i l o r s i n the h a r b o u r , c o m i n g i n f r o m the s e a , and p a s s i n g u p the v a l l e y i n a l o w cloud. A s i m i l a r o n e o c c u r r e d in Scotland l a s t y e a r .

Gl-36

BALL LIGHTNING
GLB-001 FLAMES FROM THE SKY

GLB-003

G a d d i s , V i n c e n t ; I n v i s i b l e H o r i z o n s , C h i l t o n B o o k s , P h i l a d e l p h i a , 1965, p p . 192-199. C o m p i l e r ' s S u m m a r y : G a d d i s d e v o t e s t h i s c h a p t e r t o f i r e b a l l s ; and s o m e o f t h e s e a r e v e r y strange objects. T w o o f the m o s t interesting a r e s u m m a r i z e d b e l o w . F e b r u a r y 7 , 1955; C a r r i b e a n a r e a . H u n d r e d s o f p e o p l e o n the g r o u n d and t w o p i l o t s s e e a h u g e f i r e b a l l s t r e a k a c r o s s the s k y . T o a v o i d t h e o b j e c t , the t w o p i l o t s had t o increase their altitudes. M o t o r i s t s n e a r M i a m i s a i d t h e y had t o s w e r v e t o k e e p f r o m being hit. O t h e r odd l i g h t s w e r e a l s o r e p o r t e d i n the a r e a . S o m e w e r e p e r f e c t l y round w i t h f u z z y e d g e s . Newspapers called these phenomena " m e t e o r i t i c . " S e p t e m b e r 2 , 1954; c o a s t a l w a t e r s o f f E n s e n d a , C A . A Honduran f r i e g h t e r r e p o r t e d a s t r a n g e f i r e b a l l that s k i p p e d o v e r the s u r f a c e o f the w a t e r and v a n i s h e d , l e a v i n g a trail of white s m o k e behind. S e v e r a l o f the other f i r e b a l l e v e n t s r e p o r t e d b y Gaddis a r e taken f r o m s o u r c e s quoted d i r e c t l y in this v o l u m e .

GLB-002

BALL LIGHTNING AS AN OPTICAL ILLUSION

A r g y l e , E d w a r d ; N a t u r e , 230:179-180, M a r c h 19, 1971. C o m p i l e r * s S u m m a r y : A r g y l e f i r s t p o i n t s out that t w o w e l l - k n o w n students o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g , H u m p h r e y s and Schonland, b e l i e v e d i t t o b e o n l y a n o p t i c a l i l l u s i o n . T h e p h e n o m e n o n o f v i s u a l a f t e r i m a g e s i s next r e v i e w e d , e m p h a s i z i n g that any b r i g h t l i g h t , such a s the t e r m i n u s o f any l i g h t n i n g f l a s h c a n c r e a t e a n a f t e r i m a g e . This afterimage w i l l s e e m t o d r i f t l i k e b a l l l i g h t n i n g , a s the o b s e r v e r t r i e s t o c e n t e r the i m a g e i n h i s e y e . I t w i l l then d i s a p p e a r s i l e n t l y . A r g y l e n o t e s that a f t e r i m a g e s and b a l l l i g h t n i n g h a v e the f o l l o w i n g c o m m o n p r o p e r t i e s : 1 . S a m e s i z e and shape 5. Frequent lack of physical d a m a g e 2. Same c o l o r s 6 . Sudden d i s a p p e a r a n c e 3 . S a m e l i f e t i m e s (2-10 s e c ) 7. Same ability to m a t e r i a l i z e f r o m nowhere 4. Same sort of motion T h e f r e q u e n t r e p o r t s o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g d e t o n a t i o n s a r e p r o b a b l y due t o the o b s e r v e r ' s imagination just a s a u r o r a l sounds a r e i m a g i n a r y [ ? ] . Odors are also imagined. I n v i e w o f the fact that s c i e n c e s e e m s c o m p l e t e l y a t a l o s s t o e x p l a i n b a l l l i g h t n i n g u s i n g o r d i n a r y p h y s i c a l p r i n c i p l e s , A r g y l e thinks i l l u s i o n s the o n l y a d m i s s i b l e solutions. But, h e a d m i t s , i l l u s i o n s m a y not b e the c o m p l e t e a n s w e r b e c a u s e t h e r e a r e m a n y r e p o r t s o f p h y s i c a l d a m a g e and o t h e r l o o s e e n d s .

GLB-003

IS BALL LIGNTNING CAUSED BY ANTIMATTER METEORITES?

A s h b y , E . T . F. , and W h i t e h e a d , C. ; N a t u r e , 230:180-182, M a r c h 19, 1971. T h e t h e o r y d e p e n d s o n the p o s t u l a t e that a n t i m a t t e r can b e c o m p a r a t i v e l y s t a b l e i n the p r e s e n c e o f o r d i n a r y m a t t e r . Annihilation of a speck of antimatter of 5 fxm r a d i u s and 5 x 10~*° g w o u l d l i b e r a t e 1 0 J: i o n i z a t i o n p r o d u c e d in the s u r r o u n d i n g a i r b y t h i s a n n i h i l a t i o n c o u l d b e e x p e c t e d t o h a v e the o p t i c a l p r o p e r 5

Gl-37

GLB-004

B A L L LIGHTNING

ties attributed to ball lightning. T h e a u t h o r s next p r o p o s e a m e c h a n i s m b y w h i c h the flux o f a n t i m a t t e r m e t e o r i t e s a r r i v i n g f r o m outer space could be concentrated by t e r r e s t r i a l e l e c t r i c a l s t o r m s . T h e dust p a r t i c l e s w i l l tend t o c h a r g e n e g a t i v e l y due t o the e m i s s i o n o f p o s i t r o n s b y p h o t o - e m i s s i o n and b y s e c o n d a r y e m i s s i o n c a u s e d b y r e c o i l i n g f r a g ments. T h i s n e g a t i v e c h a r g e w i l l g i v e t h e m a t e n d e n c y t o d e s c e n d i n the v i c i n i t y o f t h u n d e r s t o r m s , w h i c h c o n t i n u a l l y b r i n g n e g a t i v e c h a r g e f r o m the u p p e r a t m o sphere down to ground l e v e l A n e x p e r i m e n t s e t u p t o d e t e c t the a n n i h i l a t i o n r a d i a t i o n o f a n t i m a t t e r i n t h e a t m o s p h e r e is d e s c r i b e d next. F o u r e v e n t s , o n e c o r r e l a t e d w i t h a s e v e r e t h u n d e r s t o r m and t h r e e others after an exceptionally intense p e r i o d of thunderstorm activity, w e r e o b s e r v e d . N o b a l l l i g h t n i n g w a s s e e n d u r i n g the p e r i o d , h o w e v e r . A s h b y and W h i t e h e a d h o p e that t h e i r e x p e r i m e n t w i l l s t i m u l a t e f u r t h e r r e s e a r c h i n t o the p o s s i b i l i t y o f a n t i m a t t e r m e t e o r i t e s , although t h e y a d m i t t h e i r e x p e r i m e n t d o e s not p r o v e that b a l l l i g h t n i n g and antimatter are really connected. [ T h e mechanism suggested above may have a bearing on tornado formation, auroral a c t i v i t y , m o u n t a i n - t o p g l o w s , and o t h e r s u p p o s e d l y e l e c t r i c a l l u m i n o u s p h e n o m e n a . ]

GLB-004
B a r r y , J.

BALL LIGHTNING
D a l e ; J o u r n a l o f A t m o s p h e r i c and T e r r e s t r i a l P h y s i c s , 29:1095-1101, 1967. First, B a r r y ' s

T h i s i s o n e o f the m o r e i m p o r t a n t m o d e r n s u r v e y s o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g . conclusions a r e quoted.

T h i s s u r v e y i n d i c a t e s that a natural p h e n o m e n o n d e s c r i b e d a s b a l l l i g h t n i n g most certainly exists. It is associated with thunderstorms, earthquakes, c y c l o n e s and o t h e r natural a t m o s p h e r i c d i s t u r b a n c e s . The phenomenon is o b s e r v e d most often d u r i n g t h u n d e r s t o r m s and i s g e n e r a l l y c o n s i d e r e d t o b e the r e s u l t o f a n e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e o r due t o s o m e e l e c t r i c a l l y r e l a t e d f o r m a t i o n m e c h a n i s m . B a l l l i g h t n i n g i s m o s t c o m m o n l y o b s e r v e d a s a b a l l shaped o b j e c t w i t h a b u r n i n g a p p e a r a n c e , and r a d i a l d i m e n s i o n s l e s s than 4 0 c m . Although it appears s i m i l a r to a burning globule, its surface is g e n e r a l l y d i m l y illuminated with a lack of protruding f l a m e s . It is generally first o b s e r v e d in a slow descending m o t i o n , a p p a r e n t l y f r o m a t h u n d e r c l o u d , but d o e s not f a l l d i r e c t l y t o the g r o u n d . I t c o m m o n l y a s s u m e s r a n d o m m o t i o n s a f e w d e c a m e t e r s a b o v e the g r o u n d , o r a slow horizontal flight. It appears to behave independently of external f o r c e s , as it is frequently o b s e r v e d to be unaffected by conductors. It d o e s , h o w e v e r , s e e m to have an occasional affinity for e n c l o s u r e s . I t can d e v i a t e f r o m a s t r a i g h t path t o e n t e r a r o o m through a d o o r w a y or a p a r t i a l l y opened w i n d o w . T h e b a l l l i g h t n i n g i s s o m e t i m e s a c c o m p a n i e d b y the p r e s e n c e o f a s h a r p r e p u g nant o d o r , such a s that a s s o c i a t e d w i t h a n e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e . The ball lightning has a s h o r t l i f e t i m e , u s u a l l y o n l y a f e w s e c o n d s . I t c a n d e c a y s i l e n t l y o r e x p l o s i v e l y , although the l a t t e r d e c a y m o d e i s m o s t f r e q u e n t . S i n c e the b a l l l i g h t n i n g i s a s s u m e d t o b e a l i g h t n i n g f o r m , i t i s c o n s i d e r e d t o b e d a n g e r o u s t o l i f e , although t h i s i s not c o n f i r m e d s t a t i s t i c a l l y . Its appearance s u g g e s t s that c a u t i o n and c o m m o n s e n s e w o u l d b e w i s e d u r i n g a n o b s e r v a t i o n . It

Gl-38

BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-005

appears to be a potentially powerful phenomenon. T h e e n e r g y d e n s i t y o f the natural b a l l l i g h t n i n g w a s c a l c u l a t e d t o b e g r e a t e r than 2 . 5 k j / c m ^ . [ 2 , 500 j o u l e s p e r cubic c e n t i m e t e r ] T h e c o n c l u s i o n s p r e s e n t e d b y B a r r y and q u o t e d a b o v e a r e w i d e l y a c c e p t e d b y s c i e n t i s t s today. B a r r y , though, i s p e r h a p s m o r e p o s i t i v e than m o s t . H i s c o n c l u s i o n s d o not r e f l e c t s o m e other p r o p e r t i e s of ball lightning mentioned in his p a p e r : 1. A r a r e , r o d - l i k e type of ball lightning exists which is usually purple or v i o l e t . 2 . P r i o r t o e x p l o s i v e d i s a p p e a r a n c e , the c o l o r o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g s o m e t i m e s changes f r o m red, violet, or y e l l o w to white. 3 . O n e v a r i e t y o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g h a s a dull r e f l e c t i n g s u r f a c e , 3 0 - 5 0 c m i n d i a m e t e r . A n o t h e r kind r o t a t e s , a p p a r e n t l y , and a t h i r d t y p e h a s a b u r n i n g a p p e a r a n c e . 4 . A h i s s i n g sound i s h e a r d o n o c c a s i o n . 5. A r e s i d u e is found r a r e l y a f t e r d e t o n a t i o n s . 6 . A b o u t 10% o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g h a s a n a f f i n i t y f o r e n c l o s u r e s , d e c a y i n g e x p l o s i v e l y and u s u a l l y w i t h n o p h y s i c a l d a m a g e .

GLB-005

SLOW LIGHTNING
1957.

L e y , W i l l y ; O n E a r t h and i n the Sky, A c e B o o k s , I n c . , N e w Y o r k ,

C o m p i l e r ' s Summary: L e y devotes Chapter 5 to ball lightning. He first mentions the c r i t i c a l f e a t u r e s o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g , n o t i n g that i t i s f a r m o r e c o m m o n i n E u r o p e than N o r t h A m e r i c a the r e v e r s e of tornadoes. .He d w e l l s on K a p i t s a ' s t h e o r y ; n a m e l y , that b a l l l i g h t n i n g i s a n i o n i z e d zone, o f a i r f e d e n e r g y b y the e l e c t r o magnetic w a v e s a s s o c i a t e d with an e l e c t r i c a l s t o r m . L e y d o e s not f e e l t h i s t h e o r y is a d e q u a t e . •• ' Several interesting case histories are'presented, been selected: f r o m w h i c h the f o l l o w i n g h a v e

1. July 5, 1852; P a r i s . S h o r t l y f o l l o w i n g a s t r o n g t h u n d e r c l a p , a t a i l o r s i t t i n g in h i s f o u r t h - f l o o r a p a r t m e n t s a w a f i r e b a l l , the. s i z e o f a human head e m e r g e f r o m a f i r e p l a c e , a s i f d r i v e n b y a gust o f w i n d . . T h e f r a m e . c o v e r i n g the f i r e p l a c e d u r i n g the s u m m e r w a s pushed a s i d e . T h e b a l l w a s b r i g h t but n o h e a t w a s e v i d e n t . I t m o v e d t o w a r d the m a n ' s f e e t " l i k e a c a t ; " H e p u l l e d h i s f e e t b a c k and the b a l l m o v e d around i n t o the c e n t e r o f the r o o m . I t s u d d e n l y ' r o s e , f l e w t o the c h i m n e y , c l i m b e d s l o w l y up, and d e t o n a t e d , d e s t r o y i n g t h e .top "part o f the c h i m n e y . 2. No date; East P r u s s i a . I m m e d i a t e l y a f t e r .lightning s t r u c k a b e e r g a r d e n , the o w n e r p e r c e i v e d a r e d d i s h , r o t a t i n g b a l l , about 16. i n c h e s . i n d i a m e t e r , a p p e a r a t e y e l e v e l . R o t a t i n g a l l the t i m e , i t p a s s e d b y a number" o f p e o p l e , f o l l o w e d a l o n g the e l e c t r i c b e l l w i r e , and f i n a l l y m o v e d a l o n g the w i r e to-the s t a b l e w h e r e i t e x ploded. • -. 3 . Day o f the P e n t e c o s t , 1890; E a s t P r u s s i a . A man w a s d r i v i n g down a road lined by w i r e fences. H i s c a r r i a g e had f o u r i r o n r i m m e d w h e e l s and i r o n a x l e s . T h e r e w a s n o r a i n , but the sky w a s c l o u d y . T w o h e a d - s i z e d b a l l s a p p e a r e d o n the f e n c e s o n b o t h s i d e s o f the r o a d , f o l l o w i n g the c a r r i a g e a l o n g . W h e n the c a r r i a g e i n c r e a s e d i t s s p e e d , s o did the b a l l s . A t the e n d s o f the f e n c e s t h e b a l l s c o l l a p s e d with a noise like c r u m p l i n g paper. [This may have been an e l e c t r i c discharge p h e n o m e n o n r a t h e r than t r u e b a l l l i g h t n i n g . 1 4 . A p r i l 2 9 , 1925; S a x o n y . A b a r r e l - l i k e o b j e c t f e l l f r o m a c l o u d and b r o k e i n t o small strokes of lightning. One hit a n e a r b y s c h o o l . M e a n w h i l e , the t r e e s l o o k e d
;

Gl-39

GLB-006

B A L L LIGHTNING
at the tips of the t w i g s . T h e " b o l t " that hit t h e s c h o o l m a d e and e x i t h o l e s i n a t e a c h e r ' s r o o m and t h r e w h i m t o the f l o o r r e s t o f the l i g h t n i n g s t r o k e s d a m a g e d t r e e s , t e l e p h o n e p o l e s , w i r e s . N o o n e n o t i c e d any n o i s e a t a l l d u r i n g the e n t i r e

a s i f they had c a n d i e s n e a t , round e n t r a n c e i n the p r o c e s s . The and m e l t e d t e l e p h o n e event.

5 . 1925 o r 1926; P e n n s y l v a n i a . F o l l o w i n g a s e v e r e thunderstorm, a c a m p e r saw a y e l l o w - g o l d e n b a l l o f f i r e the s i z e o f a b a s k e t b a l l e n t e r a n o p e n w i n d o w and l e a v e b y the w i n d o w o p p o s i t e . T h e r e w a s n o n o i s e and n o d a m a g e . 6 . N o d a t e ; B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a . I n a j e t f i g h t e r a t 4 8 , 000 f e e t f l y i n g o v e r t h e t o p s of s p e c t a c u l a r c u m u l o n i m b u s t o w e r s , t h e p i l o t and a f r i e n d s a w and p h o t o g r a p h e d a luminous object in a black thundercloud. T h e s i z e w a s about that o f t h e f i g h t e r . A l t h o u g h i t a p p e a r e d s h a r p l y d e f i n e d t o the v i e w e r s , t h e p h o t o s d i s p l a y e d f u z z y edges.

GLB-006

BALL LIGHTNING

W o o d , R . W . ; N a t u r e , 126:723, N o v e m b e r 8 , 1930. S u m m e r o f 1929* East Hampton, England, a large summer residence.

T h e b a l l d i s c h a r g e a p p e a r e d i n the k i t c h e n i n t h e c e n t r e o f t h e r o o m (just o v e r t h e f u r n a c e p i p e s ) , about t h r e e f e e t a b o v e the f l o o r , and w i t h i n t h r e e o r f o u r f e e t o f the c o o k , w h o w a s s t a n d i n g u p and f a c i n g t h e p o i n t a t w h i c h i t appeared. She t o l d m e that i t a p p e a r e d j u s t a f t e r the thunder c r a s h , w a s y e l l o w l i k e a f l a m e , about f i v e i n c h e s i n d i a m e t e r , and w a s spinning l i k e a t o p . She w a s v e r y p o s i t i v e about the w h i r l i n g , and w a s l o o k i n g d o w n o n t h e thing at v e r y c l o s e r a n g e . I asked h e r w h e t h e r it faded away or e x p l o d e d . She s a i d , " I d i d n ' t w a i t t o s e e 1 j u m p e d f o r the c e l l a r d o o r and r a n d o w n the s t a i r s ! " T h e r e w a s n o sound o f a n e x p l o s i o n . She a l s o s t a t e d that t h e r o o m w a s full o f a s m o k y h a z e w h e n she r e t u r n e d , and that t h e r e w a s a s t r o n g s m e l l . I a s k e d h e r w h e t h e r i t w a s ' l i k e s u l p h u r ' (the p o p u l a r d e s c r i p t i o n ) , and she said, " N o , it w a s a c i d - l i k e . " T h i s suggests an o x i d e of nitrogen. No m a r k s o f the f l a s h c o u l d b e found i n t h e k i t c h e n , but t h e r e had e v i d e n t l y b e e n a h e a v y e l e c t r i c a l d i s t u r b a n c e b e l o w the f l o o r . T h e c o o k w a s n e a r enough t o t h e b a l l t o touch i t , and i t i s r e g r e t t a b l e that she n e g l e c t e d the o p p o r t u n i t y o f m a k i n g a valuable contribution to our k n o w l e d g e of this m y s t e r i o u s e l e c t r i c a l p h e n o m e n o n ! I think that I should h a v e r e a c h e d f o r i t , but am not s u r e .

GLB-007

BALL LIGHTNING

R u s s e l l , A . ; N a t u r e , 126:809, N o v e m b e r 23, 1930. P r o f . W o o d [ G L B - 0 0 6 ] q u o t e s a n e y e - w i t n e s s w h o s a i d that the f l a s h e s s t r u c k i n t h e w a t e r , c o m i n g n e a r e r and n e a r e r l i k e a d v a n c i n g s h e l l - f i r e . This r e m i n d s m e o f a t y p i c a l c a s e published i n the P h i l . T r a n s , f o r 1781, p . 4 2 . I t i s r e l a t e d h o w t h e tenant o f a l a r g e t h r e e - s t o r y h o u s e f a c i n g the s e a a t E a s t b o u r n e w a s s t a n d i n g and l o o k i n g t h r o u g h t h e w i n d o w a t a n o m i n o u s b l a c k c l o u d . H e s a w s e v e r a l b a l l s o f f i r e d r o p s u c c e s s i v e l y out o f t h e c l o u d i n t o t h e s e a . Suddenly h e w a s t h r o w n v i o l e n t l y b a c k w a r d s b y w h a t h e d e s c r i b e d a s a f l a s h o f fire. M a n y p e o p l e o u t s i d e t h e h o u s e a t that instant s a w s o m e t h i n g w h i c h i n

Gl-40

BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-009

f o r m and f l a m e t h e y a l l a g r e e d w a s l i k e a n i m m e n s e ' s k y r o c k e t ' s t r i k e the house. T h e t e n a n t ' s c l o t h e s w e r e t o r n , and p i e c e s o f m e t a l h e had about h i m were melted. E v e r y pane o f g l a s s i n the r o o m w a s c o m p l e t e l y s m a s h e d . O n t h e g r o u n d f l o o r the c o a c h m a n and a f o o t m a n w e r e k i l l e d , and o n the t o p f l o o r a l a d y and h e r m a i d w e r e r e n d e r e d i n s e n s i b l e . A l l the b e l l w i r e s i n the h o u s e were deflagrated. I h a v e a n i m p r e s s i o n that g l o b u l a r l i g h t n i n g m a k e s a s l i g h t n o i s e a s i t d r i f t s about. It has been c o m p a r e d to the purring of a cat.

GLB-008

WEIRD PHANTOMS OF THE AIR

A n o n y m o u s ; P o p u l a r M e c h a n i c s , 4 8 : 9 7 9 - 9 8 2 , D e c e m b e r 1927. T h i s a r t i c l e p r e s e n t s a s h o r t s u m m a r y o f t h e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g and St. E l m o ' s f i r e . T h e o n l y c a s e h i s t o r y o f i n t e r e s t f o l l o w s : D u r i n g the p r o g r e s s o f t h e t o r n a d o that s t r u c k L o u i s v i l l e , K y . , i n M a r c h , 1890, n u m e r o u s b a l l s o f l i v i n g f i r e , t h e s i z e o f o r a n g e s , a d d e d t o the f r i g h t o f t h e t e r r o r - s t r i c k e n v i c t i m s . I n t h e d a r k n e s s , a l l o f the l i g h t s o f t h e c i t y h a v i n g b e e n put out, t h e y r o l l e d about the s t r e e t s and a l o n g t e l e p h o n e w i r e s and the c o r n i c e s o f b u i l d i n g s , and f i n a l l y e x p l o d e d with t r e m e n d o u s r e p o r t s .

GLB-009

CURIOUS PHENOMENON IN VENEZUELA

C o w g i l l , W a r n e r ; S c i e n t i f i c A m e r i c a n , 55:389, D e c e m b e r 18, 1886. D u r i n g the n i g h t o f the 24th o f O c t o b e r l a s t , w h i c h w a s r a i n y and t e m p e s t u o u s , a f a m i l y o f n i n e p e r s o n s , s l e e p i n g i n a hut a f e w l e a g u e s f r o m M a r a c a i b o , w e r e a w a k e n e d b y a l o u d h u m m i n g n o i s e and a v i v i d , d a z z l i n g l i g h t , w h i c h b r i l l i a n t l y i l l u m i n a t e d the i n t e r i o r o f the h o u s e . T h e o c c u p a n t s , c o m p l e t e l y t e r r o r s t r i c k e n , and b e l i e v i n g , a s t h e y r e l a t e , that the end o f t h e w o r l d had c o m e , t h r e w t h e m s e l v e s o n t h e i r k n e e s and c o m m e n c e d t o p r a y , but t h e i r d e v o t i o n s w e r e a l m o s t i m m e d i a t e l y i n t e r r u p t e d b y v i o l e n t v o m i t i n g s , and e x t e n s i v e s w e l l i n g s c o m m e n c e d t o a p p e a r i n the u p p e r p a r t o f t h e i r b o d i e s , t h i s b e i n g p a r t i c u l a r l y n o t i c e a b l e about the f a c e and l i p s . I t i s t o b e n o t e d that the b r i l l i a n t l i g h t w a s not a c c o m p a n i e d b y a s e n s a t i o n o f h e a t , although t h e r e w a s a s m o k y a p p e a r a n c e and a p e c u l i a r s m e l l . T h e n e x t m o r n i n g the s w e l l i n g s h a d s u b s i d e d , l e a v i n g upon t h e f a c e and body l a r g e black blotches. N o s p e c i a l p a i n w a s f e l t until the ninth d a y , w h e n the s k i n p e e l e d off, and t h e s e b l o t c h e s w e r e t r a n s f o r m e d i n t o v i r u l e n t r a w sores. T h e h a i r o f t h e h e a d f e l l o f f upon t h e s i d e w h i c h h a p p e n e d t o b e u n d e r neath w h e n the p h e n o m e n o n o c c u r r e d , t h e s a m e s i d e o f the b o d y b e i n g , i n a l l nine c a s e s , the m o r e s e r i o u s l y injured. T h e r e m a r k a b l e p a r t o f the o c c u r r e n c e i s that t h e h o u s e w a s u n i n j u r e d , a l l d o o r s and w i n d o w s b e i n g c l o s e d a t the t i m e . N o t r a c e o f l i g h t n i n g c o u l d a f t e r w a r d b e o b s e r v e d i n any p a r t o f the b u i l d i n g , and a l l t h e s u f f e r e r s unite i n s a y i n g that t h e r e w a s n o d e t o n a t i o n , but

Gl-41

GLB-010

B A L L LIGHTNING

o n l y the l o u d h u m m i n g a l r e a d y m e n t i o n e d . A n o t h e r c u r i o u s attendant c i r c u m s t a n c e i s that t h e t r e e s around the h o u s e s h o w e d n o s i g n s o f i n j u r y until the ninth d a y , w h e n t h e y suddenly w i t h e r e d , a l m o s t s i m u l t a n e o u s l y w i t h the d e v e l o p m e n t o f the s o r e s upon the b o d i e s o f the o c c u p a n t s o f the h o u s e . T h i s i s p e r h a p s a m e r e c o i n c i d e n c e , but i t i s r e m a r k a b l e that the s a m e l a p s e o f t i m e , should b e o b s e r v e d i n both a n i m a l and v e g e t a b l e o r g a n i s m s . I h a v e v i s i t e d the s u f f e r e r s , w h o a r e now in one of the hospitals of this c i t y ; and a l t h o u g h t h e i r a p p e a r a n c e i s t r u l y h o r r i b l e , y e t i t i s h o p e d that i n no c a s e w i l l the injuries p r o v e fatal. C o w g i l l w a s a t t a c h e d t o the U . S . C o n s u l a t e a t M a r a c a i b o a t the t i m e . T h i s a p p a r i t i o n h a s m a n y a t t r i b u t e s o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g , but t h e p h y s i o l o g i c a l e f f e c t s a r e unusual. I t sounds a l m o s t a s i f r a d i o a c t i v i t y w e r e i n v o l v e d .

GLB-010

ON THE PHENOMENA OF THE LIGHTNING DISCHARGE, AS ILLUSTRATED BY THE STRIKING OF A HOUSE IN COSSIPORE, CALCUTTA

M c M i l l a n , W a l t e r G . ; N a t u r e , 4 0 : 2 9 5 - 2 9 6 , July 2 5 , 1889. A f t e r a l e n g t h y d e s c r i p t i o n of the path t a k e n and d a m a g e d o n e w i t h i n the house by the l i g h t n i n g , t h e author added the f o l l o w i n g : M r . V i n e y h a p p e n e d t o b e f a c i n g i n such a d i r e c t i o n that h e c o u l d w a t c h the p r o g r e s s o f the d i s c h a r g e . H e d e s c r i b e s the e f f e c t a s that o f a n i n t e n s e l y b r i l l i a n t b a l l o f y e l l o w f i r e , about 6 o r 7 i n c h e s i n d i a m e t e r , w h i c h p a s s e d f r o m o n e end o f the r o o m t o the o t h e r a t a p a c e just s u f f i c i e n t l y s l o w t o a l l o w i t t o b e r e a d i l y f o l l o w e d b y the e y e ; about h a l f - w a y a c r o s s , i t a p p e a r e d t o b e m o m e n t a r i l y c h e c k e d , and then, s e e m i n g t o b u r s t w i t h a d e a f e n i n g r e p o r t w h i c h s h o o k the w h o l e h o u s e , i t s c a t t e r e d and p a s s e d o n w a r d . About certain points he is absolutely certain: there was no p r e m o n i t o r y w a r n i n g , n o sound o f a b r u s h d i s c h a r g e o r o d o u r o f o z o n e , the f i r s t i n t i m a t i o n b e i n g the e n t r a n c e o f the f i r e - b a l l i t s e l f . A g a i n , the d i r e c t i o n taken w a s f r o m the s t a i r c a s e t o the b e l l (that i s , f r o m c l o u d t o e a r t h ) , and the d i r e c t i o n w a s u n i f o r m , and n o s e c o n d b a l l w a s s e e n t o e n t e r f r o m the o p p o s i t e s i d e t o m e e t the f i r s t and s o p r o d u c e the apparent e x p l o s i o n , n o r a f t e r the c o n c u s s i o n w a s t h e r e any o t h e r p h e n o m e n o n than the p a s s i n g o n o f the b a l l . A g a i n , i t h a s l o n g b e e n k n o w n that the p a s s a g e o f high t e n s i o n d i s c h a r g e s through m i x t u r e s o f o x y g e n and n i t r o g e n i n d u c e d c o m b i n a t i o n o f t h e s e e l e m e n t s ; I t h e r e f o r e a s k e d M r . V i n e y a s t o the a f t e r a p p e a r a n c e s , and a s t o the p r e s e n c e o f unusual c o l o u r e d g a s e s , o r o f a s u f f o c a t i n g s e n s a t i o n . He at once s a i d that the w h o l e h o u s e s e e m e d t o b e f i l l e d w i t h a n o r a n g e - c o l o u r e d g a s ( m i x e d , o f c o u r s e , w i t h c l o u d s o f d u s t ) , the b r e a t h i n g o f w h i c h w a s p e r f e c t l y s t i f l i n g , and w a s e q u i v a l e n t t o i n h a l i n g the f u m e s f r o m b u r n i n g sulphur. I h a v e s i n c e a s k e d h i m t o r e p o r t upon a s a m p l e o f n i t r o g e n t e t r o x i d e h i g h l y d i l u t e d w i t h a i r : h e d e c l a r e d that the g a s i n h i s h o u s e w a s o f a b r i g h t e r o r a n g e s h a d e , and o f a s o m e w h a t s i m i l a r y e t not i d e n t i c a l o d o u r ; o n p r e s e n t i n g h i m , h o w e v e r , w i t h a s t r o n g e r m i x t u r e , h e w a s q u i t e c o n f i d e n t that both i n c o l o u r and i n s m e l l the t w o g a s e s w e r e i d e n t i c a l .

Gl-42

B A L L LIGHTNING
GLB-011 GLOBULAR LIGHTNING

GLB-012

H a r e , A . T . ; N a t u r e , 40:415, A u g u s t 29, 1889. On M o n d a y , the 5th instant, at m i d d a y , t h i s d i s t r i c t w a s v i s i t e d by a v i o l e n t s t o r m o f r a i n , w h i c h l a s t e d h a l f a n h o u r , and w a s a c c o m p a n i e d b y thunder and l i g h t n i n g . W h e n the s t o r m had p a s s e d o v e r and the s k y w a s g e t t i n g b r i g h t , a r o d - l i k e o b j e c t w a s s e e n t o d e s c e n d f r o m the s k y . It is d e s c r i b e d a s b e i n g o f a p a l e y e l l o w c o l o u r , l i k e hot i r o n , and a p p a r e n t l y about 1 5 i n c h e s l o n g b y 5 i n c h e s a c r o s s . T h e s e d i m e n s i o n s a r e g i v e n by a n o b s e r v e r w h o e s t i m a t e d i t s d i s t a n c e (about c o r r e c t l y , a s i t s u b s e q u e n t l y a p p e a r e d ) at 100 y a r d s , and a r e not t h e r e f o r e a f f e c t e d by the u n c e r t a i n t y a t t a c h e d t o e s t i m a t e s o f t h e s i z e s o f o b j e c t s w h o s e d i s t a n c e i s q u i t e unknown. T h i s o b j e c t d e s c e n d e d " m o d e r a t e l y s l o w l y , " "not t o o fast t o b e f o l l o w e d b y the e y e " and q u i t e v e r t i c a l l y . O n r e a c h i n g a point about 4 0 f e e t f r o m the g r o u n d , and i n c l o s e p r o x i m i t y w i t h a c h i m n e y - s t a c k b e l o n g i n g t o a h o u s e i n T w i c k e n h a m P a r k , the o b j e c t s e e m e d t o " f l a s h out h o r i z o n t a l l y a s i f i t b u r s t , " s h o w i n g a n i n t e n s e l y w h i t e l i g h t i n the c e n t r e and a r o s y r e d t o w a r d s the o u t e r p a r t s . At the same instant a v i o l e n t e x p l o s i o n w a s h e a r d , and s o o n a f t e r w a r d s a s t r o n g s m e l l w a s p e r c e i v e d , w h i c h i s d e s c r i b e d b y t h e o b s e r v e r s a s " r e s e m b l i n g that o f b u r n i n g sulphur, " f o r w h i c h the s m e l l o f o z o n e and n i t r i c o x i d e m i g h t easily be mistaken. " T h e e x p l o s i o n f i l l e d the k i t c h e n w i t h s m o k e and s o o t . T h e d i n i n g - r o o m a l s o w a s f i l l e d w i t h s m o k e and s o o t , though n o f i r e w a s b u r n i n g i n i t . " T h e m a s t e r o f the h o u s e w a s just c o m i n g i n t o the d i n i n g - r o o m f r o m the c o n s e r v a t o r y w h e n h e h e a r d the d e t o n a t i o n and s i m u l t a n e o u s l y s a w a b r i g h t flash o f l i g h t . H e s t a g g e r e d b a c k a m o m e n t , and then r a n t h r o u g h the s m o k e and s o o t t o the h a l l , and c a l l e d out t o k n o w i f a n y o n e w a s h u r t . Finding all s a f e h e r e t u r n e d i n t o the d i n i n g - r o o m . A J a p a n e s e u m b r e l l a set upon a s a n o r n a m e n t i n t h e e m p t y g r a t e , but not f i x e d i n any w a y , w a s u n d i s t u r b e d , though the hub o f i t w a s hot t o the t o u c h . P i l e s o f s o o t s p r e a d out i n a s e m i c i r c l e t o the c e n t r e s o f the s i d e w a l l s o f the r o o m , and a n a r m - c h a i r , w h i c h had b e e n s t a n d i n g c l o s e t o the f i r e - p l a c e , w a s 6 f e e t f r o m i t s p r e v i o u s p o s i t i o n , and had e v i d e n t l y b e e n t u r n e d round and t h r u s t a g a i n s t the w a l l . I n the b e d - r o o m , o n the f i r s t f l o o r , s o o t w a s o n the f l o o r and i n the f i r e place. T h e s l a b o f m a r b l e f o r m i n g the a r c h i t r a v e u n d e r the m a n t e l s h e l f , and e x t e n d i n g the w h o l e w i d t h o f the f i r e - p l a c e , had b e e n thrust out f r o m i t s s e t t i n g , and w a s , w i t h a n u m b e r o f b r i c k s , l y i n g 6 f e e t a w a y o n the f l o o r . " O t h e r m i n o r d a m a g e i s d e s c r i b e d i n the r e m a i n d e r o f the r e p o r t .

GLB-012

ON THE FACTS OF EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA

M a l l e t , R o b e r t ; R e p o r t s o f the B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , 143, 1853, and 134-135, 1854. A u g u s t 13, 1761; G e n e v a . A s l i g h t s h o c k . A c c o m p a n i e d by a dull n o i s e . A m e t e o r o f the f o r m o f a n i m m e n s e g l o b e , w h i c h a f t e r w a r d s c h a n g e d t o a t r a i n o f l i g h t and d i s a p p e a r e d w i t h a n e x p l o s i o n , w a s o b s e r v e d a t the s a m e t i m e . [ N o t e that a " m e t e o r " in 1761 m e a n t any a t m o s p h e r i c p h e n o m e n o n . ]

Gl-43

GLB-013

BALL LIGHTNING

N o v e m b e r 22, 1821; I t a l y . A s t r o n g s h o c k f r o m E . t o W . , f o l l o w e d r a t h e r s l o w l y b y s e v e n o t h e r s . A c c o m p a n i e d b y : A l u m i n o u s m e t e o r m o v i n g i n the s a m e d i r e c t i o n a s that taken b y the s h o c k w a s o b s e r v e d just b e f o r e . N o v e m b e r 17, 1831; S w e d e n . A s h o c k f r o m S. to N. D u r i n g a v i o l e n t s t o r m f r o m the n o r t h . T h e s h o c k w a s a c c o m p a n i e d b y a loud e x p l o s i v e n o i s e , w h i c h w a s a l s o h e a r d i n the v i l l a g e s M o r n a o and Z e n g e r , and a t F a h l u n . An e x t r a o r d i n a r y l i g h t a p p e a r e d i n the n o r t h e r n h o r i z o n . N o v e m b e r 19, 1831; T h u r i n g e r w a l d . A s e v e r e v i b r a t o r y s h o c k . A c c o m p a n i e d b y a v e r y l o u d r o l l i n g n o i s e p a s s i n g f r o m S . t o N . , and l a s t i n g f i v e o r s i x s e c o n d s . O n the day o f the e a r t h q u a k e b e f o r e and a f t e r the s h o c k s , and o n the day b e f o r e , a c a l m p r e v a i l e d , but the p r e c e d i n g d a y s had b e e n s t o r m y . T h e W e r r a w a s unusually h i g h . A c c o r d i n g to s o m e accounts, a f i r e b a l l , a p p a r e n t l y a s l a r g e a s the m o o n , w a s s e e n p a s s i n g t o w a r d s the w e s t .

GLB-013

THEORIES OF BALL LIGHTNING

A n o n y m o u s ; S c i e n t i f i c A m e r i c a n S u p p l e m e n t , 6 8 : 3 7 6 - 3 7 7 , D e c e m b e r 11, 1909. S e n e c a , i n a n c i e n t t i m e s , a s s e r t e d that the l u m i n o u s b o d i e s o f b a l l lightning contain c o m p r e s s e d a i r . F a r a d a y d e n i e d the e x i s t e n c e o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g , and m a n y o t h e r p h y s i c i s t s h a v e r e g a r d e d m o s t o f the o b s e r v e d p h e n o m e n a a s s u b j e c t i v e , and due t o the e f f e c t o f the i n t e n s e l i g h t o f l i g h t n i n g upon the r e t i n a . T w o c l a s s e s o f t h e o r i e s , c h e m i c a l and p h y s i c a l , h a v e b e e n a d v a n c e d to explain ball lightning. T h e c h e m i c a l t h e o r i e s a r e the o l d e r . Muschenb r o c k , i n 1769, r e g a r d e d b a l l l i g h t n i n g a s a n a g g l o m e r a t i o n o f i n f l a m m a b l e s u b s t a n c e s w h i c h , a f t e r r i s i n g f r o m the e a r t h a s v a p o r s , c o n d e n s e i n the u p p e r a t m o s p h e r e , and i n s o m e w a y b e c o m e i g n i t e d a s t h e y f a l l . I n 1886 P f e i l a t t e m p t e d t o r e v i v e t h i s t h e o r y , and a s s e r t e d that b a l l l i g h t n i n g has v e r y little connection with ordinary lightning. A r a g o c o n j e c t u r e d that globe lightning is an agglomeration of ponderable matter strongly i m p r e g nated w i t h the m a t t e r o f l i g h t n i n g . B e s n o n , i n 1852, a t t r i b u t e d b a l l lightning to an accumulation of nitrogen i o d i d e . A c c o r d i n g to De la R i v e and H i l d e n b r a n d s s o n , b a l l l i g h t n i n g c o n s i s t s o f m i x e d h y d r o g e n and o x y g e n p r o d u c e d b y the e l e c t r o l y s i s o f w a t e r . T h i s t h e o r y a c c o u n t s f o r the e x p l o s i o n w h i c h o f t e n t e r m i n a t e s the p h e n o m e n o n . Raasche r e g a r d s ball lightning as an incandescent m a s s of gas e v o l v e d by e l e c t r i c d i s c h a r g e . T h e r e s e a r c h e s o f T a i t , C e c i l , C a l l a n d , F a y e , and o t h e r s h a v e l e d t o the e n u n c i a t i o n o f s e v e r a l p h y s i c a l t h e o r i e s o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g . Suchsland, f o r e x a m p l e , r e g a r d s a thunder c l o u d a s a n e l e c t r i c b a t t e r y o f a n i m m e n s e n u m b e r o f c e l l s , e a c h c o m p o s e d o f a d r o p o f r a i n and the o x y g e n and n i t r o g e n o f t h e a t m o s p h e r e , and a s s e r t s that b a l l l i g h t n i n g c o n s i s t s o f d e t a c h e d c e l l s of this c h a r a c t e r . O t h e r p h y s i c a l t h e o r i e s h a v e b e e n founded o n a t t e m p t s t o r e p r o d u c e the p h e n o m e n a o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g i n the l a b o r a t o r y . T h e m o s t i m p o r t a n t o f t h e s e e x p e r i m e n t s w e r e m a d e b y P l a n t e and h a v e b e e n r e p e a t e d and e x t e n d e d b y o t h e r p h y s i c i s t s , i n c l u d i n g T o e p l e r , w h o m a d e a s y s t e m a t i c study o f e l e c t r i c d i s c h a r g e s i n f r e e a i r and d i s c o v e r e d a f o r m i n t e r m e d i a t e b e t w e e n t h e o r d i n a r y b r u s h d i s c h a r g e and the v o l t a i c a r c , t o w h i c h h e g a v e the n a m e o f b r u s h a r c . On these experiments T o e p l e r b a s e d a t h e o r y , a l r e a d y v a g u e l y f o r e s h a d o w e d b y D u M o n c e l and P l a n t e ,

Gl-44

BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-015

which r e g a r d s g l o b e lightning as a v a r i e t y of brush d i s c h a r g e . Although T o e p l e r ' s theory l e a v e s numerous phenomena unexplained, it appears to c o n t a i n the g e r m o f t h e c o m p l e t e e x p l a n a t i o n o f g l o b e l i g h t n i n g . Prof. T r o w b r i d g e i n t h i s c o u n t r y h a s a l s o e x p e r i m e n t a l l y studied the s u b j e c t , and the r e s u l t s o f h i s r e s e a r c h e s h a v e b e e n p u b l i s h e d i n t h e s e c o l u m n s .

GLB-014

NATURE OF BALL LIGHTNING

W o l f , K a r l ; S c i e n t i f i c A m e r i c a n S u p p l e m e n t , 8 0 : 5 4 - 5 5 , J u l y 24, 1915. I n t h e c h o i c e o f i t s path b a l l l i g h t n i n g b e h a v e s i n a v e r y c o n t r a d i c t o r y m a n n e r , s o m e t i m e s p e r f o r m i n g t h e m o s t i n c o m p r e h e n s i b l e turns and j u m p s . I n o n e c a s e i t w i l l s l a v i s h l y o b e y a m e t a l l i c c o n d u c t o r , such a s a l i g h t n i n g r o d , w a n d e r i n g s l o w l y a l o n g i t ; i n a n o t h e r w i t h o b j e c t s and r e b o u n d , and b o u n c e u p and d o w n a s i f m a d e o f r u b b e r . I t p e n e t r a t e s o b s t a c l e s and c o m e s out o n t h e o t h e r s i d e ; s q u e e z e s t h r o u g h c h i n k s and k e y h o l e s and r e a p p e a r s , a p p a r e n t l y u n a f f e c t e d b y the p r o c e s s ; i t g o e s u p o r d o w n c h i m n e y s ; i t f l o a t s l i g h t l y i n t h e a i r l i k e a t o y b a l l o o n ; i t a d v a n c e s a g a i n s t the w i n d , o r a g a i n o b e y s the l e a s t g u s t o f the l a t t e r . It p a s s e s through t i l e s or b r i c k s , l e a v i n g a h o l e behind i t ; m o v e s t h r o u g h s e v e r a l r o o m s o f a h o u s e ; i n s h o r t , i t s m o v e m e n t s s e e m t o b e a l t o g e t h e r e c c e n t r i c and u n a c c o u n t a b l e . It m o v e s cautiously, l i k e a c a t , a m o n g h u m a n b e i n g s , and l i k e s t o l i n g e r o n p o i n t s , c o r n e r s , and angles. At t i m e s it halts in its c o u r s e , or m o v e s backward; a c c e l e r a t e s or retards its speed. I n s o m e c a s e s the b a l l o f l i g h t n i n g d i s a p p e a r s q u i e t l y , w h i l e i n o t h e r s i t e x p l o d e s w i t h a t e r r i f i c n o i s e , s h o o t i n g f i e r y s h e a f s l i k e the r a y s f r o m a s k y rocket in all d i r e c t i o n s . A g a i n , the b a l l m a y r e s o l v e i t s e l f i n t o a s t r i n g o f bead-like sparks. Ball lightning is r a r e l y d e s t r u c t i v e or harmful to neighboring objects. N o s e n s i b l e r a d i a t i o n o f heat f r o m i t has b e e n r e p o r t e d . I f t h e s e w a n d e r i n g b a l l s c o m e i n c o n t a c t w i t h the h u m a n b o d y , h o w e v e r , t h e y m a y p r o d u c e w o u n d s and c r a m p - l i k e s e n s a t i o n s a t the p o i n t s o f c o n t a c t . A s m e l l o f sulphur i s often r e p o r t e d and i s s o m e t i m e s s a i d t o b e s t i f l i n g i n i n tensity. This may probably be ascribed to ozonized air. I t m a y b e r e g a r d e d a s c e r t a i n that b a l l l i g h t n i n g i s the r e s u l t o f s t r o n g e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e s , and i t m u s t , t h e r e f o r e , c o n s i s t o f e l e c t r o n s , w h i c h w o u l d m a n i f e s t t h e m s e l v e s b y t h e i r a b i l i t y t o fuse a c o n d u c t o r c a r r y i n g a n electrical current. If, h o w e v e r , the s o - c a l l e d b a l l i s f i l l e d w i t h e l e c t r o n s the l a t t e r m u s t b e i n r o t a t i o n ; o t h e r w i s e t h e i r c o l l i s i o n s w o u l d s o o n b r e a k u p the b a l l . T h e shape o f the p h e n o m e n o n cannot b e r e a l l y g l o b u l a r , n o t w i t h s t a n d i n g the f a c t that m a n y p e r s o n s w h o s e s u r p r i s e o r t e r r o r i m p a i r e d the accuracy of their observations have so described it. Assuming a rotation o f the e l e c t r o n s a l o n g t h e i r i n d i v i d u a l p a t h s , the s p h e r i c a l shape w o u l d b e q u i c k l y d e f o r m e d , and i f w e a s s u m e a r o t a t i o n i n o n e d i r e c t i o n around o n e and the s a m e a x i s , the shape w o u l d b e c o m e that o f a v o r t e x f i l a m e n t .

GLB-015
Anderson,

A REPORT ON BALL LIGHTNING
F . J . ; Journal of Geophysical R e s e a r c h , 7 7 : 3 9 2 8 - 3 9 3 0 , July 20, 1972.

Gl-45

GLB-016

B A L L LIGHTNING

C o m p i l e r ' s S u m m a r y : L i g h t n i n g hit a h o m e i n M i n n e a p o l i s i n August 1971, l e a v i n g a path o f b u r n e d g r a s s a c r o s s the l a w n a f t e r f i r s t s t r i k i n g a l a r g e r e d o a k . It entered the h o u s e t h r o u g h a y a r d l i g h t . N o o n e s a w t h e b a l l , l e a v i n g s o m e doubt that t h i s w a s a c t u a l l y b a l l l i g h t n i n g , but n e i g h b o r s o b s e r v e d a r e d - o r a n g e g l o w i n the v i c i n i t y o f the oak t r e e that p e r s i s t e d f o r 2 - 3 s e c . A n e s t i m a t e o f the e n e r g y r e q u i r e d t o c r e a t e t h e b u r n e d path t h r o u g h the w e t g r a s s w a s m a d e b y a p p l y i n g a h e a t e r t o d u p l i c a t e t h e b u r n ing effects. S i n c e the path s h o w e d n o i n d i c a t i o n that the b a l l w a s w e a k e n i n g a l o n g i t , the e n e r g y d e n s i t y in the b a l l w o u l d h a v e to be c o n s i d e r a b l y g r e a t e r than 9 x 10** j o u l e s / 5 6 0 c m = 1. 6 x 103 j o u l e s / c m . O u r d e t e r m i n e d e n e r g y o f 1 x 1 0 j o u l e s / c m i s m u c h g r e a t e r than that of a ball of ionized nitrogen g a s . W e cannot o f f e r a n e x p l a n a t i o n f o r such a l a r g e energy density.
3 3 3 3

GLB-016

BALL LIGHTNING

J e n s e n , J . C . ; S c i e n t i f i c M o n t h l y , 37:190-192, A u g u s t 1933. T h e r e p o r t b e l o w d e s c r i b e s o b s e r v a t i o n s m a d e b y a t e a m o f s c i e n t i s t s o n the e v e n i n g o f A u g u s t 30, 1930 i n N e b r a s k a . T h e g r o u p w a s busy m a k i n g m e a s u r e m e n t s and p h o t o graphs in connection with an approaching line squall. T h e c o l d a i r r u s h i n g ahead o f the n i m b u s c l o u d w a s f i l l e d w i t h a s w i r l i n g m a s s o f dust, but n e v e r t h e l e s s b r i l l i a n t f l a s h e s w e r e s e e n d e s c e n d i n g i n r a p i d s u c c e s s i o n f r o m the c l o u d t o the e a r t h w h e n the f i r s t f i l m s w e r e e x p o s e d a t 9:40 P . M . I n the w a k e o f o n e o f t h e s e f l a s h e s t h e r e a p p e a r e d a s h a p e l e s s m a s s o f l a v e n d e r c o l o r which s e e m e d to float s l o w l y d o w n w a r d s . T h e w r i t e r was so occupied with the d e t a i l s o f the p h o t o g r a p h i c r o u t i n e , w h i c h r e q u i r e d t h e o p e r a t i o n o f s h u t t e r s , the u s e o f a s t o p w a t c h f o r t i m i n g the l i g h t n i n g - t h u n d e r i n t e r v a l , e n t e r i n g data i n the n o t e b o o k and t e l e p h o n i n g t o the a s s i s t a n t w h o had c h a r g e o f the e l e c t r i c a l r e c o r d i n g a p p a r a t u s i n the l a b o r a t o r y , that t h e r e w a s l i t t l e o p p o r t u n i t y f o r c l o s e o b s e r v a t i o n o f t h i s beautiful but u n e x p e c t e d d i s p l a y . The rose-colored mass s e e m e d m o s t b r i l l i a n t n e a r the g r o u n d and g a v e the i m p r e s s i o n o f a g i g a n t i c p y r o technic exhibition. T w o o r t h r e e o f the g l o b u l a r s t r u c t u r e s s e e m e d t o r o l l a l o n g a p a i r o f 2 , 300 v o l t p o w e r l i n e s f o r 100 f e e t o r m o r e , then bounce d o w n o n t h e g r o u n d and d i s a p p e a r w i t h a l o u d r e p o r t . Jensen also adds the f o l l o w i n g o b s e r v a t i o n :

A t o r n a d o w h i c h o c c u r r e d o n the e v e n i n g o f July 9 , 1932, n e a r R o c k R a p i d s , I o w a , g a v e e v i d e n c e o f a c l o s e l y r e l a t e d t y p e o f l u m i n o u s d i s p l a y a c c o r d i n g t o the r e p o r t o f M r . G e o r g e R a v e l i n g , U . S . W e a t h e r B u r e a u o b s e r v e r . F r o m the s i d e s o f the b o i l i n g dust l a d e n c l o u d a f i e r y s t r e a m p o u r e d l i k e w a t e r t h r o u g h a s i e v e , b r e a k i n g i n t o s p h e r e s o f i r r e g u l a r shape a s t h e y d e s c e n d e d . No streak lightning o f the usual t y p e w a s o b s e r v e d and n o n o i s e attended the f i r e - b a l l s o t h e r than the usual r o a r o f the s t o r m .

GLB-017

GLOBULAR LIGHTNING

H i l l , E . ; N a t u r e , 56:293, July 2 9 , 1897.

Gl-46

BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-019

D u r i n g the t h u n d e r s t o r m o f July 20, w i t h w h i c h the d r o u g h t b r o k e up, a n e l d e r l y m a n , T h o m a s S m i t h , r e s i d i n g i n t h i s p a r i s h about h a l f a m i l e f r o m the r a i l w a y s t a t i o n , w a s w a t c h i n g the l i g h t n i n g f r o m his c o t t a g e d o o r , b e t w e e n 5 and 6 p. m. , w h e n he n o t i c e d a w h i t e b a l l , "about the s i z e of an e g g , " d a n c i n g about i n the a i r " l i k e r o o k s w h e n a t p l a y . " H e w a t c h e d i t t h r o u g h the i n t e r v a l s b e t w e e n t w o o r t h r e e l i g h t n i n g f l a s h e s , t h e r e f o r e d u r i n g s e v e r a l seconds. A f t e r s o m e i n t e r v a l ( p e r h a p s a f e w m i n u t e s ) , h e s t i l l standing a t the d o o r , h i s w i f e just c o m i n g d o w n the s t a i r s t o h i m , s o m e t h i n g s e e m e d t o p a s s b e t w e e n t h e m w h i c h f e l t hot t o t h e i r f a c e s . Simultaneously M i s s D o w n e s , s c h o o l m i s t r e s s , s i t t i n g o n the l a n d i n g a b o v e the s t a i r s , f e l t s o m e t h i n g hot p a s s h e r h a i r b e h i n d , and then i n a s m a l l b e d r o o m , w i t h o p e n d o o r a d j o i n i n g , a loud d e t o n a t i o n t o o k p l a c e ; w h i t e w a s h f r o m the c e i l i n g c o v e r e d b e d and f l o o r , the w a l l - p a p e r w a s t o r n , the p l a s t e r f i s s u r e d , and the h o u s e f i l l e d with a "sulphurous" s m e l l . T h e r e is a d r a u g h t up the s t a i r s , but no a p p a r e n t r e a s o n why what it b r o u g h t should e n t e r the l i t t l e b e d r o o m . T h e c o t t a g e stands a l o n e , o n h i g h g r o u n d , but not the h i g h e s t , and t h e r e i s nothing e x c e p t i o n a l i n i t s c o n s t r u c tion or its surroundings.

GLB-018

MYSTERIOUS BURNINGS

F u l l e r , C u r t i s ; F a t e , 13:18, N o v e m b e r 1960. M r s . M a t t h e w s w a s l y i n g o n h e r l i v i n g r o o m s o f a r e c e n t l y w h e n she l o o k e d u p and s a w a h u g e r e d b a l l o f f i r e c o m e t h r o u g h the c l o s e d l i v i n g r o o m w i n d o w and t h r o u g h the V e n e t i a n b l i n d without h a r m i n g e i t h e r . H e r f i r s t thought w a s that the a t o m i c b o m b had f a l l e n . She b u r i e d h e r f a c e i n the s o f a and s a i d : " O h ! L o r d , not l i k e t h i s ! " T h e b a l l o f f i r e c o n t i n u e d t h r o u g h the l i v i n g r o o m , p a s s e d i n t o the d i n i n g r o o m and w e n t out the c l o s e d d i n i n g r o o m w i n d o w , m a k i n g a s i z z l i n g n o i s e a s i t m o v e d t h r o u g h the h o u s e . M r s . M a t t h e w s t e l e p h o n e d h e r husband w h o c a m e h o m e f r o m w o r k , t o o k one l o o k a t h e r and b e g a n t o c r y b e c a u s e o f M r s . M a t t h e w s ' p r o o f . E a r l i e r that day, M r s . M a t t h e w s had a full h e a d o f h a i r . A s the b a l l o f f i r e p a s s e d she had f e l t a t i n g l i n g s e n s a t i o n i n the b a c k o f h e r h e a d and put h e r hand up. T h e b a c k o f h e r hand w a s b u r n e d ; and a l l the h a i r f e l l out o f the b a c k o f h e r h e a d , l e a v i n g i t h a r d and a s c l e a n a s h e r f a c e . T h e r e w e r e burned places on h e r scalp.

GLB-019

BALL LIGHTNING

P o w e l l , J a m e s R.j and F i n k e l s t e i n , D a v i d ; A m e r i c a n S c i e n t i s t , 5 8 : 2 6 2 - 2 7 9 , M a y June 1970. C o m p i l e r ' s Summary: T h e usual p r o p e r t i e s o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g a r e r e v i e w e d f i r s t . T h r e e o f the c a s e h i s t o r i e s p r e s e n t e d a r e i n t e r e s t i n g enough t o g i v e h e r e i n c a p s u l e form. 1. July 27, 1952; H a m b u r g , G e r m a n y . S e v e r a l s e c o n d s a f t e r a l i g h t n i n g s t r o k e in the n e i g h b o r h o o d , s e v e r a l w i t n e s s e s o b s e r v e d a b r i g h t , g l e a m i n g b a l l the s i z e o f

Gl-47

GLB-020

B A L L LIGHTNING

a fist m o v i n g downward in short, snake-like m o v e m e n t s . The ball was initially s e e n o u t s i d e the w i n d o w . I t then p e n e t r a t e d the g l a s s w i n d o w , without d a m a g i n g i t , and e n t e r e d the r o o m . A f t e r m o v i n g a m e t e r i n t o the r o o m i t e x e c u t e d a 9 0 ° turn, m o v e d a n o t h e r m e t e r , and e x p l o d e d . T h e b a l l w a s p u r p l i s h w i t h a r e d d i s h c a s t and l a s t e d about 3 s e c o n d s . A f t e r the d e t o n a t i o n , a n o d o r t y p i c a l o f e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e s w a s noted. 2 . B a l l l i g h t n i n g e m e r g e d i n t o a r o o m t h r o u g h the o p e n i n g s i n a w o o d e n s c r e e n . I t m o v e d a c r o s s the r o o m , e x i t e d t h r o u g h a p a n e o f g l a s s , m e l t i n g a n a l m o s t p e r fect circular hole 2 8 - c m in diameter. It detonated outside. The ball was bluishw h i t e , had a f u z z y o u t l i n e , and s e e m e d t o p o s s e s s i n t e r n a l m o t i o n . 3 . 1753; St. P e t e r s b u r g , R u s s i a . G. W. Richman was an e a r l y experimenter with lightning, l i k e Ben Franklin. His apparatus c o n s i s t e d of an ungrounded lightning r o d leading into his l a b o r a t o r y e l e c t r o m e t e r . I . S o k o l o v w a s p r e s e n t i n the l a b o r a t o r y with R i c h m a n when a thunderstorm approached. Sokolov saw a pale blue fists i z e d b a l l l e a v e the r o d and f l o a t s i l e n t l y t h r o u g h the a i r t o R i c h m a n ' s f a c e . It d e t o n a t e d , and S o k o l o v l o s t then c o n s c i o u s n e s s . H e a w o k e t o the s m e l l o f a c r i d smoke. R i c h m a n w a s d e a d , w i t h a r e d spot o n h i s f o r e h e a d and t w o h o l e s i n one of his shoes. T h e d e t o n a t i o n o f the b a l l l i g h t n i n g w a s d e t e c t e d s e v e r a l h o u s e s away by an instrument measuring atmospheric e l e c t r i c f o r c e . T h e a u t h o r s a l s o r e v i e w the m a n y t h e o r i e s that h a v e b e e n p r o p o s e d t o e x p l a i n b a l l l i g h t n i n g , e l i m i n a t i n g a l l but t h o s e i n v o l v i n g r a d i o - f r e q u e n c y g e n e r a t e d l u m i n o s i ties. E l e c t r o l u m i n e s c e n c e o c c u r s i n l i g h t n i n g c h a n n e l s , and P o w e l l and F i n k e l s t e i n f e e l that the p o w e r a v a i l a b l e i n the l i g h t n i n g s t r o k e c o u l d e a s i l y c r e a t e d e tached spheres of g l o w i n g a i r .

GLB-020

FIREBALL CUTS OFF 2500 TV SETS

G o r d o n , A . H . ; W e a t h e r , 25:85, 1970. S c o r e s o f p e o p l e i n Sidmouth r e p o r t e d s e e i n g " a r e d b a l l o f f i r e " i n the sky a b o v e the t o w n d u r i n g a v i o l e n t t h u n d e r s t o r m at 6. 30 on T u e s d a y m o r n i n g (12 A u g u s t ) . I t m a d e c r a c k l i n g n o i s e s f o r a f e w s e c o n d s and then suddenly e x p l o d e d w i t h a d e a f e n i n g r e p o r t , s e n d i n g j a g g e d f l a s h e s o f l i g h t n i n g t o w a r d s the ground. A t the s a m e t i m e , the V i e w l i n e n e t w o r k o f c a b l e s , w h i c h b r i n g s t e l e v i s i o n s i g n a l s d o w n i n t o the t o w n f r o m a e r i a l s m o u n t e d i n the h i l l s , w a s seriously damaged. N e a r l y 300 r e s i d e n t s a l l o v e r S i d m o u t h w e r e burnt out b y the l i g h t n i n g , and 2500 t e l e v i s i o n s e t s b e c a m e cut o f f f r o m t h e n e t work.

GLB-021

BALL LIGHTNING IN A CLOUD

A n o n y m o u s ; A m e r i c a n M e t e o r o l o g i c a l S o c i e t y , B u l l e t i n , 23:88, F e b r u a r y 1942. I n a r e c e n t i s s u e o f L i f e the f o l l o w i n g a p p e a r s i n a n account o f " I b o m b Britain", in an October flight. " . . . A t l e n g t h w e g o t out o f the i c e z o n e but o n l y t o run i n t o a washtub o f c l o u d s o v e r the C h a n n e l . W e had h a r d l y b e e n

Gl-48

BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-023

s w a l l o w e d u p i n t h i s soup, w h e n a t e r r i f i c b l o w r i p p e d m y c r a t e o n one s i d e . A m o m e n t l a t e r f l o w i n g w h i t e s n a k e s shot p a s t the f u s e l a g e o f o u r p l a n e , o n e following another in a g r u e s o m e chase of white, blue, bluish-green flashes. E v e r y t h i n g w a s d i p p e d i n t h i s d e v i l i s h g r e e n c o l o r n e v e r s e e n b e f o r e o n any painting. E v e r y s e c o n d n e w b l u i s h - g r e e n b a l l s o f f i r e c a m e r a c i n g head o n . I n s t a n t l y t h e y g r e w t o the s i z e o f a p p l e s , then b u r s t . The whirling p r o p e l l e r s stood l i k e s o m e f u t u r i s t i c c i r c u l a r s h a d o w s i n this g l a r e o f l i g h t . T h e a i r w a s p u t r i d w i t h the stink o f s u l p h u r . Instruments no longer functioned."

GLB-022

BALL LIGHTNING

L e w i s , H a r o l d W . ; S c i e n t i f i c A m e r i c a n , 208:106-108+, M a r c h 1963. C o m p i l e r ' s S u m m a r y : L e w i s p r e s e n t s a g e n e r a l s u m m a r y o f the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g and the h y p o t h e s e s a d v a n c e d t o e x p l a i n i t . K a p i t z a ' s theory is given particular prominence. L e w i s , l i k e m a n y o t h e r i n v e s t i g a t o r s , finds that n o s i n g l e t h e o r y e x p l a i n s a l l the f e a t u r e s o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g . No case histories are presented that h a v e not a l r e a d y b e e n a c q u i r e d e l s e w h e r e f o r t h i s s o u r c e b o o k .

GLB-023
Uman, M. June 1968.

SOME COMMENTS ON BALL LIGHTNING
A . ; J o u r n a l o f A t m o s p h e r i c and T e r r e s t r i a l P h y s i c s , 30:1245-1246,

W h a t f o l l o w s i s a n e x a c t t r a n s c r i p t i o n o f a l e t t e r r e c e i v e d f r o m the p i l o t of a K C - 9 7 U S A F tanker aircraft. "Dear Sirs: W a s r e a d i n g a n a c c o u n t i n June 1 6 N a s h v i l l e T e n n e s s e a n r e K u g e l b l i t z studies. I had an i n t e r e s t i n g e x p e r i e n c e in 1960 w h i c h I w i l l d e s c r i b e to y o u on the p r e m i s e that i t m a y b e o f s o m e i n t e r e s t t o y o u . I w a s a t the c o n t r o l s o f a K C - 9 7 U S A F t a n k e r a i r c r a f t , h e a v i l y l o a d e d w i t h J P - 4 fuel f o r o f f l o a d t o B - 4 7 b o m b e r s . E n r o u t e t o the r e f u e l i n g r e n d e z v o u s ( E l k o , N e v a d a v i c i n i t y ) w e w e r e i n the c l o u d s a t 18, 0 0 0 ' . T h e r e w a s l i g h t p r e c i p i t a t i o n , t e m p , w a s a b o v e f r e e z i n g and t h e r e w a s n o t u r b u lence. I r e c a l l that St. E l m o ' s f i r e w a s d a n c i n g a r o u n d the e d g e s o f the a i r c r a f t front w i n d o w s . ( T h i s i s a not t o o u n c o m m o n o c c u r r e n c e but m a y h a v e s o m e significance t o y o u . ) T h e c r e w w a s e x p e r i e n c e d i n all phases o f a l l - w e a t h e r o p e r a t i o n and not c o n c e r n e d o r a p p r e h e n s i v e about any p o r t i o n o f the m i s s i o n to be accomplished. A s I w a s c o n c e n t r a t i n g o n the i n s t r u m e n t s o n the p a n e l (no o u t s i d e v i s u a l r e f e r e n c e s w e r e v i s i b l e ) a b a l l o f y e l l o w - w h i t e c o l o r a p p r o x i m a t e l y 18" i n d i a m e t e r e m e r g e d t h r o u g h the w i n d s h i e l d c e n t e r p a n e l s and p a s s e d a t a r a t e about that o f a fast run b e t w e e n m y l e f t s e a t and the c o - p i l o t ' s r i g h t s e a t , d o w n the c a b i n p a s s a g e w a y p a s t the N a v i g a t o r and E n g i n e e r . I had b e e n s t r u c k b y l i g h t n i n g 2 t i m e s through the y e a r s i n p r e v i o u s f l i g h t s and r e c a l l w a i t i n g f o r the e x p l o s i o n o f the b a l l o f l i g h t ! I w a s unable t o turn around and w a t c h

Gl-49

GLB-024

B A L L LIGHTNING

the p r o g r e s s o f the b a l l a s i t p r o c e e d e d t o the r e a r o f the A i r c r a f t , a s I w a s e x p e c t i n g the e x p l o s i o n w i t h a full l o a d o f J P - 4 fuel a b o a r d and c o n c e n t r a t e d on flying the a i r c r a f t . A f t e r a p p r o x i m a t e l y 3 seconds of a m a z i n g l y quiet r e a c t i o n b y the 4 c r e w m e m b e r s i n the f l i g h t c o m p a r t m e n t , the B o o m o p e r a t o r s i t t i n g i n the r e a r o f the a i r c r a f t c a l l e d o n the i n t e r p h o n e i n a n e x c i t e d v o i c e d e s c r i b i n g a b a l l o f f i r e that c a m e r o l l i n g t h r o u g h the aft c a r g o c o m p a r t m e n t a b e a m the w i n g s , then d a n c e d out o v e r t h e r i g h t w i n g and r o l l i n g o f f i n t o the night and c l o u d s ! N o n o i s e a c c o m p a n i e d the a r r i v a l o r d e p a r t u r e o f the phenomenon." T h i s and s e v e r a l o t h e r r e p o r t s o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g a p p e a r i n g i n s i d e e n c l o s u r e s m a y i n d i c a t e that b a l l l i g h t n i n g m a y b e i n d u c e d b y e l e c t r i c a l f o r c e s .

GLB-024

BALL LIGHTNING AT SALINA, KANS.

A n o n y m o u s ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 47-728, O c t o b e r 1919. At about 6. 30 p. m. , O c t o b e r 8, 1919, a b r i l l i a n t d i s p l a y of b a l l l i g h t n i n g o c c u r r e d a t S a l i n a , K a n s . , o n o n e o f the m o s t f r e q u e n t e d s t r e e t i n t e r s e c t i o n s o f the t o w n . E y e w i t n e s s e s d e s c r i b e d it as "a ball of f i r e as l a r g e as a washtub f l o a t i n g l o w i n t h e a i r . " I t s t r u c k the n o r t h w e s t c o r n e r o f the C a m p b e l l B u i l d i n g , c o r n e r Santa F e and I r o n A v e n u e , about m i d w a y t o the t o p o f the b u i l d i n g , w h i c h i s 3 5 f e e t high, t o r e out s o m e b r i c k , d e m o l i s h e d a s e c o n d s t o r y w i n d o w , and then e x p l o d e d w i t h a b a n g that r e s e m b l e d the n o i s e m a d e b y the d i s c h a r g e o f a l a r g e p i s t o l , f i l l i n g the a i r w i t h b a l l s o f f i r e a s l a r g e a s b a s e b a l l s , which floated away in all d i r e c t i o n s . Some of these balls f o l l o w e d t r o l l e y and e l e c t r i c - l i g h t w i r e s i n a snaky s o r t o f m a n n e r and s o m e s i m p l y f l o a t e d o f f t h r o u g h the a i r i n d e p e n d e n t l y o f any o b j e c t s n e a r b y . An e l e c t r i c s w i t c h b o x a c r o s s the s t r e e t w a s r i p p e d o p e n and a t r a n s f o r m e r d e s t r o y e d , l e a v i n g the e a s t s i d e o f the t o w n i n d a r k n e s s . T h e e x p l o s i o n o f t h i s l a r g e b a l l o f f i r e into s e v e r a l s m a l l e r b a l l s i s a n i n t r i g u i n g f e a t u r e . S e e a l s o G L B - 0 0 5 , G L B - 0 1 6 , and G L B - 0 2 0 .

GLB-025

LABORATORY BALL LIGHTNING
30:313-317,

B a r r y , J . D a l e ; J o u r n a l o f A t m o s p h e r i c and T e r r e s t r i a l P h y s i c s , F e b r u a r y 1968.

Abstract A m e c h a n i s m f o r the f o r m a t i o n o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g i s d i s c u s s e d . I t i s s u g g e s t e d that the p r e s e n c e o f a l o w d e n s i t y o f s i m p l e h y d r o c a r b o n s i n the a t m o s p h e r e , c o u p l e d w i t h a n a t m o s p h e r i c e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e , m a y b e s u f f i c i e n t t o f o r m the p h e n o m e n o n . A simple calculation establishes a t h e o r e t i c a l d i a m e t e r o f a p p r o x i m a t e l y 6-130 c m . A laboratory experiment is d e s c r i b e d in which a ball of f i r e was f o r m e d . The phenomenon appeared t o p o s s e s s m a n y p r o p e r t i e s o f natural b a l l l i g h t n i n g , i n c l u d i n g e x i s t e n c e f o r a finite t i m e without an external e n e r g y s o u r c e .

Gl-50

BALL LIGHTNING
GLB-026
Hill,

GLB-027

BALL LIGHTNING AS A PHYSICAL PHENOMENON

E . L . ; J o u r n a l o f G e o p h y s i c a l R e s e a r c h , 65:1947-1952, July 1960.

Abstract. B a l l l i g h t n i n g h a s not b e e n p r o d u c e d i n the l a b o r a t o r y a s y e t , but i t s e x i s t e n c e a s a r e a l natural p h e n o m e n o n s e e m s t o b e a s s u r e d . The e v i d e n c e c o n c e r n i n g i t s p h y s i c a l n a t u r e i s r e v i e w e d i n the l i g h t o f k n o w n i n f o r m a t i o n o n a t m o s p h e r i c e l e c t r i c i t y and the l i g h t n i n g d i s c h a r g e . I t i s c o n c l u d e d that i t i s u n l i k e l y that b a l l l i g h t n i n g i s a p l a s m a p h e n o m e n o n , a s it is frequently assumed to be. M o r e probably it is a r e g i o n containing a s t r o n g l y i n h o m o g e n e o u s d i s t r i b u t i o n o f s p a c e c h a r g e i n the f o r m o f h i g h l y i o n i z e d g a s , the i o n i z a t i o n b e i n g p r i m a r i l y i n the m o l e c u l a r f o r m , w i t h f e w free electrons. O c c l u d e d m a t e r i a l such a s dust, w a t e r v a p o r , and c o m b u s tible g a s e s may play a significant r o l e in its b e h a v i o r .

GLB-027

A TRULY REMARKABLE FLY
( C o p y r i g h t 1966 by t h e

M o h r , F r e d e r i c k B. ; S c i e n c e , 151:634, F e b r u a r y 11, 1966. A m e r i c a n A s s o c i a t i o n f o r the A d v a n c e m e n t o f S c i e n c e . )

C o i n c i d e n c e s associated with so r a r e a phenomenon as ball lightning tend to be i n t e r e s t i n g but not s i g n i f i c a n t . A c a s e w h i c h has r e c e n t l y c o m e to my attention w o u l d s e e m t o f o l l o w that r u l e . O n 2 5 A u g u s t 1965, I w a s e d i t i n g a n a r t i c l e e n t i t l e d " S o v i e t r e s e a r c h o n b a l l lightning" p r e p a r e d by A r s e n Iwanovsky of this d i v i s i o n for publication in the S e p t e m b e r i s s u e o f the F o r e i g n S c i e n c e B u l l e t i n . W e d i s c u s s e d a t s o m e l e n g t h the unusual b e h a v i o r o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g and the fact that the v e r y f e w e y e w i t n e s s r e ports available contained conflicting statements. O n the s a m e d a y m y u n c l e and aunt, M r . and M r s . R o b e r t B . G r e e n l e e , w e r e relaxing on their f i b e r g l a s s - s c r e e n e d , r o o f e d patio in Dunnellon, F l o r i d a . The t e m p e r a t u r e w a s i n the 9 0 ' s , the sky w a s o v e r c a s t , and t h e r e w a s a s l i g h t d r i z z l e ; the G r e e n l e e s had h e a r d thunder s o m e d i s t a n c e t o t h e w e s t o f t h e i r i m m e d i a t e v i c i n i t y . M r s . G r e e n l e e and a n e i g h b o r , M r s . R i g g s , w e r e s e a t e d a f e w f e e t a p a r t i n a l u m i n u m c h a i r s , and M r . G r e e n l e e w a s standing about t h r e e f e e t f r o m Mrs. Greenlee. M r s . G r e e n l e e had j u s t s w a t t e d a f l y when a b a l l o f l i g h t n i n g the s i z e of a basketball appeared i m m e d i a t e l y in front of her. The ball was later d e s c r i b e d a s b e i n g o f a c o l o r and b r i g h t n e s s c o m p a r a b l e t o the f l a s h s e e n i n a r c w e l d i n g , w i t h a f u z z y a p p e a r a n c e around the e d g e s . M r s . R i g g s did not s e e the b a l l i t s e l f , but s a w the f l y - s w a t t e r " e d g e d i n f i r e " d r o p p i n g o n the f l o o r . The m o v e m e n t o f the b a l l t o the f l o o r w a s a c c o m p a n i e d b y a r e p o r t " l i k e a shotgun b l a s t . " T h e e n t i r e incident was o v e r in seconds. N o n e o f the w i t n e s s e s f e l t any heat f r o m the b a l l , and M r s . G r e e n l e e s h o w e d n o s i g n s o f e x t e r n a l i n j u r i e s , although s h e c o m p l a i n e d o f pain i n the b a c k o f h e r n e c k and h a s had o c c a s i o n a l h e a d a c h e s s i n c e . T h e explosion was heard by a n e i g h b o r about 150 f e e t a w a y , and it w a s s u b s e q u e n t l y l e a r n e d that a n o t h e r n e i g h b o r ' s e l e c t r i c r a n g e had b e e n s h o r t e d out a t the s a m e t i m e . T h e r e was no d a m a g e o f any s o r t a t the G r e e n l e e s , n o r w e r e t h e r e any m a r k s o n the p a t i o f l o o r w h e r e t h e f l y s w a t t e r had f a l l e n . W i t h r e g a r d t o the f l y , M r s . R i g g s c o m m e n t e d , " Y o u s u r e g o t h i m that t i m e . " T h e neck p a i n s and h e a d a c h e s s u f f e r e d b y M r s . G r e e n l e e m a y b e r e l a t e d t o the p h y s i o l o g i c a l e f f e c t s o f the V e n e z u e l a c a s e ( G L B - 0 0 9 ) . A l s o , e l e c t r i c a l e f f e c t s f a r f r o m the b a l l i t s e l f a r e r a t h e r c o m m o n . (GLB-019)

Gl-51

GLB-028
GLB-028
Felsher,

BALL LIGHTNING

BALL LIGHTNING
M u r r a y ; N a t u r e , 227:982, August 29, 1970.

O n M a y 15, 1970, a t a p o i n t s o m e 8 0 t o 150 k m e a s t o f St. L o u i s , a n a i r c r a f t i n w h i c h I w a s a p a s s e n g e r w a s f o r c e d t o f l y i n t o and t h r o u g h a t h i c k d a r k storm-cloud mass. E x t r e m e turbulence resulted in a rather violent m o v e m e n t o f the w i n g s o f t h e a i r c r a f t ( a B o e i n g 7 2 7 ) . A l l t h i s t i m e the a i r c r a f t w a s d e s c e n d i n g , and a n e l e c t r i c a l d i s p l a y w a s l i g h t i n g the s u r r o u n d i n g c l o u d s i n a diffuse g l o w . T h e f r e q u e n c y o f e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e s (no actual s t r o k e s w e r e seen) i n c r e a s e d with the i n c r e a s i n g turbulence. A t (what s e e m e d ) the m o m e n t o f m a x i m u m t u r b u l e n c e and e l e c t r i c d i s c h a r g e , w h i l e the a i r c r a f t w a s s t i l l d e s c e n d i n g t h r o u g h the s t o r m , a s e q u e n c e o f e v e n t s t o o k p l a c e that I l i s t b e l o w . T h e w h o l e t o o k not m o r e than 5 s , and I m u s t a d m i t that the o r d e r , s a v e f o r n u m b e r s 4 and 6, is not n e c e s s a r i l y c h r o n o l o g i c a l . 1, T h e t u r b u l e n c e c e a s e d altogether. 2, T h e surrounding e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e s ( g l o w s ) c e a s e d a l t o g e t h e r . 3, T h e w i n g stopped buckling a l t o g e t h e r . 4, A white g l o w i n g sphere ( b a l l l i g h t n i n g ? ) a p p e a r e d o n the p o r t w i n g t i p . I d o not k n o w i f i t w a s a c t u a l l y t o u c h i n g t h e w i n g . I t s d i a m e t e r w a s l e s s than 1 m and m o r e than 1 0 c m . I t s b o u n d a r y w a s " f u z z y " and not d i s t i n c t . 5, T h e r e w a s a soft " p o p . " 6, T h e ball lightning ( ? ) vanished. R e g a r d i n g the a c c o m p a n y i n g n o i s e ( 5 ) I r e c o r d e d i t a t the t i m e . S h o r t l y a f t e r w a r d s m y s c i e n t i f i c u p b r i n g i n g and I b o t h d e c i d e d that a n o u t s i d e n o i s e w a s not l i k e l y t o b e h e a r d w i t h i n a m o v i n g j e t a i r c r a f t , and that m y e y e , s e e i n g the b a l l g o , i n s i s t e d t o m y e a r that i t should d o s o a c c o m p a n i e d b y a n o i s e . N o n e t h e l e s s , I r e c o r d i t n o w , a s I r e c o r d e d i t then. The appearance of ball lightning during a c a l m interlude has been reported from s h i p s a t s e a . S e e G L B - 0 5 6 and G L B - 0 6 3 .

GLB-029

BALL LIGHTNING

B r o m l e y , K . A . ; N a t u r e , 226:253, _ A p r i l 18, 1970. A s i m i l a r i n c i d e n t o c c u r r e d i n the M e t e o r o l o g i c a l O f f i c e , B o s c o m b e D o w n , W i l t s h i r e , i n the n o r t h e r n s u m m e r o f 1938. T h e r e w a s a v i v i d flash with simultaneous thunder. I t w a s a s s u m e d that the D i n e s p r e s s u r e - t u b e a n e m o m e t e r , w h i c h p a s s e d t h r o u g h the r o o f and w a s s u p p o r t e d b y f o u r h e a v y s t e e l s u p p o r t s e m b e d d e d i n the f l o o r , w a s s t r u c k . I m m e d i a t e l y a f t e r the l i g h t n i n g f l a s h , a b r i l l i a n t w h i t e s p h e r e , w i t h a d i a m e t e r o f about 2 0 c m and d i f f u s e e d g e s , w a s o b s e r v e d h o v e r i n g n e a r the anemometer supports. T h e d i a m e t e r , s y m m e t r y and a b s e n c e o f s t r u c t u r e a g r e e with Jennison's description. ( G L B - 0 3 0 ) N o heat radiation w a s noted. The motion differed f r o m Jennison's c a s e . The object followed an i r r e g u l a r c o u r s e ; i t t r a v e l l e d f r o m o n e a n e m o m e t e r l e g t o the o t h e r , and then f r o m the a n e m o m e t e r t o a r a d i o r e c e i v e r / t r a n s m i t t e r w h i c h w a s b e i n g o p e r a t e d a t the time. T h e d i s t a n c e f r o m the a n e m o m e t e r t o t h e r a d i o set w o u l d b e about 2 m , and the h e i g h t a b o v e t h e f l o o r about 1 . 5 m . T h e object d i s a p p e a r e d as it r e a c h e d the r a d i o s e t , p e r h a p s 3-5 s a f t e r i t s a p p e a r a n c e .

Gl-52

BALL LIGHTNING
GLB-030 BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-031

J e n n i s o n , R . C , ; N a t u r e , 224:895, N o v e m b e r 2 9 , 1969. I w a s s e a t e d n e a r the f r o n t o f the p a s s e n g e r c a b i n o f a n a l l - m e t a l a i r l i n e r ( E a s t e r n A i r l i n e s F l i g h t E A 539) o n a l a t e night f l i g h t f r o m N e w Y o r k t o W a s h ington. The aircraft encountered an e l e c t r i c a l s t o r m during which it was e n v e l o p e d in a sudden b r i g h t and loud e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e (0005 h E S T , M a r c h 19, 1963). S o m e s e c o n d s a f t e r t h i s a g l o w i n g s p h e r e a l i t t l e m o r e than 2 0 c m i n d i a m e t e r e m e r g e d f r o m the p i l o t ' s c a b i n and p a s s e d d o w n the a i s l e o f the a i r c r a f t a p p r o x i m a t e l y 5 0 c m f r o m m e , m a i n t a i n i n g the s a m e h e i g h t and c o u r s e f o r the whole distance o v e r which it could be o b s e r v e d . T h e o b s e r v a t i o n w a s r e m a r k a b l e f o r the f o l l o w i n g r e a s o n s , ( i ) T h e a p p e a r a n c e o f the p h e n o m e n o n i n a n a l m o s t t o t a l l y s c r e e n e d e n v i r o n m e n t ; ( i i ) the r e l a t i v e v e l o c i t y of t h e b a l l to that of the c o n t a i n i n g a i r c r a f t w a s 1. 5 ± 0 . 5 m s~*, t y p i c a l o f m o s t g r o u n d o b s e r v a t i o n s ; ( i i i ) the o b j e c t s e e m e d p e r f e c t l y s y m m e t r i c a l i n a l l t h r e e d i m e n s i o n s and had n o p o l a r o r t o r r o i d a l s t r u c t u r e ; ( i v ) i t w a s s l i g h t l y l i m b d a r k e n e d h a v i n g a n a l m o s t s o l i d a p p e a r a n c e and i n d i c a t i n g that i t w a s o p t i c a l l y t h i c k ; ( v ) the o b j e c t did not s e e m t o r a d i a t e h e a t ; ( v i ) the o p t i c a l output c o u l d b e a s s e s s e d a s a p p r o x i m a t e l y 5 t o 1 0 W and i t s c o l o u r w a s b l u e - w h i t e ; ( v i i ) the d i a m e t e r w a s 22 ± 2 c m , a s s e s s e d b y e y e r e l a t i v e t o the s u r r o u n d i n g s ; ( v i i i ) the h e i g h t a b o v e the f l o o r w a s a p p r o x i m a t e l y 7 5 c m ; ( i x ) the c o u r s e w a s s t r a i g h t d o w n the w h o l e c e n t r a l a i s l e o f the a i r c r a f t ; ( x ) the o b j e c t s e e m e d t o b e i n p e r f e c t e q u i l i b r i u m ; ( x i ) the s y m m e t r y o f the o b j e c t w a s such that i t w a s not p o s s i b l e t o a s s e s s w h e t h e r o r not i t w a s spinning. I t i s not e a s y t o r e c o n c i l e the s y m m e t r y o f the b a l l and the l a c k o f r a d i a n t heat w i t h m a n y o f the t h e o r i e s that h a v e b e e n p r o p o s e d f o r b a l l l i g h t n i n g , though t h e s e a s p e c t s o f the o b s e r v a t i o n s a r e c o n s i s t e n t w i t h m a n y o t h e r c a s e s r e p o r t e d by Singer.

GLB-031

BALL LIGHTNING

C o v i n g t o n , A r t h u r E . ; N a t u r e , 2 2 6 : 2 5 2 - 2 5 3 , A p r i l 18, 1970. Jennison's r e p o r t [ G L B - 0 3 0 ] of ball lightning inside an a i r l i n e r reminds me of an o b s e r v a t i o n of my own. It took place on a s u m m e r evening in either 1928 o r 1929 d u r i n g a s e v e r e e l e c t r i c a l s t o r m i n the K o o t e n a y L a k e V a l l e y 10 m i l e s f r o m N e l s o n , B. C. The event, in two parts,was seen by a group w a t c h i n g f r o m a s h e l t e r e d p o r c h and a s e c o n d ( o f w h i c h I w a s a m e m b e r ) i n s i d e a w o o d e n c o t t a g e i n a f o r e s t e d a r e a b y the l a k e s i d e . S o m e d i s t a n c e f r o m the s h o r e the f i r s t g r o u p s a w a b a l l o f l i g h t d r o p f r o m the c l o u d s t o w a r d s o u r s i d e o f the l a k e . I t did not s t r i k e the m o u n t a i n s i d e but c a m e t o a s t o p , f l o a t i n g a b o v e the f o r e s t . T h e m a i n r o a d and e l e c t r i c a l t r a n s m i s s i o n l i n e a l o n g the l a k e s i d e w e r e h e r e b u i l t p a r a l l e l t o but a w a y f r o m the s h o r e , and l e d d o w n i n t o a s m a l l e r o p e n v a l l e y s t r e t c h i n g f r o m the l a k e s i d e i n t o the m o u n t a i n s i d e . T h e b a l l c o n t i n u e d d o w n w a r d s , d r i f t i n g a b o v e the r o a d and the t r a n s m i s s i o n l i n e until i t r e a c h e d the b o t t o m o f the v a l l e y . Here i t d r i f t e d t o the l a k e s h o r e and s t r u c k o n e o f the p i l e s o f a s m a l l w h a r f j u t t i n g i n t o the l a k e . I t s h a t t e r e d the p i l e i n t o l o n g s p l i n t e r s and p r o d u c e d a l a r g e detonation. T h e i n d o o r g r o u p had not b e e n w a t c h i n g the s t o r m . While listening in the l i v i n g - r o o m t o the t h u n d e r , w e s a w a b a l l o f l i g h t , s i m i l a r t o J e n n i s o n ' s ,

Gl-53

GLB-032

BALL LIGHTNING

e m e r g e f r o m the f i r e p l a c e and s l o w l y d r i f t a c r o s s the r o o m . I t a p p e a r e d t o p a s s t h r o u g h a c u r t a i n e d , c l o s e d d o o r w i t h o u t m a k i n g any n o i s e a b o v e the r u m b l e o f the s t o r m o r c a u s i n g any d a m a g e . A loud detonation w a s h e a r d a f e w m o m e n t s a f t e r the b a l l v a n i s h e d . W e d i d not k n o w about the f i r s t b a l l until the next m o r n i n g . At one t i m e the n e i g h b o u r w h o had s e e n i t w a s c o n c e r n e d that i t m i g h t s t r i k e our c o t t a g e , but i t h a d c a r r i e d o n t o the p i l e s o m e 200 o r 300 f e e t a w a y . I i n f e r that the f i r s t b a l l , c l e a r l y o f h i g h e n e r g y , i n d u c e d i n s o m e w a y the f o r m a t i o n o f the s e c o n d , l o w e n e r g y b a l l that e m e r g e d f r o m o u r f i r e p l a c e . J e n n i s o n ' s d e s c r i p t i o n c o r r e s p o n d s t o m y m e m o r y o f the i n d o o r b a l l . It i s r e m a r k a b l e that the d i f f e r e n t s u r r o u n d i n g s should p r o d u c e o r b e a c c o m p a nied b y s i m i l a r b a l l s : o n e i n s i d e a m e t a l a i r c r a f t m o v i n g w i t h i n a n e l e c t r i c a l l y d i s t u r b e d c l o u d , and the o t h e r i n s i d e a w o o d e n c o t t a g e w i t h a high e n e r g y ball m o v i n g overhead.

GLB-032

METEOR

F o r t e s c u e , C . ; N a t u r e , 2 8 : 5 4 1 , O c t o b e r 4 , 1883. I t m a y i n t e r e s t s o m e o f y o u r r e a d e r s t o k n o w that a m e t e o r w a s s e e n h e r e t h i s e v e n i n g d u r i n g a t h u n d e r s t o r m , and i m m e d i a t e l y a f t e r a f l a s h of l i g h t n i n g . I t a p p e a r e d about the s i z e o f a n o r d i n a r y c r i c k e t b a l l , and w a s o f a b r i l l i a n t y e l l o w c o l o u r , and m o v e d v e r y s l o w l y i n a n u p w a r d n o r t h e r l y d i r e c t i o n f r o m about e a s t - s o u t h - e a s t . A s i t m o v e d a l o n g , i t g r a d u a l l y d e c r e a s e d t o the s i z e o f a n o r d i n a r y s t a r , and w a s then l o s t t o m y v i e w . T h e s t o r m b e g a n about 7 o ' c l o c k , and l a s t e d about h a l f an h o u r , d u r i n g w h i c h t i m e the l i g h t n i n g w a s v e r y v i v i d . A v e r y t h i c k f o g (that a r o s e s u d d e n l y ) p r e c e d e d the s t o r m , but disappeared b e f o r e its c o m m e n c e m e n t . T h e w e a t h e r d u r i n g the day had b e e n c l o s e , with heavy showers at intervals. The " m e t e o r " d e s c r i b e d above w a s m o r e l i k e l y ball lightning.

GLB-033

IS BALL LIGHTNING A NUCLEAR PHENOMENON?

A l t s c h u l e r , M . D . , e t a l ; N a t u r e , 2 2 8 : 5 4 5 - 5 4 7 , N o v e m b e r 7 , 1970. C o m p i l e r ' s S u m m a r y : T h e a u t h o r s a r e m o s t c o n c e r n e d w i t h the e n e r g y c o n t a i n e d i n the l i g h t n i n g b a l l . T h e y r e f e r t o a c a s e w h e r e r e d b a l l l i g h t n i n g , about 6 0 c m i n d i a m e t e r , dug a t r e n c h 100 m l o n g and I. 2 m d e e p in soft s o i l and then t o r e 25 m of a s t r e a m bank a w a y . T h i s , t h e y c o n c l u d e , r e q u i r e d a t l e a s t 10^ j o u l e s o f e n e r g y , o r a n e n e r g y d e n s i t y e x c e e d i n g 10^ j o u l e s / m . B e c a u s e o f t h i s high d e n s i t y , t h e y p o s t u l a t e a nuclear e n e r g y s o u r c e , originating perhaps when protons are a c c e l e r a t e d down a l i g h t n i n g c h a n n e l and c r e a t e r a d i o i s o t o p e s i n the a i r . The disintegration of these r a d i o i s o t o p e s then l i b e r a t e the e n e r g y n e e d e d b y the b a l l l i g h t n i n g . T h e y note that the b i o l o g i c a l e f f e c t s o f such a r a d i a t i o n s o u r c e c o u l d b e s e v e r e . A c c o r d i n g t o the n u c l e a r h y p o t h e s i s , a n o b s e r v e r standing w i t h i n 2 m o f high e n e r g y b a l l l i g h t n i n g (10 J) f o r a f e w seconds might r e c e i v e a radiation d o s a g e o f a f e w h u n d r e d r a d , enough t o c a u s e r a d i a t i o n s i c k n e s s o r d e a t h . Most b a l l l i g h t n i n g , h o w e v e r , i s p r o b a b l y 1 0 t o 100 t i m e s l e s s e n e r g e t i c , s o that the

Gl-54

BALL LIGHTNING
r a d i a t i o n d o s a g e w o u l d not c a u s e b i o l o g i c a l e f f e c t s .

GLB-037

Such r a d i a t i o n m i g h t e x p l a i n the p h y s i o l o g i c a l e f f e c t s n o t e d i n G L B - 0 0 9 and G L B - 0 2 7 . T h e a u t h o r s , h o w e v e r , a d m i t m a n y p r o b l e m s e x i s t w i t h the n u c l e a r h y p o t h e s i s , such a s the d i f f i c u l t y o f l o c a l i z i n g the r a d i o a c t i v i t y w i t h i n a b a l l . The nuclear theory is s i m i l a r to the antimatter t h e o r y mentioned in G L B - 0 0 3 .

GLB-034

THE UNSOLVED PROBLEM OF BALL LIGHTNING

S i n g e r , S t a n l e y ; N a t u r e , 198:745-747, M a y 2 5 , 1963. C o m p i l e r ' s S u m m a r y : S i n g e r r e v i e w s b a l l l i g h t n i n g ' s w e l l - k n o w n p r o p e r t i e s and the t h e o r i e s p r o p o s e d t o e x p l a i n t h e m . H e s u m m a r y i s s u c c i n c t and c o m p r e h e n s i v e . A f t e r e x a m i n i n g the e l e c t r o m a g n e t i c , c h e m i c a l , and n u c l e a r e n e r g y t h e o r i e s , h e c o n c l u d e s that none i s a d e q u a t e .

GLB-035

[FIREBALL RISES OUT OF SEA]

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 37:187, D e c e m b e r 22, 1887. F r o m the P i l o t C h a r t o f the N o r t h A t l a n t i c O c e a n f o r D e c e m b e r 1887. O n e o f t h e r a r e and i n e x p l i c a b l e c a s e s o f g l o b u l a r l i g h t n i n g . On N o v e m b e r

12, a t m i d n i g h t , n e a r C a p e R a c e , a l a r g e b a l l o f f i r e s e e m e d t o r i s e out o f the s e a t o a h e i g h t o f about 5 0 f e e t , c o m i n g a g a i n s t the w i n d c l o s e u p t o the s h i p , and then r u n n i n g a w a y t o the s o u t h - e a s t , l a s t i n g a l t o g e t h e r about f i v e m i n u t e s . T h i s p h e n o m e n o n h a r d l y s e e m s b a l l l i g h t n i n g ; i t s l i f e t i m e i s t o o l o n g and i t m o v e s a g a i n s t the w i n d . It has m o r e in c o m m o n with m o d e r n U F O r e p o r t s .

GLB-036

THE BALL LIGHTNING CONTROVERSY

A n o n y m o u s ; C h e m i s t r y , 44 2 2 - 2 3 , June 1971. T h i s a r t i c l e r e v i e w s the r e c e n t l i t e r a t u r e o n the s u b j e c t and s u m m a r i z e s the m a i n p r o p e r t i e s of ball lightning. No case histories of significance.

GLB-037

A FIREBALL

M i n c h i n , G e o r g e M . ; S c i e n t i f i c A m e r i c a n , 73:374, 1895. A recent number of Nature g i v e s the following: I p l a c e on r e c o r d an instance of d a m a g e done by a f i r e ball or g l o b u l a r lightning. About f i v e w e e k s a g o , when I w a s in L o n d o n d e r r y , the c i r c u m stances w e r e related to me by M r . J a m e s H a r v e y , of Northland Road in

Gl-55

GLB-038

B A L L LIGHTNING

that c i t y . M r . H a r v e y w a s s t a y i n g d u r i n g the m o n t h o f A u g u s t a t Culdaff, o n the n o r t h c o a s t o f D o n e g a l ; and o n the 24th o f that m o n t h a t about 4 p . m . , a l i t t l e b o y named R o b e r t A l c o r n , w h o s e parents occupied a house n e a r M r . H a r v e y ' s , w a s d e s i r e d b y h i s f a t h e r t o g o i n t o t h e y a r d and d r i v e a w a y s o m e f o w l s f r o m the d o o r . O n g o i n g but o f the h o u s e , the b o y s a w a l a r g e b r i g h t o b j e c t i n the s k y about t h e s i z e o f t h e t a b l e i n h i s b e d r o o m ( I g i v e h i s o w n a c c o u n t , l e a v i n g out n e c e s s a r y c o n s i d e r a t i o n s o f d i s t a n c e s , e t c . ) , o r a p p a r e n t l y about s i x s q u a r e f e e t i n a r e a . The object c a m e toward his h o u s e f r o m the w e s t o r n o r t h w e s t ; and w h e n i t c a m e c l o s e , i t p a r t l y b u r s t w i t h a r e p o r t l i k e that o f a gun. H e put h i s hands o v e r h i s f a c e t o s h i e l d h i m s e l f f r o m "the s p a r k , " and a f t e r the e x p l o s i o n t h e bulk o f the b a l l appeared to continue its c o u r s e t o w a r d the east, l o w down. When it burst, h o w e v e r , i t s t r u c k h i m , s h a t t e r i n g the thumb and the f i r s t and s e c o n d f i n g e r s o f the l e f t hand, cutting, s c r a t c h i n g and b l a c k e n i n g the r i g h t hand and l e f t c h e e k , and s h a t t e r i n g i n t o f r a g m e n t s s e v e r a l b o n e buttons o n h i s c o a t . V e r y s o o n a f t e r w a r d , D r . R . Y o u n g , o f C u l d a f f , and D r . N e w e l l , o f M o v i l l e , a t t e n d e d t h e b o y , and a m p u t a t e d t h e f i n g e r s and a p o r t i o n o f the thumb. N o o n e n e a r t h e p l a c e s a w the b a l l ( e x c e p t the b o y , o f c o u r s e ) , but the p a r e n t s and s e v e r a l o t h e r s h e a r d the r e p o r t , and the b o y ' s f a t h e r r u s h e d out i m m e d i a t e l y and caught h i s son a s h e w a s f a l l i n g . M r . H a r v e y soon afterward e x a m i n e d the p l a c e , and c o u l d find n o f u r t h e r t r a c e o f the f i r e b a l l , e x c e p t that a p i e c e o f b a r k had b e e n k n o c k e d o f f a s m a l l t r e e w i t h i n a f e w f e e t o f the p l a c e w h e r e the b o y w a s s t r u c k . The l o c a l p o l i c e m a d e exhaustive inquiry a s r e g a r d s the p o s s i b i l i t y o f any o n e ' s h a v i n g f i r e d a gun a t the b o y , o r o f h i s h a v i n g had any e x p l o s i v e i n his p o s s e s s i o n ; but nothing o f the kind t r a n s pired. I t i s w e l l t o add that a t R e d c a s t l e (about e i g h t m i l e s a w a y ) , o n e o f the r e s i d e n t s s a w , o n the s a m e d a y , a b r i g h t o b j e c t i n the sky, w h i c h o b j e c t h e took to be a f i r e b a l l . T h e day w a s s t o r m y , w i t h h e a v y s h o w e r s , but n o thunder.

GLB-038

THE ELECTRIC PHENOMENA OF THUNDERSTORMS

G o l d , E . ; N a t u r e , 1 6 9 : 5 6 1 - 5 6 3 , A p r i l 5 , 1952. M r . J . D u r w a r d , deputy d i r e c t o r , M e t e o r o l o g i c a l O f f i c e , c o n t r i b u t e d t w o o b s e r v a t i o n s o f unusual p h e n o m e n a . I n the s u m m e r o f 1934 h e w a s m o t o r i n g a l o n g the south bank o f L o c h T u m m e l . I t b e g a n t o r a i n h e a v i l y , w i t h s l i g h t o r m o d e r a t e thunder and l i g h t n i n g . H i s son, a b o y o f t w e l v e , w a s o p e n i n g the i r o n g a t e s , s p a c e d a t r e g u l a r i n t e r v a l s o n t h i s r o a d , and found o n e d i f f i c u l t t o open. M r . D u r w a r d , w h i l e w a l k i n g the s h o r t d i s t a n c e f r o m the m o t o r - c a r t o the g a t e t o a s s i s t h i s son, s a w a m o n g the p i n e t r e e s o n h i s l e f t w h a t l o o k e d l i k e a b a l l o f f i r e about 1 2 i n . i n d i a m e t e r m o v i n g t o w a r d s t h e m . I t s t r u c k t h e i r o n g a t e - p o s t f a r t h e s t f r o m the l a t c h . T h e r e w a s n o n o i s e , but t h e b o y , w h o had h i s hand o n the l a t c h g a v e a y e l l ; f o r the n e x t f e w h o u r s h e w a s u n a b l e t o l o w e r his a r m . T h e s e c o n d i n c i d e n t w a s i n the l a t e s u m m e r o f 1938 e n r o u t e f o r I r a q i n a B . O . A . C . f l y i n g - b o a t . Just a f t e r p a s s i n g the T o u l o u s e g a p , i n d e n s e n i m b o s t r a t u s c l o u d at a h e i g h t of 8, 500 f t . , what a p p e a r e d to be a b a l l of f i r e e n t e r e d the r e a r c a b i n and b u r s t w i t h a l o u d e x p l o s i o n . T h e c a p t a i n o f the a i r c r a f t t o l d M r . D u r w a r d about o n e o r t w o m i n u t e s a f t e r the e x p l o s i o n that h e had had the c o c k p i t w i n d o w o p e n , f o r v i s i b i l i t y , that the b a l l o f f i r e e n t e r e d b y the

Gl-56

BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-041

open window, burned off his e y e b r o w s , s o m e of his hair, a hole in his safety b e l t and d i s p a t c h c a s e . F r o m the c o c k p i t the b a l l p a s s e d t h r o u g h the d i s p a t c h c l e r k ' s ' o f f i c e ' and the f o r w a r d p a s s e n g e r c a b i n w i t h o u t h a r m i n g a n y b o d y o r anything only i n the r e a r c a b i n w a s t h e r e a n e x p l o s i o n . T h e s a m e t w o c a s e h i s t o r i e s a r e s u m m a r i e d in: S c i e n c e D i g e s t , 3 2 : 8 0 , July 1952. Anonymous; Ball Lightning is R e a l ,

GLB-039

BALL LIGHTNING DUE TO LEAK IN STROKE AT JOINT
1964.

A n o n y m o u s ; S c i e n c e N e w s L e t t e r , 85:392, June 20,

D r . B r u c e b e l i e v e s that w h e n a f l a s h o f l i g h t n i n g s h a r p l y c h a n g e s i t s d i r e c t i o n , the h o l e i n the m a g n e t i c f i e l d that c o u l d b e f o r m e d a t such a b e n d a l l o w s the e s c a p e of an e l e c t r i c a l l y c h a r g e d j e t of hot gas under high p r e s s u r e . S i n c e t h e e s c a p i n g and e x p a n d i n g g a s i s f l o w i n g a c r o s s a m a g n e t i c f i e l d , i t would be r o l l e d into a b a l l .

GLB-040

NEW THEORETICAL MODEL FOR BALL LIGHTNING
1964.

A n o n y m o u s ; S c i e n c e N e w s L e t t e r , 86:199, S e p t e m b e r 26,

B a l l l i g h t n i n g i s the r e s u l t o f a c o n c e n t r a t i o n around a c o n d u c t o r o f the h i g h e l e c t r i c a l f i e l d s found d u r i n g a t h u n d e r s t o r m , D r . D a v i d F i n k e l s t e i n o f Y e s h i v a U n i v e r s i t y , N e w Y o r k , and g r a d u a t e student, J u l i o R u b i n s t e i n , believe. T h e e l e c t r i c a l c o n d u c t o r can b e a i r that h a s p r e v i o u s l y b e e n i o n i z e d , or stripped of e l e c t r o n s , by ordinary lightning, or it can be a pointed object such a s a l i g h t n i n g r o d . T h e s o - c a l l e d St. E l m o ' s f i r e m a y b e a f o r m o f ball lightning.

GLB-041

BALL LIGHTNING

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 15:539, A p r i l 19, 1877 A v e r y fine d i s p l a y o f t h i s i n t e r e s t i n g m e t e o r w a s w i t n e s s e d a t V e n c e , i n the s o u t h - e a s t o f F r a n c e , o n the night o f M a r c h 2 1 - 2 2 , b y M . E d . B l a n c , o f w h i c h a n i n t e r e s t i n g d e t a i l e d account has j u s t a p p e a r e d i n the C o m p t e s R e n d u s o f the F r e n c h A c a d e m y , p . 666. T o w a r d m i d n i g h t t h e r e w a s o b s e r v e d , about e l e v e n m i l e s n o r t h - e a s t of V e n c e , a l a r g e black thundery cloud, in a state of e x t r e m e a g i t a t i o n , and c o n t i n u a l l y r a i s i n g and l o w e r i n g i t s p o s i t i o n . A t the upper part of this cloud t h r e e or four b a l l s of f i r e issued e v e r y two minutes, a s i f f r o m the i n v i s i b l e c e n t r e o f the c l o u d , d i v e r g i n g i n all d i r e c t i o n s , and a f t e r running a c o u r s e o f f r o m s i x t o e i g h t d e g r e e s , b r o k e s i l e n t l y w i t h effulgent b r i g h t n e s s . T h e i r apparent d i a m e t e r , as seen at a distance of e l e v e n m i l e s , w a s about a d e g r e e . T h e y w e r e m o s t l y of a reddish colour, a f e w , h o w e v e r , b e i n g o f a y e l l o w i s h t i n g e , but a l l o f t h e m a s s u m e d a w h i t e

Gl-57

GLB-042

BALL LIGHTNING

c o l o u r i n the act o f b u r s t i n g . T h e i r c o u r s e , w h i c h w a s h o r i z o n t a l and p a r a l l e l t o the p l a n e o f the c l o u d , w a s r e l a t i v e l y s l o w , not e x c e e d i n g t w o d e g r e e s p e r s e c o n d , and t h e y b o r e a s t r o n g r e s e m b l a n c e t o i m m e n s e s o a p b u b b l e s , both a s r e g a r d s a p p a r e n t l i g h t n e s s and g e n e r a l a p p e a r a n c e . From t i m e t o t i m e a d i s c h a r g e o f l i g h t n i n g p a s s e d t h r o u g h the c l o u d f r o m a b o v e d o w n w a r d s , f o l l o w e d s o m e s e c o n d s a f t e r b y a dull r u m b l i n g sound. The cloud, with its fine display of f i r e - b a l l s , took a c o u r s e f r o m east to w e s t , p a s s i n g about a l e a g u e t o the north o f V e n c e . T h e g l i m m e r i n g o f the l i g h t ning w i t h i t s l o w d u l l thunderous sound c o n t i n u e d f o r m o r e than a n h o u r , a f t e r w h i c h the s k y b e c a m e d a r k e r and d a r k e r ; r a i n m i x e d w i t h h a i l s t o n e s f e l l , and l i g h t n i n g , a c c o m p a n i e d w i t h thunder, f u r r o w e d the s k y i n a l l d i r e c t i o n s .

GLB-042

GLOBULAR LIGHTNING DISCHARGE

C h a t t o c k , A . P . ; N a t u r e , 109:106-107, J a n u a r y 2 6 , 1922. T h e t w o l a d i e s w e r e s i t t i n g a t t a b l e about 8 p . m . , w i t h the w i n d o w o p e n . I t w a s r a i n i n g h e a v i l y a t the t i m e , and t h e r e w a s n o w i n d . Stormy clouds w e r e about, but i t w a s not unusually h o t . T h u n d e r and l i g h t n i n g a t the s a m e time w e r e afterwards reported f r o m London a d i s t a n c e of, s a y , 5 0 m i l e s but t h e r e w a s n o t h u n d e r s t o r m a t E a s t b o u r n e . T h e r e had b e e n n o r a i n d u r i n g the f e w p r e c e d i n g d a y s . A s o n e o f the l a d i e s t o o k u p a k n i f e t o cut b r e a d the b a l l o f l i g h t w a s s e e n t o f l a s h p a s t the k n i f e (without t o u c h i n g i t ) o n t o the t a b l e , t r a v e l l i n g a d i s t a n c e of about 9 i n . at an a v e r a g e h e i g h t of about 3 i n . f r o m the t a b l e , but m o v i n g t o w a r d s the l a t t e r . W h e n t h e b a l l t o u c h e d the t a b l e c l o t h i t " w e n t out w i t h a s p i t t i n g s o u n d , " l e a v i n g n o m a r k o r t r a c e o f any s o r t . U n t i l i t t o u c h e d the c l o t h t h e r e w a s n o sound, and the w h o l e t h i n g w a s o v e r i n such a " f l a s h o f t i m e " that i t w a s . i m p o s s i b l e t o s a y h o w fast the b a l l t r a v e l l e d . T h e r e s e e m s to have been an i m p r e s s i o n that t h e b a l l c a m e f r o m the d i r e c t i o n o f the o p e n w i n d o w , but i t w a s o n l y u n d e r d e p e n d a b l e o b s e r v a t i o n d u r i n g i t s 9 - i n . path f r o m the b r e a d knife t o the t a b l e c l o t h . A s t o t h e a p p e a r a n c e o f the b a l l i t s e l f , i t w a s "about the s i z e o f a p e a , the l i g h t e n c i r c l i n g i t b e i n g about the s i z e o f a g o l f b a l l . The light was white and i n t e n s e l y b r i g h t , l i k e e l e c t r i c i t y . " " T o o d a z z l i n g t o s e e t h r o u g h . "

GLB-043

THE LATEST CONCEPTION OF "BALL LIGHTNING"

A n o n y m o u s ; C u r r e n t L i t e r a t u r e , 51:389, O c t o b e r 1911. T h i s i s a r e v i e w o f a n a r t i c l e i n the P h i l o s o p h i c a l M a g a z i n e , b y W . M . T h o r n t o n , w h o s u g g e s t s that b a l l l i g h t n i n g i s a s p h e r e o f d i s s o c i a t e d o z o n e and o x y g e n .

GLB-044

A PECULIAR DISCHARGE OF LIGHTNING

B r e w , W i l l i a m ; N a t u r e , 48:370, August.17, 1893.

Gl-58

BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-045

On the a f t e r n o o n of W e d n e s d a y , July 2 6 , d u r i n g a s t o r m at about 5:30, a blue f l a m e w a s o b s e r v e d by s o m e of the inhabitants of Epping to approach and s h a t t e r the c h i m n e y o f a h o u s e upon the h i l l o c c u p i e d b y M r s . B r o w n and f a m i l y a t t h e t i m e . M r s . B r o w n , w h o w a s s e a t e d i n t h e f r o n t r o o m , s t a t e s that a f e w s e c o n d s b e f o r e the h o u s e w a s s t r u c k she n o t i c e d w h a t a p p e a r e d t o b e a d a r k e n e d space, surrounded by a c r i m s o n fringe of f l a m e in the c o r n e r (perhaps a b r u s h d i s c h a r g e ) , and h e r s o n i n the k i t c h e n a t t h e t i m e t e s t i f i e s t o h a v i n g s e e n a s i m i l a r t h i n g p r e v i o u s t o what a p p e a r e d t o b e the b u r s t i n g o f the l u m i n o u s m a s s , w h i c h o c c u r r e d w i t h a l o u d r e p o r t , f i l l i n g the h o u s e w i t h s m o k e and the u s u a l a c c o m p a n y i n g s m e l l o f o z o n e . T h e w a l l s a r e much d a m a g e d , and the p o l a r i t y of a s m a l l c o m p a s s in a d r a w e r of a s i d e b o a r d n e a r e s t the path o f d i s c h a r g e w a s r e v e r s e d . I c o n s i d e r e d the a p p a r e n t f o r e w a r n i n g o f the b r u s h d i s c h a r g e o f s u f f i c i e n t i n t e r e s t t o j u s t i f y t h i s l e t t e r .

GLB-045

THUNDERBOLT IN WARWICKSHIRE

C u m m i n g , L . ; N a t u r e , 48:341-342, August 10, 1893. July 2 , 1893, W a r w i c k s h i r e , E n g l a n d . F o l l o w i n g a d e s c r i p t i o n o f the v e r y c o n s i d e r a b l e d a m a g e d o n e t o a t r e e and n e a r b y h o u s e . T h e author r e l a t e s the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f the b a l l l i g h t n i n g i t s e l f . T h e e x p l o s i o n i s said t o h a v e b e e n q u i t e u n l i k e thunder, and t o h a v e r e s e m b l e d the r e p o r t o f a h e a v y p i e c e o f o r d n a n c e . I t i s p r o b a b l e that the r e p o r t w a s h e a r d h e r e i n R u g b y , a s I find that t w o p e r s o n s w h o happened t o b e i n m y h o u s e a t the t i m e r e m e m b e r h e a r i n g a d o u b l e r e p o r t a t about the s a m e h o u r , w h i c h t h e y r e m a r k e d upon t o each o t h e r a s b e i n g l i k e the distant f i r i n g o f a cannon. A s t o the e v i d e n c e o f the agent o f d e s t r u c t i o n b e i n g a f i r e b a l l , I h a v e , t h r o u g h the kind h e l p o f M r . H a r r i s o n , b e e n e n a b l e d t o e x a m i n e f o u r w i t n e s s e s , a l l o f w h o m a g r e e that d u r i n g a n i n t e r v a l o f t w o m i n u t e s b e f o r e the e x p l o s i o n a l a r g e f i e r y g l o b e w a s s e e n t r a v e l l i n g t h r o u g h the a i r , and e m i t t i n g l i g h t o f such d a z z l i n g b r i l l i a n c y that the only o n e o f t h e m w h o w a s out o f d o o r s a t the t i m e w a s f o r a m o m e n t b l i n d e d and d a z e d and f e l t f o r s o m e s h o r t t i m e a f t e r w a r d s a s e n s a t i o n of pain in the b a c k of the head and the n e c k . A fifth w i t n e s s , w h o m I d i d not s e e , w a s at the t i m e of the e x p l o s i o n in a r o o m o v e r l o o k i n g the l a w n o n w h i c h the t r e e g r e w , and s t a t e s that she s a w t h r o u g h the d r a w n b l i n d the r e f l e c t i o n o f a f i e r y round b a l l a t the instant o f eruption. T h e b a l l s e e m s t o h a v e b e e n l a r g e r than any h i t h e r t o o b s e r v e d , a l l s p e a k i n g o f i t a s a p p e a r i n g l a r g e r than the sun o r m o o n , and one o f t h e m s a i d i t w a s as l a r g e as an o r d i n a r y f i r e - b a l l o o n when seen at a short distance. The colour i s s a i d t o h a v e b e e n o f a n i n t e n s e f i e r y r e d , but a p e r s o n w h o d i d not s e e the b a l l w a s s t a r t l e d a l m o s t at the instant of the e x p l o s i o n by the l i g h t i n g up of a l o n g p a s s a g e i n Dunchurch H a l l b y a n i n t e n s e b l u e l i g h t . O n c e a g a i n p h y s i o l o g i c a l e f f e c t s o n a n e a r b y human. T h e double r e p o r t is also i n t e r e s t i n g and i n f e r s that s o m e m y s t e r i o u s d e t o n a t i o n s m i g h t b e due t o a t m o s p h e r i c electrical phenomena.

Gl-59

GLB-046
GLB-046

B A L L LIGHTNING

BALL LIGHTNING AT SEA

A n o n y m o u s ; S c i e n t i f i c A m e r i c a n , 86:36, J a n u a r y 18, 1902. T h i s note i s m e r e l y a s u m m a r y o f G L B - 0 6 3 .

GLB-047

BALL LIGHTNING APPARENTLY CONNECTED WITH DUST

A n o n y m o u s ; S c i e n c e N e w s L e t t e r , 2 4 : 3 2 3 - 3 2 4 , N o v e m b e r 18, 1933. Jensen's observations reported in GLB-016 are r e v i e w e d . The suggestion is made that dust m a y s o m e h o w b e i n v o l v e d , but n o d e t a i l s a r e g i v e n i n t h i s b r i e f a n n o u n c e m e n t .

GLB-048

AFIRE-BALL

Hunneman, M a r y E. ; S c i e n c e , 86:244, S e p t e m b e r 10, 1937. T h e e l e c t r i c a l p h e n o m e n o n known a s a " f i r e - b a l l " i s r a t h e r a r a r e o c c u r r e n c e . T h e r e f o r e o n e that I s a w a t F i t z w i l l i a m , N e w H a m p s h i r e , a t 5 p. m. on A u g u s t 10 m a y be w o r t h y of r e c o r d . I w a s s e a t e d on a s e c o n d s t o r y p o r c h e n c l o s e d w i t h g l a s s w a t c h i n g the s t o r m . A radio aerial extends f r o m a distant t r e e t o a p o i n t o n the s i d e o f the h o u s e s o m e d i s t a n c e f r o m the p o r c h . C o i n c i d e n t w i t h a c r a s h o f t h u n d e r , the f i r e - b a l l a p p e a r e d . I cannot s a y that i t f o l l o w e d the w i r e o r c a m e f r o m t h e s k y . I t just c a m e out o f s p a c e and s e e m e d t o m o v e d i r e c t l y t o w a r d the w i n d o w and then f e l l a s though t o e n t e r the c e l l a r o f the h o u s e . It w a s a round, b r o n z e , glistening b a l l w i t h g l e a m i n g r a y s s h o o t i n g f r o m the t o p and s i d e s ; b y i t s b e a u t y and b r i l l i a n c e r e m i n d i n g o n e o f a n o r n a m e n t a t the t o p o f a C h r i s t m a s t r e e . Such w a s m y f l e e t i n g s i g h t o f a f i r e - b a l l . P r o b a b l y a t the s a m e instant, a l l e l e c t r i c f u s e s i n t h e h o u s e b l e w out w i t h unusual v i o l e n c e .

GLB-049

BALL LIGHTNING PHENOMENON

A n o n y m o u s ; S c i e n c e , 78:sup 9 , O c t o b e r 27, 1933. T h i s is a slightly different v e r s i o n of G L B - 0 4 7 descending lavender mass is presented. in which J e n s e n ' s description of a

GLB-050

BALL LIGHTNING
6 0 : 2 9 3 - 2 9 4 , S e p t e m b e r 26, 1924

K a i s e r , John; S c i e n c e ,

S e v e r a l y e a r s ago my h o m e was struck by lightning. A ball of f i r e s e e m i n g l y about n i n e i n c h e s i n d i a m e t e r w a s t h r o w n i n t o the c e n t e r o f m y b e d r o o m and e x p l o d e d w i t h a t e r r i f i c n o i s e , j u s t a s i f a b o m b had b e e n

Gl-60

BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-053

exploded. B r i l l i a n t p a r t i c l e s s e e m e d t o h a v e b e e n hurled into e v e r y d i r e c t i o n , but I f e l t no e f f e c t o t h e r than that of sound and s i g h t . T h e e l e c t r i c w i r e s throughout the h o u s e w e r e a f f e c t e d , and t h e r e i s a n i n c h h o l e t h r o u g h t h e p l a s t e r e d w a l l o n the g r o u n d f l o o r w h e r e a n e l e c t r i c s p a r k s e e m s t o h a v e found i t s path b e t w e e n the r a d i a t o r i n the r o o m and the m e t a l s u p p o r t t o the w a t e r spout o n the o u t s i d e o f t h e b u i l d i n g .

GLB-051

A NEW THEORY OF BALL LIGHTNING
107:27, O c t o b e r 11, 1930. Pro-

Anonymous; L i t e r a r y Digest,

A new explanation of this phenomenon, offered by a G e r m a n physicist, f e s s o r M e i s s n e r , i s g i v e n i n K o s m o s (Stuttgart)

" E v e r y lightning d i s c h a r g e c a u s e s a s t r o n g a i r - c u r r e n t , f o r i t s path i s a s t r e a m of luminous g a s e s . W h e n t w o l i g h t n i n g - p a t h s c r o s s one a n o t h e r i n o p p o s i t e d i r e c t i o n s , t h e r e r i s e s a w h i r l o f l u m i n o u s g a s , w h i c h t a k e s the f o r m o f a g l o b e . H e r e w e h a v e the ' b a l l ' o r ' g l o b e * l i g h t n i n g . " I n the i n t e r i o r o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g t h e r e i s a n e x h a u s t e d s p a c e ; a s i t w e r e , i t i s ' h o l l o w . ' T h e incandescent g a s e s c i r c l e with g r e a t v e l o c i t y — f i v e m i l e s a second o r m o r e — a n d t h e y a r e d r i v e n o u t w a r d b y the c e n t r i f u g a l f o r c e . O n the o t h e r hand, the p r e s s u r e o f the a i r r e s t r a i n s t h e m o n the o u t s i d e , s o that the l i g h t n i n g - b a l l r e m a i n s f o r s o m e t i m e i n a s t a t e o f e q u i l i b r i u m and r e t a i n s i t s f o r m . When f i n a l l y the e q u i l i b r i u m i s d i s t u r b e d , the a i r p e n e t r a t e s the b a l l and the l i g h t n i n g vanishes.

GLB-052

BALL LIGHTNING

P l u n k e t t , G . T . ; E n g l i s h M e c h a n i c , 90:140, S e p t e m b e r 10, 1909. A b o u t t w o m o n t h s a g o m y w i f e and I b o t h s a w , i n t h i s h o u s e , about 1 0 p . m . , what m u s t h a v e b e e n a f o r m o f g l o b e l i g h t n i n g . I t w a s a f i n e e v e n i n g , and t h e r e w a s n o t h u n d e r s t o r m that day o r n i g h t ; the e l e c t r i c l i g h t s w e r e o n i n m y study, i n the h a l l , and e l s e w h e r e . I w a s i n m y study, s e a t e d a t the b u r e a u , and at about 7 ft. to my l e f t and 6 to the f r o n t , the d o o r into the h a l l w a s w i d e o p e n . M y w i f e , c o m i n g a c r o s s the h a l l w h e n a t about 7 ft. f r o m the d o o r , exclaimed. " W h a t w a s t h a t ? " and as I l o o k e d up t o w a r d s the d o o r , I s a w a b r i g h t f l a s h , and h e a r d a s l i g h t r e p o r t , r a t h e r a s i f s o m e o n e had f l a s h e d a l i t t l e guncotton. M y w i f e s a i d that she had s e e n a g l o b e o f l i g h t , about 4 o r 5 i n . i n d i a m e t e r , w h i c h s e e m e d t o r e s t f o r a b r i e f p e r i o d o n the b a c k o f a c h a i r h a l f - w a y b e t w e e n the o p e n d o o r and m y s e l f , and then b u r s t w i t h a report. A p p a r e n t l y , I had l o o k e d u p t o o l a t e t o s e e the o c c u r r e n c e c l e a r l y .

GLB-053

ON THUNDER AND LIGHTNING

A r a g o , M . ; E d i n b u r g h N e w P h i l o s o p h i c a l J o u r n a l , 26:81-144, 1838.

Gl-61

GLB-054

BALL LIGHTNING

T h e l i g h t n i n g , w h i c h a p p e a r s i n the f o r m o f b a l l s , o r f i r e b a l l s , o f which we have c o l l e c t e d so many e x a m p l e s , a f t e r w a r d s to be produced, and w h i c h a r e s o e x t r a o r d i n a r y , f i r s t o f a l l , b y the s l o w n e s s and u n c e r t a i n t y o f t h e i r m o t i o n s , and then b y the e x t e n t o f the d e v a s t a t i o n t h e y occasion in bursting, appear to me at present, among the most i n e x p l i c able phenomena in physics. T h e s e balls, or globes of f i r e , appear to be a g g l o m e r a t i o n s of ponderable substances strongly i m p r e g n a t e d with the v e r y e s s e n c e of the thunderbolt. H o w , then, a r e t h e s e c o n g l o m e r a t i o n s f o r m e d ? i n what r e g i o n s a r e t h e y p r o d u c e d ? w h e n c e d o t h e y o b t a i n the s u b s t a n c e s w h i c h c o m p o s e t h e m ? w h a t i s t h e i r n a t u r e ? and w h y a r e t h e y s o m e t i m e s s u s p e n d e d f o r a l o n g p e r i o d , o n l y that t h e y m a y p r e c i p i t a t e t h e m s e l v e s w i t h the g r e a t e r r a p i d i t y ? & c . & c . To all these inquiries, s c i e n c e r e m a i n s m u t e , and c a n m a k e n o r e p l y .

GLB-054

BALL LIGHTNING

A n o n y m o u s ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 26:358, A u g u s t 1898. T h e p h e n o m e n o n d e s c r i b e d i n the l e t t e r s b e l o w s h o u l d d o u b t l e s s b e c l a s s i f i e d a s a n o c t u r n a l l i g h t due t o i t s l o n g l i f e t i m e and " i n c l i n a t i o n " t o f o l l o w the t r a i n . T h e E d i t o r h a s r e c e i v e d the t w o l e t t e r s f o l l o w i n g f r o m M r . C . N . C r o t s e n b u r g , C r o w A g e n c y , M o n t a n a d a t e d A u g u s t 2 2 and S e p t e m b e r 6 , 1898, r e s p e c t i v e l y , and s u b m i t s h i s o w n s u g g e s t e d e x p l a n a t i o n , but thinks i t w o r t h w h i l e t o p u b l i s h t h e w h o l e i n f u l l , i n o r d e r that the a t t e n t i o n o f o t h e r s m a y b e d r a w n t o the s u b j e c t , s i n c e , i f h i s o w n e x p l a n a t i o n i s c o r r e c t , the p h e n o m e n o n m u s t b e frequently seen by others: A s y o u e x p r e s s e d a d e s i r e t o h e a r f r o m t h o s e w h o had o b s e r v e d " b a l l l i g h t n i n g " a t v a r i o u s t i m e s , I w i l l r e l a t e a n e x p e r i e n c e w h i c h b e f e l l m e i n the s u m m e r o f 1896. I w a s then e m p l o y e d a s a r a i l w a y p o s t a l c l e r k o n t h e l i n e o f the C h i c a g o , R o c k I s l a n d and P a c i f i c R a i l w a y , b e t w e e n D a v e n p o r t , I o w a , and Leavenworth, Kans. O n e v e r y d a r k n i g h t , about t h e m i d d l e o f the s u m m e r , o u r t r a i n w a s g o i n g n o r t h w a r d b e t w e e n T r e n t o n , M o , , and L i n e v i l l e , I o w a . Just b e f o r e r e a c h i n g P r i n c e t o n , i n M e r c e r County, a h e a v y r a i n began falling, which necessitated the c l o s i n g o f the d o o r s o n the e a s t s i d e o f the m a i l c a r . Soon a f t e r l e a v i n g that s t a t i o n , a t 10:35 p . m . , m y c o m p a n i o n ( M r . R . C . C o r b i n ) l a y d o w n f o r a short s l e e p . T h e w o r k b e i n g v e r y l i g h t that n i g h t , I sat i n a c h a i r , l o o k i n g out o f the c a r d o o r t o t h e w e s t . T h e d a r k n e s s w a s i n t e n s e ; not a r a y o f l i g h t w a s v i s i b l e f r o m any p o i n t , e x c e p t f r o m the t r a i n . W h e n a f e w m i l e s out f r o m P r i n c e t o n , and w h i l e t r a v e l i n g a l m o s t due n o r t h , I o b s e r v e d a p e c u l i a r l i g h t l o w d o w n o n the w e s t e r n h o r i z o n . I t a p p e a r e d t o b e p e r f e c t l y round and about a foot i n d i a m e t e r , o f a dull r o s e c o l o r , o r , p o s s i b l y , l i k e a p i e c e o f l i v e coal. W h e n f i r s t o b s e r v e d i t s e e m e d t o b e f l o a t i n g w i t h i n a hundred f e e t o f the e a r t h , but s o o n r o s e t o a h e i g h t about m i d w a y b e t w e e n the h o r i z o n and the zenith. F o r a t i m e i t f l o a t e d v e r y s t e a d i l y , but s o o n b e g a n t o o s c i l l a t e u p and d o w n , a t t i m e s e v e n d r o p p i n g out o f s i g h t b e h i n d h i l l s . T h e wind w a s quite s t r o n g f r o m the e a s t , but the l i g h t t r a v e l e d i n a n a l m o s t t r u e north c o u r s e . Its s p e e d v a r i e d , s o m e t i m e s s e e m i n g t o outrun the t r a i n c o n s i d e r a b l y , and a t o t h e r s i t w o u l d f a l l b e h i n d , but n e v e r f a r e n o u g h t o b e l o s t t o s i g h t . Most of the t i m e i t a p p e a r e d t o b e n e a r l y a b r e a s t o f the t r a i n and a p p a r e n t l y f r o m h a l f a m i l e to a m i l e distant. Soon a f t e r i t w a s f i r s t o b s e r v e d b y m e , m y c o m p a n -

Gl-62

BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-055

i o n a r o s e , and w e b o t h w a t c h e d i t c l o s e l y until the t o w n o f L i n e v i l l e , I o w a , w a s reached. T h e r e i t p a s s e d out o f s i g h t b e h i n d the d e p o t , and w e s a w i t n o m o r e . D u r i n g a l l the t i m e , i t w a s i n s i g h t t h e r e w a s a h e a v y f a l l o f r a i n , but v e r y l i t t l e lightning. It s e e m e d to f o l l o w a c o u r s e p a r a l l e l to the Grand R i v e r , m o v i n g upstream. W e had n o i d e a a t the t i m e w h a t c a u s e d the l i g h t , but I h a v e s i n c e b e c o m e c o n v i n c e d that i t w a s " b a l l l i g h t n i n g . " R e p l y i n g t o y o u r l e t t e r o f A u g u s t 30, and r e f e r r i n g t o m y o w n o f A u g u s t 22: I h a v e n o m e a n s o f a s c e r t a i n i n g the d a t e o f the o c c u r r e n c e r e l a t e d . It m a d e a v e r y d e e p i m p r e s s i o n upon m e a t the t i m e , and M r . C o r b i n and m y s e l f o f t e n t a l k e d about i t a f t e r w a r d , but I m a d e n o n o t e o f t h e d a t e . We made many i n q u i r i e s c o n c e r n i n g the p h e n o m e n o n w h i c h w e o b s e r v e d , but n e v e r o b t a i n e d a satisfactory explanation. W e thought o f d i s t a n t e l e c t r i c l i g h t , but found that none e x i s t e d w i t h i n the r a n g e o f o u r v i s i o n o n that p o r t i o n o f the r o a d . Since b e g i n n i n g t h i s I r e m e m b e r that w e r e m a r k e d that i f i t had o c c u r r e d a f e w n i g h t s b e f o r e w e should h a v e f e l t c e r t a i n that i t w a s the l i g h t f r o m a b a l l o o n s e n t u p f r o m s o m e F o u r t h o f July c e l e b r a t i o n , s o p r o b a b l y i t w a s w i t h i n a w e e k o f July 4, 1 8 9 6 . But e v e n t h e n , i t w o u l d h a v e b e e n r e m a r k a b l e , a s the l i g h t t r a v e l e d a l m o s t d i r e c t l y n o r t h and k e p t a n e v e n c o u r s e , w h i l e the w i n d b l e w q u i t e s t r o n g l y f r o m the e a s t . I t w a s s o v e r y s t r a n g e that I should n e v e r h a v e m e n t i o n e d i t , e v e n t o m y f r i e n d s , had i t not b e e n c o r r o b o r a t e d b y a r e l i a b l e w i t n e s s . I have sought f o r a n e x p l a n a t i o n w h e n e v e r and w h e r e v e r I h a v e had a n o p p o r t u n i t y , and f r o m w h a t I h a v e b e e n a b l e t o l e a r n I had c o m e t o the c o n c l u s i o n that i t was m o s t probably "ball lightning. " Although my conclusions may be entirely erroneous, I have no m o r e plausible theory to advance. T h e f a c t that i t w a s o b s e r v e d b y b o t h o f u s a t t h e s a m e t i m e , had the s a m e a p p e a r a n c e t o h i s e y e s a s i t had t o m i n e b e f o r e h e s a w i t i s v e r y g o o d e v i d e n c e that it w a s a r e a l i t y and not a h a l l u c i n a t i o n . He o b s e r v e d it as he w a s p a s s i n g the o p e n d o o r , and b e f o r e I had s p o k e n t o h i m . I n f a c t t h e thing w a s s o u n r e a l that I h e s i t a t e d t o s p e a k o f i t , f e a r i n g that i t w a s s o m e f r e a k o f m y i m a g i n a t i o n , but when h e t o o s a w i t the s a m e , I c o u l d n o l o n g e r doubt i t s e x i s t e n c e a s a r e a l i t y ; and w e b o t h o b s e r v e d i t c l o s e l y w h i l e the t r a i n w a s running a t l e a s t 1 5 miles. W h e n i t d i s a p p e a r e d i t w a s a t l e a s t a m i l e f r o m u s , a s the b u i l d i n g s o f t h e t o w n w e r e p l a i n l y v i s i b l e and i t w a s s o m e d i s t a n c e f a r t h e r w e s t than any o f t h e m . T h e p r e c e d i n g a c c o u n t o f a p h e n o m e n o n b y M s s r s . C r o t s e n b u r g and C o r b i n d o e s not h a r m o n i z e w i t h the o r d i n a r y d e s c r i p t i o n s o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g w e l l e n o u g h t o j u s t i f y a p p l y i n g that t e r m t o i t , and the e d i t o r b e l i e v e s that s o m e o t h e r e x p l a n a t i o n o f the p h e n o m e n o n m u s t b e found. If there w e r e a m a s s of falling rain, or fog, or h a z e a t a l i t t l e d i s t a n c e w e s t o f the t r a i n i n w h i c h t h e y w e r e t r a v e l i n g , o r i n d e e d i f t h e r e w e r e g r o v e s o r f o r e s t s , the l e a v e s o f which w e r e c o v e r e d with r a i n d r o p s , t h e s e w o u l d u n d o u b t e d l y send b a c k t o the o b s e r v e r ' s e y e a faint r e f l e c t i o n o r m o r e p r o p e r l y an antisolar corona, which would be b a r e l y v i s i b l e on a dark night. It w o u l d n e c e s s a r i l y a p p e a r t o f l o a t a l o n g w i t h t h e t r a i n , a s the C r o t s e n b u r g p h e n o mena did. T h e r e c a n b e n o doubt but what the l i g h t o b s e r v e d i n t h i s c a s e w a s s o m e f o r m o f r e f l e c t i o n o f the l i g h t o f t h e t r a i n i t s e l f , a s i t c e r t a i n l y had none o f the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g .

GLB-055
Fuller,

FIREBALL
Curtis; Fate, 15:22, J a n u a r y 1962.

Gl-63

GLB-056

B A L L LIGHTNING

M r s . D o r i s W i l l w a s i n the k i t c h e n o f h e r h o m e i n C h e l t e n h a m , A u s t r a l i a , o n e day r e c e n t l y watching a thunderstorm outside when she " f e l t this g r e a t thing o v e r my shoulder." M r s . W i l l l o o k e d around and l e t out a y a w p . T h e r e w a s a f i r e b a l l . She r a c e d t h r o u g h the d i n i n g r o o m and h e a d e d f o r the s t a i r s . The fireball followed her, passing h e r in the s t a i r w e l l . M r s . W i l l w a s s o c o n f u s e d she c o n t i n u e d o n u p t h e s t a i r s , n o w t h e p u r s u e r i n s t e a d o f the p u r s u e d . She a r r i v e d a t the t o p o f the s t a i r s just i n t i m e t o s e e the fireball enter a b e d r o o m . H e r b r o t h e r s D e s and N o e l w e r e s t i l l a b e d . T h e y h e a r d a c r a s h " l i k e thunder a m p l i f i e d 1 0 t i m e s . " And b e f o r e t h e i r t e r r i f i e d e y e s t h e f i r e b a l l e s c a p e d t h r o u g h the o p e n w i n d o w o f t h e i r r o o m . T h i s account o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g i s a l i t t l e b r e a t h l e s s , but the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s a r e v e r y m u c h the s a m e a s t h o s e r e p o r t e d b y s c i e n t i s t s f o r t u n a t e e n o u g h t o v i e w t h e p h e n o m e n o n .

GLB-056

A CATALOGUE OF OBSERVATIONS OF LUMINOUS METEORS

P o w e l l , B a d e n ; R e p o r t o f t h e B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , 3 0 - 3 1 , 1861. F r o m the M a l t a M a i l . The b r i g ' V i c t o r i a ' saw this extraordinary appearance w h e n i n l a t i t u d e 3 6 4 0 ' 5 6 " n o r t h , and 1 3 ° 4 4 ' 3 6 " e a s t , b e i n g b e c a l m e d and w i t h o u t any a p p e a r a n c e o f bad w e a t h e r ; h e r t o p g a l l a n t and r o y a l m a s t s suddenly w e n t o v e r the s i d e , a s i f c a r r i e d away b y a sudden s q u a l l ; and t w o h o u r s a f t e r i t b l e w v e r y h a r d f r o m the south and e a s t , but suddenly a g a i n f e l l c a l m , w i t h a n o v e r p o w e r i n g stench o f sulphur and a n u n b e a r a b l e h e a t . At this m o m e n t three luminous b o d i e s w e r e s e e n t o i s s u e f r o m the s e a a t the d i s t a n c e o f about h a l f a m i l e f r o m the v e s s e l , w h i c h r e m a i n e d v i s i b l e f o r about 1 0 m i n u t e s ; s o o n a f t e r i t c a m e o n t o b l o w h a r d f r o m the s o u t h - e a s t , and t h e v e s s e l r a n i n t o a c u r r e n t o f a i r the r e v e r s e o f that j u s t e x p e r i e n c e d (900 m i l e s w e s t o f A d a l i a ) . L e t t e r f r o m A m a b , on Mount Lebanon. O n the s a m e d a y , about h a l f a n h o u r a f t e r sunset ( v e r y n e a r l y the s a m e t i m e ) , t h e h e a v e n s p r e s e n t e d a n e x t r a o r d i n a r y and beautiful a p p e a r a n c e . A fiery m e t e o r , c o m p o s e d of two luminous b o d i e s , e a c h a p p e a r i n g a t l e a s t f i v e t i m e s l a r g e r than the m o o n , w i t h s t r e a m e r s and a p p e n d a g e s t o e a c h , j o i n i n g the t w o , and l o o k i n g l i k e l a r g e f l a g s b l o w n out b y a g e n t l e b r e e z e , a p p e a r e d i n the w e s t , r e m a i n e d v i s i b l e f o r a n hour, and t a k i n g a n easterly course gradually disappeared. T h e appendages appeared t o shine f r o m the r e f l e c t e d l i g h t o f t h e m a i n b o d i e s , w h i c h i t w a s painful t o l o o k a t f o r any length of t i m e . T h e m o o n had r i s e n h a l f a n h o u r b e f o r e , and t h e r e w a s s c a r c e l y any w i n d (350 m i l e s s o u t h - e a s t o f A d a l i a ) . A d a l i a i s i n A s i a M i n o r . A l l o f the o b s e r v a t i o n s a b o v e w e r e c o m p i l e d i n c o n n e c t i o n w i t h a r e m a r k a b l e m e t e o r s e e n June 11, 1845. I t i s not c l e a r f r o m the a c c o u n t s w h e t h e r a l l p h e n o m e n a w e r e s e e n p r e c i s e l y o n that d a t e . T h e luminous phenomena l i t t l e r e s e m b l e t r u e m e t e o r s ; they a r e m o r e l i k e m o d e r n U F O s . S e e a l s o G L B - 0 2 8 and G L B - 0 6 3 .

GLB-057

ON A SHOOTING METEOR

S h e p a r d , C h a r l e s U . ; A m e r i c a n J o u r n a l o f S c i e n c e , 2 : 2 8 : 2 7 0 - 2 7 6 , 1859.

Gl-64

BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-057

M r . S p a r k m a n R . S c r i v e n , a g e d a b o u t 17, and c l e r k i n t h e d r y g o o d s store of M e s s r s . Browning & Ketchum of King Street, Charleston, a y o u n g m a n o f e x c e l l e n t c h a r a c t e r , w a s the p r i n c i p a l o b s e r v e r o f the p h e n o m enon. H e h a d j u s t r e t u r n e d a t h a l f p a s t 8 i n t h e e v e n i n g o f N o v . 16th, 1857, t o the r e s i d e n c e o f his father ( M r . J . M . S c r i v e n ) i n M o r r i s s t r e e t , t h r e e d o o r s w e s t o f K i n g , and h a v i n g o c c a s i o n t o s t e p i n t o t h e p o r t i c o , h e s a w a r e d , f i e r y b a l l o f t h e s i z e and s h a p e o f a n o r a n g e , s l o w l y d e s c e n d i n g t h r o u g h a distance apparently of 20 or 30 feet, to the ground. Its fall was s c a r c e l y m o r e r a p i d t h a n that o f a s o a p b u b b l e , g i v i n g h i m t i m e t o c a l l h i s s i s t e r , a l i t t l e g i r l , t o s e e i t s t r i k e a h i g h w o o d e n f e n c e , d i s t a n t about f i f t y o r s i x t y f e e t f r o m t h e p o r t i c o , and w h i c h s e p a r a t e d t h e d o o r - y a r d f r o m a c h u r c h enclosure adjoining. I t s e e m e d t o a d h e r e f o r a n instant t o the b o a r d a g a i n s t w h i c h i t s t r u c k , and t h e n s e p a r a t e d i n t o t h r e e p a r t s and d i s a p p e a r e d . The e v e n i n g w a s d a r k , it h a v i n g f o l l o w e d a r a i n y a f t e r n o o n , though at the t i m e o f t h e f a l l , i t h a d c e a s e d t o r a i n and b e c o m e v e r y f o g g y . N o t h i n g f u r t h e r w o u l d p r o b a b l y h a v e b e e n h e a r d o f t h e p h e n o m e n o n but f o r the a c c i d e n t a l r e a d i n g , by an e l d e r s i s t e r the next day at the b r e a k f a s t t a b l e , of a p a r a g r a p h f r o m the n e w s p a p e r , r e l a t i n g to a m e t e o r i c f a l l , w h e r e the s p e c i m e n s p i c k e d u p w e r e s a i d t o h a v e p o s s e s s e d a s t r o n g o d o r o f s u l p h u r . T h i s i n d u c e d y o u n g S c r i v e n , w h o had n e v e r b e f o r e h e a r d o f m e t e o r i c f a l l s , a t o n c e t o e x a m i n e the f e n c e against w h i c h the b a l l had s t r u c k . The fence was e i g h t f e e t h i g h , and f o r m e d o f l o n g s t r i p s o f h o r i z o n t a l l y d i s p o s e d b o a r d s . It w a s n e a r t h e e x t r e m i t y o f a n u p p e r m o s t b o a r d , that had b e e n d e t a c h e d and b e n t a r o u n d s o a s t o p r e s e n t i t s f i a t s i d e u p p e r m o s t , that t h e b o d y h a d b e e n seen to i m p i n g e . A n d h e r e i t w a s , that h e d i s c o v e r e d a d h e r i n g , a s m a l l bristling mass of black fibres. T h e s e h e d e t a c h e d and c a r r i e d i n t o t h e h o u s e . D r . P e t t i g r e w i m m e d i a t e l y c a l l e d t o a c q u a i n t m e o f the c a s e ; but not f i n d i n g m e a t h o m e , w e d i d not m e e t u n t i l t h e f o r e n o o n o f t h e 20th, w h e n h e p r e s e n t e d m e t h e s p e c i m e n g a t h e r e d b y S c r i v e n , and t o o k m e t o t h e s p o t . I h e a r d the s t a t e m e n t s r e p e a t e d f r o m the d i f f e r e n t m e m b e r s of the f a m i l y , c o r r o b o r a t i v e o f t h o s e a b o v e p r e s e n t e d , and e x a m i n e d t h e p l a c e u p o n t h e b o a r d , f r o m w h e n c e t h e f i b r e s had b e e n g a t h e r e d . It presented no discoloration or a p p e a r a n c e o f h a v i n g b e e n heated o r c h a r r e d , though f o r many inches o n e i t h e r side, it was slightly blackened in spots. T h i s p e r h a p s w a s not s t r a n g e , a s h e a v y r a i n s h a d f a l l e n s i n c e t h e o c c u r r e n c e ; and i t m i g h t f a i r l y b e p r e s u m e d , that a l l f o r e i g n m a t t e r w o u l d h a v e b e e n e f f e c t u a l l y d e t a c h e d . I e x a m i n e d the g r a s s and s o i l o n b o t h s i d e s o f t h e f e n c e , w i t h o u t f i n d i n g a n y t h i n g b e y o n d l i t t l e f r a g m e n t s o f c h a r c o a l , w h i c h a r e c o m m o n e n o u g h i n m o s t p l a c e s about t h e p r e m i s e s of houses. W e then t o o k pains t o find the individual t o w h o m had b e e n g i v e n the p r i n c i p a l p o r t i o n o f the f i b r o u s m a t t e r obtained f r o m the f e n c e ; but h a d t h e m o r t i f i c a t i o n t o d i s c o v e r , that h a v i n g w o r n i t i n a p a p e r w r a p p e r f o r s e v e r a l d a y s i n h i s v e s t p o c k e t , h e had f i n a l l y m i s l a i d o r l o s t i t . Thus l i t t l e m o r e than a m i c r o s c o p i c a l l y v i s i b l e s p e c i m e n o f t h e s h o o t i n g s t a r r e m a i n e d f o r s t u d y and e x a m i n a t i o n . I t s e n t i r e w e i g h t i s p r o b a b l y l e s s than o n e tenth of a g r a i n . When v i e w e d by a s i n g l e p o c k e t - l e n s , it s e e m s to be a c o n fused a g g r e g a t e of short c l i p p i n g s of the finest b l a c k hair, v a r y i n g in length f r o m one-tenth to one-third of an inch. Each portion is straight or only slightly curved. E x c e p t i n c o l o r , t h e y r e m i n d o n e m o s t o f that v a r i e t y o f p u m i c e stone f r o m the Sandwich I s l a n d s , known as v o l c a n i c h a i r , or as " P e l e ' s h a i r . " T h e y d o not s e e m v e r y p r o n e t o b r e a k i n h a n d l i n g , and a p p e a r s l i g h t l y e l a s t i c . T h e y have been examined under compound m i c r o s c o p e s of high p o w e r by s e v e r a l p e r s o n s a c c u s t o m e d t o t h e u s e o f t h i s i n s t r u m e n t ; but h i t h e r t o n o o n e h a s v e n t u r e d t o s u g g e s t a r e l a t i o n s h i p i n t h e i r p r o p e r t i e s , t o any k n o w n f o r m

Gl-65

GLB-058

B A L L LIGHTNING

of organic or inorganic matter. T h e f o l l o w i n g d e s c r i p t i o n is f r o m a note, handed t o m e b y m y f r i e n d , D r . F . W . P o r c h e r o f C h a r l e s t o n . "Black elong a t e d b o d i e s , p e r f e c t l y o p a q u e , round and s o l i d ; a m o r p h o u s , not p r o p e r l y smooth, surfaces often furnished with w a r t y dots or p r o j e c t i o n s ; r a t h e r g l o s s y . " I could spare only a f e w of them for a c h e m i c a l t r i a l . These w e r e introd u c e d i n t o a s m a l l g l a s s t e s t - t u b e ( p r e v i o u s l y w e l l d r i e d ) , and h e a t e d b y c o n t a c t o f the f l a m e o f the b l o w p i p e . T h e y suddenly g l o w e d with a brilliant light, a t the s a m e t i m e e m i t t i n g a n o d o r m o s t n e a r l y r e s e m b l i n g the b i t u m i n o u s . A d i s t i n c t g r e y i s h s k e l e t o n o f e a c h f i b r e w a s l e f t a d h e r i n g t o the g l a s s . Barytic w a t e r b e i n g t h r o w n i n t o the tube w a s i n s t a n t l y r e n d e r e d m i l k y , t h e r e b y p r o v i n g the e x i s t e n c e o f c a r b o n i c a c i d ; and the s u b s e q u e n t a d d i t i o n o f h y d r o c h l o r i c a c i d s l o w l y c a u s e d the s e p a r a t i o n o f the s k e l e t o n s f r o m the g l a s s , w h i c h l e d m e t o i n f e r the p r e s e n c e o f s i l i c a a s a p a r t o f the e a r t h y r e s i d u u m . The little bodies h o w e v e r w e r e not a n n i h i l a t e d b y the p r o c e s s ; but g r e a t l y t o m y s u r p r i s e w e r e e a s i l y s e e n , b y the aid o f a s i n g l e l e n s , s t i l l f l o a t i n g t h r o u g h the c l e a r l i q u i d , p r e s e r v i n g i n a g r e a t m e a s u r e t h e i r o r i g i n a l f o r m , w i t h the e x c e p t i o n o n l y , o f b e i n g r e n d e r e d h e r e and t h e r e t r a n s p a r e n t , a s i f about o n e - h a l f o f the b l a c k m a t t e r had b e e n e a t e n out and d i s s o l v e d , l e a v i n g the r e m a i n d e r s u f f i c i e n t l y c o n n e c t e d t o m a i n t a i n the o r i g i n a l f i g u r e o f t h e b o d y .

GLB-058

A POSSIBLE CASE OF BALL LIGHTNING

A l e x a n d e r , W i l l i a m H . ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 36:310, July 1907. The l a r g e torpedo-shaped m a s s d e s c r i b e d b e l o w may have been a parent body which subsequently s p l i t into s e v e r a l b a l l s . L a r g e disintegrating bodies l i k e this a r e described in GLB-005, GLB-016, GLB-020, GLB-024, GLB-037, GLB-057, G L B 059. [July 2 , 1907. B u r l i n g t o n , V T ] B i s h o p John S . lyiichaud s a y s : I w a s standing o n the c o r n e r o f C h u r c h and C o l l e g e s t r e e t s , j u s t i n front o f the H o w a r d Bank and f a c i n g e a s t , e n g a g e d i n c o n v e r s a t i o n w i t h E x - G o v e r n o r W o o d b u r y and M r . A . A . B u e l l , w h e n , without the s l i g h t e s t i n d i c a t i o n o r w a r n i n g , w e w e r e s t a r t l e d b y what sounded l i k e a m o s t unusual and t e r r i f i c e x p l o s i o n , e v i d e n t l y v e r y n e a r b y . R a i s i n g m y e y e s and l o o k i n g e a s t w a r d a l o n g C o l l e g e S t r e e t , I o b s e r v e d a t o r p e d o - s h a p e d b o d y s o m e 300 f e e t a w a y , s t a t i o n a r y in a p p e a r a n c e and s u s p e n d e d in the a i r about 50 f e e t a b o v e the t o p s of the b u i l d i n g s . I n s i z e , i t w a s about 6 f e e t l o n g b y 8 i n c h e s i n d i a m e t e r , the s h e l l o r c o v e r h a v i n g a d a r k a p p e a r a n c e , w i t h h e r e and t h e r e t o n g u e s o f f i r e i s s u i n g f r o m s p o t s o n the s u r f a c e r e s e m b l i n g r e d - h o t unburnished c o p p e r . A l t h o s t a t i o n a r y when f i r s t n o t i c e d t h i s o b j e c t s o o n b e g a n t o m o v e , r a t h e r s l o w l y , and d i s a p p e a r e d o v e r Dolan B r o t h e r s ' s t o r e , southward. A s i t m o v e d , the c o v e r i n g s e e m e d r u p t u r ing i n p l a c e s and thru t h e s e i n t e n s e l y r e d f l a m e s i s s u e d . My first impression w a s that i t w a s s o m e e x p l o s i v e shot f r o m the u p p e r p o r t i o n o f the H a l l f u r n i t u r e store. When first seen it was surrounded by a halo of d i m light, s o m e 20 feet in d i a m e t e r . T h e r e w a s n o o d o r that I a m a w a r e o f p e r c e p t i b l e a f t e r the d i s a p p e a r a n c e o f the p h e n o m e n o n , n o r w a s t h e r e any d a m a g e done s o f a r a s k n o w n to m e . A l t h o the s k y w a s e n t i r e l y c l e a r o v e r h e a d , t h e r e w a s any a n g r y - l o o k i n g c u m u l o - n i m b u s c l o u d a p p r o a c h i n g f r o m the n o r t h w e s t ; o t h e r w i s e t h e r e w a s a b s o l u t e l y nothing t o l e a d u s t o e x p e c t a n y t h i n g s o r e m a r k a b l e . And, strange t o s a y , a l t h o the d o w n p o u r o f r a i n f o l l o w i n g t h i s p h e n o m e n o n , p e r h a p s twenty

Gl-66

BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-059

m i n u t e s l a t e r , l a s t e d a t l e a s t h a l f a n h o u r , t h e r e w a s n o i n d i c a t i o n o f any o t h e r f l a s h o f l i g h t n i n g o r sound o f thunder. F o u r w e e k s h a v e p a s s e d s i n c e the o c c u r r e n c e o f t h i s e v e n t , but the p i c t u r e o f that s c e n e and the t e r r i f i c c o n c u s s i o n c a u s e d b y i t a r e v i v i d l y b e f o r e m e , w h i l e t h e c r a s h i n g sound s t i l l r i n g s i n m y e a r s . I hope I m a y n e v e r h e a r or see a s i m i l a r p h e n o m e n o n , a t l e a s t a t such c l o s e r a n g e . M r . A l v a r o Adsit says: I w a s s t a n d i n g i n m y s t o r e d o o r f a c i n g the n o r t h ; m y attention w a s a t t r a c t e d b y t h i s " b a l l o f f i r e " a p p a r e n t l y d e s c e n d i n g t o w a r d a point o n the o p p o s i t e s i d e o f the s t r e e t i n f r o n t o f the H a l l f u r n i t u r e s t o r e ; w h e n w i t h i n 1 8 o r 2 0 f e e t o f the g r o u n d t h e b a l l e x p l o d e d w i t h a d e a f e n i n g sound; the b a l l , b e f o r e the e x p l o s i o n , w a s a p p a r e n t l y 8 o r 1 0 i n c h e s i n d i a m e t e r ; the h a l o o f l i g h t r e s u l t i n g f r o m t h e e x p l o s i o n w a s 8 o r 1 0 f e e t i n d i a m e t e r ; t h e l i g h t had a y e l l o w i s h t i n g e , s o m e what l i k e a c a n d l e l i g h t ; n o n o i s e o r sound w a s h e a r d b e f o r e o r a f t e r t h e e x p l o s i o n ; n o d a m a g e w a s d o n e s o f a r a s known t o m e .

JL_-JUL
COLLEGE STREET

Plan of streets and (2) National Biscuit (5) Dolan Brothers; Ice Co.; (8) Strong

buildings described in GLB-058. (1) Howard National Bank; Co.; (3) Hall's Furniture Co.; (4) Ferguson & Adsit's store; (6) Equitable Life insurance Co.; (7) Standard Coal and Theater. (Adapted from GLB-058)

GLB-059

A CATALOGUE OF OBSERVATIONS OF LUMINOUS METEORS, 1848-1849

P o w e l l , B a d e n ; R e p o r t s o f the B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , 152-153, 1858. M a y 4 , 1848, Quainton, E n g l a n d . I g n i t e d g l o b e . F e l l d o w n i n t o a b a r n y a r d . Exploded with a loud r e p o r t ; incandescent fragments f l e w in different d i r e c t i o n s ; one hit a c o w . S m e l l o f sulfur. N o h o l e found, but t h e s t r a w d i s t u r b e d and turned up w h e r e it f e l l .

Gl-67

GLB-060
QLB-060

B A L L LIGHTNING

BALL LIGHTNING

H u m p h r e y s , W . J . ; A m e r i c a n P h i l o s o p h i c a l S o c i e t y , P r o c e e d i n g s , 76:613-626, 1936. W . J . H u m p h r e y s , a noted m e t e o r o l o g i s t of his t i m e , s o l i c i t e d accounts of ball l i g h t n i n g f r o m the s c i e n t i f i c c o m m u n i t y and any o t h e r s w h o c a r e d t o c o n t r i b u t e . H e then s u m m a r i z e d h i s f i n d i n g s i n s e v e r a l r e p o r t s such a s t h i s o n e . His survey made H u m p h r e y s v e r y s k e p t i c a l about the r e a l i t y o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g , a s s u g g e s t e d b y h i s quickness to classify c a s e histories according to supposedly w e l l - e x p l a i n e d phenomena. T h e c a s e h i s t o r i e s b e l o w a r e q u o t e d w i t h the p e r m i s s i o n o f the A m e r i c a n P h i l o s o p h ical Society. P e r s i s t e n c e o f V i s i o n . H e r e i s a n i n t e r e s t i n g a c c o u n t w r i t t e n o n Jan. 19, 1925, a t T a u r a n g a , N e w Z e a l a n d , b y M r . G . H . B e l l : " Y e a r s a g o , " h e s a y s , " w h i l e m i l k i n g c o w s in an o p e n shed a t h u n d e r s t o r m c a m e o v e r and I ' s a w ' a f i r e b a l l s o m e feet in d i a m e t e r shoot t o w a r d s m e . L o s t a m o m e n t behind l o g s it r e a p p e a r e d in the s t o c k y a r d and I f e l t a hot g l o w as it g l i d e d p a s t a f e w f e e t f r o m m e r i g h t t h r o u g h the s h e d . I f a i l e d t o d e t e r m i n e i t s c o u r s e a f t e r that a s m y s i g h t s e e m e d c o n f u s e d , and I c o n g r a t u l a t e d m y s e l f o n a n a r r o w e s c a p e f r o m death. " N o w a m o s t r e m a r k a b l e f e a t u r e o f the i n c i d e n t w a s that the c o w s , the m o s t n e r v o u s o f a n i m a l s , g a v e not the s l i g h t e s t h e e d t o i t , and l o n g did I p o n d e r o n this aspect. Y e a r s a f t e r w a r d s w h i l e c l o s e l y s t a r i n g a t a n e l e c t r i c l i g h t point the l i g h t w a s s w i t c h e d off, but I s t i l l ' s a w ' the b r i g h t g l o b e s l o w l y m o v i n g o n the w a l l . O n l y then d i d i t o c c u r t o m e that m y ' l i g h t n i n g b a l l ' o f y e a r s b e f o r e had b e e n ' a l l m y e y e ' i n the t r u e s t s e n s e o f the t e r m . " H e r e i s a n o t h e r i n t e r e s t i n g c a s e that a p p e a r s t o i n v o l v e p e r s i s t e n c e o f v i s i o n , q u o t e d i n full b e c a u s e o f the s c i e n t i f i c t r a i n i n g and a b i l i t y o f the o b s e r v e r , M r . G . W . L e w i s , D i r e c t o r Aeronautical R e s e a r c h , National A d v i s o r y C o m m i t t e e for A e r o n a u t i c s . He says: " O n e a f t e r n o o n i n the s p r i n g o f 1923, f o l l o w i n g a r a t h e r s e v e r e t h u n d e r storm, I was surprised to see, f r o m my home in Chevy Chase, M d . , a ball of l i g h t about the s i z e of a t o y b a l l o o n a p p r o x i m a t e l y 125 f e e t a w a y in the adjacent w o o d s . It w a s 8 f e e t , r o u g h l y , f r o m the g r o u n d , and in a f e w s e c o n d s had m o v e d i n m y d i r e c t i o n 100 f e e t , o r s o , w h e n , a t the h e i g h t o f 7 f e e t , i t c a m e in contact with a tulip t r e e . A t t h i s p l a c e a c l o u d o f dust w a s f o r m e d b y a d y n a m i t e l i k e e x p l o s i o n s o loud that n e i g h b o r s c a m e out o f t h e i r h o u s e s t o s e e what had h a p p e n e d . " I i m m e d i a t e l y e x a m i n e d the t r e e and found that the e x p l o s i o n had o c c u r r e d w h e r e t w o n a i l s had b e e n d r i v e n i n t o the trunk. T h e r e w e r e no w i r e s or connect i o n s o f any kind a t t a c h e d t o the t r e e . T h e b a r k w a s s h a t t e r e d a t the p l a c e s t r u c k and so l o o s e n e d f r o m the trunk a l l around that the t r e e d i e d . " L i g h t n i n g D i s c h a r g e O u t d o o r s a l o n g a B r o k e n C o n d u c t o r . O n Sunday a f t e r noon, June 8 , 1924, M r . C P . T h o m a s , a w h i t e m a i l c a r r i e r o f W a s h i n g t o n , D . C . , p a r k e d h i s a u t o m o b i l e o n the s i d e o f the r o a d t o F a i r f a x , V a . , p e n d i n g the p a s s a g e o f a s e v e r e t h u n d e r s t o r m . When it was nearly o v e r , a m o d e r a t e flash o f l i g h t n i n g w a s i n s t a n t l y f o l l o w e d b y a b a l l o f f i r e the s i z e o f o n e ' s d o u b l e f i s t that s w i f t l y p a s s e d 100 f e e t o r s o a l o n g the o p p o s i t e s i d e o f the r o a d , but w i t h i n 2 0 f e e t o f h i m . At one point on its c o u r s e t h e r e w a s a sharp explosion with flying sparks followed by smoke. O n the f o l l o w i n g T h u r s d a y a f t e r n o o n M r . T h o m a s k i n d l y t o o k m e t o the scene of the ball lightning. T h e r e w e a t o n c e found a l o n g the c o u r s e the b a l l had t a k e n the b a d l y r u s t e d r e m n a n t s o f a n a b a n d o n e d w i r e f e n c e . T h e upper

Gl-68

BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-060

s t r a n d , about t w o f e e t a b o v e the g r o u n d and m o r e o r l e s s c o v e r e d b y w e e d s , w a s p a r t i a l l y fused i n v a r i o u s p l a c e s , e s p e c i a l l y w h e r e i t w a s i n c o n t a c t w i t h a n o t h e r w i r e , and a t o n e p l a c e b u r n e d e n t i r e l y i n t w o . About 20 feet beyond the p l a c e the b a l l w a s l a s t s e e n , and i n the d i r e c t i o n i t s e e m e d t o b e g o i n g , the w i r e t e r m i n a t e d in_a l a r g e t r e e , p r e s u m a b l y o v e r g r o w n w h e r e i t had b e e n attached y e a r s b e f o r e . N e a r the p l a c e the a u t o m o b i l e had b e e n p a r k e d the w i r e t u r n e d o f f a t r i g h t a n g l e s t o the r o a d , w e n t t h r o u g h w o o d s s o m e 7 5 f e e t and t e r m i n a t e d o n a t r e e that had b e e n s t r u c k b y l i g h t n i n g v e r y r e c e n t l y a s e v i d e n c e d b y t h e f r e s h n e s s o f the skinned b a r k , p l o w e d u p d i r t and w i l t e d l e a v e s . Quite e v i d e n t l y , then, a p o r t i o n o f the d i s c h a r g e that hit t h i s t r e e t u r n e d o f f a l o n g the r u s t e d w i r e and m a d e the f l a s h e s that p r o d u c e d the i m p r e s s i o n o f a s w i f t l y passing ball of f i r e . W i l l - o ' - t h e - w i s p . M r . C h a r l e s L . S e a r c y , w r i t i n g f r o m the U n i v e r s i t y o f N e v a d a o n F e b r u a r y 1 , 1926, r e p o r t s that i n 1885 h e and s e v e r a l o t h e r s s a w b a l l l i g h t n i n g o n e c a l m s u l t r y night i n I n d i a n a . I t l o o k e d l i k e a b a l l o f f i r e t w o t o f o u r f e e t i n d i a m e t e r , and m o v e d i n a n i r r e g u l a r c o u r s e n e a r the s u r f a c e o f a long meadow ridge. A t t i m e s i t a p p e a r e d t o b r u s h the g r o u n d and then q u i c k l y r o s e t o the h e i g h t o f 1 0 t o 1 5 f e e t . I t p a s s e d b y s o m e 200 f e e t distant, and w a s v i s i b l e three quarters of a m i l e away. S e v e r a l neighbors also saw it. Its s p e e d w a s m o d e r a t e , s o m e t h i n g l i k e that o f a s l o w m o v i n g a i r p l a n e . F o r a r e c o l l e c t i o n of 40 y e a r s this is a m o s t e x c e l l e n t d e s c r i p t i o n of one o f the r e c o g n i z e d v a r i e t i e s o f the w i l l - o ' - t h e - w i s p , n a m e l y , a n o w l out o n a hunting f l i g h t and c o v e r e d w i t h fox f i r e f r o m a d e c a y i n g h o l l o w t r e e i n w h i c h h e had s p e n t t h e d a y . T h e s i z e and b e h a v i o r p l a c e t h i s i n the c a t e g o r y o f n o c t u r n a l l i g h t s . L i g h t n i n g S e e n End o n . M r . J . W . B e r n a r d , w r i t i n g f r o m D e r m o t t , A r k . , on J u l y 18, 1 9 3 1 , s a y s that in 1902 or 1903 a s e v e r e t h u n d e r s t o r m c a m e on while he w a s in a field plowing. H e w a s h u r r y i n g t o the e n d o f the r o w w h e r e h e c o u l d unhitch h i s m u l e and find s h e l t e r , but b e f o r e g e t t i n g t h e r e s e n s e d a pungent o d o r and h e a r d a s w i s h i n g sound that a p p e a r e d to be b e h i n d h i m . On l o o k i n g b a c k t o s e e what c o u l d b e m a k i n g t h i s n o i s e , h e s a w , h e s a y s , " a b a l l o f l i g h t n i n g , about the s i z e o f a m a n ' s h e a d , s t a r t i n g i n m y d i r e c t i o n . I d o d g e d d o w n a g a i n s t the p l o w , o r rung i n the p l o w h a n d l e s . The lightning s e e m e d to b u r s t b e t w e e n m e and the m u l e . I f e l t the j a r o f the p l o w a s i t w a s j a r r e d out o f the e a r t h , p e r h a p s s i x i n c h e s . One p l o w h a n d l e w a s s p l i t o f f and r e m a i n e d i n m y hand; the o t h e r handle w a s s p l i t but r e m a i n e d o n the p l o w . The mule f e l l t o i t s k n e e s , then s p r a n g u p and r a n a c r o s s t h e f i e l d . A s the m u l e s p r a n g t o i t s f e e t I f e l l t o the g r o u n d . I d i d not l o s e c o n s c i o u s n e s s , but c o u l d not r i s e at o n c e . I w a s s h o c k e d but not i n j u r e d in any w a y . " I h a v e o n e m o r e v a r i e t y o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g t o r e p o r t , but o n l y a s i n g l e o c c u r r e n c e o f i t h a s c o m e t o m y a t t e n t i o n , and I d o not k n o w h o w e v e n t o c l a s s i f y that, l e t a l o n e e x p l a i n i t . I t w a s d e s c r i b e d b y D r . J o s e p h S . A m e s , l o n g - t i m e p r o f e s s o r o f p h y s i c s a t the Johns H o p k i n s U n i v e r s i t y . I n h i s l e t t e r o f June 19, 1924, q u o t e d w i t h h i s e x p l i c i t p e r m i s s i o n , h e s a y s : " M r s . A m e s w a s s t a n d i n g o n a r u g d u r i n g a t h u n d e r s t o r m w i t h h e r hand a t h e r w a i s t , one f i n g e r m o r e o r l e s s e x t e n d e d . I w a s about f i v e f e e t a w a y and n o t i c e d the a i r b e t w e e n h e r f i n g e r and the f l o o r w a s q u i v e r i n g s o that i t l o o k e d j u s t l i k e the hot a i r o v e r a f i e l d . I n o t i c e d s o m e t h i n g r i s e s l o w l y f r o m the f l o o r u p t o w a r d s h e r f i n g e r and then t h e r e w a s f o r a n instant a s m a l l o b l o n g f i r e b a l l about the s i z e o f a p e c a n attached to h e r f i n g e r . I t w a s not v e r y b r i g h t and a p p e a r e d t o s h i n e t h r o u g h a haze. T h e r e c a m e a f l o o d o f l i g h t n i n g o u t s i d e and the f i r e b a l l d i s a p p e a r e d . "

Gl-69

GLB-060

B A L L LIGHTNING

T h e f o l l o w i n g w a s e x p e r i e n c e d by L e o n a r d B. L o e b , l a t e r a physicist, when he was 8-10 y e a r s o l d . T h e t o y b a l l o o n a n a l o g y i s found i n m a n y r e p o r t s o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g . " I t w a s d u r i n g a s u m m e r t h u n d e r s h o w e r i n S p r i n g f i e l d , M a s s a c h u s e t t s , and m u s t h a v e b e e n a r o u n d 1898 o r 1899. It w a s an afternoon thundershower, o c c u r r i n g , a s n e a r a s I can r e m e m b e r , b e t w e e n t h r e e and f i v e o ' c l o c k , p r o b a b l y a t about f o u r . T h e p h e n o m e n o n o c c u r r e d a t the b e g i n n i n g o f the s t o r m , that i s , a s the m a i n t h u n d e r c l o u d w a s a p p r o a c h i n g ; i t w a s a l r e a d y f a i r l y d a r k . I was i n d o o r s o n a c c o u n t o f the i m p e n d i n g s h o w e r and w a s o b s e r v i n g i t f r o m the front w i n d o w o f m y g r a n d f a t h e r ' s h o u s e . It o c c u r r e d coincident with a s t r i k i n g o f the l i g h t n i n g o n the c o r n i c e o r r o o f o f a h o u s e a c r o s s the s t r e e t and o n e o r t w o d o o r s up. I t p r e c e d e d the t h u n d e r c l a p and the f l a s h . A s I l o o k e d out of the w i n d o w I n o t i c e d a b a l l of what I w o u l d n o w d e s c r i b e as the c o l o r of active nitrogen or possibly slightly darker, as it seemed to m e , descending f r o m s o m e w h a t the d i r e c t i o n o f the n e i g h b o r ' s h o u s e i n a l i g h t g r a c e f u l c u r v e . I t s d i a m e t e r a p p e a r e d t o b e about d o u b l e that o f t h e t o y b a l l o o n s w h i c h o n e s e e s and i t s m o t i o n t h r o u g h the a i r w a s q u i t e a n a l o g o u s t o the m o t i o n o f the type of a i r - i n f l a t e d balloons which a r e used so frequently in m o d e r n dinner parties. I t had a t r a n s l a t o r y m o t i o n i n m y d i r e c t i o n and s e e m e d t o d e s c e n d d o w n a n i n c l i n e d p l a n e f r o m the a p p r o x i m a t e l o c a t i o n m e n t i o n e d . It appeared t o s t r i k e o n the l a w n , b o u n c e d s l i g h t l y o n c e and then d i s a p p e a r e d . I t s d i s appearance w a s f o l l o w e d , b e t t e r a c c o m p a n i e d , by a t r e m e n d o u s c l a p of thunder and f l a s h o f l i g h t n i n g w h i c h a p p e a r e d s i m u l t a n e o u s l y . T h i s w a s the f l a s h w h i c h s t r u c k the c o r n i c e . " T h e r e w a s n o v i s i b l e a f t e r e f f e c t and i t s o u t l i n e , s o f a r a s I r e m e m b e r , w a s m o r e o r l e s s i n d i s t i n c t , although i t w a s q u i t e s p h e r i c a l i n s h a p e . I n the q u e s t i o n o f the s h a r p n e s s o f o u t l i n e I a m n o l o n g e r d e f i n i t e l y c e r t a i n . As r e g a r d s the d i r e c t i o n o f the w i n d , I a m i n c l i n e d t o b e l i e v e that i t m i g h t h a v e f o l l o w e d the d i r e c t i o n o f the w i n d , although a t that p a r t i c u l a r t i m e the l u l l b e t w e e n the u p - d r a f t and the t h u n d e r s t o r m w i n d w a s o n . I t h a s b e e n m y i m p r e s s i o n , a s I h a v e thought o f i t i n l a t e r y e a r s , that the p h e n o m e n o n w a s c a u s e d b y s o m e t y p e o f i n t e n s e g l o w d i s c h a r g e c a u s e d b y the e f f e c t o f t h e f i e l d o f the a p p r o a c h i n g c l o u d o n the c o r n i c e o r s o m e p r o j e c t i n g a n g l e o f the b u i l d i n g . I t has b e e n m y i m p r e s s i o n i n thinking o f i t that the s o c a l l e d b a l l w a s i n t e r n a l l y i n r a p i d r o t a t i o n o f s o m e s o r t o r that t h e r e w a s a v o r t e x which g a v e i t i t s shape. T h e c o l o r w a s d e f i n i t e l y that o f a c t i v e n i t r o g e n , a s I h a v e s i n c e s e e n a c t i v e n i t r o g e n i n the l a b o r a t o r y . " I f u l l y c o n c u r in the s u p p o s i t i o n that t h i s p h e n o m e n o n w a s s t a r t e d by an i n t e n s e g l o w , o r b r u s h d i s c h a r g e , but s t r o n g l y s u s p e c t that i t s g r a c e f u l f a l l w a s the f a m i l i a r t r a v e l o f a n a f t e r i m a g e , and i t s b o u n c i n g just what any " b o r n " p h y s i c i s t w o u l d e x p e c t a b a l l t o d o and, i f i t w e r e a n a f t e r i m a g e , " s e e " it do. T h e c r a s h o f thunder d i s t r a c t e d a t t e n t i o n and the b a l l , d o u b t l e s s a l r e a d y fading, w a s lost to sight. I h a v e other s i m i l a r accounts of this v a r i e t y of ball lightning lightning s e e n end o n . One of them, a somewhat d e t a i l e d account by a man k i l l e d by this v a r i e t y of ball lightning, d e s e r v e s b e i n g quoted. Oh y e s , he c a m e to t w o o r t h r e e h o u r s l a t e r , but h e had g o n e t h r o u g h a l l the e x p e r i e n c e o f b e i n g k i l l e d , and d o u b t l e s s w o u l d h a v e b e e n b u r i e d w i t h o u t f u r t h e r c o n s c i o u s n e s s i f h e had not c o m e t o . T h e m a n i n q u e s t i o n i s M r . N e w t o n J . D o m i n y , p o s t m a s t e r a t D u b l i n , O h i o , w h o s e a c c o u n t i s d a t e d A u g u s t 18, 1 9 3 1 . H e s a y s the o c c u r r e n c e w a s about 4 m i l e s s o u t h w e s t o f D u b l i n , O h i o , i n A u g u s t 1896 and a t 11:45 p . m . T h e b a l l w h i c h m a d e a h i s s i n g r o a r and l e f t a s t r o n g o d o r o f b u r n i n g sulphur ( E f f e c t s , both o f t h e m , o b v i o u s l y o f the p r e c u r s o r y b r u s h d i s c h a r g e ) w a s f i e r y r e d , c h a n g i n g t o w h i t e , r o u n d and s e e m e d t o b e about a foot i n d i a m e t e r .

Gl-70

BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-061

H e f u r t h e r s t a t e s that h e w a s d r i v i n g a h o r s e and b u g g y i n d a r k n e s s that w a s pitch black, s a v e only as r e l i e v e d by frequent lightning, when suddenly this ball appeared with a streak of f i r e behind it. T h e r e w a s a hissing noise (due, p r e s u m a b l y , t o a p r e c u r s o r y b r u s h d i s c h a r g e , a s e x p l a i n e d a b o v e ) and t h e n suddenly the b a l l hit the left f o r e w h e e l of the b u g g y , knocking h i m , b u g g y , and h o r s e i n t o a d i t c h a l o n g t h e r o a d f e n c e . T h e h o r s e w a s thrown on her b a c k , t h e h a r n e s s b r o k e n , t h e w h e e l s t r u c k t o r n o f f , and a l l i t s s p o k e s e x c e p t t h r e e j e r k e d out o f t h e hub, and t h e y out o f t h e f e l l y . He r e m a i n e d in the b u g g y , h i p s o n t h e s e a t , b o d y b e n t f o r w a r d b e t w e e n h i s l e g s , and t o p o f h e a d on the foot r e s t on the f l o o r . H e r e h e r e m a i n e d u n c o n s c i o u s t w o and a h a l f hours. T h e h o r s e , s t i l l o n h e r b a c k , f i n a l l y w a s g o t t e n u p but s e e m e d d a z e d f o r d a y s a f t e r w a r d s , and f r o m that t i m e o n a f r a i d o f l i g h t n i n g . T h e m o s t s p e c t a c u l a r d i s p l a y o f t h e b r u s h d i s c h a r g e that h a s c o m e t o m y a t t e n t i o n o c c u r r e d i n J a n u a r y 1 9 2 4 , o n t h e r i d g e o f a b a r n s o m e 200 f e e t a w a y f r o m t h e o b s e r v e r s , d i r e c t l y a c r o s s a r o a d and p a r a l l e l t h e r e t o . The followi n g account, w r i t t e n o n D e c e m b e r 1 6 o f the s a m e y e a r , kindly w a s sent t o m e b y one o f the e y e w i t n e s s e s , M r s . R . G i l c h r i s t . " A t s i x o ' c l o c k a . m . M r . G i l c h r i s t o b s e r v e d a l i g h t that a p p e a r e d t o b e r e f l e c t e d f r o m t h e b a r n t h r o u g h o u r w i n d o w and r e m a r k e d that a c a r m i g h t b e coming. H o w e v e r , a s the l i g h t p e r s i s t e d I a r o s e and s t e p p e d t o t h e w i n d o w w h e r e m y e y e s w e r e hurt b y the g l a r e . I i m m e d i a t e l y rushed t o the phone t o i n f o r m t h e o w n e r o f the b a r n that i t w a s o n f i r e , but i n p a s s i n g the l a r g e b a y w i n d o w i n t h e l i v i n g r o o m I w a s s o a t t r a c t e d b y t h e l i g h t that I l o o k e d a t i t a g a i n and t h e n s a w that i n s t e a d o f t h e b a r n b e i n g a b l a z e t h e r e w e r e b a l l s o f f i r e atop the r o o f . M r . G i l c h r i s t and o u r a d o p t e d s o n E d w a r d w e r e t h e r e b y t h i s t i m e and w e a l l g a z e d i n a s t o n i s h m e n t a t t h e w o n d e r f u l s p e c t a c l e . " T h e r e w e r e six incandescent globes or disks or hemispheres, it is i m p o s s i b l e t o s t a t e e x a c t l y w h i c h , u p o n t h e r i d g e o f t h e b a r n , s e e m i n g l y about t h r e e f e e t i n d i a m e t e r and s p a c e d e x a c t l y e v e n w i t h a d i s t a n c e o f s i x i n c h e s b e t w e e n their edges f o r a distance of four r o d s around the barn e v e r y t h i n g w a s c l e a r ly illuminated. " E d w a r d then c a l l e d o u r r a p t attention to the d i s k on the north end of the b a r n w i t h t h e e x c l a m a t i o n : ' I t ' s f a l l i n g ! ' S u r e e n o u g h i t d i d f a l l , l e a v i n g the r i d g e w i t h a s o r t o f j u m p and l a n d i n g , w i t h o u t l o s s o f b r i l l i a n c e , h a l f w a y d o w n t h e r o o f , t h e n b o u n c i n g f r o m t h e r e o v e r t h e e a v e and d i s a p p e a r i n g b e f o r e r e a c h ing the ground. I m m e d i a t e l y u p o n t h e e x t i n c t i o n o f t h e f i r s t l i g h t the s e c o n d d i s k s t a r t e d t o f a l l , and t h e n t h e r e s t , o n e a f t e r a n o t h e r , i n e x a c t l y t h e s a m e way at r e g u l a r i n t e r v a l s . A b r u p t l y as the l a s t one d i s a p p e a r e d the light around the b a r n v a n i s h e d and all w a s again d a r k . I a t o n c e l o o k e d a t t h e s k y and s a w i t w a s e x c e p t i o n a l l y c l e a r , w i t h n o c l o u d s and t h e s t a r s v e r y b r i l l i a n t . An inv e s t i g a t i o n i n t h e m o r n i n g s h o w e d that n o t h i n g had b e e n d i s t u r b e d and that t h e r e w e r e n o s i g n s o f a n y t h i n g out o f t h e o r d i n a r y h a v i n g t a k e n p l a c e . "

GLB-061
Marsh, O.

G L O B U L A R LIGHTNING
C; Nature, 53:152, D e c e m b e r 1895.

O n T u e s d a y , J u l y 2 3 , 1878, I w a s o n b o a r d a l a r g e y a c h t a t a n c h o r i n t h e harbour of Southampton, England. A b o u t t w o o ' c l o c k i n the afternoon, when w e w e r e a b o u t t o s a i l , a v i o l e n t t h u n d e r s t o r m c a m e u p f r o m t h e w e s t , and a s it p a s s e d o v e r Southampton, s e v e r a l b o l t s d e s c e n d e d , one of which, as I afterwards learned, struck a church. As the f i r s t d r o p s of r a i n c a m e down

Gl-71

GLB-062

B A L L LIGHTNING

o n the y a c h t , I w a s standing i n the a f t e r - c o m p a n i o n w a y , l o o k i n g f o r w a r d , when m y a t t e n t i o n w a s a t t r a c t e d b y a b r i g h t l i g h t a p p a r e n t l y n e a r the u p p e r p a r t o f the f o r e m a s t . W h e n I f i r s t s a w i t d i s t i n c t l y , i t w a s about h a l f - m a s t h i g h , and w a s f a l l i n g s l o w l y and d i r e c t l y t o w a r d the d e c k . This light w a s a b a l l o f f i r e , a d e l i c a t e r o s e - p i n k i n c o l o u r , p e a r - s h a p e d i n f o r m , w i t h the l a r g e e n d b e l o w , and a p p e a r e d t o b e f o u r o r f i v e i n c h e s i n d i a m e t e r and s i x or eight inches in length. W h e n i t s t r u c k the d e c k , about f o r t y f e e t f r o m w h e r e I w a s standing, t h e r e w a s a l o u d e x p l o s i o n , and i t w a s s o m e m i n u t e s b e f o r e i t c o u l d b e a s c e r t a i n e d what d a m a g e had r e s u l t e d . T h e m a t e , w h o s t o o d n e a r the m a i n m a s t , about t w e n t y - f i v e f e e t f r o m w h e r e I w a s , w a s k n o c k e d d o w n , but soon r e c o v e r e d . T h e s a m e b o l t , o r p a r t o f i t , a l s o p a s s e d i n f r o n t o f the f o r e m a s t , d o w n a w i n d s a i l v e n t i l a t o r , i n t o the g a l l e r y , w h e r e i t k n o c k e d a l a r g e tin pan f r o m the hands of a c o o k , and upset t h i n g s g e n e r a l l y t h r o u g h o u t the c u l i n a r y d e p a r t m e n t , but i n j u r e d n o one s e r i o u s l y . O f the c r e w , s o m e w e r e o n d e c k , and o t h e r s b e l o w , but none w e r e r e a l l y i n j u r e d , although a f e w w e r e b a d l y demoralised. A strong o z o n e - l i k e odour w a s o b s e r v e d i m m e d i a t e l y after the e x p l o s i o n , and t h i s r e m a i n e d p e r c e p t i b l e f o r s o m e t i m e . T h e o f f i c e r i n c h a r g e o f the y a c h t , C a p t a i n M a t t h e w s , w h o w a s f o r w a r d a t the t i m e , and e s c a p e d without i n j u r y , s t a t e d that j u s t a f t e r the s t r o k e , h e s a w " s t r e a k s o f l i g h t n i n g running around o n d e c k l i k e s n a k e s . " I w a s m y s e l f o n l y d a z e d f o r a m o m e n t b y the e x p l o s i o n , and s a w d i s t i n c t l y that the d e c k f o r w a r d w a s i l l u m i n a t e d with a bright confused l i g h t . T h e o w n e r o f the y a c h t , G e o r g e P e a b o d y R u s s e l l , and h i s o t h e r g u e s t s , had g o n e b e l o w w h e n the s t o r m b e g a n , and s u f f e r e d n o i n j u r y , e x c e p t p o s s i b l y f r o m f r i g h t , a s they w e r e s t i l l f u r t h e r a w a y f r o m the s t r o k e .

GLB-062

BALL LIGHTNING

A n o n y m o u s ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 33:409, N o v e m b e r 1905. The following letter was from M r s . A. E. Russell, of Paducah, Kentucky.

My n i e c e and I w e r e s i t t i n g ' i n my front hall on July 16, 1905, w h e n suddenly, without w a r n i n g , what s e e m e d l i k e a b i g b a l l o f f i r e p a s s e d b e t w e e n o u r h e a d s . M y n i e c e ' s head w a s not distant m o r e than s i x i n c h e s f r o m o u r t e l e p h o n e b o x . She e x p e r i e n c e d no s h o c k , w h i l e I w a s b l i n d e d by it f o r h a l f a m i n u t e . T h e front and b a c k h a l l d o o r s w e r e s c r e e n e d but t h e y s h o w e d n o s i g n o f any lightning having touched them. A t r e e i n the b a c k y a r d about ten y a r d s f r o m the b a c k h a l l d o o r had a round h o l e m a d e in the b a r k w i t h a dent in the w o o d just a s i f a cannon b a l l had b e e n shot a g a i n s t i t . T h e t h r e e h o r s e s standing n e a r the t r e e w e r e k n o c k e d d o w n ; the h o r s e standing i n a s t r a i g h t l i n e b e t w e e n the t r e e and the h o u s e s e e m e d d e a d f o r a l o n g w h i l e . M y n i e c e s a y s that t h e r e had b e e n a l o w r u m b l i n g n o i s e o f thunder just p r e v i o u s to the l i g h t n i n g , but I did not h e a r it. A n e i g h b o r w h o had l e f t my h o u s e t w o m i n u t e s b e f o r e and w a s o n the r o a d s a y s s h e h e a r d n o thunder and s a w n o l i g h t n i n g until suddenly a t e r r i f i c e x p l o s i o n s e e m e d t o o c c u r just o v e r h e r h e a d ; she w a s b l i n d e d and s a w nothing m o r e . I h a v e w i t n e s s e d the l i g h t n i n g s t r i k e t r e e s t h r e e t i m e s o n o u r f r o n t l a w n , but I n e v e r b e f o r e saw a ball of f i r e .

Gl-72

BALL LIGHTNING
GLB-063
Seyhoth,

GLB-063

AN INSTANCE OF B A L L LIGHTNING AT SEA
R o b e r t ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 2 9 : 2 4 9 - 2 5 0 , June 1901.

T h e s u m m e r o f 1867 found m e , t h e n a m e r e b o y , a b o a r d t h e N e w B e d f o r d w h a l i n g b a r k O r r a y T a f t , outbound f r o m t h e d e s o l a t e h a r b o r o f M a r b l e I s l a n d , i n t h e n o r t h w e s t e r n c o r n e r o f H u d s o n B a y , w h e r e t h e v e s s e l had w i n t e r e d i n t h e i c e f r o m S e p t e m b e r u n t i l J u n e , and w h e n c e s h e h a d r e s u m e d h e r c r u i s e i n A r c t i c w a t e r s a f t e r " b l u b b e r and b o n e . " O n t h e n i g h t o f June 3 0 t o J u l y 1 t h e b a r k e n c o u n t e r e d a g e n u i n e h u r r i c a n e , w i t h t h e ( f o r t h e l a t i t u d e ) unusual phenomenon of a v i o l e n t t h u n d e r s t o r m . A r o c k - b o u n d l e e s h o r e and t h e p r e s e n c e of floe i c e in l a r g e quantities, with an occasional b e r g , n e c e s s i tated the c a r r y i n g o f all the sail p o s s i b l e , i n o r d e r t o " c l a w o f f " f r o m the r o c k s o n t h e o n e h a n d , and s t e e r c l e a r o f t h e m a d l y h e a v i n g and t u m b l i n g i c e m a s s e s on the other. A t about 2 a . m . w i n d and r a i n c e a s e d w i t h s t a r t l i n g s u d d e n n e s s , and t h e s k y s h o w e d s i g n s o f c l e a r i n g , t h o u g h a p o r t e n t o u s c u m u l u s c l o u d o r " t h u n d e r h e a d " s t i l l hung l o w o v e r the t r o u b l e d w a t e r s . T h e sudden c e s s a t i o n o f the u p r o a r , t o g e t h e r with the v i o l e n t p i t c h i n g and r o l l i n g o f t h e s h i p , b r o u g h t t h e c a p t a i n t o t h e c o m p a n i o n h a t c h , w h e n c e h e s h o u t e d t h e e m p h a t i c o r d e r "Stand b y t o w e a r s h i p , " a d d i n g , s o m e w h a t p r o f a n e l y , " W e ' l l catch h— p r e s e n t l y f r o m the opposite q u a r t e r . " Inured a s t h e c r e w o f a w h a l e r i s s u r e t o b e c o m e t o u n u s u a l and c r i t i c a l s i t u a t i o n s , and a p a t h e t i c a s t h e w r i t e r f e l t t o t h e p e r i l o f t h e p r e s e n t o n e , h e n e v e r t h e l e s s had a d i s t i n c t l y uncanny sensation at this sudden t r a n s i t i o n f r o m h o w l i n g h u r r i c a n e to dead c a l m , a s s o c i a t e d with a l a r g e d e g r e e of s k e p t i c i s m at the c a p t a i n ' s a s s u r a n c e i n p r e d i c t i n g and p r e p a r i n g f o r a s t i l l m o r e v i o l e n t c h a n g e t o c o m e ; f o r h e had n e v e r b e f o r e p a s s e d through the c e n t e r o f a c y c l o n e , and h i s t h e o r e t i c a l k n o w l e d g e o f t h e l a w s o f s t o r m s w a s d e c i d e d l y limited. But t h e m a n o r b o y w h o , a b o a r d a w h a l e r , w o u l d l e t s k e p t i c i s m stand in the w a y of his p r o m p t c o m p l i a n c e with an o r d e r f r o m the captain w o u l d f i n d h i s b e r t h a n e x c e e d i n g l y u n h e a l t h y o n e , and w o u l d m o s t l i k e l y h a v e c a u s e t o r e g r e t the day o f his b i r t h ; s o a l l hands rushed t o t h e i r p r o p e r s t a t i o n s , t o " s t a n d b y and haul, " a s and w h e n d i r e c t e d . Happening to s e c u r e the u p p e r hold o n the f o r e - t o p s a i l b r a c e , the w r i t e r f a c i n g s t e r n w a r d , a g a i n n o t i c e d the e v i l - l o o k i n g thunderhead a p p a r e n t l y but a f e w y a r d s a b o v e t h e m i z z e n truck, and, w h i l e w a i t i n g i n s i l e n t e x p e c t a n c y f o r the things t o c o m e , s a w a b a l l o f f i r e , t h e s i z e o f a m a n ' s h e a d , d e t a c h i t s e l f f r o m t h e c l o u d and sail q u i t e l e i s u r e l y to the m i z z e n truck, s t r i k i n g w h i c h it e x p l o d e d w i t h a d e a f e n i n g c r a s h and s e n t a s h o w e r o f h i s s i n g s p a r k s o v e r r i g g i n g and d e c k . O f the i m m e d i a t e c o n s e q u e n c e s , s a v e one, the w r i t e r can only speak f r o m hearsay. W h e n h e r e g a i n e d c o n s c i o u s n e s s h e found h i m s e l f s i t t i n g , p r o p p e d up a g a i n s t the w e a t h e r s i d e of the m a i n m a s t , p a r a l y z e d in the r i g h t half of h i s b o d y , and h i s s h i p m a t e s b u s i l y e n g a g e d , s o m e i n c l e a r i n g a w a y t h e w r e c k a g e of the shattered m i z z e n m a s t , o t h e r s in sounding the pump to d i s c o v e r w h e t h e r o r n o t t h e b o l t had k n o c k e d a h o l e i n t h e v e s s e l ' s b o t t o m . The l a t t e r c a l a m i t y w a s p r o b a b l y a v e r t e d b y t h e f a c t that the l i g h t n i n g had found an e a s i e r e s c a p e to the w a t e r by w a y of the a n c h o r chains through the h a w s e p i p e s , a s b o t h a n c h o r s had b e e n m a d e r e a d y t o l e t d r o p i n c a s e o f t h e v e s s e l ' s i n a b i l i t y t o w e a t h e r the r o c k s . T h e o n e e x c e p t i o n a b o v e n o t e d , and w h i c h h e h a s a c c e p t e d a s a p r o o f that t h e v e l o c i t y o f t h o u g h t i s g r e a t e r than that o f l i g h t n i n g , w a s h i s d i s t i n c t r e a l i z a t i o n , a t t h e c r i t i c a l m o m e n t , that h e had b e e n s t r u c k b y l i g h t n i n g and w a s b e i n g h u r l e d t o t h e d e c k , t h o u g h c o n s c i o u s ness failed h i m b e f o r e he struck it. H e a l s o had t i m e t o f o r m u l a t e t h e t h o u g h t , " W e l l , i t i s a l l o v e r w i t h y o u t h i s t i m e , " and f e e l r a t h e r g r a t i f i e d a t t h e

Gl-73

GLB-064

B A L L LIGHTNING

supposed fact. T h e r e w a s a b s o l u t e l y n o p a i n f e l t , not e v e n a n u n p l e a s a n t s e n s a t i o n ; o n t h e c o n t r a r y , h e s e e m e d t o sink i n t o a n a g r e e a b l y r e s t f u l p o s i t i o n though, a c c o r d i n g t o h i s s h i p m a t e s ' s t a t e m e n t s , h e w a s h u r l e d w i t h g r e a t v i o l e n c e i n t o the l e e s c u p p e r s . O f the o t h e r m e n o n d e c k , e s p e c i a l l y t h o s e h a v i n g h o l d o f the b r a c e , e v e r y o n e w a s m o r e o r l e s s s h o c k e d , but none were rendered insensible. T h e w r i t e r ' s u p p e r m o s t h o l d o n the r o p e had e v i d e n t l y d e f l e c t e d the g r e a t e r p a r t o f the c h a r g e t h r o u g h h i s b o d y . The paralysis of his right side was gradually succeeded by a prickling, tingling s e n s a t i o n , and the m o v e m e n t o f h i s l i m b s had a g a i n b e c o m e p o s s i b l e b y the t i m e the w a t c h w a s t o l d t o g o b e l o w . H i s f o r m e r s k e p t i c i s m o f the c a p t a i n ' s p r o g n o s t i c a t i o n had t o b e atoned f o r b y a m e n t a l a p o l o g y , f o r the h u r r i c a n e b e g a n w i t h i n c r e a s e d f u r y , and f r o m the o p p o s i t e q u a r t e r , a l m o s t i m m e d i a t e l y a f t e r the l i g h t n i n g had s t r u c k the m a s t . One r a t h e r a m u s i n g s t o r y w a s t o l d o f t h e t h i r d m a t e , w h o s e s t a t i o n i n w e a r i n g ship w a s f o r w a r d o f the w i n d l a s s . Standing i n s i d e o f a b i g c o i l o f the a n c h o r c h a i n , a l o n g w h i c h t h e l i g h t n i n g f l e w s o that i t l o o k e d l i k e a h u g e f i e r y s e r p e n t , the m a t e w a s s a i d t o h a v e b e e n s w i f t l y t u r n e d around h i s own a x i s a n u m b e r o f t i m e s , l o o k i n g m o r e l i k e a d a n c i n g d e r v i s h than a g r i m o l d t a r , w h i l e t h e l i g h t n i n g f o l l o w e d t h e c o n v o l u t i o n s o f the c o i l . W h e n h e had r e g a i n e d h i s b r e a t h , t h e p r o f a n i t y o f the v e t e r a n w h a l e m a n w a s s a i d t o h a v e b o r d e r e d o n the s u b l i m e . F o r other appearances o f ball lightning during c a l m interludes, G L B - 0 2 8 , and G L B - 0 5 6 . see GLB-003,

GLB-064

BALL LIGHTNING AT ALPENA, MICHIGAN

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 126:153, July 26, 1930. A u g u s t 1, 1907. B a l l L i g h t n i n g at A l p e n a , M i c h i g a n . On A u g u s t 1, 1907, d u r i n g a h e a v y s h o w e r w i t h thunder and l i g h t n i n g , a b a l l of l i g h t n i n g about s i x to eight inches in d i a m e t e r entered a house. I t d r o p p e d l i g h t l y o n t o the f l o o r , m o v e d round the r o o m i n c i r c l e s , then e n t e r i n g the w a l l , m o v e d u p i n s i d e i t and c a m e out a f e w f e e t a b o v e t h e w i n d o w . A four-inch brace was splintered and m u c h p l a s t e r w a s f o r c e d i n t o the r o o m . T h e b a l l then t r a v e l l e d a c r o s s the r o o m a g a i n and out o f the o t h e r w a l l , m a k i n g a r a g g e d h o l e . I t s t r u c k into the e a r t h about 30 f e e t f r o m the h o u s e , l e a v i n g a h o l e about 6 i n c h e s w i d e and a f e w i n c h e s d e e p .

GLB-065

[DESCENT OF BALL LIGHTNING]
24:476, S e p t e m b e r 15, 1 8 8 1 .

Anonymous; Nature,

A t a r e c e n t m e e t i n g o f the B a n b u r y s h i r e N a t u r a l H i s t o r y S o c i e t y M r . E . A . W a l f o r d r e a d a note " O n the O c c u r r e n c e o f a F i r e - b a l l a t W a t e r g a l l " o n August 2 3 . I n a n s w e r t o M r . W a l f o r d ' s q u e r i e s , M r . F e s s e y , j u n . , had sent a n account a s f o l l o w s , d a t e d " W a t e r g a l l , L e a m i n g t o n , A u g u s t 30: A s r e g a r d s the f i r e - b a l l , I w a s about 200 y a r d s f r o m i t , i n a w a g g o n h o v e l . I s a w i t d i r e c t l y i t l e f t the s k y , a s I w a s l o o k i n g i n that d i r e c t i o n a t the t i m e . When I first saw it, i t l o o k e d l i k e a b a l l o f f i r e , about a s l a r g e a s a d i n n e r - p l a t e . I t s l o w l y d e s c e n d -

Gl-74

BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-067

e d , and I h a v e n o doubt I c o u l d h a v e run t w e n t y y a r d s f r o m the t i m e I f i r s t s a w i t until i t s t r u c k the g r o u n d ; but w h e n about f i f t e e n t o e i g h t e e n f e e t f r o m the g r o u n d , it e x p l o d e d w i t h a l o u d c r a s h , q u i t e as l o u d as a cannon, d i s t i n c t l y b e f o r e the t h u n d e r , w h i c h w a s v e r y l o u d a l s o . T h e e x p l o s i o n shook the w h o l e b u i l d i n g . I c e r t a i n l y thought the s l a t e s w e r e f a l l i n g i n , but w h e n i t e x p l o d e d o n e p a r t s t r u c k t h e h e d g e , m a k i n g a h o l e in the g r o u n d about a f o o t d e e p , and l a y i n g a l l the r o o t s b a r e , but not d a m a g i n g t h e m . F o r s o m e t i m e the p l a c e l o o k e d a l l o n f i r e , and t h e r e w a s a c o n s i d e r a b l e quantity o f s m o k e w h e n i t hit the g r o u n d , l a s t i n g f o r a s e c o n d o r t w o . I t w a s s e e n b y m y s e l f and f o u r m e n . T h e y a l s o a g r e e w i t h m e that t h i s i s a s n e a r a s p o s s i b l e a c o r r e c t e x p l a n a t i o n of it. W e dug t h e h o l e out y e s t e r d a y , but found n o t h i n g . The soil was blackened f o r s e v e r a l i n c h e s d e e p . "

GLB-066
Tennant,

A FIREBALL
John; N a t u r e , 24:285, July 2 8 , 1881.

On W e d n e s d a y the 20th ult. , about m i d n i g h t , a h o u s e at M o n t D o r e , in the A u v e r g n e , was destroyed by a fireball during a s e v e r e thunderstorm. My b r o t h e r , w h o h a s l a t e l y a r r i v e d f r o m t h e n c e , d i d not s e e the b a l l h i m s e l f , but his v a l e t , an intelligent Italian, saw it distinctly. He d e s c r i b e s it as a globe o f f i r e about h a l f a m e t r e i n d i a m e t e r , w h i c h a p p r o a c h e d the h o u s e o b l i q u e l y , s e e m i n g t o p a s s o v e r a d i s t a n c e o f 200 m e t r e s i n about h a l f a m i n u t e . It e n t e r e d the d o o r o f the h o u s e and t h e r e b u r s t . M y b r o t h e r h e a r d the e x p l o s i o n as w e l l as h i s v a l e t , and d e s c r i b e s it as a dull thud l i k e that of a s m o t h e r e d blast. T h e h o u s e , w h i c h w a s a w o o d e n o n e , w a s s e t o n f i r e , a c h i l d burnt t o death, and a n o t h e r i n m a t e s e r i o u s l y , i f not m o r t a l l y , i n j u r e d . S e v e r a l inhabitants o f M o n t D o r e a r e s a i d b y the v a l e t t o h a v e s e e n the b a l l , one o f w h o m l i v e d i n the a d j a c e n t h o u s e .

GLB-067

BALL LIGHTNING

B o t l e y , C i c e l y M. ; N a t u r e , 126: 919, D e c e m b e r 13, 1930. The f o l l o w i n g c a s e h i s t o r y was quoted f r o m F l a m m a r i o n , probably his book Thunder and L i g h t n i n g . D u r i n g a s t o r m a t B e u g n o n ( D e p a r t e m e n t D e u x - S e v r e s , F r a n c e ) about t h e y e a r 1904, a g l o b e a p p r o a c h e d the d o o r o f a c a t t l e - s h e d w h e r e w e r e s h e l t e r i n g t w o children. " O n e o f the c h i l d r e n had the c o u r a g e t o t o u c h i t w i t h h i s f o o t ; i m m e d i a t e l y a f r i g h t f u l d e t o n a t i o n shook the w a l l s o f the f a r m , the t w o c h i l d r e n w e r e t h r o w n t o the g r o u n d , without any wound, but e l e v e n h e a d o f c a t t l e w e r e k i l l e d i n the s t a b l e . T h i s c a s e s u p p o r t s the o l d t a l e that b a l l l i g h t n i n g , d a n g e r o u s t o a n i m a l s than t o h u m a n s . indeed, all lightning, is m o r e

Gl-75

GLB-068
GLB-068

B A L L LIGHTNING

FIREBALL

C o c k i n g , A n n i e ; N a t u r e , 30:269, July 17, 1884. [ A u t u m n , 1881; C h i s w i c k , E n g l a n d ] T h e s t o r m had l a s t e d s o m e t i m e , and I sat r e a d i n g a l i t t l e b a c k f r o m a n o p e n w i n d o w but f a c i n g i t . Suddenly i t b e c a m e so d a r k that I c o u l d no l o n g e r s e e . I d r o p p e d my b o o k and l o o k e d out. A b a l l o f f i r e w a s p a s s i n g t h r o u g h the w i n d o w i n t o t h e r o o m . I t m o v e d v e r y s l o w l y o n w a r d s and d o w n w a r d s t o w a r d s m e , and b e c a m e a l m o s t s t a t i o n a r y o v e r m y book. A t f i r s t I thought i t r e s t e d upon i t , "but I s o o n s a w i t w a s m o v i n g s l o w l y across. H a v i n g p a s s e d o v e r the b o o k , i t t u r n e d i n t h e d i r e c t i o n o f m y hand, p a u s e d j u s t b e n e a t h i t , and then sank t o w a r d s t h e c a r p e t . A t t h i s i n s t a n t a p e a l o f thunder c r a s h e d o v e r the h o u s e — i t w a s t h e v e r y l o u d e s t I h a v e e v e r heard.

GLB-069

BALL LIGHTNING

T a l m a n , C h a r l e s F . ; A m e r i c a n M e r c u r y , 2 6 : 6 9 - 7 2 , M a y 1932. T h i s a r t i c l e i n A m e r i c a n M e r c u r y r e v i e w s the g e n e r a l a s p e c t s o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g and g o e s on to recount s o m e interesting c a s e h i s t o r i e s , four of which a r e reproduced below. D r . L . B . T u c k e r m a n , o f the U n i t e d S t a t e s B u r e a u o f S t a n d a r d s , r e p o r t s a c a s e that o c c u r r e d m a n y y e a r s a g o i n O h i o . S o m e m e n w h o had t a k e n s h e l t e r i n a b a r n d u r i n g a t h u n d e r s h o w e r w e r e l o o k i n g a c r o s s the b a r n y a r d t o w a r d a n o r c h a r d w h e r e p i g s w e r e a l l o w e d t o run, w h e n t h e y s a w a b a l l o f f i r e f a l l f r o m aloft and r o l l s l o w l y o v e r the g r o u n d . One o f the p i g s t r o t t e d u p t o the b a l l and began to nose it. A m o m e n t l a t e r the b a l l e x p l o d e d and the i n q u i s i t i v e p o r k e r fell o v e r as if dead. T h e m e n w a l k e d a c r o s s the y a r d t o e x a m i n e the s u p p o s e d l y l i f e l e s s a n i m a l , but b e f o r e t h e y r e a c h e d h i m h e s t a g g e r e d u p and r a n o f f full t i l t , s q u e a l i n g a t the t o p o f h i s l u n g s . M i s s S a r a E . B r a n h a m , a s e n i o r b a c t e r i o l o g i s t i n the P u b l i c H e a l t h S e r v i c e , r e p o r t s a personal e x p e r i e n c e of her childhood days in G e o r g i a . She w a s o n e o f a g r o u p o f c h i l d r e n a s s e m b l e d d u r i n g a t h u n d e r s t o r m i n the l o n g h a l l running t h r o u g h the c e n t e r o f a c o u n t r y h o u s e . M i s s B r a n h a m ' s aunt w a s r e a d i n g a s t o r y t o the y o u n g s t e r s , w h e n a s h a r p c l i c k a t t r a c t e d t h e i r attention and t h e y s a w a s m a l l g l o w i n g b a l l e n t e r the f r o n t d o o r . I t f l o a t e d t h r o u g h the e n t i r e l e n g t h o f the h a l l , m o v i n g i n j e r k s and s o s l o w l y that o n e o f the l i t t l e b o y s r o s e f r o m h i s s e a t and s n a t c h e d a t i t , but m i s s e d i t . A strong s m e l l , probably of o z o n e , attended its p a s s a g e . L e a v i n g by the back d o o r , it apparently struck a t r e e a f e w y a r d s a w a y and d i s a p p e a r e d . T h e t r e e w a s not i n j u r e d . T h e r e c o r d s i n d i c a t e that b a l l l i g h t n i n g m a y s t r i k e a n a n i m a t e o r i n a n i m a t e o b j e c t w i t h o u t l e a v i n g the s l i g h t e s t t r a c e , o r , o n the o t h e r hand, m a y cause great mischief. In a c a s e r e p o r t e d to D r . Humphreys f r o m Kentucky a b o y w a s s t a n d i n g in a d o o r w a y w a t c h i n g a t h u n d e r s t o r m , when a s m a l l b a l l of fire suddenly darted at h i m . H e t u r n e d t o run, but the b a l l l i g h t e d o n o n e o f h i s f i n g e r s and then v a n i s h e d . I t l e f t n o m a r k , but h i s f i n g e r r e m a i n e d numb for some time. A c a s e in which s e v e r a l b a l l s w e r e o b s e r v e d at one t i m e is r e p o r t e d by D r . C . G . R . Jennings, o f G l e n o r a , N e w Y o r k . H e w r i t e s : Fifty y e a r s a g o , when I w a s a m e d i c a l student, I w a s w a l k i n g h o m e j u s t at dusk d u r i n g an e v e n i n g of

Gl-76

BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-071

thunderstormy weather. T h e a i r w a s s u l t r y and t h e r e w e r e f l a s h e s o f h e a t lightning on the h o r i z o n . W h e n I c a m e to what we c a l l e d in N e w England the v i l l a g e g r e e n , I saw a r e m a r k a b l e exhibition of what I assumed to be static e l e c tricity. T h e r e w e r e s o m e t w e l v e o r m o r e round b a l l s o f l u m i n e s c e n c e b o u n c i n g around in the m o s t undisciplined m a n n e r in all d i r e c t i o n s . They would a p p a r e n t l y s t r i k e t h e g r o u n d , t h e n b o u n c e u p i n t o t h e a i r i n t h e l i g h t e s t and m o s t buoyant fashion. T h e y l o o k e d t o b e about the s i z e o f a f o o t b a l l . S i m i l a r c a s e s with m u l t i p l e s p h e r e s "bouncing" i n the a i r l i k e toy b a l l o o n s a r e r e ported i n section G L D because they r e s e m b l e s o m e e l e c t r i c d i s c h a r g e phenomena.

GLB-070

FIREBALLS
1884.

M i l l a r , W . J . ; N a t u r e , 30:312, J u l y 3 1 ,

I n r e f e r e n c e t o the p h e n o m e n a o f f i r e b a l l s the f o l l o w i n g notes m a y b e o f interest. L a s t y e a r , in July, I w a s r e s i d i n g on Naphill C o m m o n , Buckinghamshire. About midday, during my absence at Oxford, a violent thunders t o r m b r o k e o v e r t h e d i s t r i c t , and a p p e a r e d t o e x t e n d f r o m O x f o r d t o L o n d o n . O n r e t u r n i n g I f o u n d that t h e h o u s e had b e e n s t r u c k b y l i g h t n i n g , a p p a r e n t l y in two places. O n e c h i m n e y w a s knocked i n through the r o o f , the d e b r i s partly filling up my room. T h e kitchen c h i m n e y had also been v i s i t e d , the l i g h t n i n g b r e a k i n g s o m e o f t h e b r i c k w o r k o f t h e h e a r t h , and p a s s i n g a p e r s o n c o o k i n g a t t h e f i r e ; t w o o r t h r e e o t h e r s w e r e i n t h e h o u s e a t t h e t i m e , but n o o n e w a s hurt. O n c a r e f u l l y e x a m i n i n g t h e m a r k s l e f t , I found that a d o o r i n a r o o m a d j o i n i n g t h e o n e a b o v e - m e n t i o n e d had b e e n s p l i t , and s o m e i r o n k n o b s k n o c k e d o f f and b r o k e n , t h e s c r e w n a i l s b e i n g r e m o v e d out o f t h e w o o d , and a l a r g e h o l e s e v e r a l f e e t s q u a r e m a d e i n t h e s i d e o f t h e h o u s e . From e x a m i n a t i o n of the outside of the w a l l at the foot of the kitchen c h i m n e y , the b r i c k s s h o w e d d i s p l a c e m e n t o p p o s i t e the m a r k s i n s i d e at the hearth. I b e l i e v e a t r e e w a s s t r u c k , and a w a t e r - t r a p o r c e s s p o o l s h i f t e d out o f p o s i tion. S o m e m e n u s i n g a r e a p i n g m a c h i n e i n a n e i g h b o u r i n g f i e l d s t a t e d that t h e y k n e w t h e s t o r m w a s c o m i n g b y t h e f i r e p l a y i n g about t h e b l a d e s o f t h e machine. A b o y w h o had b e e n n e a r a t t h e t i m e s a i d that h e s a w a l a r g e b a l l o f f i r e fall o n the h o u s e , w h i c h i t s e e m e d t o e n t e r ; i t then r e a p p e a r e d , and p a s s e d into the m e a d o w . I t h e r e f o r e t h i n k i t l i k e l y that t h e d a m a g e d o n e t o t h e r o o m s and s i d e o f h o u s e w a s d u e t o t h e e l e c t r i c d e v e l o p m e n t c a l l e d a fireball.

GLB-071

B A L L LIGHTNING
46:177, January 25, 1913.

Anonymous; Literary Digest,

A s i n g u l a r instance of what s e e m s to h a v e b e e n g l o b u l a r or " b a l l " l i g h t n i n g i s r e p o r t e d i n the F r e n c h scientific p a p e r s . According to Ciel et T e r r e , to w h i c h a d e s c r i p t i o n o f the p h e n o m e n o n i s c o n t r i b u t e d b y w i t n e s s e s , M e s s r s . D e m b e r and M e y e r , t h e l i g h t n i n g w a s s e e n i n a p l a c e w h e r e t h e r e w a s n o s t o r m a t the t i m e , altho s t o r m - c l o u d s w e r e v i s i b l e i n the n e i g h b o r h o o d . The appeara n c e w a s that o f t w o l u m i n o u s , o r a n g e - c o l o r e d g l o b e s , o n e a b o v e t h e o t h e r and c o n n e c t e d b y a s l e n d e r c o r d o r c h a i n , w h i c h e m i t t e d a f e e b l e r l i g h t and s e e m e d

Gl-77

GLB-072

BALL LIGHTNING

granular in constitution. The two globes moved together horizontally toward the northeast, altho at the place where the observers were, the wind was from the north. The upper globe, which was the larger, kept on its way steadily, while the other dropt slowly toward the ground. The connecting cord then disappeared and the globes moved on slowly, remaining visible for two minutes and finally disappearing silently. This is obviously not typical of ball lightning because of the long lifetime. The coordinated behavior, too, is unusual and would tend to place the phenomenon in the category of nocturnal lights.

GLB-072

BALL LIGHTNING

Gillmor, Daniel S., ed. ; Scientific Study of Unidentified Flying Objects, Bantam Books, Inc., New York, 1969. The Condon report devotes considerable space to ball lightning because some UFOs are undoubtedly cases of ball lightning. In keeping with the current scientific view, ball lightning is recognized as a very real physical phenomenon, although estimates of ball lightning's energy density is so high that present theories cannot explain it. After reviewing the properties of ball lightning and some of the proposed theories, several interesting case histories are discussed, five of which are reproduced below. A commercial airliner (LI-2) was struck by ball lightning on 12 August 1956 while flying in the lower Tambosk region of the USSR. Before being struck, the aircraft had been flying at 3.3 km altitude through a slowly moving cold front which contained dense thunderclouds. During a penetration of one thundercloud, where the air temperature was about - 3 ° C , the crew saw a rapidly approaching dark red almost orange fireball 25 to 30 cm in diameter to the front and left of the aircraft. At a distance of not more than 30 to 40 cm in front of the nose, the ball swerved and collided with a blade of the left propeller, exploded in a blinding white flash, and left a flaming tail along the left side of the fuselage. The sound of the explosion was loud enough to be heard over the noise of the engine. No substantial damage could be found. One of the left propeller blades had a small fused area 4 cm along the .blade and less than 1 cm in depth. Around the damaged region was a small area of soot, which was easily wiped off. In 1952, a T-33 jet trainer was flying near Moody A F B in Georgia. Because of a thunderstorm, the pilot was told to proceed to Mobile, Ala. As the T-33 rolled out onto a westerly heading at 4 km altitude, it collided with a "big orange ball of fire" that hit the nose head-on. The jolt was such that the student pilot believed there had been a midair collision with another aircraft. The low frequency radio compass no longer functioned, and they had to receive radio guidance to another base. On examination of the aircraft, they did not find a single mark or hole. The only damage was to the radio compass unit in the nose of the T-33 which was practically melted inside and was rendered useless. After the radio compass was replaced, everything functioned normally. Another pilot distinguishes ball lightning from balls of St. Elmo's fire, and states that he has only seen "true" ball lightning near severe thunderstorms associated with squall lines, mountainous terrain, and significant cloud-tocloud lightning. He defines "true" ball lightning as having the following characteristics: (1) diameters between 15 and 30 meters, (2) never originates outside the main thunderstorm cloud, (3) generates from a single point and expands

Gl-78

BALL LIGHTNING

GLB-073

i n e x a c t l y the s a m e m a n n e r a s the f i r e b a l l o f a n a t o m i c e x p l o s i o n , but w i t h a l o n g e r l i f e t i m e , (4) earphones detect soft sibilant h i s s , e a s i l y distinguishable f r o m c r a s h static, which gradually i n c r e a s e s in loudness concurrent with the g r o w t h o f the b a l l , then r a p i d l y d e c r e a s e s i n l o u d n e s s a f t e r p e a k b r i g h t n e s s , (5) no apparent thunder. He considers s m a l l e r luminous balls seen near his airc r a f t t o b e St. E l m o ' s f i r e . I f K u g e l b l i t z w i t h i n c l o u d s c a n b e a s l a r g e a s i s e s t i m a t e d b y t h i s p i l o t , then g r o u n d - b a s e d o b s e r v a t i o n s r e f l e c t o n l y w e a k m a n i f e s t a t i o n s o f the p h e n o m e n o n . T h e f o l l o w i n g c a s e i s i n d i c a t i v e o f h i g h - e n e r g y b a l l l i g h t n i n g . A t 3:30 p . m . o n 2 6 A p r i l 1939, f o l l o w i n g a m o d e r a t e r a i n s t o r m a t R o c h e - f o r t - s u r - M e r ( F r a n c e ) , an e x t r e m e l y b r i l l i a n t flash of lightning branched into t h r e e d i r e c t i o n s . A t the f i r s t i m p a c t p o i n t , a w i t n e s s d e s c r i b e d a b a l l 1 5 t o 2 0 c m i n d i a m e t e r and 2 . 5 m e t e r s a b o v e the g r o u n d w h i c h p a s s e d o n l y 4 m e t e r s i n f r o n t o f h i m . He felt a b r e e z e o f a i r a t the s a m e t i m e . The globe c l i m b e d an i r o n cable which it m e l t e d and p u l v e r i z e d , p r o d u c i n g s m o k e i n the p r o c e s s . T h e e l e c t r i c a l conduits of an a d j o i n i n g h o u s e w e r e b u r n e d and the m e t e r w a s d a m a g e d . The observer, who w a s installing a gas pipe, r e c e i v e d a shock. A t t h e s e c o n d i m p a c t point s e v e r a l w o r k e r s s a w a g l o b e a l s o 1 5 t o 2 0 c m i n d i a m e t e r t o u c h the t o p o f a c r a n e . There ensued a g r e a t e x p l o s i v e noise accompanied by a blue spark as l a r g e as an a r m w h i c h f l e w 4 0 m e t e r s and s t r u c k the f o r e h e a d o f a d o c k w o r k e r , k n o c k i n g h i m t o t h e g r o u n d . A d o z e n s h o v e l e r s w o r k i n g 1 0 t o 5 0 m e t e r s f r o m the c r a n e r e c e i v e d s h o c k s and w e r e k n o c k e d o v e r , o n e b e i n g t h r o w n 6 0 c m i n t o the a i r . The shovels w e r e t o r n f r o m t h e i r hands and t h r o w n 3 o r 4 m e t e r s a w a y . No smoke or odor was perceived. A t the c r a n e , c u r r e n t f l o w e d a l o n g the e l e c t r i c c a b l e , b o i l e d t h e c i r c u i t b r e a k e r b o a r d and the w i n d i n g s o f the c r a n e ' s e l e c t r i c m o t o r . The chief e l e c t r i c i a n r e c e i v e d a v i o l e n t s h o c k and w a s u n a b l e t o f r e e h i s hands f r o m the controls. A t the t h i r d i m p a c t p o i n t , a b a l l o f f i r e a s l a r g e a s t w o f i s t s hit a l i g h t n i n g r o d and d e s c e n d e d a l o n g the c o n d u c t o r t o the g r o u n d , d i s a p p e a r i n g b e hind a b u i l d i n g . T w o w o r k e r s saw a b a l l of fire r o l l v e r y rapidly along the ground. I n St. P e t e r s b u r g , F l a . , d u r i n g t h e s u m m e r o f 1951 a n e l d e r l y w o m a n w a s found b u r n e d t o d e a t h i n a n a r m c h a i r n e a r a n o p e n w i n d o w . A b o v e one m e t e r , t h e r e w e r e i n d i c a t i o n s o f i n t e n s e heat melted candles, cracked m i r r o r , etc. A t e m p e r a t u r e o f 1 4 0 0 ° C w o u l d h a v e b e e n n e e d e d t o p r o d u c e such e f f e c t s . But b e l o w o n e m e t e r t h e r e w a s o n l y o n e s m a l l b u r n e d spot o n the r u g and the m e l t e d plastic c o v e r of an e l e c t r i c outlet. A f u s e had b l o w n , s t o p p i n g a c l o c k i n the early morning hours. S i n c e l i g h t n i n g i s c o m m o n n e a r St. P e t e r s b u r g , t h i s c a s e h a s a l l the m a r k s o f K u g e l b l i t z . ( p p . 7 3 2 - 7 3 5 ) ( M a r t i n D . A l t s c h u l e r ) T h e final c a s e s e e m s t o b e one o f those m y s t e r i o u s o c c a s i o n s o f "spontaneous c o m b u s t i o n " of a h u m a n b e i n g .

GLB-073

BALL OF FIRE

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 22:466, S e p t e m b e r 16, 1880. During the s e v e r e thunderstorm which passed o v e r North London on M o n d a y , a p e c u l i a r p h e n o m e n o n w a s w i t n e s s e d i n the g r o u n d s o f the W e l s h H a r p , H e n d o n , b y s o m e g e n t l e m e n b o a t i n g o n t h e l a k e . A v i v i d flash o f l i g h t n i n g w a s s u c c e e d e d b y a t r e m e n d o u s p e a l o f thunder, a g r e a t b a l l o f f i r e a t the s a m e t i m e d e s c e n d i n g f r o m the h e a v e n s i n t o the w a t e r . W h e n the s t o r m had a b a t e d o v e r 100 f i s h o f v a r i o u s k i n d s , i n c l u d i n g t w o fine c a r p , w e i g h i n g t o g e t h e r 2 3 l b . , w e r e found f l o a t i n g d e a d o n the l a k e .

Gl-79

GLB-074
GLB-074
Smith, W .

B A L L LIGHTNING

BALL LIGHTNING
F . ; N a t u r e , 22:267, July 22, 1880.

O n S a t u r d a y night, the 17th i n s t . , a n i n s t a n c e o f t h i s f o r m o f l i g h t n i n g c a m e under my observation. T h e d a y had b e e n hot, the t h e r m o m e t e r r e g i s t e r i n g a t e m p e r a t u r e o f about 7 1 ° F . i n the s h a d e d u r i n g the m i d d l e o f the d a y , w h i c h w a s b r i g h t and c l e a r . In the evening, h o w e v e r , a curious h a z e or m i s t spread rapidly o v e r the l a n d s c a p e , w h i l e t h e t e m p e r a t u r e had f a l l e n t o about 6 8 ° F . This haze was v e r y m u c h d e n s e r and m o r e a n l a o g o u s t o t h e s m o k e - f o g o f a t o w n than I h a v e e v e r o b s e r v e d i n the c o u n t r y a t t h i s t i m e o f y e a r , y e t the a i r d i d not s e e m particularly damp or chill. About 9 p . m . frequent flashes of sheet-lightning o c c u r r e d , with rumblings o f distant thunder a t i n t e r v a l s , both o f w h i c h c o n t i n u e d m o r e o r l e s s u p t o m i d n i g h t , about w h i c h t i m e , the m i s t h a v i n g s o m e w h a t c l e a r e d off, I s a w w h e n r e t u r n i n g h o m e , a p p a r e n t l y about a q u a r t e r of a m i l e ahead, a b a l l or g l o b e of f i r e o f c o n s i d e r a b l e s i z e d e s c e n d s l o w l y f r o m the c l o u d s , and w h e n n e a r t o o r touching the earth suddenly disappear, its d i s a p p e a r a n c e being a c c o m p a n i e d b y t w o s l i g h t but q u i c k c o n c u s s i o n s , w h i c h m a y h a v e b e e n a n e x p l o s i o n and i t s echo. T h e f i r e - b a l l c o u l d not h a v e b e e n v i s i b l e m o r e than f i v e o r s i x s e c o n d s . I cannot a s c e r t a i n that any d a m a g e w a s d o n e b y i t . M i s t s , p e r h a p s o f the t y p e a b o v e , h a v e b e e n n o t e d i n r e p o r t s o f e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e p h e n o m e n a and e a r t h q u a k e s .

GLB-075

CURIOUS ELECTRICAL PHENOMENON
2 2 : 1 9 3 , July 1, 1880.

M o t t , F. T. ; N a t u r e ,

A t about 4 . 3 0 p . m . t h i s d a y a s e v e r e t h u n d e r s t o r m w i t h a d e l u g e o f r a i n c a m e u p f r o m the n o r t h - w e s t and l a s t e d about a n h o u r . At 5. 30 my w i f e w a s standing a t the w i n d o w w a t c h i n g the r e c e d i n g s t o r m , w h i c h s t i l l r a g e d i n the south, just o v e r L e i c e s t e r , w h e n she o b s e r v e d , i m m e d i a t e l y a f t e r a d o u b l e flash o f l i g h t n i n g , what s e e m e d l i k e a f a l l i n g s t a r , o r a f i r e b a l l f r o m a r o c k e t , d r o p out o f the b l a c k c l o u d about' 2 5 ° a b o v e the h o r i z o n , and d e s c e n d p e r p e n dicularly till lost behind a belt of t r e e s . T h e same phenomenon was repeated a t l e a s t a d o z e n t i m e s i n about f i f t e e n m i n u t e s , the l i g h t n i n g f l a s h e s f o l l o w i n g each o t h e r v e r y - r a p i d l y and the thunder c o n s i s t i n g o f s h o r t and s h a r p r e p o r t s . A f t e r n e a r l y e v e r y flash a f i r e b a l l d e s c e n d e d . T h e s e balls, appeared to be about o n e - f i f t h o r o n e - s i x t h the d i a m e t e r o f the full m o o n , blunt and rounded at the b o t t o m , d r a w n out into a t a i l a b o v e , and l e a v i n g a t r a i n of l i g h t behind them. T h e i r c o l o u r w a s m o s t l y w h i t i s h , but o n e w a s d i s t i n c t l y pink, and the course of one was sharply z i g - z a g g e d . T h e y f e l l a t a r a t e c e r t a i n l y not g r e a t e r than that o f a n o r d i n a r y s h o o t i n g s t a r . I have n e v e r witnessed a phenomenon o f t h i s kind m y s e l f , but m y w i f e i s a g o o d o b s e r v e r , and I c a n v o u c h f o r the trustworthiness of her report.

Gl-80

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE
GLD-001 MOUNTAINTOP ELECTRICITY

GLD-001

G i l l m o r , D a n i e l S . , e d . ; S c i e n t i f i c Study o f U n i d e n t i f i e d F l y i n g O b j e c t s , B a n t a m B o o k s , I n c . , N e w Y o r k , 1969. A g r a d u a t e student o f t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f C o l o r a d o w a s c l i m b i n g C h i m b o r a z o , a h i g h and i s o l a t e d m o u n t a i n i n E c u a d o r . T h e s u m m i t is a l a r g e flat plateau 400 m e t e r s i n d i a m e t e r and 6266 m e t e r s a b o v e s e a l e v e l . H e and a c o m p a n i o n l e f t t h e i r c a m p a t 5700 m e t e r s o n t h e m o r n i n g o f 1 M a r c h 1968. At 10 a. m. c l o u d s s t a r t e d f o r m i n g a t t h e p e a k and a s m a l l amount o f g r a u p e l b e g a n t o f a l l . W h e n t h e y r e a c h e d the s u m m i t , b e t w e e n 2 and 2:30 p . m . , t h e r e w a s c o n s i d e r a ble cloudiness. Just a s t h e y w e r e about t o t a k e t h e t r a d i t i o n a l p h o t o g r a p h o f c o n q u e s t , the g r a u p e l b e g a n t o f a l l m o r e h e a v i l y . Suddenly t h e y f e l t a n odd s e n s a t i o n about t h e i r h e a d s d e s c r i b e d a s m i l d e l e c t r i c s h o c k s and c r a c k l i n g and b u z z i n g s o u n d s . T h e i r a l u m i n u m g l a c i e r g o g g l e s b e g a n t o v i b r a t e , and t h e i r h a i r s t o o d o n e n d . T h e c l i m b e r s d i v e d i n t o t h e s n o w and w a i t e d . Thunder w a s heard in the distance. T h e y found that w h e n e v e r t h e y r a i s e d t h e i r h e a d s o f f the g r o u n d , t h e e l e c t r i c a l e f f e c t s r e c u r r e d . I t s e e m e d a s i f t h e r e w e r e a n o p p r e s s i v e l a y e r 50 cm a b o v e the s u r f a c e . A f t e r w a i t i n g half an hour, the c l i m b e r s c r a w l e d off the peak o n t h e i r b e l l i e s . T h e y proceeded in this manner f o r an h o u r and a half, 400 m e t e r s a c r o s s the p l a t e a u and d o w n t h e s l o p e . A f t e r d e s c e n d i n g 6 0 m e t e r s , they found t h e y c o u l d stand up. By this t i m e the f a l l o f g r a u p e l and t h e sounds o f t h u n d e r had c e a s e d .

T h e f o l l o w i n g o b s e r v a t i o n s a r e quoted f r o m the journal maintained o n P i k e ' s P e a k b y the H a r v a r d C o l l e g e O b s e r v a t o r y d u r i n g t h e 1870s and 1880s.

"16 July 1874. A v e r y s e v e r e t h u n d e r s t o r m p a s s e d o v e r the s u m m i t b e t w e e n 1 and 3 p. m. , a c c o m p a n i e d by m i x e d r a i n and h a i l . S h a r p f l a s h e s and r e p o r t s c a m e t h r o u g h the l i g h t n i n g a r r e s t e r , t o t h e t e r r o r o f s e v e r a l l a d y v i s i t o r s ; o u t s i d e the b u i l d i n g the e l e c t r i c e f f e c t s w e r e s t i l l m o r e s t a r t l i n g . The s t r a n g e c r a c k l i n g o f the h a i l , m e n t i o n e d b e f o r e , w a s a g a i n h e a r d , and a t the s a m e t i m e t h e o b s e r v e r ' s w h i s k e r s b e c a m e s t r o n g l y e l e c t r i f i e d and r e p e l l e n t , and g a v e q u i t e a u d i b l e h i s s i n g s o u n d s . In spite of the c a p w o r n , the o b s e r v e r ' s s c a l p a p p e a r e d t o b e p r i c k e d w i t h h u n d r e d s o f r e d hot n e e d l e s , and a b u r n i n g s e n s a t i o n w a s f e l t o n f a c e and h a n d s . Silent lightning w a s seen in all d i r e c t i o n s i n t h e e v e n i n g , and g r o u n d - c u r r e n t s p a s s e d i n c e s s a n t l y t h r o u g h the a r r e s t e r . " " 2 1 July 1874. N o t o n l y did t h e c o n s t a n t c r a c k l i n g o f the f a l l e n h a i l i n d i c a t e the h i g h l y e l e c t r i f i e d state o f t h e s u m m i t , but f r o m t h e v e r y r o c k s p r o c e e d e d a p e c u l i a r c h a t t e r i n g n o i s e , as if they w e r e shaken by subterranean c o n v u l s i o n s . " "25 M a y 1876. A t 6 p . m . c o n t i n u e d thunder w a s h e a r d o v e r h e a d and southeast of the peak. T h e a r r e s t e r w a s c o n t i n u a l l y m a k i n g t h e usual c r a c k l i n g noise. A b o u t t h i s t i m e , w h i l e o u t d o o r s , the o b s e r v e r h e a r d a p e c u l i a r " s i n g i n g " a t t w o o r t h r e e p l a c e s o n the w i r e v e r y s i m i l a r t o that o f c r i c k e t s . When the o b s e r v e r a p p r o a c h e d n e a r o n e o f t h e s e p l a c e s t h e sound w o u l d c e a s e , but w o u l d r e c o m m e n c e as soon as he w i t h d r e w t w o or t h r e e feet distant. " "18 A u g u s t 1876. D u r i n g t h e e v e n i n g t h e m o s t c u r i o u s l y beautiful p h e n o m e non e v e r s e e n b y the o b s e r v e r w a s w i t n e s s e d , i n c o m p a n y w i t h the a s s i s t a n t and f o u r v i s i t o r s . M e n t i o n h a s b e e n m a d e i n j o u r n a l o f 2 5 M a y and 1 3 J u l y o f a p e c u l i a r " s i n g i n g " o r r a t h e r " s i z z l i n g " n o i s e o n t h e w i r e , but o n t h o s e o c c a s i o n s i t o c c u r r e d i n the d a y t i m e . T o n i g h t i t w a s h e a r d a g a i n , but t h e l i n e f o r a n e i g h t h o f a m i l e (200 m ) w a s d i s t i n c t l y o u t l i n e d i n b r i l l i a n t l i g h t , w h i c h w a s t h r o w n out f r o m the w i r e i n beautiful s c i n t i l l a t i o n s . N e a r us we could

Gl-81

GLD-002

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

observe these little jets of flame v e r y plainly. T h e y w e r e i n v a r i a b l y i n the shape of a q u a d r a n t , and the r a y s c o n c e n t r a t e d at the s u r f a c e of the l i n e in a s m a l l m a s s about the s i z e o f a c u r r a n t , w h i c h had a b l u i s h t i n g e . These little q u a d r a n t s o f l i g h t w e r e c o n s t a n t l y j u m p i n g f r o m one p o i n t t o a n o t h e r o f the l i n e , n o w p o i n t i n g i n one d i r e c t i o n , and a g a i n i n a n o t h e r . T h e r e w a s no heat to the l i g h t , and w h e n the w i r e w a s t o u c h e d , o n l y the s l i g h t e s t t i n g l i n g s e n s a t i o n w a s felt. N o t o n l y w a s the w i r e o u t l i n e d i n t h i s m a n n e r , but e v e r y e x p o s e d m e t a l l i c p o i n t and s u r f a c e w a s s i m i l a r l y t i p p e d o r c o v e r e d . T h e a n e m o m e t e r cups a p p e a r e d a s f o u r b a l l s o f f i r e r e v o l v i n g s l o w l y round a c o m m o n c e n t e r ; the w i n d v a n e w a s o u t l i n e d w i t h t h e s a m e p h o s p h o r e s c e n t l i g h t , and one o f the v i s i t o r s w a s v e r y m u c h a l a r m e d b y s p a r k s w h i c h w e r e p l a i n l y v i s i b l e i n h i s h a i r , though none a p p e a r e d i n the o t h e r s ' . A t the t i m e o f the p h e n o m e n o n s n o w w a s f a l l i n g , and i t has b e e n p r e v i o u s l y n o t i c e d that the " s i n g i n g " n o i s e i s n e v e r h e a r d e x c e p t w h e n the a t m o s p h e r e i s v e r y d a m p , and r a i n , h a i l , o r s n o w i s f a l l i n g . " "10 July 1879. At 5 p. m. the h a i l t u r n e d to s n o w , and c e a s e d at 5:30 p. m. , the w i n d b e i n g g e n t l e t h r o u g h o u t . ' On s t e p p i n g to the d o o r at 6 p. m. , o b s e r v e r s t a t e s that h e f e l t a p e c u l i a r s e n s a t i o n about the w h o l e b o d y , s i m i l a r t o that o f a n a w a k e n i n g l i m b a f t e r b e i n g b e n u m b e d ; that h i s h a i r stood s t r a i g h t out f r o m h i s h e a d , and s e e m e d t o p r o d u c e a p e c u l i a r " s i n g i n g " n o i s e l i k e that o f b u r n i n g e v e r g r e e n s ; the t e l e g r a p h l i n e and a l l m e t a l l i c i n s t r u m e n t s p r o d u c i n g a n o i s e l i k e that o f s w a r m i n g b e e s . W h e n h e put o n h i s hat, the p r i c k l y s e n s a t i o n b e c a m e s o i n t e n s e that h e w a s c o m p e l l e d t o r e m o v e i t , h i s f o r e h e a d s m a r t i n g a s though i t had b e e n b u r n e d f o r fully t h r e e h o u r s l a t e r . A t 7 p . m . the e l e c t r i c s t o r m had ceased." W i t h the e x c e p t i o n o f t o r n a d o s i t u a t i o n s d e s c r i b e d e a r l i e r ( w h e r e heat i s a l s o p r e s e n t ) , i t i s not l i k e l y that e l e c t r i c a l s e n s a t i o n s a r e a n y w h e r e m o r e i n t e n s e than o n m o u n t a i n t o p s . U F O reports s o m e t i m e s indicate c r e e p y , crawling sensat i o n s , much l e s s p r o n o u n c e d , h o w e v e r , than t h o s e e x p e r i e n c e d b y m o u n t a i n e e r s , (pp. 741-743) ( M a r t i n D . A l t s c h u l e r ) T h e h u m m i n g , b e e - l i k e sounds a r e v e r y s i m i l a r t o t h o s e h e a r d a t Y e l l o w s t o n e L a k e , the v i c i n i t y o f K e n t , E n g l a n d , and w h e n n o r t h e r n l i g h t s a r e s e e n at least by s o m e people. A l l o f t h e s e sounds m a y b e due t o i n f r a s o n i c sound, p h y s i o l o g i c a l r e a c t i o n s t o e l e c t r o m a g n e t i c r a d i a t i o n , o r s o m e e f f e c t s w e d o not y e t r e c o g n i z e .

GLD-002

CURIOUS LIGHTNING IN THE ANDES
1912.

A n o n y m o u s ; S c i e n t i f i c A m e r i c a n , 106:464, M a y 18,

D r . W a l t e r K n o c h e , the G e r m a n d i r e c t o r o f the C h i l e a n m e t e o r o l o g i c a l s e r v i c e , h a s b e g u n a n i n v e s t i g a t i o n o f the r e m a r k a b l e d i s p l a y s o f s o - c a l l e d "heat l i g h t n i n g " w h i c h a r e often o b s e r v e d a l o n g the c r e s t o f the A n d e s , and a r e s o m e t i m e s v i s i b l e f a r out a t s e a . (In one c a s e D r . K n o c h e s a w t h e m f r o m E a s t e r I s l a n d , 300 m i l e s f r o m the C h i l e a n c o a s t . ) T h u n d e r s t o r m s a r e r a r e i n C h i l e , and t h i s fact m a y p o s s i b l y b e e x p l a i n e d on the a s s u m p t i o n that the A n d e s act as a g i g a n t i c l i g h t n i n g - r o d , b e t w e e n w h i c h and the c l o u d s s i l e n t d i s c h a r g e s t a k e p l a c e o n a v a s t s c a l e . The v i s i b l e d i s c h a r g e s o c c u r d u r i n g the w a r m s e a s o n , f r o m l a t e s p r i n g t o autumn, and a p p e a r t o c o m e e s p e c i a l l y f r o m c e r t a i n f i x e d p o i n t s . According to Dr. K n o c h e t h e y a r e c o n f i n e d a l m o s t e x c l u s i v e l y t o the A n d e s p r o p e r , o r C o r d i l l e r a R e a l , a s d i s t i n g u i s h e d f r o m the c o a s t Cordillera. Viewed from a favorable point n e a r their o r i g i n t h e r e i s s e e n t o b e , at t i m e s , a c o n s t a n t g l o w around

Gl-82

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

GLD-004

the s u m m i t s o f t h e m o u n t a i n s , w i t h o c c a s i o n a l o u t b u r s t s , w h i c h often s i m u l a t e t h e b e a m s o f a g r e a t s e a r c h l i g h t , and m a y b e d i r e c t e d w e s t w a r d s o a s t o e x t e n d out o v e r the o c e a n . T h e c o l o r o f the l i g h t i s p a l e y e l l o w , o r r a r e l y reddish. O n e s t r i k i n g f e a t u r e o f t h e s e d i s c h a r g e s i s that t h e y a r e e s p e c i a l l y m a g nificent during earthquakes. A t t h e t i m e o f the g r e a t e a r t h q u a k e o f A u g u s t , 1906, t h r o u g h o u t c e n t r a l C h i l e the w h o l e sky s e e m e d t o b e o n f i r e ; n e v e r b e f o r e o r s i n c e h a s the d i s p l a y b e e n s o b r i l l i a n t . The natives regard these l i g h t s a s the r e f l e c t i o n i n the s k y o f the g l o w i n g l a v a i n the c r a t e r s o f v o l c a n o e s ; but t h e r e s e e m s t o b e n o doubt that t h e y a r e e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e s . It enon, phere result which is planned to m a k e s p e c t r o s c o p i c o b s e r v a t i o n s of this singular p h e n o m and a l s o , i f p o s s i b l e , m e a s u r e m e n t s o f the e l e c t r i c a l s t a t e o f the a t m o s i n the h i g h A n d e s w h e r e i t a p p e a r s t o h a v e i t s o r i g i n . P o s s i b l y the m a y be to connect up "Andes lightning" with a peculiar f o r m of aurora has been o b s e r v e d b y L e m s t r o m o v e r mountain s u m m i t s .

GLD-003

CAPTAIN WITNESSES THUNDERSTORM IN A CLEAR SKY

A n o n y m o u s ; L i t e r a r y D i g e s t , 116:25, July 1 , 1933. I n t h e l o g o f the B r i t i s h s t e a m e r M o r a v i a n , C a p t . A . S i m p s o n d e s c r i b e d a t h u n d e r - s t o r m o n D e c e m b e r 30, 1902, just w i t h i n r a n g e o f C a p e V e r d e l i g h t house. A t 1:30 £L. m . a w a r m puff o f d u s t - l a d e n w i n d c a m e off the A f r i c a n s h o r e . L i g h t n i n g , a t f i r s t distant o n the n o r t h e a s t h o r i z o n , b e c a m e a l m o s t c o n t i n u o u s , with loud thunder. A l l the s t a r s w e r e v i s i b l e ; o n l y u p p e r c l o u d s , n o c u m u l u s , i n the s k y . C a p t a i n S i m p s o n had n e v e r b e f o r e e x p e r i e n c e d a s e v e r e t h u n d e r - s t o r m without cloud. C h a r l e s Fitzhugh T a l m a n , who d e s c r i b e s this freak t h u n d e r - s t o r m in h i s S c i e n c e S e r v i c e f e a t u r e W h y the W e a t h e r ? , g o e s on: " F o r f u l l y a n h o u r the sky w a s o n e b l a z e o f l i g h t n i n g , and w i r e r o p e s , m a s t h e a d s , y a r d a r m s , d e r r i c k e n d s , e t c . , w e r e l i g h t e d up. A l l the s t a y s s e e m e d to h a v e g l o w l a m p s 3 to 4 f e e t a p a r t , and the m a s t h e a d s and y a r d a r m s a b r i g h t light at t h e i r e x t r e m i t i e s . T h e o f f i c e r s and p a s s e n g e r s w e r e r o u s e d t o w i t n e s s the w e i r d s p e c t a c l e . " T h e m o s t r e m a r k a b l e p a r t o f the p h e n o m e n o n w a s the e x t r a o r d i n a r y sound e m i t t e d t h r o u g h o u t . I t w a s , s a y s the l o g , e x a c t l y l i k e the n o i s e o f the s p a r k s f r o m the c a r b o n s o f a n a r c l a m p ; o r a s i f s e v e r a l thousands o f c i c a d a s had t a k e n u p t h e i r q u a r t e r s i n the r i g g i n g ; o r the c r a c k l i n g o f b u r n i n g g r a s s or twigs. " T h i s n o i s e w a s not l o c a l n e a r the b r i d g e , but the o f f i c e r s r e p o r t e d i t a l l o v e r the s h i p , e v e n i n the n e i g h b o r h o o d o f the n o i s y s t e e r i n g - g e a r . " Dust s t o r m s a r e o f t e n e l e c t r i f i e d , and dust m a y h a v e b e e n a f a c t o r i n e s t a b l i s h i n g high e l e c t r i c a l p o t e n t i a l d i f f e r e n c e s h e r e .

GLD-004

CORONAL EFFECTS

G i l l m o r , D a n i e l S . , e d . ; S c i e n t i f i c Study o f U n i d e n t i f i e d F l y i n g O b j e c t s , B a n t a m B o o k s , I n c . , N e w Y o r k , 1969.

Gl-83

GLD-005

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

St. E l m o ' s f i r e a p p e a r s a s a g l o w i n g l u m i n e s c e n c e h o v e r i n g a b o v e a p o i n t e d object or near a w i r e conductor. It is usually oval or ball-shaped, between 10 and 4 0 c m i n d i a m e t e r , and h a s a g l o w i n g b l u e - w h i t e a p p e a r a n c e . Its l i f e t i m e e x c e e d s that o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g , s o m e t i m e s l a s t i n g s e v e r a l m i n u t e s . The decay i s s i l e n t but m a y b e sudden o r s l o w . S o m e t i m e s hissing or buzzing noises can be detected. T h e p r i m a r y d i f f e r e n c e b e t w e e n b a l l l i g h t n i n g and St. E l m o ' s f i r e i s that St. E l m o ' s f i r e r e m a i n s n e a r a c o n d u c t o r . It has b e e n o b s e r v e d to m o v e along w i r e s and a i r c r a f t s u r f a c e s , s o m e t i m e s p u l s a t i n g . Foo-fighters are probably a m a n i f e s t a t i o n o f St. E l m o ' s f i r e . H e r e i s a n a c c o u n t o f St. E l m o ' s f i r e f r o m the s a m e p i l o t w h o g a v e o b s e r v a t i o n 3 of the p r e v i o u s s e c t i o n . " T h e s m a l l e r ' b a l l l i g h t n i n g ' I h a v e a l w a y s a s s o c i a t e d a s b e i n g the p h e n o m e non k n o w n a s St. E l m o ' s f i r e ; h o w e v e r , St. E l m o ' s f i r e g e n e r a l l y c o n s i s t s o f a n i n f r e q u e n t b l a n k e t c o v e r i n g the l e a d i n g e d g e s and t r a i l i n g e d g e s o f a n a i r c r a f t . I t d o e s not b l i n d o r b r i g h t e n but i s m e r e l y i r r i t a t i n g a s i t p r e v e n t s c l e a r r a d i o reception. The 'small ball' formation v a r i e s in s i z e f r o m two inches (5 c m ) to a foot and h a l f (46 c m ) i n d i a m e t e r and g e n e r a l l y ' r o l l s around' the a i r c r a f t a p p a r e n t l y u n a f f e c t e d b y the m o v e m e n t o f the a i r c r a f t . O n one o c c a s i o n a s m a l l b a l l (about s i x i n c h e s (15 c m ) i n d i a m e t e r ) o f y e l l o w i s h - w h i t e l i g h t n i n g f o r m e d o n m y l e f t tiptank i n a n F - 9 4 B then r o l l e d c a s u a l l y a c r o s s the w i n g , u p o v e r the c a n o p y , a c r o s s the r i g h t w i n g t o the tiptank and t h e n c e c o m m e n c e d a r e t u r n , w h i c h I d i d n ' t n o t e , but I w a s a d v i s e d by my o b s e r v e r that it d i s a p p e a r e d as s p o n t a n e o u s l y a s i t had a r i s e n . I h a v e s e e n t h i s f o r m s e v e r a l t i m e s but r a r e l y f o r a s l o n g a s a p e r i o d w h i c h I w o u l d e s t i m a t e t o b e about t w o m i n u t e s i n d u r a tion. S o m e t i m e s t h e b a l l s a r e b l u e , b l u e - g r e e n , o r w h i t e though i t a p p e a r s t o f a v o r the b l u e - g r e e n and y e l l o w - w h i t e . I t m i g h t b e o f i n t e r e s t t o y o u t o k n o w that subsequent t o the ' s m a l l b a l l ' r o l l i n g o v e r m y a i r c r a f t , the a i r c r a f t w a s s t r u c k t h r e e t i m e s b y c o n v e n t i o n a l l i g h t n i n g b o l t s w h i c h m e l t e d f o u r i n c h e s (10 c m ) off the t r a i l i n g e d g e o f e a c h tiptank and fused about a f o u r i n c h s e c t i o n c o v e r i n g m y t a i l l i g h t s . " (pp. 7 3 5 - 7 3 6 ) ( M a r t i n D . A l t s c h u l e r )

GLD-005
Olmsted,

OBSERVATIONS ON THE METEORS OF NOVEMBER 13TH, 1833
D e n i s o n ; A m e r i c a n J o u r n a l o f P h y s i c s , 1:25:363-411, 1834.

T h e f o l l o w i n g s e c t i o n o f O l m s t e d ' s l o n g r e p o r t o n the g r e a t m e t e o r d i s p l a y o f 1833 d e a l s w i t h c o n c u r r e n t e l e c t r i c and m a g n e t i c p h e n o m e n a w h i c h p e r h a p s had s o m e c a u s a l r e l a t i o n s h i p t o the m e t e o r s . N o t e that a u r o r a l a c t i v i t y w a s a l s o s e e n ( G L A - 0 0 5 ) . 10. E L E C T R I C A L A N D M A G N E T I C O B S E R V A T I O N S . — O b s e r v a t i o n s m a d e i n v a r i o u s p l a c e s , i n d i c a t e d a h i g h l y e l e c t r i c a l s t a t e o f the a t m o s p h e r e . No v e r y d e c i s i v e o b s e r v a t i o n s with m a g n e t i c i n s t r u m e n t s h a v e c o m e t o o u r k n o w l e d g e . ( 2 . ) D r . K i r t l a n d , at Poland, Ohio, "on r e t i r i n g to rest, a l i t t l e after 10 o ' c l o c k , d i s c o v e r e d b r i l l i a n t e l e c t r i c a l s p a r k s e m i t t e d f r o m h i s c l o t h e s o n any slight motion. " ( L e t t e r to P r o f e s s o r S i l l i m a n . ) ( 3 . ) W h i l e r i d i n g i n the t o w n o f F r e d o n i a , ( s a y s a c o r r e s p o n d e n t o f the N e w Y o r k D a i l y A d v e r t i s e r , ) i n the e v e n i n g o f the 14th i n s t . b e t w e e n 6 and 7 o ' c l o c k , the night a f t e r t h e m e t e o r i c d i s p l a y , the t i p s o f the e a r s o f m y h o r s e , f o r a h a l f a n i n c h i n l e n g t h , b e c a m e l u m i n o u s , and s i m i l a r i n a p p e a r a n c e t o p h o s p h o r e s c e n t

Gl-84

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE
bodies. It remained for s o m e minutes.

GLD-006

. . . . T h e f a c t that s u c h e l e c t r i c a l a p p e a r a n c e s w e r e u n u s u a l l y s t r i k i n g a t t h e t i m e o f t h e o c c u r r e n c e u n d e r r e v i e w , and a f e w h o u r s a f t e r , b e i n g g r a n t e d , w e s h o u l d still h a v e to i n q u i r e , w h e t h e r the e l e c t r i c i t y w e r e a cause or a c o n s e q u e n c e of the m e t e o r s , o r w h e t h e r i t w e r e m e r e l y a subordinate e f f e c t o f the change i n w e a t h e r . S i m i l a r r e m a r k s m a y b e m a d e w i t h r e s p e c t t o any m a g n e t i c i n f l u e n c e w h i c h may have been detected. Should a c o n n e x i o n b e t r a c e d b e t w e e n t h e a p p a r e n t m o t i o n s o f t h e m e t e o r s and t h e l a w s o f t e r r e s t r i a l m a g n e t i s m , t h i s d i s c o v e r y w o u l d t h r o w l i g h t o n t h e m o t i o n s o f t h e s e b o d i e s , but w o u l d s t i l l l e a v e t h e g r e a t e r p a r t o f t h e d i f f i c u l t i e s , s u c h a s t h e i r n a t u r e and o r i g i n , u n s e t t l e d . But the known c o n n e c t i o n o f the a u r o r a b o r e a l i s with t e r r e s t r i a l m a g n e t i s m , and t h e o b v i o u s c o n n e x i o n o f t h e p h e n o m e n o n i n q u e s t i o n w i t h a u r o r a l a p p e a r a n c e s , a f f o r d r e a s o n a b l e g r o u n d s f o r e x a m i n i n g the m a g n e t i c i n d i c a t i o n s with g r e a t e s t a t t e n t i o n ; c o n s i d e r a t i o n s , w h i c h add t o t h e r e g r e t a l r e a d y a d v e r t e d t o , that s o f e w m a g n e t i c o b s e r v a t i o n s have been c o m m u n i c a t e d to the public.

GLD-006

ATMOSPHERIC ELECTRICITY

B o w l k e r , C . A . C . ; N a t u r e , 4 0 : 5 5 , M a y 16, 1 8 8 9 . I s e n d y o u t h e f o l l o w i n g a c c o u n t o f a c u r i o u s , and, I b e l i e v e , r a r e e l e c t r i c a l p h e n o m e n o n w i t n e s s e d l a s t w e e k b y a f r i e n d o f m i n e and m y s e l f . W e h a d , i n t h e c o u r s e o f a l o n g m o u n t a i n r a m b l e , r e a c h e d the s u m m i t o f E l i d y r F a w r ( 3 0 3 3 f e e t ) , a m o u n t a i n l y i n g t o t h e n o r t h - e a s t o f L l a n b e r i s , and about four m i l e s north of Snowdon. B e i n g a short distance in front of my f r i e n d , I s a t d o w n and r e s t e d w i t h m y b a c k t o t h e c a i r n , s h e l t e r i n g m y s e l f f r o m a c o l d south w i n d w h i c h w a s b l o w i n g w i t h c o n s i d e r a b l e v e l o c i t y . I n a b o u t t w o m i n u t e s I h e a r d a c u r i o u s b u z z i n g sound c o m m e n c e , a p p a r e n t l y p r o c e e d i n g f r o m t h e t o p o f t h e p o s t s e t u p not l o n g a g o b y the O r d n a n c e s u r v e y o r s . I had h e a r d t h e s a m e n o i s e about t h r e e y e a r s a g o w h i l e d e s c e n d i n g the a r e t e o f t h e W e i s s h o r n , and o n that o c c a s i o n , a s o n t h i s , t h e r e w a s a south w i n d blowing, accompanied by snow o n the W e i s s h o r n i n l a r g e f l a k e s , o n E l i d y r F a w r i n f i n e p o w d e r y f l a k e s . - O n the W e i s s h o r n , f o r a b o v e a n h o u r e v e r y r o c k s e e m e d t o e m i t t h e p e c u l i a r b u z z i n g n o i s e , and o u r i c e - a x e s d i d t h e s a m e . We w e r e in t o o g r e a t a h u r r y , h o w e v e r , to pay much attention to the p h e n o m e n o n . A day or t w o after, I related my e x p e r i e n c e to a gentleman, M r . P o w e l l who, I trust, w i l l f o r g i v e me f o r mentioning his n a m e and l e a r n e d f r o m h i m that h e h a d h a d a s i m i l a r e x p e r i e n c e o n the U n t e r - G a b e l h o r n , n e a r Z e r m a t t . T h e d a y w a s o n that o c c a s i o n , i f I r e m e m b e r r i g h t , c l e a r , w h e n t h e n o i s e w a s h e a r d , f o l l o w e d i n a s h o r t t i m e b y a f l a s h , and a shout f r o m t w o o f t h e p a r t y that t h e y w e r e s t r u c k . N o h a r m w a s d o n e b y t h e s h o c k , but the s e n s a t i o n w a s d e s c r i b e d a s b e i n g l i k e that w h i c h w o u l d b e f e l t i f e v e r y h a i r o f t h e h e a d w e r e c a u g h t h o l d o f and v i o l e n t l y t w i s t e d . H a v i n g h e a r d t h e sound b e f o r e , I r e a d i l y r e c o g n i z e d i t o n E l i d y r F a w r , and r e s o l v e d i f p o s s i b l e t o s t u d y t h e p h e n o m e n o n more closely. I f i r s t c l i m b e d o n t o t h e c a i r n , and found that t h e sound p r o c e e d e d f r o m t h e w h o l e s u r f a c e o f the w o o d f o r a b o u t t w o f e e t f r o m the t o p o f the p o s t . I t h e n r a i s e d m y s t i c k , w h i c h h a d a n i r o n p o i n t , and found that t h e sound b e g a n t o p r o c e e d f r o m i t d i r e c t l y a h e i g h t o f about s i x f e e t f r o m t h e ground was reached. I t h e n put m y hand o n t h e p a r t e m i t t i n g t h e s o u n d , b u t could f e e l nothing. O n p u t t i n g m y s t i c k d o w n , and k e e p i n g m y hand up, t h e sound p r o c e e d e d f r o m m y hand from m o r e or l e s s of it according as I raised

Gl-85

GLD-007

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

it higher or l o w e r and I i m a g i n e d that o n the b a c k o f m y hand the s e n s a t i o n of being v e r y slightly pricked in many p l a c e s w a s p e r c e p t i b l e . My friend was m u c h i m p r e s s e d b y the p e c u l i a r i t y and i n t e n s i t y o f the sound, and a g r e e d w i t h m e that i t w o u l d not b e w i s e t o s t a y l o n g . A s w e p r o c e e d e d a l o n g the r i d g e , a f t e r a s l i g h t d r o p , w e r o s e a g a i n , and w h i l e s t a n d i n g o n s o m e r o c k s , the n o i s e b e g a n i n o u r c a p s , a c c o m p a n i e d b y such a n a g i t a t i o n o f the h a i r that i t q u i t e s e e m e d a s i f w e had l i t e r a l l y a " b e e i n the b o n n e t . " T h e r e w a s n o sound o f thunder, and i n the c o u r s e o f about h a l f a n h o u r the s n o w - s t o r m p a s s e d a w a y , not h o w e v e r b e f o r e w e had d e s c e n d e d f a r b e l o w the enchanted s u m m i t . Snow, l i k e sand and o t h e r f o r m s o f p r e c i p i t a t i o n , c a n s e p a r a t e e l e c t r i c a l c h a r g e and e s t a b l i s h c o n d i t i o n s f o r such d i s c h a r g e e f f e c t s .

GLD-007

NOTICES OF EARTHQUAKE SHOCKS FELT IN GREAT BRITAIN

M i l n e , D a v i d ; E d i n b u r g h N e w P h i l o s o p h i c a l J o u r n a l , 31:92-122, 1841. I n r e a d i n g the f o l l o w i n g account, i t should b e r e c a l l e d that e a r t h q u a k e s c a n p r o d u c e e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e e f f e c t s t h r o u g h the p i e z o e l e c t r i c e f f e c t , a t l e a s t i n p r i n c i p l e . A p r i l 2 , 1750; L i v e r p o o l , E n g l a n d . A p e r s o n w e n t out into the o p e n a i r d u r i n g the s h o c k , and s a w m u l t i t u d e o f b l o o d r e d r a y s c o n v e r g i n g f r o m a l l p a r t s o f the h e a v e n s t o o n e d a r k p o i n t ; but s a w n o l u m i n o u s b o d y . T h e phenomenon disappeare d i n f i f t e e n m i n u t e s , ( p . 99)

GLD-008

CELESTIAL SIGNS OF EARTHQUAKE

A n o n y m o u s ; L i t e r a r y D i g e s t , 115:27, F e b r u a r y 4 , 1933. M y s t e r i o u s l i g h t s i n the sky d u r i n g o r just b e f o r e a n e a r t h q u a k e h a v e b e e n traced for four additional earthquakes by a Japanese expert, M r . K. Musya. That such l i g h t s s o m e t i m e s a p p e a r a s c e l e s t i a l " w a r n i n g s " o f the a p p r o a c h ing catastrophe is an ancient b e l i e f which m o d e r n s c i e n c e a l w a y s has r e j e c t e d . Says D r . E . E . F r e e ' s W e e k ' s S c i e n c e ( N e w Y o r k ) : " N o w a y i s k n o w n i n w h i c h such l i g h t s c o u l d b e c r e a t e d b y the s h o c k o r b y the p r e l i m i n a r y e a r t h s t r e s s e s f r o m w h i c h the s h o c k r e s u l t s . " T w o y e a r s a g o , h o w e v e r , M r . M u s y a b e c a m e i n t e r e s t e d i n r e p o r t s o f such l i g h t s s e e n a t the t i m e o f the J a p a n e s e e a r t h q u a k e o f N o v e m b e r 26, 1930. T h e r e a f t e r he took pains to c o l l e c t all s i m i l a r r e p o r t s at t i m e s of Japanese e a r t h q u a k e s , e s p e c i a l l y o n the o c c a s i o n o f the s e v e r e e a r t h q u a k e o f N o v e m b e r 2, 1931. A t t h i s t i m e n o f e w e r than 355 p e r s o n s s a w l u m i n o u s a p p e a r a n c e s i n the s k y , l i k e the r a y s o f a b l u i s h s e a r c h - l i g h t p o i n t i n g u p w a r d f r o m b e l o w the horizon. " M o s t o f t h e s e l i g h t s w e r e s e e n i n the d i r e c t i o n o f the c e n t e r o f the e a r t h q u a k e , a s t h o s o m e t h i n g that happened t h e r e a b o u t s c a u s e d the sky l i g h t s a s w e l l a s the s h o c k . I t s e e m s that the r e a l i t y o f s o m e kind o f l u m i n o s i t y i n the sky i n the n e i g h b o r h o o d o f e a r t h q u a k e s m u s t b e a c c e p t e d , a l t h o n e i t h e r M r . M u s y a n o r any o t h e r s c i e n t i f i c m a n has b e e n a b l e t o s u g g e s t a p l a u s i b l e t h e o r y o f h o w these lights are caused. P e r h a p s s o m e e l e c t r i c a l d i s t u r b a n c e o f the u p p e r a i r p r e c e d e s o r a c c o m p a n i e s the e a r t h q u a k e and c a u s e s l i g h t s l i k e the A u r o r a . "

Gl-86

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE
GLD-009 [PLAIN C O V E R E D WITH THOUSANDS OF LIGHTS]
August 1, 1872.

GLD-010

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 6:270,

A c o r r e s p o n d e n t o f the M a d r a s M a i l , quoted b y the T i m e s o f India, s a y s that o n t h e n i g h t o f J u n e 1 5 l a s t t h e p l a i n t o t h e e a s t , n o r t h , and n o r t h - e a s t o f N a n d i d r o o g w a s c o v e r e d with "many thousands" of lights, which have been observed occasionally in former years. T h e c o r r e s p o n d e n t c o m p a r e s the a p p e a r a n c e t o that o f a l a r g e c i t y b r i l l i a n t l y i l l u m i n a t e d , and i n o n e d i r e c t i o n the s c e n e , through a b i n o c u l a r g l a s s , " l o o k e d l i k e a v i e w of p a r t of the s t a r r y h e a v e n s , each f l a m e b e i n g l i k e a star. " As many of the lights w e r e f r o m ten t o f i f t e e n m i l e s d i s t a n t f r o m t h e r e p o r t e r ' s p o i n t o f v i e w , h e c o n j e c t u r e s that each f l a m e must have been five to six feet in length. An attempt is being m a d e t o f i n d out t h e c a u s e o f t h e c u r i o u s p h e n o m e n o n , t h e m o s t l i k e l y h y p o t h e s i s b e i n g that t h e l i g h t s a r e " c a u s e d b y t h e i g n i t i o n o f s o m e i n f l a m m a b l e g a s e s c a p i n g in j e t s f r o m the s u r f a c e of the e a r t h . " T h i s account is s i m i l a r to one f r o m England ( G L D - 0 2 4 ) . w h e t h e r the lights a r e e l e c t r i c a l , o p t i c a l , o r neither. It is difficult to tell

GLD-010

E A R T H Q U A K E S A N D LUMINOUS PHENOMENA
1911.

M i l n e , John; N a t u r e . 87:16. July 6,

I n v o l . x i v . . N o . 6 . 7 , and 8 , o f t h e B o l l e t t i n a d e l l a S o c i e t a S i s m o l o g i c a I t a l i a n a , w e f i n d a v e r y l o n g p a p e r b y D r . I g n a z i o G a l l i o n t h e c o l l e c t i o n and c l a s s i f i c a t i o n o f l u m i n o u s phenomena o b s e r v e d a t the t i m e o f e a r t h q u a k e s . A f t e r a n i n t r o d u c t i o n , h e c o n s i d e r s that w h i c h m i g h t b e e x c l u d e d and t h e d i f f i c u l t i e s f i r s t m e t with in the f o r m a t i o n of a c a t a l o g u e of the p h e n o m e n a he d i s cusses. T h e i l l u s t r a t i o n s w h i c h h e g i v e s o f l u m i n o s i t i e s and o t h e r s t r a n g e p h e n o m e n a w h i c h h a v e a p p e a r e d a t o r about t h e t i m e o f e a r t h q u a k e s a r e 148 in number. T h e d a t e o f t h e f i r s t i s 8 9 B . C . , and t h e l a s t M a r c h 3 0 , 1 9 1 0 . T h e s e d e s c r i p t i o n s o c c u p y 184 p a g e s . The various luminosities are classified u n d e r m o r e than t w e l v e h e a d s , and t o t h e s e a r e a d d e d t h e n u m b e r o f t i m e s that e a r t h q u a k e s h a v e b e e n a s s o c i a t e d w i t h v a p o u r s , s m o k e , and o d o u r s o f s u l p h u r or bitumen. S e i s m o l o g i s t s h a v e k n o w n f o r y e a r s p a s t that c e r t a i n e a r t h q u a k e s a r e s a i d l o have been a c c o m p a n i e d b y appearances o f the A u r o r a B o r e a l i s , g l i m m e r i n g l i g h t s i n t h e s k y . f i r e - b a l l s , i g n i s f a t u i . l i g h t n i n g s , c o r r u s t a t i o n s , and e m a n a t i o n s f r o m t h e s o i l , but t h i s i s the f i r s t t i m e s o l a r g e a c o l l e c t i o n o f t h e s e phenomena have been brought together f o r t h e i r c o n s i d e r a t i o n . W h e n r e s i d e n t i n Japan the p r e s e n t w r i t e r m a d e many e x p e r i m e n t s e x t e n d i n g o v e r s o m e y e a r s o n e l e c t r i c a l and m a g n e t i c p h e n o m e n a a s s o c i a t e d w i t h seismic disturbances. H e a l s o c o l l e c t e d m a t e r i a l f r o m all p a r t s o f t h e w o r l d w h i c h b o r e upon t h e s e a s s o c i a t i o n s . O n e c o n c l u s i o n a r r i v e d a t i s that i t i s a n u n d o u b t e d fact that a t the t i m e o f c e r t a i n l a r g e e a r t h q u a k e s , a s , f o r e x a m p l e , t h e o n e w h i c h i n 1900 d e s t r o y e d V a l p a r a i s o , c u r i o u s l i g h t s w h i c h , i n t h i s instance, w e r e c o m p a r e d to those of chain lightning, have been seen playing a c r o s s the h i l l s in t h e e p i c e n t r a l r e g i o n . O b s e r v a t i o n s of this nature led the w r i t e r t o m a k e e x p e r i m e n t s a t S h i d e . i n t h e I s l e o f W i g h t , and a t t h e K i n g Edward VII M i n e at C a m b o r n e , in C o r n w a l l . T h e object was to d e t e r m i n e w h e t h e r t h e r e w a s o r w a s not a t t h e t i m e o f a l a r g e e a r t h q u a k e a p r a c t i c a l l y

Gl-87

GLD-011

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

i n s t a n t a n e o u s t r a n s m i s s i o n o f e n e r g y t o d i s t a n t r e g i o n s o t h e r than that r e c o r d ed by s e i s m o g r a p h s . I t w a s o b s e r v e d , and s t i l l i s o b s e r v e d , b y m a n y p e r s o n s that the f a c e o f a v e r y l a r g e chalk p i t a t Shide e x h i b i t s , a f t e r dull d a m p d a y s , a flaring luminosity. In a c h a m b e r at the end of a tunnel is t h i s p i t , a c y l i n d e r c a r r y i n g photographic paper was installed. T h i s cylinder was enclosed in a box, one end of which w a s a metal plate containing t h r e e h o l e s . The plate touched a flat chalk s u r f a c e . T h e c y l i n d e r t o o k o n e w e e k t o turn; t h e r e f o r e p a r t s o f the p a p e r b e f o r e the h o l e s w e r e v e r y s l o w l y e x p o s e d t o a c h a l k s u r f a c e about 3 / l 6 t h o f a n inch d i s t a n t . O n c e r t a i n w e e k s the r e s u l t s w e r e n i l . O t h e r w e e k s , a f t e r the d e v e l o p m e n t o f the p a p e r , t h e r e w e r e t h r e e d a r k bands c o r r e s p o n d i n g t o the p o s i t i o n o f the h o l e s , s u g g e s t i n g that the c h a l k had a c t e d like an e x t r e m e l y feeble light. Another experiment was to place small p i e c e s o f p h o t o g r a p h i c p a p e r i n e n v e l o p e s , a c e r t a i n n u m b e r o f w h i c h had a s m a l l g l a s s w i n d o w ; t h e s e w e r e p l a c e d a g a i n s t the f a c e o f the c h a l k . The image of the w i n d o w s w a s f r e q u e n t l y o b t a i n e d , but nothing m o r e than the e f f e c t s o f d a m p w a s found upon the o t h e r s . T h e c o n c l u s i o n a r r i v e d a t w a s that the p h o t o g r a p h i c e f f e c t s w e r e i n n o w a y c o n n e c t e d w i t h r a d i o - a c t i v i t y , but t h e y w e r e p r o b a b l y e l e c t r i c a l . The effects o b t a i n e d i n the g r a n i t e o f C o r n w a l l w e r e v e r y m a r k e d and, l i k e t h o s e o b s e r v e d i n the I s l e o f W i g h t , v a r i e d i n t h e i r i n t e n s i t y . A s t o the p o s s i b i l i t y o f t h e s e e f f e c t s b e i n g due t o m i c r o - o r g a n i s m s , a n u m b e r o f i n v e s t i g a t i o n s w e r e m a d e , but t h e r e w e r e n o i n d i c a t i o n s that o r g a n i s m s o b t a i n e d f r o m the c h a l k s u r f a c e s w e r e connected with luminosity. W h e t h e r t h e s e o b s e r v a t i o n s t h r o w l i g h t upon d i f f e r e n c e s i n c l i m a t e o b s e r v e d a t d i f f e r e n t p l a c e s , e v e n though they m a y b e n e a r t o e a c h o t h e r , i s a m a t t e r f o r c o n j e c t u r e , but future r e s e a r c h e s m a y s h o w that the w e l l - b e i n g o f l i v i n g t h i n g s o n the s u r f a c e o f o u r e a r t h i s m o r e d e p e n d e n t upon i t s r a d i a t i o n s than h a s h i t h e r to been i m a g i n e d . T h e l u m i n e s c e n c e o f the c h a l k c o u l d b e b i o l o g i c a l , c h e m i c a l , o r e l e c t r i c a l i n o r i g i n .

GLD-011

STRANGE EARTHQUAKE LIGHTS

A n o n y m o u s ; L i t e r a r y D i g e s t , 47:1060, N o v e m b e r 2 9 , 1913. Says a w r i t e r i n C o s m o s ( P a r i s , O c t o b e r 1 6 ) : " W h a t s e r i o u s , o b j e c t i v e truth i s t h e r e i n s t o r i e s o f l u m i n o u s p h e n o m e n a c o l u m n s o f f i r e and l i g h t n i n g said w accompany earthquake s h o c k s ? Prof. I g n a z i o G a l l i has c o l l e c t e d 148 o b s e r v a t i o n s o f such p h e n o m e n a o b s e r v e d i n c o n n e c t i o n w i t h e a r t h q u a k e s f r o m 8 9 B . C . u p t o the m o n t h o f M a r c h , 1910. " A l l e x p e r t s i n s e i s m i c r e s e a r c h a r e not, l i k e h i m , c o n v i n c e d o f the r e a l i t y o f the p h e n o m e n a i n q u e s t i o n . F a t h e r S e c c h i , h a v i n g g o n e t o study o n the spot the e f f e c t s o f the e a r t h q u a k e o f A u g u s t 2 2 , 1859, a t N o r c i a , r e c o g n i z e d the inanity o f the s t o r i e s o f f l a m e s and o f f i e r y c o l u m n s ; b e s i d e s t h i s , the s h o c k took place in broad daylight. F a t h e r B e r t e l l i s a y s that c e r t a i n w a n d e r i n g l i g h t s , noted a t the t i m e o f the L i g u r i a n e a r t h q u a k e o f F e b r u a r y 23, 1887, m i g h t h a v e b e e n due t o the i n f l a m m a t i o n o f s u l f u r e t e d h y d r o g e n o r o f h y d r o c a r b o n s g i v e n o f f f r o m the e a r t h , but h e w a s a l s o i n c l i n e d t o a t t r i b u t e t h e s e l i g h t s t o the e n t i r e l y s u b j e c t i v e i m p r e s s i o n s o f p e r s o n s f r i g h t e n e d b y the s h o c k . "On t h i s s a m e q u e s t i o n , P r o f e s s o r G . A g a m e n n o n e g i v e s , i n h i s turn, t h i s opinion. A f t e r the e a r t h q u a k e that d e v a s t a t e d B i s i g n a n o o n D e c e m b e r 3 , 1887,

Gl-88

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

GLD-012

h e l e a r n e d a t R o g g e a n o that a c o l u m n o f f i r e had b e e n s e e n ; w h e n h e sought e y e - w i t n e s s e s h e found that the o n l y o n e w a s a p e a s a n t w h o , w h e n i n t e r r o gated, s c a r c e l y s e e m e d to speak s e r i o u s l y . A f t e r the C a l a b r i a n e a r t h q u a k e o f S e p t e m b e r 8 , 1905, q u e s t i o n n a i r e s s e n t out w e r e r e t u r n e d w i t h n u m e r o u s n o t e s o f l u m i n o u s p h e n o m e n a , but a f t e r s i f t i n g the a n s w e r s i t w a s i m p o s s i b l e t o c o n c l u d e d e f i n i t e l y that t h e s e w e r e i n any d i r e c t c o n n e c t i o n w i t h t h e e a r t h q u a k e . I n the n e i g h b o r h o o d o f P i z z o , c i t e d a s o n e o f the m o s t r e m a r k a b l e f o r the i n t e n s i t y o f t h e l u m i n o u s p h e n o m e n a , A g a m e n n o n e l o o k e d u p a l l the e y e w i t n e s s e s and found that, o f a l l the p e r s o n s w h o w e r e a t w o r k o n the c o a s t that n i g h t , o n e a l o n e had s e e n l i g h t s w i t h h i s o w n e y e s ; t h e y w e r e a kind o f s h o o t i n g s t a r s s e e n a t f i r s t t h r e e - q u a r t e r s o f a n h o u r , and a g a i n a q u a r t e r o f a n h o u r , b e f o r e the s h o c k . " T h e o p i n i o n o f Count M o n t e s s u s d e B a l l o r e , d i r e c t o r o f the C h i l e a n s e i s m o logical s e r v i c e , may also be recalled. H e c o n c l u d e d that a l l the l u m i n o u s a p p e a r a n c e s n o t e d d u r i n g the e a r t h q u a k e o f 1906 a t V a l p a r a i s o m i g h t e a s i l y b e e x p l a i n e d b y l i g h t n i n g , c o n t a c t s b e t w e e n t r o l l e y - w i r e s and t h o s e o f the t e l e g r a p h o r t e l e p h o n e s e r v i c e , and the s e a r c h - l i g h t s o f w a r s h i p s . ' T h u s the p o s s i b i l i t y o f l u m i n o u s a p p e a r a n c e s i n d i r e c t c o n n e c t i o n w i t h e a r t h q u a k e p h e n o m e n a c a n not b e a b s o l u t e l y d e n i e d ; but t h e i r r e a l i t y i s not y e t demonstrated." T h e t o n e o f t h e s e d e n i a l s r e s e m b l e s that h e a r d f r o m t h e d e b u n k e r s o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g , U F O s , and o t h e r s t r a n g e p h e n o m e n a ; that i s , e v e r y t h i n g c a n b e e x p l a i n e d i n t e r m s o f contemporary physical laws.

GLD-012

LUMINOSITY ACCOMPANYING ST. LOUIS TORNADO FEBRUARY 10, 1959
F e b r u a r y 1959.

V o n n e g u t , B e r n a r d ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 87:64,

O r d i n a r y l i g h t n i n g and b a l l l i g h t n i n g often a c c o m p a n y t o r n a d o e s , but m a n y o f the luminous phenomena s e e m to be other kinds of e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e s . N e w s p a p e r a c c o u n t s o f the 1959 St. L o u i s t o r n a d o w h i c h o c c u r r e d a t about 2:20 a . m . h a v e d e s c r i b e d v a r i o u s l u m i n o u s p h e n o m e n a that a c c o m p a n i e d t h i s tornado. F o r e x a m p l e , one o b s e r v e r w a s quoted a s saying, " I saw a blue f l a s h o f l i g h t and I h e a r d a t e r r i b l e r o a r . " A n o t h e r o b s e r v e r s t a t e d , " T h e r e w a s a t e r r i f i c g l o w o f l i g h t a s i f a c l o u d w a s i l l u m i n a t e d , and t h e r e w a s a sound l i k e the r o a r o f a t r e m e n d o u s a u t o m o b i l e r a c i n g i t s e n g i n e . " T h e s e accounts appear s i m i l a r to M o n t g o m e r y ' s d e s c r i p t i o n of the B l a c k w e l l , O k l a . t o r n a d o o f M a y 25, 1955. H e s t a t e d , " T h e f i r e u p n e a r the t o p o f the funnel l o o k e d l i k e a c h i l d ' s F o u r t h o f July P i n w h e e l . " I n a n e f f o r t t o l e a r n m o r e about t h e d e t a i l s o f t h i s l u m i n o s i t y , w e w r o t e a l e t t e r t o the e d i t o r o f the St. L o u i s P o s t D i s p a t c h r e q u e s t i n g i n f o r m a t i o n f r o m r e a d e r s w h o m i g h t h a v e w i t n e s s e d such p h e n o m e n a . O v e r a dozen people r e s p o n d e d t o t h i s r e q u e s t and sent i n l e t t e r s d e s c r i b i n g t h e i r o b s e r v a t i o n s . The f o l l o w i n g a c c o u n t s w e r e t a k e n v e r b a t i m f r o m s o m e o f the l e t t e r s that w e r e sent i n d e s c r i b i n g the F e b r u a r y 1 0 t o r n a d o :
1

Floyd C. p . 109.

1

Montgomery,

M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , M a y 1955, v o l . 8 3 ,

No.

5,

Gl-89

GLD-013

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

1. " T h e a p p r o a c h of the St. L o u i s 2:20 a. m. t o r n a d o w a s a continuous i l l u m i n a t i o n not s t r e a k s o r s t r o k e s a s i n a n e l e c t r i c s t o r m . " T h e c o n t i n u o u s s o r t o f f l a t l i g h t n i n g i s a l w a y s a n i n d i c a t i o n o f w i n d and hail. " I h a v e o b s e r v e d such p e r f o r m a n c e s f o r a n u m b e r o f y e a r s , not t o s a y that just w h e n and w h e r e i t w o u l d s t r i k e , but o n e c a n t e l l about that t h e r e i s s o m e thing c o m i n g . C o n t i n u o u s i l l u m i n a t e d c l o u d i s what I s a w a g a i n f r o m 1:30 a . m . t i l l 2:20 a . m . w h e n s o o n I h e a r d what had h a p p e n e d , p a s s i n g o v e r h e a d , but 1-1/2 m i l e s t o the south o f w h e r e I a m l o c a t e d , I h e a r d the r o a r , a sound a s i f a 100-car freight train was passing by. " (Martin M a u r e r ) 2 . " T h e l i g h t n i n g w a s not c l o s e nor d i d i t o c c u r o f t e n . But t h e r e w e r e t w o f r e a k s h o w s w h i c h I had n e v e r s e e n b e f o r e . T h e f i r s t i n the s o u t h e a s t a s a b r i l l i a n t pink w h i c h l a s t e d a f e w s e c o n d s , f o l l o w e d b y a p a l e g r e e n w h i c h a l s o l i n g e r e d . I t w a s not a s t r e a k but m o r e l i k e a sunset e f f e c t and c l o u d s w e r e outlined against it. " T h e s e c o n d w a s i n the n o r t h e a s t and e n t i r e l y d i f f e r e n t b e i n g a f l a m e - l i k e f l a r e r i g h t u p f r o m the h o r i z o n j u s t a s though i t w e r e f r o m a b u r n i n g b u i l d i n g . I t w a s f o l l o w e d b y a s e c o n d o n e just l i k e i t and i n the s a m e g e n e r a l d i r e c t i o n . " (Miss Genevieve Plummer) 3. " T h e night of the s t o r m I a w o k e at 2 o ' c l o c k . I thought it s e e m e d to me i t w a s r a i n i n g h a r d s o I a r o s e and l o o k e d out. At once I saw a b i g ball of f i r e i n the sky t o the e a s t . I t l o o k e d d i f f e r e n t kind o f b r i g h t y e l l o w and then t h e r e w a s a l o n g f l a s h not l i k e usual but v e r y b r i g h t and t o m e i t l o o k e d l i k e the s h a p e o f a b r o a d s w o r d not s l i m l i k e the f l a s h e s I h a v e s e e n b e f o r e . " ( M r s . M . H a t c h ) 4 . " O n t h e n i g h t o f the s t o r m I w o k e a s the r e s u l t o f h e a v y thunder ( a p p a r e n t l y about 2 a . m . o r s h o r t l y a f t e r ) . T h e thunder s t o p p e d and a v e r y h e a v y r a i n c a m e a g a i n s t the w e s t w i n d o w s a t about the s t r e n g t h o f a s t r o n g f i r e hose. T h e w i n d o w s d i d not b r e a k . A f t e r o n l y a m i n u t e o r t w o the r a i n stopped suddenly and a p e c u l i a r v e r y r a p i d l i g h t n i n g f l a s h i n g b e g a n f l a s h i n g t h r o u g h the west window. My windows w e r e c o v e r e d by a transparent mesh-type curtain ( g l a s s f i b e r ) s o that I c o u l d s e e the l i g h t but t h e i r t r a n s l u c e n c y did not a l l o w m e t o s e e m o r e and I d i d not r e a l i z e t h e r e w a s m o r e t o b e s e e n than a n o r d i n a r y bad t h u n d e r s t o r m . " T h i s lightning flashing was v e r y rapid perhaps two or three flashes per s e c o n d and not a s b r i l l i a n t a s the usual b i g f l a s h p r e c e d i n g a t h u n d e r c l a p . This f l a s h i n g p a s s e d the w e s t w i n d o w s m o v i n g r a p i d l y n o r t h and i n a f e w m o m e n t s w a s p a s s i n g the n o r t h w i n d o w g o i n g n o r t h e a s t e r l y ( p r e s u m a b l y at least it p a s s e d b y e a c h w i n d o w i n about the s a m e w a y . T o t a l t i m e o f p a s s a g e p a s t both w i n d o w s p e r h a p s 3 - 4 m i n . ) . I d o n ' t r e c a l l h e a r i n g any sound a s t h i s r a p i d f l a s h i n g w a s g o i n g on, but m y w i n d o w s w e r e c l o s e d , and I w a s p r o b a b l y i n a half-sleep condition. " ( L . G. Spiess) B a l l l i g h t n i n g h a s b e e n s e e n t o f o r m d u r i n g sudden l u l l s i n v i o l e n t s t o r m s . (GLB056 and G L B - 0 6 3 ) T h i s " e y e " o f the s t o r m m a y b e w h e r e e l e c t r i c a l a c t i v i t y i s h i g h , giving r i s e to luminous plenomena.

GLD-013

[LUMINOUS FOOTPRINTS]

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 12:564, O c t o b e r 2 8 , 1875. A c o r r e s p o n d e n t o f the A b e r y s t w i t h O b s e r v e r , the R e v . J a m e s L e w i s , o f L l a n i l a r V i c a r a g e , w r i t e s a s f o l l o w s t o that j o u r n a l : "Whilst returning f r o m

Gl-90

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

GLD-015

s e r v i c e a t the p a r i s h c h u r c h o f R h o s t i e , about 8.15 p . m . o n F r i d a y , t h e 24th u l t . , i n c o m p a n y with t w o m e m b e r s o f the c o n g r e g a t i o n , m y attention w a s c a l l e d to a r e m a r k a b l y strange phenomenon. In walking a c r o s s a field on the f a r m o f C w m c l y d , i t w a s n o t i c e d that o u r f o o t s t e p s w e r e m a r k e d b y a p e c u l i a r light, which could be traced back for s e v e r a l y a r d s , each footprint being as d i s t i n c t l y m a r k e d on the ground as when one w a l k s in snow. When we got into t h e a d j o i n i n g f i e l d t h e l i g h t d i s a p p e a r e d until w e c a m e n e a r t o t h e end o f i t , w h e n i t w a s o b s e r v e d that o u r f o o t s t e p s w e r e a g a i n m a r k e d b y t h e s a m e l u m i n ous a p p e a r a n c e . I n c o l o u r t h e l i g h t w a s s i m i l a r t o that o f p h o s p h o r u s r u b b e d on a wall in a dark r o o m , or a m a s s of g l o w - w o r m s , of which insect, h o w e v e r , t h e r e w a s n o t r a c e o n the s u r r o u n d i n g g r o u n d . " Since no e l e c t r i c a l s t o r m or other atmospheric effects w e r e mentioned, this luminous phenomenon may be c h e m i c a l or b i o l o g i c a l in o r i g i n . T h e r e are, h o w e v e r , c a s e s of terrain made luminous by some sort of e l e c t r i c discharge phenomenon.

GLD-014

[PHOSPHORESCENCE DURING THUNDERSTORM]

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 12:447, S e p t e m b e r 16, 1875. N i g h t o f July 7 - 8 , 1875; S w i t z e r l a n d . A f t e r d e s c r i b i n g t h e s u f f o c a t i n g c a l m p r e c e d i n g the s t o r m , t h e n o i s e o f i t s a p p r o a c h , i t s v i o l e n c e , and the d a m a g e i t i n f l i c t e d , the f o l l o w i n g c u r i o u s f a c t s w e r e r e l a t e d : T h e s m a l l e s t o f the h a i l s t o n e s w e r e t h e s i z e o f h a z e l - n u t s , m a n y w e r e a s l a r g e a s w a l n u t s and c h e s t n u t s , and s o m e e v e n a s l a r g e a s a h e n ' s e g g . Some o f the h a i l s t o n e s m e a s u r e d f o u r i n c h e s i n d i a m e t e r , and s i x h o u r s a f t e r t h e y f e l l w e i g h e d u p w a r d s o f 300 g r a m m e s . F o r the m o s t p a r t t h e h a i l s t o n e s w e r e of a flattish or l e n t i c u l a r f o r m , with a c e n t r a l nucleus of 0' 16 to 0 ' 4 0 inch diameter, enveloped in several concentric layers of i c e , generally from 6 to 8 , a l t e r n a t e l y t r a n s p a r e n t and o p a q u e . T h e e l e c t r i c a l phenomena w e r e v e r y r e m a r k a b l e ; the flashes o f lightning s u c c e e d e d each with so great rapidity f r o m midnight till a few minutes after 1 o ' c l o c k in t h e m o r n i n g , that a m e a n f r o m 2 to 3 w e r e counted e a c h s e c o n d , o r f r o m 8 , 000 t o 10, 000 p e r h o u r . Electrical phosphorescence was remarkab l y i n t e n s e b e f o r e and d u r i n g t h e h a i l . The ground, animals, prominent o b j e c t s , a s w e l l a s the h a i l s t o n e s , w e r e s t r o n g l y p h o s p h o r e s c e n t . I m m e d i a t e l y a f t e r t h e h a i l , o z o n e w a s g r e a t l y d e v e l o p e d , the s m e l l b e i n g s o p r o n o u n c e d as to be compared by nearly all o b s e r v e r s to g a r l i c . The incessant e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e s p a s s e d f r o m c l o u d t o c l o u d o v e r a c e n t r a l point f r o m w h i c h t h e h a i l f e l l , but t h u n d e r w a s v e r y r a r e l y h e a r d .

GLD-015

LUMINOUS PHENOMENA IN NOCTURNAL TORNADOES

V o n n e g u t , B . , and W e y e r , J a m e s ; S c i e n c e , 1 5 3 : 1 2 1 3 - 1 2 2 0 , S e p t e m b e r 9 , 1966. ( C o p y r i g h t 1966 b y T h e A m e r i c a n A s s o c i a t i o n f o r the A d v a n c e m e n t o f S c i e n c e ) The authors of this p a p e r advocate a strong r o l e for e l e c t r i c i t y in tornado action, c o n c l u s i o n b a s e d o n t o r n a d o e n e r g e t i c s and t h e f r e q u e n t o b s e r v a t i o n o f e l e c t r i c a l a

Gl-91

GLD-015

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

e f f e c t s i n the n e i g h b o r h o o d o f t o r n a d o e s . D u r i n g t h e T o l e d o t o r n a d o e s o f A p r i l 1 1 , 1965, W e y e r w a s t a k i n g p h o t o g r a p h s o f t h e s t o r m and w a s f o r t u n a t e enough t o g e t a p i c t u r e o f t w o v e r t i c a l shafts o f l i g h t i n the r e g i o n w h e r e the tornadoes w e r e a c t i v e . T h e s e r a t h e r startling photos w e r e supplemented by the f o l l o w i n g e y e - w i t n e s s accounts; T h e t w i s t e r c a m e through h e r e u p high. F r o m southwest t o n o r t h e a s t . . . . T h e r e w a s h a r d w i n d . I w a s o u t s i d e . Suddenly t h e r e w a s n o w i n d . My e a r d r u m s felt l i k e they would burst, v e r y intense. I h e a r d a f a r a w a y r o a r and a t t h e s a m e t i m e i t w a s a l l around m e Then a great wall of white c a m e . T h e r e w a s h a r d w i n d and a l l w h i t e . I c o u l d not s e e t h r o u g h t h e w h i t e . T h e r e w a s v e r y little damage here. Just a f t e r the t o r n a d o s t r u c k , I w a s i n s i d e o f t h e h o u s e l o o k i n g out, I s a w s o m e t h i n g v e r y b r i g h t about the s i z e o f a b a s k e t b a l l about s i x f e e t a w a y f r o m m e and about f i v e f e e t o f f t h e g r o u n d . I t w a s w h i t e , b l u e and y e l l o w i n c o l o r and c o m i n g s l o w l y t o w a r d m e . . . . a t l e s s than t h e s p e e d a p e r s o n w o u l d w a l k . . . . w h e n i t s e e m e d t o h i t t h e d o o r , i t m a d e the d o o r sound l i k e i t w a s s i n g i n g . W e w e r e shaken u p and our t r a i l e r a l o n g w i t h o t h e r s w a s d e n t e d b a d l y f r o m h a i l the s i z e o f b a s e b a l l s . T h e beautiful e l e c t r i c b l u e l i g h t that w a s around the t o r n a d o w a s s o m e t h i n g t o s e e , and b a l l s o f o r a n g e and l i g h t n i n g c a m e f r o m the c o n e point o f the t o r n a d o . T h e c o n e o r t a i l o f the t o r n a d o r e m i n d e d m e o f a n elephant trunk. I t w o u l d d i p d o w n a s i f t o g e t f o o d t h e n r i s e u p a g a i n a s i f the trunk o f a n e l e p h a n t w o u l d put t h e food i n h i s m o u t h . W h i l e the trunk w a s u p t h e t o r n a d o w a s not d a n g e r o u s , just when t h e p o i n t c a m e d o w n i s w h e n t h e d a m a g e s t a r t e d . M y son and I w a t c h e d the o r a n g e b a l l s o f f i r e r o l l d o w n t h e R a c e W a y P a r k then i t l i f t e d and the r o o f c a m e off o n e o f the h o r s e b a r n s . T h e s t o r m hit u n e x p e c t e d a l l s o r t s o f t h i n g s w e r e f a l l i n g about. T h e m o s t i n t e r e s t i n g thing I r e m e m b e r i s a s u r f a c e g l o w s o m e three or four feet deep rolling noise e t c . . . . there was sort of a general brightness for a few seconds s o m e static on r a d i o e t c . W e thought w e s a w s e a r c h l i g h t s a l l around u s , but t h e r e w e r e n o l i g h t b e a m s s h o o t i n g u p t o the c l o u d s f r o m the g r o u n d . T h e l i g h t s d a r t i n g around i n the c l o u d s w e r e s o r t o f l u m i n o u s and a p p e a r e d t o b e m o r e round i n shape than a n y thing e l s e , a l s o they w e r e q u i t e l a r g e . T h e l i g h t s w e r e not a s b r i g h t a s a s t r o k e o f l i g h t n i n g , but t h e y w e r e a b o v e a d e n s e l a y e r o f c l o u d s , and b l u i s h w h i t e i n c o l o r . . . . t h e y w e r e s h o o t i n g around. W e c o u l d s e e the l i g h t s i n the w e s t , n o r t h w e s t , n o r t h , and n o r t h e a s t f r o m 8:00 p . m . o n . . . . W e did not h a v e m u c h s t r o k e l i g h t n i n g and I d o not r e c a l l h e a r i n g t h u n d e r . O u r e l e c t r i c i t y w a s k n o c k e d out a t 9:32 p . m . , and that i s w h e n w e s a w o n e b l a c k funnel. The reason we could see it is b e c a u s e t h e r e w a s a slight g l o w c o m i n g f r o m the s i d e s of it. It c a m e f r o m due w e s t . I w a s standing i n m y b a c k y a r d about 9:00 p . m . l o o k i n g a t t h e sky t o w a r d the w e s t t o n o r t h about 1 5 ° . T h e sky w a s r e a l l y b l a c k . . . . A l l a t o n c e a b i g h o l e o p e n e d u p i n t h e sky w i t h a m a s s o f c h e r r y r e d . T h e o p e n i n g l o o k e d about 1/4 m i l e l o n g and about the s a m e h e i g h t . I t had a y e l l o w t i n g e i n t h e c e n t e r and the e d g e s w e r e d a r k e r c h e r r y r e d w i t h b l a c k s p o t s i n the e d g e s . T h i s opening o p e n e d up c o m p l e t e in about 6 s e c o n d s , s t a y e d o p e n about 10 to 12 s e c o n d s then c l o s e d i n 6 s e c o n d s . T h e sky w a s c o m p l e t e l y b l a c k a g a i n . I t w a s about 3 0 ° t o 3 5 ° up. T h e b l a c k s p o t s that I r e f e r r e d t o w e r e s m a l l p o r t i o n s o f d a r k c l o u d s l i k e b a l l s , j u s t a f e w o n t h e r i g h t o f the s k e t c h and t h e l o w e r l e f t . They w e r e r o l l i n g s o m e , a l w a y s w o r k i n g t o w a r d the o u t e r s i d e s . T h e c h e r r y r e d had s o m e vibration to it, v e r y l i t t l e . The upper center had a v e r y fast q u i v e r . A l s o a m o t i o n l i k e hot s t e e l m e l t i n g i n a p o t . T h i s m o t i o n w a s v e r y s m a l l but f a s t .

Gl-92

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

GLD-015

T h e a u t h o r s then m a k e the f o l l o w i n g c o m m e n t s r e g a r d i n g the o b s e r v a t i o n s . T h e r e a p p e a r t o b e s e v e r a l p o s s i b l e e x p l a n a t i o n s f o r the c o l u m n s o f l i g h t s h o w n i n [the p h o t o ] . T h e y m a y b e t w o t o r n a d o funnels i l l u m i n a t e d e x t e r n a l l y b y l i g h t n i n g ; t h e y m a y b e s o m e kind o f l u m i n o u s e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e ; o r t h e y m a y b e t o r n a d o funnels i l l u m i n a t e d b y l i g h t n i n g o r s o m e o t h e r kind o f e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e w i t h i n the v o r t e x . W e doubt t h e f i r s t o f t h e s e p o s s i b i l i t i e s o n the g r o u n d s that i f t h e r e w e r e e x t e r n a l l i g h t n i n g c a p a b l e o f i l l u m i n a t i n g the c l o u d s , w e should s e e e v i d e n c e o f i l l u m i n a t i o n o n the g r o u n d o r o b j e c t s i n the f o r e g r o u n d . T h u s w e are inclined to f a v o r either of the t w o latter explanations.

Appearance of the Blackwell tornado of May 25, 1955. (Adapted from GLD-015,

Fig. 7).

Pertinent observations made during two other tornadoes f o l l o w . The first tornado o c c u r r e d on a s u m m e r a f t e r n o o n in 1942 in C h a m p a i g n , I l l i n o i s ; the s e c o n d , June 17, 1959, a t M i a m i , F l o r i d a . I w a s l o o k i n g . . . . u p at t h e c l o u d s w h e n I s a w s o m e t h i n g that l o o k e d l i k e a s e a r c h l i g h t b e a m e x t e n d out o f the c l o u d and r e a c h t o the s k y l i n e . I t s e e m e d a b i t b r i g h t e r than the c l o u d b a c k g r o u n d . E d g e s w e r e sharp, o v e r a l l intensity e v e n , s i d e s p a r a l l e l . W i d t h about a d e g r e e o f a r c . N o m o v e m e n t o r t u r b u l e n c e e v i d e n t . T h e p h e n o m e n o n w a s i n t e r e s t i n g enough s o I t o o k out m y P o l a r o i d g l a s s e s and o b s e r v e d t h i s " r a y " t h r o u g h t h e m , t w i s t i n g the l e n s t o l o o k f o r p o l a r i z a t i o n . N o p o l a r i z a t i o n w a s n o t e d . T h i s r a y w a s o b v i o u s enough s o that p a s s e r b y s o n the s t r e e t w e r e s t a r i n g a t i t . A l l t h i s t o o k , s a y , 6 0 t o 120 s e c o n d s (or m o r e ) . Then abruptly the r a y w a s instantly r e p l a c e d by a n o r m a l tornado funnel. No transition stage was noted. T h e funnel did not d e s c e n d f r o m the c l o u d l a y e r . I t a p p e a r e d o v e r a l l , i n situ. A t t h i s t i m e I w a s a student a t the A r m y W e a t h e r S c h o o l a t Chanute F i e l d .

Gl-93

GLD-016

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

[ T h e ] l o w e r e x t r e m i t y [ o f the funnel] w a s c o n t i n u o u s l y i l l u m i n a t e d w i t h a b l u e - g r e e n light flashing like an e l e c t r i c welding t o r c h . A part of this w a s no doubt p r o d u c e d b y t h e t o r n a d o d i s r u p t i n g . . . . p o w e r l i n e s . H o w e v e r , the t o r n a d o w a s a s s o c i a t e d w i t h a t h u n d e r s t o r m w h i c h had a n e x t r e m e amount o f e l e c t r i c a l a c t i v i t y w i t h a l m o s t continuous c l o u d t o c l o u d and c l o u d t o g r o u n d lightning strokes T h e authors a l s o d i s c u s s the p o s s i b l e r o l e s e l e c t r i c i t y m a y play i n tornado f o r m a t i o n and a c t i o n . T h e y f e e l that e l e c t r i c a l f o r c e s c a n h e l p e x p l a i n the v e r y high e n e r g y density in tornado c o r e s .

GLD-016

ELECTRIC THEORY OF EARTHQUAKES AND VOLCANOES

A n o n y m o u s ; L i v i n g A g e , 102:387-398, 1869. T h i s i s a n o l d and r a t h e r c u r i o u s a r t i c l e . T h e r e are s e v e r a l stories of lightning's seeming p r e f e r e n c e for certain l o c a l i t i e s w h e r e other geophysical phenomena s e e m t o b e f o c u s s e d ; f o r e x a m p l e , the M o o d u s Sounds ( G S D - 0 1 4 ) . Any o n e w h o h a s l i v e d much i n the c o u n t r y m u s t h a v e h e a r d , o r n o t i c e d f o r h i m s e l f , that t h e r e a r e c e r t a i n spots i n e a c h l o c a l i t y w h e r e s h e e p and c a t t l e a r e s t r u c k d u r i n g t h u n d e r s t o r m s m o r e f r e q u e n t l y than e l s e w h e r e . It is well known that m e n and a n i m a l s a r e m o r e l i a b l e t o b e s t r u c k b y l i g h t n i n g when standing u n d e r t r e e s than i n the open c o u n t r y . But i t i s not t o such c a s e s that we refer. W e s p e a k o f s p o t s o n the h i l l s o r o n the o p e n m o o r w h e r e t h e r e a r e n o t r e e s , and w h e r e the h e r b a g e o r v e g e t a t i o n i s o f the s a m e c h a r a c t e r a s p r e v a i l s f o r m i l e s around, y e t w h e r e , n e v e r t h e l e s s , the l i g h t n i n g - f l a s h d e s c e n d s t o e a r t h , o r i s s u e s f r o m i t , m o r e f r e q u e n t l y than e l s e w h e r e . T h e r e must be a cause for this. And t h e r e i s but o n e c a u s e w h i c h can b e assigned for it. A t t h e s e spots the e a r t h m u s t i n a s p e c i a l m a n n e r a t t r a c t the e l e c t r i c d i s c h a r g e f r o m the a i r the e a r t h m u s t i n t h o s e p l a c e s g i v e a r e a d i e r p a s s a g e , w h e t h e r u p w a r d s o r d o w n w a r d s , t o the e l e c t r i c fluid than e l s e w h e r e . I f such s p o t s w e r e e x a m i n e d , w e b e l i e v e i t w o u l d b e found that the subjacent r o c k s c o m e n e a r t o the s u r f a c e , and a l s o that t h o s e r o c k s a r e o f a kind t h r o u g h w h i c h the e l e c t r i c c u r r e n t s p a s s r e a d i l y . In some cases, probab l y , the r o c k s a t such spots a r e i m p r e g n a t e d w i t h i r o n o r o t h e r m e t a l l i c o r e s ; and c e r t a i n l y they w i l l b e r o c k s o f h i g h e r m o l e c u l a r o r g a n i z a t i o n than sandstone n a m e l y , t r a p r o c k s and o t h e r s o f s o - c a l l e d i g n e o u s o r i g i n . We b e l i e v e that c e r t a i n kinds o f r o c k a r e the f a v o u r i t e o r s p e c i a l m e d i a o f the m a g netic c u r r e n t s , w h i c h a r e i n constant a c t i o n a r o u n d and b e n e a t h u s , and w h i c h m a y b e r e g a r d e d a s the n e r v e - f o r c e o f the e a r t h and o f a l l m a t t e r sandstone p r o b a b l y h a v i n g the l e a s t , and the " i g n e o u s , " c r y s t a l l i n e , and m e t a l l i f e r o u s r o c k s the g r e a t e s t a f f i n i t y and a t t r a c t i o n f o r t h o s e c u r r e n t s , ( p . 392)

GLD-017

LUMINOUS PHENOMENA OBSERVED ON MOUNTAINS

C a s h , C. G. ; N a t u r e , 56:31, M a y 13, 1897. On E a s t e r M o n d a y , 19th ult. , I w a s a s c e n d i n g B r a e r i a c h by i t s w e l l - k n o w n n o r t h e r n r i d g e , and s h o r t l y a f t e r I had c r o s s e d the " s n o w - l i n e , " I w i t n e s s e d a

Gl-94

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

GLD-018

p h e n o m e n o n o f g r e a t beauty, the e x p l a n a t i o n o f w h i c h I cannot g i v e . The edge o f m y plaid, o f m y g l o v e d hands, o f m y k n i c k e r b o c k e r s , & c . , w a s b o r d e r e d b y a t w o i n c h b a n d o f b r i l l i a n t v i o l e t l i g h t ; a t t h e m o m e n t o f b e g i n n i n g any m o v e ment. T h e l i g h t w a s not v i s i b l e a r o u n d a n y t h i n g a t r e s t , n o r d i d i t p e r s i s t ; but o n l y s h o w e d a t t h e m o m e n t w h e n r e s t w a s c h a n g e d f o r m o v e m e n t . My attention w a s d i r e c t e d to this f o r a v e r y short t i m e only, f o r h e a v y snow b e g a n t o d r i v e i n m y f a c e , and I had t o w a t c h w h e r e I w a s g o i n g , a s t h e i m m e d i ate surrounds included dangerous ground. A f t e r m y r e t u r n , I found a n a c c o u n t o f a s o m e w h a t s i m i l a r a p p e a r a n c e i n the C a i r n g o r m Club Journal, v o l . i . , p. 159. I c o p y the account a s t h e r e g i v e n b y D r . John G o r d o n , o f A b e r d e e n : " H a l f - w a y a c r o s s t h e s n o w - s l o p e , w h i l e t h e sun w a s s o m e w h a t o b s c u r e d , but w a s s t i l l s e n d i n g a c o n s i d e r a b l e i n t e n s i t y o f l i g h t , w e o b s e r v e d a s t r a n g e phenomenon. On the s i d e of o u r body next the s n o w - s l o p e t h e r e w a s a nimbus o f v i o l e t l i g h t , w h i c h c l u n g t o c l o t h e s , n a k e d f i n g e r s , and t h e shaft o f t h e i c e axe. S o p l e n t i f u l d i d i t a p p e a r i n t h e p a l m o f t h e h a n d that i t l o o k e d a t t i m e s l i k e a p o o l o f v i o l e t i n k , and o n e t h o u g h t i t c o u l d b e p i t c h e d a w a y . On shaking t h e h a n d , h o w e v e r , t h e n i m b u s c l u n g , and w a s n o t t o b e r e m o v e d . Occasionally t h e c o l o u r v a r i e d , t a k i n g o n s h a d e s o f b r o w n i s h - y e l l o w and b l u e , but v i o l e t w a s the m o s t m a r k e d c o l o u r . A t a n o t h e r t i m e , i n m u c h the s a m e c o n d i t i o n o f l i g h t and s n o w s u r r o u n d i n g s , o n e o f t h e p a r t y , w h o w a s v e r y p r o u d o f t h e b e a u t y o f t h e s i l v e r c a s e o f h i s c o m p a s s , w a s d i s g u s t e d t o f i n d that i t h a d a d i s t i n c t l y y e l l o w , pinchbeck look. T h i s l i g h t r e f r a c t i o n o r p o l a r i s a t i o n [ ? ] w a s not s o e v i d e n t t o s o m e o f t h e p a r t y , but t h e w r i t e r h a s o b s e r v e d i t b e f o r e i n s i m i l a r c i r c u m s t a n c e s and a t m o s p h e r i c c o n d i t i o n s . " I m a y add t h a t , i n m y o w n c a s e , n o d i r e c t s u n l i g h t r e a c h e d m e , a s I w a s i n the l o w e r part o f a d e n s e cloud o r m i s t . Some of your readers may offer an e x p l a n a t i o n o f t h i s r e m a r k a b l e and b e a u t i f u l a p p e a r a n c e .

GLD-018

THE A N D E S GLOW

Y o u n g , J . R . C . ; W e a t h e r . , 2 6 : 3 9 , 1972 I was particularly interested in this article [ G L D - 0 1 9 ] for two reasons. I n t h e s p r i n g o f 1 9 4 4 , o n e d a r k c l e a r n i g h t , I o b s e r v e d the f l a s h t y p e o f d i s c h a r g e b e i n g m a d e r e p e a t e d l y at the s u m m i t of what I b e l i e v e is c a l l e d M o n t L e o n t o the n o r t h - w e s t o f B o n e a i r p o r t i n A l g e r i a . T h e night i n q u e s t i o n w a s c l e a r and s t a r l i t and t h e t o p o f M o n t L e o n w a s c o v e r e d w i t h a l i t t l e c a p o f c l o u d ; e v i d e n t l y i t c o i n c i d e d w i t h t h e i n v e r s i o n t o p , and i t w a s i n t h i s c l o u d the flash o c c u r r e d . I n q u i r y s e e m e d t o s h o w that t h i s w a s c o m m o n l y s e e n i n winter there. When a m a j o r c o r o n a l d i s c h a r g e takes p l a c e around an a i r c r a f t in flight, and m a y I s a y I h a v e n e v e r s e e n t h i s o n a i r c r a f t f i t t e d w i t h t h e l a t e s t t y p e d i s c h a r g e r s , what happens is this. F l a s h e s o f l i g h t a p p e a r upon the w i n d s c r e e n and t h e n a s d i s c h a r g e i n c r e a s e s t h e n o s e o f t h e a i r c r a f t a p p e a r s i m m e r s e d in a purplish haze which is a c c o m p a n i e d by a loud hissing n o i s e . T h i s m a y all d i e a w a y . I f not, a s a s e e m i n g c r e s c e n d o i s r e a c h e d , t h e r e i s a l o u d b a n g and a f l a s h o f l i g h t i s s e e n t o e m a n a t e f r o m t h e a i r c r a f t , e x h i b i t i n g t h e c l a s s i c a l z i g - z a g f o r m a t i o n and e n d i n g i n a p o i n t . Then all i s d a r k n e s s and s i l e n c e a p a r t f r o m t h e c o n t i n u e d a e r o d y n a m i c and e n g i n e n o i s e s w h i c h b y c o m p a r i s o n w i t h m o m e n t s b e f o r e a m o u n t t o a s t r a n g e hush. P e r h a p s t h e r e i s s o m e l i m i t i n g v a l u e o f the potential g r a d i e n t b e y o n d w h i c h c o r o n a l d i s c h a r g e i s r e p l a c e d b y a d i r e c t d i s c h a r g e o f the c u r r e n t t o a c o n siderably greater distance.

Gl-95

GLD-019
GLD-019

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

MOUNTAIN-PEAK POTENTIAL-GRADIENT MEASUREMENTS AND THE ANDES GLOW

M a r k s o n , R a l p h , and N e l s o n , R i c h a r d ; W e a t h e r , 2 5 : 3 5 0 - 3 6 0 , 1971. M a r k s o n and N e l s o n b e g i n b y r e v i e w i n g the p h e n o m e n o n o f the " A n d e s G l o w " : "Andes g l o w " or"Andes lights" are t e r m s used to describe illumination seen a t night i n the v i c i n i t y o f c e r t a i n m o u n t a i n p e a k s . W h i l e the m a j o r i t y o f r e p o r t s h a v e c o m e f r o m the A n d e s m o u n t a i n s o f B o l i v i a , C h i l e and P e r u , t h i s p h e n o m e n o n has a l s o b e e n r e p o r t e d i n the E u r o p e a n A l p s , M e x i c o , and L a p l a n d and p r e sumably could o c c u r in many mountainous r e g i o n s under favourable conditions. W h i l e s o m e t i m e s thought t o b e l i g h t n i n g , f o r l a c k o f a m o r e o b v i o u s e x p l a n a t i o n , the i n t e r e s t i n g p r o p e r t y o f t h e s e l i g h t d i s p l a y s i s that t h e y can o c c u r u n d e r c l o u d less skies. S o m e t i m e s t h e y a r e but one s i n g l e f l a s h , w h i l e a t o t h e r t i m e s t h e y m a y persist intermittently for hours. O n o c c a s i o n , a p e r i o d i c i t y has b e e n noted i n the time between flashes At their most spectacular they have been d e s c r i b e d as " . . . . not o n l y c l o t h i n g the p e a k s , but p r o d u c i n g g r e a t b e a m s , w h i c h c a n b e s e e n m i l e s out a t s e a " T h e y s e e m t o f a v o u r p a r t i c u l a r mountain p e a k s w h e r e often t h e y c a n b e s e e n d u r i n g t h e d r y s e a s o n V e r y l o w humidity is frequently m e n t i o n e d a s the d o m i n a t i n g m e t e o r o l o g i c a l f a c t o r w h e n A n d e s l i g h t s a r e s e e n . R a t h e r than l i g h t n i n g , the A n d e s l i g h t s m a y b e a l a r g e s c a l e Saint E l m o ' s F i r e w i t h m a n y p o i n t s a c r o s s the mountain t o p g o i n g i n t o c o r o n a d i s c h a r g e . M a r k s o n and N e l s o n n e x t r e v i e w the s p a r s e l i t e r a t u r e o n the s u b j e c t . N e x t , t h e y d e s c r i b e m e a s u r e m e n t s they made of e l e c t r i c f i e l d s on the summits of s o m e M e x i c a n m o u n t a i n s . T h e f i e l d g r a d i e n t s w e r e found t o v a r y , r e a c h i n g 3,100 v o l t s / m e t e r 2 5 t i m e s the n o r m a l v a l u e . N o g l o w s w e r e o b s e r v e d d u r i n g the e x p e r i m e n t s , but t h e y b e l i e v e that s t r o n g e r f i e l d s c o u l d e a s i l y b u i l d u p and c r e a t e d i s c h a r g e p h e n o m e n a . T h e y r e m a r k that m o u n t a i n - t o p g l o w s i n the p o l a r r e g i o n s m i g h t e a s i l y b e t a k e n f o r a u r o r a s , and that t h i s i m p r e s s i o n m i g h t b e m o r e than s u b j e c t i v e . Solar flares a r e not only a s s o c i a t e d w i t h a u r o r a s but they a r e k n o w n t o i n c r e a s e the e a r t h ' s e l e c t r i c f i e l d g r a d i e n t . I n o t h e r w o r d s , m o u n t a i n - t o p g l o w s and a u r o r a s m a y b o t h b e s t i m u l a t e d by solar activity.

© 00©©

Fair Weather Conduction Current

High

Conductivity

Region

Discontinuity in conductivity causing charge build-up

T o p of inversion^ ANDES ^V^-

The mechanism by which a haze might initiate point discharge from a mountain peak. (Adapted from GLD-019)

Gl-96

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE
GLD-020
Huntington,

GLD-021

ELECTRIC PHENOMENA IN THE EUPHRATES VALLEY
E l l s w o r t h ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 2 8 : 2 8 6 - 2 8 7 , July 1900.

Huntington w a s w e l l - k n o w n a t the t i m e f o r h i s s t u d i e s o f the e f f e c t s o f c l i m a t e o n man. During a r e c e n t ten d a y s ' g e o l o g i c a l t r i p through an almost unvisited part of the T a u r u s M o u n t a i n s to t h e south of H a r p o o t I h e a r d of a p h e n o m e n o n w h i c h I should b e g l a d t o h a v e y o u e x p l a i n , e i t h e r b y l e t t e r o r t h r o u g h the c o l u m n s o f the R e v i e w . B e f o r e l e a v i n g H a r p o o t I w a s t o l d b y a m a n f r o m A i v o s e that K e k l u j e k M o u n t a i n , n e a r h i s v i l l a g e , fought w i t h Z i a r e t M o u n t a i n , o n the o t h e r s i d e o f the E u p h r a t e s R i v e r . T h e w e a p o n s w e r e b a l l s o f l i g h t , w h i c h the mountains t h r e w at each other. A s the r e g i o n w a s o n e o f v o l c a n i c a c t i v i t y i n c o m p a r a t i v e l y r e c e n t t i m e s , and a s hot s p r i n g s a t e x t i n c t c r a t e r s a r e s t i l l t o be s e e n , I thought at f i r s t that t h i s m u s t be a t r a d i t i o n a l a c c o u n t of a v o l c a n i c eruption. Subsequent i n v e s t i g a t i o n , h o w e v e r , s h o w e d that the s t o r y had i t s o r i g i n in a m e t e o r o l o g i c a l phenomenon. A t f i r s t I w a s s k e p t i c a l a s t o the truth o f what f o l l o w s . A f t e r h e a r i n g s u b s t a n t i a l l y the s a m e s t o r y f r o m t e n o r t w e l v e men w h o m I saw in f i v e different places separated by an e x t r e m e d i s tance of 40 or m o r e m i l e s , I b e c a m e thoroughly c o n v i n c e d of its truth. It m a y b e a c o m m o n o c c u r r e n c e , but I h a v e n e v e r h e a r d o f i t and c a n find n o account of it in the f e w books at my c o m m a n d . T h e facts, upon which all a g r e e , a r e as f o l l o w s : A ball of f i r e is s o m e t i m e s s e e n t o s t a r t f r o m o n e m o u n t a i n and t o g o l i k e a f l a s h t o a n o t h e r . A t the s a m e t i m e t h e r e i s a sound l i k e t h u n d e r . T h i s o c c u r s b y day o r b y night, although b y d a y n o l i g h t i s s e e n . I t a l w a y s o c c u r s w h e n the sky i s c l e a r and n e v e r when it is cloudy. It s o m e t i m e s happens t w o or t h r e e t i m e s in a y e a r , and then a g a i n i s not s e e n f o r s e v e r a l y e a r s . F o r the l a s t t w o y e a r s i t h a s not b e e n s e e n . I t i s m o s t c o m m o n ( o r p o s s i b l y n e v e r happens e x c e p t ) i n the f a l l a t the end o f t h e l o n g , d r y s e a s o n o f t h r e e m o n t h s . T h e mountains show no spe cial features different f r o m other mountains. I v i s i t e d one of them, K a r a o g h l o n ( B l a c k Son) M o u n t a i n , and found i t t o b e c o m p o s e d o f m e t a m o r phic s c h i s t o s e s h a l e o f c r e t a c e o u s a g e . I t s h e i g h t i s 7 , 3 5 0 f e e t and the t o p is c o m p a r a t i v e l y flat. One o b s e r v e r s a i d that a g l o w r e m a i n e d a f t e r the f l a s h , but a l l t h e r e s t c o n t r a d i c t e d t h i s . A n o t h e r s a i d that the b a l l o f f i r e w a s f i r s t s m a l l , but g r e w l a r g e r a s i t p a s s e d o v e r , and then g r e w s m a l l e r again. H e e v i d e n t l y w a s b e t w e e n the t w o m o u n t a i n s .

GLD-021

ELECTRIC PHENOMENA IN THE EUPHRATES VALLEY

A n o n y m o u s ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 28:290, July 1900. I n a t t e m p t i n g a n e x p l a n a t i o n o f the p h e n o m e n o n r e p o r t e d b y Huntington ( G L D - 0 2 0 ) , the E d i t o r o f the M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w b e g i n s thus: W e n e e d not a p o l o g i z e f o r r e f r a i n i n g f r o m a t t e m p t i n g t o find the c o r r e c t e x p l a n a t i o n o f t h e m y s t e r i o u s l i g h t n i n g s and t h u n d e r s h e r e r e c o r d e d . It is w e l l k n o w n that l i g h t n i n g p a s s e s b e t w e e n c l o u d and c l o u d o r c l o u d and e a r t h , but w e h a v e not y e t any w e l l a u t h e n t i c a t e d c a s e o f i t s p a s s i n g f r o m p e a k t o p e a k , although the p o e t s d e s c r i b e i t a s " l e a p i n g f r o m c r a g t o c r a g . " B y r o n i s q u i t e t r u e t o n a t u r e w h e n h e (in C h i l d e H a r o l d e , C a n t o I I I , s t a n z a 9 2 ) , d e s c r i b i n g a

Gl-97

GLD-022

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE
says:

thunderstorm on Lake Leman,

F a r along F r o m p e a k t o p e a k , the r a t t l i n g c r a g s a m o n g , L e a p s the l i v e thunder T h e r e a r e p e a k s i n the R o c k y M o u n t a i n s o n w h i c h a l m o s t continuous e l e c t r i c d i s c h a r g e s h a v e b e e n o b s e r v e d , but t h e y p a s s o f f i n t o the a i r q u i e t l y , l i k e St. E l m o ' s f i r e , n e v e r i n g r e a t f l a s h e s f r o m p e a k t o p e a k . D u r i n g e r u p t i o n s o f V e s u v i u s , the l i g h t n i n g p a s s e s f r o m the m o u n t a i n t o the c l o u d s o f s t e a m that h a v e r i s e n f r o m the v o l c a n o , but not b e t w e e n n e i g h b o r i n g p e a k s . I n g e n e r a l , the a i r o r d i n a r i l y o f f e r s such a r e s i s t a n c e t o the p a s s a g e o f e l e c t r i c i t y , w h i l e t h e e a r t h i s such a g o o d c o n d u c t o r o f e l e c t r i c i t y , that i t w o u l d b e e a s i e r f o r t w o e l e c t r i f i e d p e a k s t o d i s c h a r g e t h r o u g h the e a r t h than t h r o u g h the a i r . W e c a n n o t , t h e r e f o r e , think o f a l i g h t n i n g f l a s h p a s s i n g between two neighboring peaks. On the o t h e r hand, a c l o u d or a m a s s of e l e c t r i f i e d a i r that h a s not q u i t e attained the c l o u d y c o n d i t i o n m a y l i e b e t w e e n t w o p e a k s , and f l a s h e s m a y p r o c e e d f r o m i t s i m u l t a n e o u s l y t o the t w o p e a k s i n such a w a y a s t o l e a d a c a r e l e s s o b s e r v e r t o s a y that o n e peak d i s c h a r g e d o v e r t o the o t h e r .

GLD-022

ST. ELMO'S FIRE ON BEN NEVIS
1889.

Rankin, Angus; Nature, 40:439-440, September 5,

St. E l m o ' s F i r e a s s e e n o c c a s i o n a l l y a t the B e n N e v i s O b s e r v a t o r y t a k e s the f o r m o f j e t s o f l i g h t o n the t o p s o f all o b j e c t s that stand any h e i g h t a b o v e the g e n e r a l l e v e l o f the r o o f o f the O b s e r v a t o r y , such a s the c h i m n e y s , a n e m o m e t e r s , l i g h t n i n g - r o d , & c . I n a v e r y fine d i s p l a y the t o p s o f the o b j e c t s a r e q u i t e a b l a z e w i t h the p h e n o m e n o n , w h i c h then g l o w s and h i s s e s i n b r i l l i a n t t o n g u e s o f w h i t e and b l u e , f r o m f o u r t o s i x , o r e v e n m o r e , i n c h e s in length. N o r i s the p h e n o m e n o n c o n f i n e d t o t h e s e o b j e c t s a l o n e i n the f i n e r d i s p l a y s , but i f the o b s e r v e r stands o n the r o o f h i s h a i r , hat, p e n c i l , & c . , g l o w w i t h i t a s w e l l , and when h e r a i s e s a s t i c k a b o v e h i s h e a d the s t i c k h a s a l s o a l o n g f l a m e at the t o p . F u r t h e r , h o w e v e r , than h a v i n g a s l i g h t t i n g l i n g i n h i s h e a d and hands h e s u f f e r s n o i n c o n v e n i e n c e . The hissing is a v e r y marked c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the phenomenon, being always h e a r d d u r i n g o r d i n a r y d i s p l a y s , though i n the f e e b l e r d i s p l a y s , w h e n the l i g h t can b a r e l y b e s e e n , i t cannot b e d i s t i n g u i s h e d f r o m the h i s s i n g o f the wind and the s n o w d r i f t . On o n e o c c a s i o n the sound w a s a v e r y h i g h l y p i t c h e d n o t e . I n the f i n e r and e v e n i n o r d i n a r y d i s p l a y s St. E l m o ' s F i r e i s a n o b j e c t o f g r e a t b e a u t y , and the s t o r m y c h a r a c t e r o f the w e a t h e r namely, squally w i n d s w i t h h e a v y s h o w e r s o f s n o w and h a i l , and w i t h c l o u d s o f s n o w d r i f t f l y ing all around h e i g h t e n s r a t h e r than d i m i n i s h e s the e f f e c t , although a t the s a m e t i m e i t d e t r a c t s f r o m the c o n v e n i e n c e o f o b s e r v i n g w i t h a d v a n t a g e .

GLD-023
Brunton,

A PSEUDO-AURORA
L a u d e r ; N a t u r e , 87:278, A u g u s t 3 1 , 1911. St. Beatenberg,

F o r s o m e t i m e I have been staying at the Kurhaus,

Gl-98

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

GLD-024

S w i t z e r l a n d , and m y w i n d o w c o m m a n d s a v i e w o f t h e B e r n e s e O b e r l a n d f r o m the W e t t e r h o r n t o the B a l m h o r n . T h e E i g e r M o n c h , Jungfrau, and B l u m l i s a l p stand out m o s t c l e a r l y a b o v e the l o w e r m o u n t a i n s i n f r o n t o f t h e m , o f w h i c h the F a u l h o r n and M e s e n a r e m e m b e r s . T h e r e h a s b e e n a c o n t i n u a n c e o f hot and d r y w e a t h e r f o r m a n y w e e k s , and t h e r e h a v e b e e n o c c a s i o n a l t h u n d e r s t o r m s w i t h b o t h f o r k e d and s h e e t l i g h t n i n g . O n t h e night o f A u g u s t 2 1 , about t e n o ' c l o c k , s e m i c i r c u l a r f l a s h e s o f l i g h t shot u p a p p a r e n t l y b e h i n d the M o n c h , q u i v e r e d f o r a f e w s e c o n d s , and then d i s a p p e a r e d . I c o u n t e d t w e n t y - e i g h t i n a minute. T h e light w a s s o m e t i m e s intense at a c e n t r a l point, which w a s s t e a d y , and f r o m t h i s a q u i v e r i n g g l o w p r o c e e d e d and l i g h t e d u p f r o m 15° t o 20 of the h o r i z o n . T h e o u t l i n e o f the Jungfrau g r o u p c o u l d o c c a s i o n a l l y , but not a l w a y s , b e s e e n . The appearance seemed to me v e r y like an aurora borealis which I saw i n S c o t l a n d i n t h e ' f i f t i e s , but the c e n t r e o f the l i g h t h e r e w a s t o the s o u t h w e s t o f w h e r e I s t o o d . I d o not k n o w h o w l o n g the l i g h t had a p p e a r e d b e f o r e I s a w i t , but i t c o n t i n u e d t o flash w i t h g r e a t b r i l l i a n c y f o r about t w e n t y m i n u t e s . I t then b e c a m e l e s s b r i g h t , and d i d not s h o o t s o h i g h i n t o the s k y , but e x t e n d e d l a t e r a l l y t o t h e south f o r about 3 0 ° b e h i n d the O b e r l a n d c h a i n . A f t e r half an h o u r m o r e t h e s e d i e d a w a y , and o n l o o k i n g out t w o h o u r s l a t e r nothing w a s t o be seen. I a m i n f o r m e d that a s i m i l a r p h e n o m e n o n w a s v i s i b l e o n the p r e v i o u s night, but w a s l e s s b r i l l i a n t . The r e s e m b l a n c e to a true aurora was so g r e a t that I h a v e thought i t m i g h t b e w o r t h d e s c r i p t i o n . See G L D - 0 2 9 f o r s e m i - c i r c u l a r flashes of light f r o m v o l c a n o e s . may have an electrical origin. Both instances

GLD-024

ATMOSPHERIC PHENOMENON

S . , B . W . ; N a t u r e , 2 2 : 3 6 2 , A u g u s t 19, 1880. A c u r i o u s p h e n o m e n o n w a s o b s e r v e d h e r e a f t e r sunset the night b e f o r e l a s t , and a g a i n i n a l e s s d e g r e e l a s t n i g h t . L o o k i n g a c r o s s f r o m t h i s point t o the p o s i t i o n o f the sun a t and a f t e r s e t t i n g , the l i n e o f s i g h t c r o s s e s about t h r e e m i l e s o f s e a , then about the s a m e d i s t a n c e o r r a t h e r l e s s o f p r o j e c t i n g high g r o u n d , and b e y o n d that m a n y m i l e s o f s e a again. On T u e s d a j ' (10th) the sun set in a hot h a z e , and h a l f an hour a f t e r t h e r e a p p e a r e d o n the e d g e o f the p r o j e c t i n g l a n d what l o o k e d l i k e t o n g u e s o f f l a m e f i f t e e n t o t h i r t y m i n u t e s i n h e i g h t , l a s t i n g f r o m t w o t o f o u r s e c o n d s e a c h , and then d i s a p p e a r i n g i n d i f f e r e n t p l a c e s , s o m e t i m e s h a l f a d o z e n a t a t i m e . At the s a m e t i m e t h e r e w a s m o r e o r l e s s o f a f l i c k e r i n g l i g h t a l o n g the w h o l e l i n e of projecting land. M y f i r s t i m p r e s s i o n w a s that i t w a s a n o p t i c a l i l l u s i o n , and the s e c o n d that a m o o r w a s o n f i r e b e h i n d the r i d g e , and that t h e s e w e r e p o i n t s o f f l a m e . T h e f i r s t w a s n e g a t i v e d b y the fact that f o u r o t h e r s b e s i d e m y s e l f ( t w o o f t h e m w i t h v e r y k e e n s i g h t ) s a w the l i g h t s i n d e p e n d e n t l y i n the s a m e p l a c e s ; and the s e c o n d b y the g r a d u a l f a d i n g o f the l i g h t a s the e v e n i n g b e c a m e d a r k e r , the " t o n g u e s " r e t a i n i n g p r e t t y m u c h t h e i r r e l a t i v e b r i g h t n e s s t o the g e n e r a l g l o w until b o t h f a d e d out. T h e day had b e e n e x t r e m e l y hot, and the e v e n i n g w a s s u l t r y , w i t h m o t i o n less air. I i m a g i n e the a p p e a r a n c e w a s due t o i r r e g u l a r r e f r a c t i o n , a r i s i n g f r o m h e a t e d c u r r e n t s o f a i r f r o m the c o o l i n g l a n d , and that the c i r c u m s t a n c e o f the s l i c e o f land w i t h i t s c u r r e n t s o c c u r r i n g b e t w e e n the t w o s t r e t c h e s o f

Gl-99

GLD-025

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

h o m o g e n e o u s a i r o v e r the s e a a l l o w e d t h e e f f e c t t o b e s e e n without b e i n g m a s k e d , a s i t w o u l d h a v e b e e n had t h e r e b e e n i n t e r v e n i n g l a n d . But I n e v e r s a w i t b e f o r e , and d o n ' t r e m e m b e r t o h a v e s e e n i t d e s c r i b e d . T h i s account i s s i m i l a r t o o n e f r o m I n d i a . (GLD-009)

GLD-025

[ELECTRIC FLUID ENVELOPES GIRL]

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 22:204, July 1, 1880. T h e T i m e s G e n e v a c o r r e s p o n d e n t w r i t e s u n d e r d a t e June 2 0 that a r e m a r k a b l e e l e c t r i c a l p h e n o m e n o n o c c u r r e d a t C l a r e n s o n the a f t e r n o o n o f Thursday last. H e a v y m a s s e s o f r a i n - c l o u d hid f r o m v i e w the m o u n t a i n s w h i c h s e p a r a t e F r i b o u r g f r o m M o n t r e u x , but t h e i r s u m m i t s w e r e f r o m t i m e t o t i m e l i t u p b y v i v i d f l a s h e s o f l i g h t n i n g , and a h e a v y t h u n d e r s t o r m s e e m e d t o b e r a g i n g i n the v a l l e y s o f the A v a n t s and the A l l i a z . N o r a i n w a s f a l l i n g n e a r the l a k e , and the s t o r m s t i l l a p p e a r e d f a r off, w h e n a t r e m e n d o u s p e a l o f thunder s h o o k the h o u s e s o f C l a r e n s and T a v e l t o t h e i r f o u n d a t i o n s . A t the s a m e instant a m a g n i f i c e n t c h e r r y t r e e n e a r the c e m e t e r y , m e a s u r i n g a m e t r e i n c i r c u m f e r e n c e , w a s struck b y lightning. S o m e p e o p l e who w e r e w o r k i n g i n a v i n e y a r d h a r d b y s a w the e l e c t r i c " f l u i d " p l a y about a l i t t l e g i r l w h o had b e e n g a t h e r i n g c h e r r i e s and w a s a l r e a d y 3 0 p a c e s f r o m the t r e e . She w a s l i t e r a l l y folded in a sheet of f i r e . T h e v i n e - d r e s s e r s f l e d i n t e r r o r f r o m the spot. I n the c e m e t e r y s i x p e r s o n s , s e p a r a t e d i n t o t h r e e g r o u p s , none o f t h e m w i t h i n 250 p a c e s o f the c h e r r y t r e e , w e r e e n v e l o p e d i n a l u m i n o u s c l o u d . T h e y f e l t a s i f they w e r e b e i n g s t r u c k i n the f a c e w i t h h a i l s t o n e s o r f i n e g r a v e l , and w h e n t h e y t o u c h e d e a c h o t h e r s p a r k s o f e l e c t r i c i t y p a s s e d f r o m t h e i r finger-ends. A t the s a m e t i m e a c o l u m n o f f i r e w a s s e e n t o d e s c e n t i n the d i r e c t i o n o f C h a t e l a r d , and i t i s a v e r r e d that the e l e c t r i c fluid c o u l d b e d i s t i n c t l y h e a r d a s i t r a n f r o m point t o point o f the i r o n r a i l i n g o f a v a u l t i n the cemetery. T h e s t r a n g e s t p a r t o f the s t o r y i s that n e i t h e r the l i t t l e g i r l , the p e o p l e i n the c e m e t e r y , n o r the v i n e - d r e s s e r s a p p e a r t o h a v e b e e n hurt; the o n l y i n c o n v e n i e n c e c o m p l a i n e d o f b e i n g a n u n p l e a s a n t s e n s a t i o n i n the j o i n t s , a s i f t h e y had b e e n v i o l e n t l y t w i s t e d , a s e n s a t i o n w h i c h w a s f e l t w i t h m o r e o r l e s s acuteness f o r a few hours after. T h e explanation of this phenomenon is p r o b a b l y t o b e found i n P r o f . C o l l a d o n ' s t h e o r y o f the w a y i n w h i c h l i g h t n i n g descends, a s d e s c r i b e d i n Nature, v o l . x x i i , p . 65. T h e P r o f e s s o r contends that it f a l l s in a s h o w e r , not in a p e r p e n d i c u l a r f l a s h , and that it runs a l o n g b r a n c h e s o f t r e e s until i t i s a l l g a t h e r e d i n the trunk, w h i c h i t b u r s t s o r t e a r s o p e n i n i t s e f f o r t t o r e a c h the g r o u n d . I n the i n s t a n c e i n q u e s t i o n t h e trunk o f the c h e r r y t r e e i s a s c o m p l e t e l y s h i v e r e d a s i f i t had b e e n e x p l o d e d b y a c h a r g e of dynamite.

T h e s e l u m i n o u s e f f e c t s c l o s e l y r e s e m b l e t h o s e e x p e r i e n c e d n e a r and i n s o m e tornadoes ( G L D - 0 1 5 ) .

GLD-026

[FIREBALLS ON CHURCH TOWER]

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 22:155, June 17, 1880.

Gl-100

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

GLD-027

M r . G . A m b r o s e P o g s o n , B r i t i s h V i c e - C o n s u l a t H a m b u r g , w r i t e s t o the T i m e s f r o m that p l a c e , u n d e r d a t e June 12, a s t o " S t . E l m o ' s F i r e " : A s e r i e s o f t h u n d e r s t o r m s , h e states, has l a t e l y p a s s e d o v e r H a m b u r g . During the 11th i n s t . t h e a i r w a s d e n s e l y c h a r g e d w i t h e l e c t r i c i t y ; the s t o r m b r o k e about 1 0 . 1 5 p . m . , l a s t i n g until 1 1 p . m . , d u r i n g w h i c h t i m e , a t v e r y s h o r t i n t e r v a l s , f r o m m y s t a t i o n , about 1 , 200 y a r d s d i s t a n c e f r o m the c o p p e r r o o f e d t o w e r o f the c h u r c h k n o w n a s St. J a c o b i , about 300 f e e t h i g h , I s a w t h i s p h e n o m e n o n a p p a r e n t l y r e s t i n g about 3 0 f e e t f r o m the s u m m i t o f the steeple. T h e c o l o u r w a s a r e d d i s h p u r p l e , and r e m i n d e d o n e s o m e w h a t o f burning potassium. F r o m repeated c o m p a r i s o n s with other objects during the l i g h t n i n g f l a s h e s , I j u d g e d t h e s e f i r e - b a l l s ( t w o w e r e s e v e r a l t i m e s v i s i b l e ) to be f r o m 4 feet to 6 feet in d i a m e t e r . T h e l o n g e s t d u r a t i o n that I t i m e d w a s 42 seconds. T h i s p a s s i n g a w a y o f such d e n s e m a s s e s o f e l e c t r i c i t y b y i n d u c t i o n w a s v i s i b l e s o m e t w e n t y t i m e s , but w h e t h e r p e r f o r m e d s i l e n t l y I had n o means of ascertaining. F r o m the a p p a r e n t s i z e o f f l a m e and the n o n l i g h t n i n g q u a l i t y o f the c o l o u r , I e s t i m a t e d i t a s e q u a l t o 10, 000 c a n d l e s . T h e c o l o u r w a s d o u b t l e s s the e f f e c t o f t h e g l a r e o f the c o p p e r r o o f .

GLD-027

PHOSPHORESCENCE OF THE SEA

G r o v e s , T h o s . B. ; Nature, 23:411, M a r c h 3, 1881. Y o u w i l l p e r h a p s p e r m i t m e t o r e c o r d the o c c u r r e n c e o f a p h e n o m e n o n v e r y r a r e l y witnessed on this coast 1 m e a n the g e n e r a l and q u a s i s p o n t a n e o u s l u m i n o s i t y o f the s e a . I t i s o f c o u r s e c o m m o n enough t o o b s e r v e s p a r k l e s o f l i g h t m o r e o r l e s s abundant w h e n s e a - w a t e r i s b r i s k l y d i s t u r b e d b y c o n t a c t w i t h a n o a r o r the b o w o f a n a d v a n c i n g v e s s e l ; but i t has o n l y o n c e b e f o r e b e e n m y f o r t u n e , and that w a s t w e n t y y e a r s a g o , t o w i t n e s s the c r e s t o f e a c h w a v e l e t i l l u m i n a t e d b y the p a l e s i l v e r y l i g h t p r o c e e d i n g f r o m c o u n t l e s s p h o s p h o r e s c e n t o r g a n i s m s p r e s e n t i n the w a t e r . T h e night, b e i n g c l o u d y , , f a v o u r e d o b s e r v a t i o n , but t h e r e w a s c o n s i d e r a b l e haze. T h e w i n d w a s s o u t h - e a s t o r t h e r e a b o u t s , the t e m p e r a t u r e o f the a i r b e i n g 5 2 F . , that o f the s e a c l o s e b y the s h o r e 4 7 ° 5 F . T h e p h e n o m e n o n w a s v i s i b l e o n t h e night o f T h u r s d a y , F e b r u a r y 1 7 o n l y . T h e f o l l o w i n g night w a s e q u a l l y f a v o u r a b l e f o r o b s e r v a t i o n , and the t e m p e r a t u r e s w e r e the s a m e w i t h i n a d e g r e e , but the c a u s e o r c a u s e s n o l o n g e r operated. O n c a s t i n g i n t o the s e a a s h o w e r o f p e b b l e s , w h i c h t h e night b e f o r e p r o d u c e d b r i l l i a n t f l a s h e s o f l i g h t , o r l a r g e r s t o n e s , w h i c h then d e v e l o p e d c o n c e n t r i c l u m i n o u s w a v e l e t s , o n l y a doubtful e f f e c t w a s o b s e r v e d . The o r g a n i s m s had, it s e e m e d , a l r e a d y expended t h e i r f o r c e p r o b a b l y had actually died and I thought I p e r c e i v e d an unusual f r o t h i n e s s in the w a t e r . I s i t not u n c o m m o n f o r t h i s t o o c c u r s o e a r l y i n t h e y e a r ? I t i s i n s u m m e r , w h e n t h e t e m p e r a t u r e o f the s e a i s h i g h , that w e e x p e c t t o s e e the w a t e r " f i e r y . " W a s the p h e n o m e n o n o b s e r v e d o n o t h e r p a r t s o f the c o a s t ? T h e a u t h o r p r e s u m e s t h i s i s a b i o l u m i n e s c e n t p h e n o m e n o n , p e r h a p s l i k e the f a m o u s " l i g h t w h e e l s " o f the I n d i a n O c e a n . ( G L W s e c t i o n ) N e v e r t h e l e s s , e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e i s a p o s s i b l e s t i m u l u s and the o b s e r v a t i o n i s p r e s e n t e d h e r e .

Gl-101

GLD-028
GLD-028

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

A STRANGE LIGHT ON THE ANDES
4 5 : 8 4 0 - 8 4 1 , N o v e m b e r 9 , 1912.

Anonymous; L i t e r a r y Digest,

T r a n s l a t e d f r o m a Havana p a p e r . O r d i n a r i l y the l i g h t h a s a g l i s t e n i n g a p p e a r a n c e , and c o m m o n l y i t s b o u n d a r y h a s the s h a p e o f a b o l d c u r v e ; not s e l d o m i t i s s e e n o n l y o n o n e s i d e o f the C o r d i l l e r a n g r o u p . T h e m o s t v i v i d , the m o s t p o w e r f u l f l a s h i n g o c c u r s a t a d e f i n i t e p o i n t , and i t s o m e t i m e s r i s e s s e v e r a l d e g r e e s a b o v e t h e m a i n Cordilleran crest. O f t e n the d i s c h a r g e s s e e m t o r e a c h b e y o n d the z e n i t h and c o n s e q u e n t l y o v e r the s o - c a l l e d A r t i s t s ' C o r d i l l e r a , and f a r w a y t o s e a . W h e n the sky i s c l e a r the p h e n o m e n o n c a n b e p e r c e i v e d w i t h e a s e ; and d u r i n g l o n g i n t e r v a l s a f t e r d a r k n e s s i t c a n b e o b s e r v e d day b y d a y . Of course, it may be p r e s e n t a l s o d u r i n g d a y l i g h t , but i t i s not then o b s e r v a b l e . I t b e g i n s i n l a t e s p r i n g and l a s t s t i l l the a p p r o a c h o f w i n t e r ; and t o w a r d the south t h i s p h e n o m e n a l l i g h t b e c o m e s g r a d u a l l y l e s s o r c e a s e s a l t o g e t h e r . I n n o r t h e r n and c e n t r a l C h i l e , i n B o l i v i a , and p r o b a b l y , t o o , i n P e r u , t h i s flashing is seen, altho on occasional long i n t e r v a l s of t h e i r joint a r e a it apparently fails to appear. Q u i t e r e c e n t l y a n a t u r a l i s t , d u r i n g a j o u r n e y t h r o u g h a v a l l e y of the m a i n C o r d i l l e r a , o b s e r v e d this phenomenon with e x a c t n e s s . One e v e n i n g about nine o ' c l o c k , w h i l e s t u d y i n g a n unusual and f r e q u e n t d i s c h a r g e , h e w a s a b l e t o a s c e r t a i n that i t s p o i n t o f i s s u e w a s a n e l e v a t i o n o f the C o r d i l l e r a a l o n g which he was r o a m i n g . M o v i n g c o n s t a n t l y a r o u n d t h i s p e a k w a s a band shaped l i k e a s e g m e n t o f one o r t w o d e g r e e s i n h e i g h t and s o m e w h a t s i m i l a r t o the z o d i a c a l l i g h t i n b r i g h t n e s s . D u r i n g the p r e s e n t s e a s o n the l i g h t has g l i s t e n e d a s usual, but w i t h m u c h g r e a t e r s t r e n g t h , and e s p e c i a l l y a b o v e the d i s c h a r g e , i n t o w h i c h the g l i s t e n i n g has d i s a p p e a r e d a f t e r a m o d e r a t e i n t e r val. T h e n a t u r a l i s t b e l i e v e s that t h i s f l a s h i n g o f the A n d e s i s due t o p r o f u s e e l e c t r i c d i s c h a r g e s i n c e r t a i n d i s t r i c t s o f t h e i r C h i l e a n s e c t i o n , and p a r t i c u l a r l y a m o n g the g r e a t e r p e a k s . T h e p r e d o m i n a t i n g p o p u l a r v i e w i s that t h i s l i g h t i s a r e f l e c t i o n o f the m o l t e n l a v a i n v o l c a n i c c r a t e r s . Such a v i e w i s erroneous, however. I t i s not i m p r o b a b l e that the n u m b e r o f the p o i n t s a t w h i c h t h e s e d i s c h a r g e s o c c u r c h a n g e s ; and i t i s p o s s i b l e , t o o , that d u r i n g the g r e a t e a r t h q u a k e o f A u g u s t , 1906, d i s c h a r g e s o c c u r r e d a l o n g the w h o l e c r e s t , f o r , i f w e m a y a c c e p t a u t h o r i t a t i v e s t a t e m e n t , the sky e v e r y w h e r e i n c e n t r a l C h i l e then f l a s h e d w i t h a q u i v e r i n g " f i r e , " such a s w a s n e v e r s e e n e i t h e r previously or thereafter. O b s e r v a t i o n l e a d s t o the c o n c l u s i o n that t h i s s e e m i n g r a d i a n c e o f the A n d e s i s the r e s u l t o f a c o p i o u s i s s u e o f e l e c t r i c i t y , w h i c h i s v i s i b l e o n l y f r o m c e r t a i n f a v o r a b l e p o i n t s o f v i e w , and p e r h a p s i s not a l w a y s o c c u r r i n g . H o w t h e s e d i s c h a r g e s , w h i c h a r e n o i s e l e s s and p r o d u c e n o s p a r k s , m a y b e d e s i g n a t e d a t t h i s d a y , i s not q u i t e c l e a r . P r o b a b l y , if we may follow f u r t h e r e m i n e n t o p i n i o n , the g r e a t i n f r e q u e n c y o f t h u n d e r s t o r m s i n C h i l e i s r e l a t e d t o the a p p a r e n t l y c o m p e n s a t i n g a c t i o n o f the l i g h t n i n g c r e s t o f the C o r d i l l e r a s . A n d w h e t h e r the f l a s h i n g o f the A n d e s i s not r e l a t e d , t o o , t o that f o r m o f the a u r o r a b o r e a l i s w h i c h i s s o m e t i m e s o b s e r v a b l e a b o v e m o u n t a i n peaks in N o r w a y must be a n s w e r e d by further i n v e s t i g a t i o n .

GLD-029
Perret,

THE FLASHING ARCS: A VOLCANIC PHENOMENON
Frank A . ; A m e r i c a n Journal of S c i e n c e , 4 : 3 4 : 3 2 9 - 3 3 5 , 1912.

Gl-102

ELECTRIC D I S C H A R G E

GLD-029

On the afternoon of A p r i l 7, 1906, the p r e s e n t w r i t e r , in c o m p a n y with P r o f e s s o r M a t t e n u c c i , w a s s k i r t i n g the southern flank of V e s u v i u s on a t r i p t o the m a i n s o u r c e o f the l a v a a t the B o s c o C o g n o l i . T h e v o l c a n o a t this t i m e w a s e n t e r i n g one o f t h o s e p a r o x y s m a l p h a s e s b y w h i c h the e r u p t i o n — a l r e a d y three days old w o r k e d p r o g r e s s i v e l y u p t o i t s g r e a t culmination, which o c c u r r e d , i t w i l l b e r e m e m b e r e d , b e t w e e n this and the f o l l o w i n g d a y . T h e e j e c t e d d e t r i t u s w a s o f a m i x e d nature, v i z . , the f r e s h l a v a , c l e a r r e d i n full d a y l i g h t , b e i n g m i n g l e d with o l d m a t e r i a l f r o m the upper p o r t i o n s o f the c o n e , then i n p r o c e s s o f r a p i d d e m o l i t i o n . T h e frequency o f the e x p l o s i o n s v a r i e d f r o m a p p r o x i m a t e l y one e v e r y t h r e e o r f o u r seconds t o a t l e a s t t h r e e p e r s e c o n d . Although p o w e r f u l , they w e r e v e r y sharp and sudden i n t h e i r nature, and at the instant of each but b e f o r e it c o u l d be s e n s e d by the e y e or e a r a thin, luminous a r c flashed upward and outward f r o m the c r a t e r and d i s a p p e a r e d in s p a c e . T h e n c a m e the sound of the e x p l o s i o n and the p r o j e c t i o n of g a s and d e t r i t u s a b o v e the l i p of the c r a t e r . T h e m o t i o n of t r a n s l a t i o n o f the a r c s , w h i l e v e r y r a p i d i n c o m p a r i s o n with that o f the d e t r i t u s , w a s not a b o v e the l i m i t s of e a s y o b s e r v a t i o n and t h e r e could be no doubt as to the r e a l i t y of the phenomenon, which w a s r e p e a t e d s o m e hundreds of times.

The flashing arcs from the Vesuvius eruption. (Adapted from a photograph, Fig. 7, in GLD-029).

L a t e r , d u r i n g the 1910 eruption o f Etna, the w r i t e r a g a i n o b s e r v e d t h e s e s t r a n g e arcs. On the m o r n i n g of M a r c h 30 [1910] b o m b s as l a r g e as a m e t e r in d i a m e t e r w e r e e j e c t e d and t h e s e e x p l o s i o n s p r o d u c e d the flashing a r c s which w e r e i n all r e s p e c t s i d e n t i c a l with t h o s e at V e s u v i u s . Until they w e r e pointed out to h i m my guide did not o b s e r v e t h e m , and it is quite p o s s i b l e that I m y s e l f m i g h t not h a v e s e e n t h e m had I not known what to l o o k f o r , as the a b s e n c e of

Gl-103

GLD-030

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

a d a r k e r s e t t i n g and t h e l e s s e r d i s t a n c e o f the v i e w p o i n t r e n d e r e d t h e m m o r e d i f f i c u l t o f o b s e r v a t i o n than a t V e s u v i u s . S o m e f i f t e e n w e r e c l e a r l y s e e n b y both o f u s , a l l t h e s t r o n g e r e x p l o s i o n s p r o d u c i n g t h e m . What is the nature of this phenomenon? T h e only hypothesis which s e e m s in a c c o r d with the o b s e r v e d c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s sets forth a proposition which, at f i r s t thought, m a y s e e m a l m o s t s t a r t l i n g , v i z , that w e h a v e t o d o w i t h v i s i b l e sound w a v e s . A c c o r d i n g t o s o m e f a r f r o m a c c u r a t e m e a s u r e m e n t s m a d e o n the spot the v e l o c i t y o f p r o p a g a t i o n o f the a r c s s e e m e d t o c o r r e s p o n d w i t h that o f s o u n d . W e m a y c e r t a i n l y a s s u m e t h e o u t b u r s t t o b e s p h e r i c a l o r a t a l l e v e n t s g l o b u l a r , a s though a huge s o a p b u b b l e w e r e r a p i d l y b l o w n f r o m the c r a t e r and that the e d g e a l o n e i s v i s i b l e and t h e r e f o r e a p p e a r s f r o m any p o i n t o f v i e w a s a n a r c . T h e m o v e m e n t o f this v i s i b l e p o r t i o n w i l l t h e r e f o r e b e a t r i g h t a n g l e s t o the l i n e o f s i g h t and the a r r i v a l o f the sound f r o m the c r a t e r r a d i a l l y t o the o b s e r v e r m u s t b e c o m p a r e d w i t h the a r r i v a l o f the a r c a t s o m e p o i n t e q u i d i s t a n t f r o m the c r a t e r but a t r i g h t a n g l e s t o t h i s r a d i u s . As the a r c s r a p i d l y f a d e i n t o i n v i s i b i l i t y w i t h i n c r e a s i n g d i s t a n c e f r o m t h e i r s o u r c e the d i f f i c u l t y o f a c c u r a t e m e a s u r e m e n t w i l l s e e m t o b e v e r y g r e a t . T h e p o s s i b i l i t y e x i s t s , o f c o u r s e , that the a r c s a r e e l e c t r i c i n n a t u r e , a r e known t o s t i m u l a t e l i g h t n i n g d i s c h a r g e s . for volcanoes

GLD-030
Dunn,

WHAT WAS IT?
F e b r u a r y 1961.

M r s . J a m e s ; F a t e , 14:116-117,

M y husband and I l i v e o n a f a r m o u t s i d e o f t h e t o w n o f M a r i o n , M i c h . O n o n e side of our house is a hayfield. E a r l y o n e m o r n i n g i n June, 1960, a s I w a s d o i n g m y h o u s e w o r k , m y husband c a m e i n t o the r o o m w h e r e I w a s w o r k i n g and g a z e d out o f the w i n d o w . H e s a i d t o m e , " C o m e h e r e a m i n u t e . What i s that r e d o b ject?" I l o o k e d out o f the w i n d o w and s a w what a p p e a r e d t o b e f l a m e s l e a p i n g u p i n t h e uncut h a y . M y husband s a i d , " I ' l l g o out t h e r e and s e e what i t i s . " W e both w e n t o u t s i d e and h e w a l k e d a h e a d t o i n v e s t i g a t e . H e c a l l e d out, " I don't see anything h e r e . " I s a i d , " I t is a l l a r o u n d y o u , " W e b o t h w e n t i n t o the h o u s e and g a z e d out a g a i n . T h e r e it w a s . It lasted for half a n h o u r . W e b o t h w a t c h e d until i t g r a d u a l l y d i s a p p e a r e d . What was i t ? Unfortunately, no w e a t h e r information is g i v e n h e r e . S h i m m e r i n g of the atmosphere is s o m e t i m e s r e p o r t e d p r i o r to the formation of ball lightning. Of course, electrical d i s c h a r g e phenomena a r e often f l a m e - l i k e i n a p p e a r a n c e .

GLD-031

ON THE FACTS OF EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA

M a l l e t , R o b e r t ; R e p o r t o f the B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , 303, 1854. T h i s and the f o l l o w i n g i t e m ( G L D - 0 3 2 ) a r e f r o m the 1854 s e c t i o n o f M a l l e t ' s c a t a l o g of earthquakes.

Gl-104

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

GLD-034

M a r c h 2 2 , 1841; C o b l e n t z . A s h o c k o f a s e c o n d ' s d u r a t i o n , f r o m N . E . t o S. W. A c c o m p a n i e d by a v e r y loud noise. T h e s t e e r s m a n o f o n e o f the s t e a m e r s d e c l a r e d that h e s a w a b l u e f l a m e r i s e f r o m a h i l l i n the d i s t a n c e , w h i c h r e m a i n e d s u s p e n d e d i n the a i r f o r a t i m e , and t h e n sank and d i s a p p e a r e d upon t h e spot i t rose from

GLD-032

ON THE FACTS OF EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA

M a l l e t , R o b e r t ; R e p o r t o f the B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , 2 5 9 , 1854. F e b r u a r y 9 , 1836; H u n g a r y . A v e r y s e v e r e s h o c k . P r e c e d e d b y t e r r i b l e n o i s e , and e x t r a o r d i n a r y d i s t u r b a n c e s i n the a t m o s p h e r e . At Z a l l e s - G y o r o k the r u i n s w e r e n u m e r o u s . I n s o m e p l a c e s f l a m e s i s s u e d f r o m the g r o u n d

GLD-033

CURIOUS PHENOMENON

M a r k w i c k , E . E . ; E n g l i s h M e c h a n i c , 75:417, June 2 7 , 1902. A f r i e n d i n f o r m s m e that, o n l o o k i n g a t the s u n s e t sky o n M a y 1 0 l a s t f r o m about 6 . 5 0 p . m . t o 7 . 5 p . m . , o r p e r h a p s a l i t t l e l a t e r , h e s a w n u m b e r l e s s " s u n s " i n v a r i o u s p a r t s o f the s k y , c o l o u r e d " m a g e n t a t o v i o l e t " p r i n c i p a l l y , although t h e y a l s o c h a n g e d t o y e l l o w and g r e e n . He called his sister out o f t h e h o u s e ; a f t e r that, h i s f a r m m a n a g e r ; and then a g a i n r e f e r r e d t o t h e l o c a l p o s t m a n ; a l l o f w h o m v e r i f i e d t h e c u r i o u s s i g h t , the l a d y r e m a r k e d t h e y (the " s u n s " ) l o o k e d " l i k e t o y a i r b a l l o o n s . " T h e l o c a l i t y i s n e a r I v y b r i d g e , South D e v o n . W e a t h e r w a s c l e a r at the t i m e . I u n d e r s t a n d the " s u n s " w e r e v i s i b l e a t a m o d e r a t e a l t i t u d e , and i n the d i r e c t i o n o f the s u n s e t . I h a v e q u e s t i o n e d m y f r i e n d p e r s o n a l l y o n the s u b j e c t , w i t h a v i e w t o a s c e r t a i n i n g w h e t h e r o r not h e w a s the v i c t i m o f s o m e c o m p l e m e n t a r y e f f e c t , a f t e r l o o k i n g at, o r t o w a r d s , the b r i g h t i m a g e o f the sun. He is a man of the w o r l d , has t r a v e l l e d l a r g e l y , is a good s p o r t s m a n , in e x c e l l e n t h e a l t h , and i s the l a s t p e r s o n , o n e w o u l d c o n s i d e r , t o m a k e such a r e p o r t , u n l e s s s o m e t h i n g unusual had r e a l l y b e e n s e e n . M o r e o v e r , he was thoroughly c o r r o b o r a t e d b y the i n d i v i d u a l s t o w h o s e a t t e n t i o n h e d i r e c t e d the p h e n o m e n o n , and w h o s a w the " s u n s " q u i t e p l a i n l y . T h e l o c a l p r e s s d i d not a t the t i m e c o n t a i n any r e f e r e n c e t o the m a t t e r . T h e t i m e o f y e a r n e g a t i v e s , I think, t h e i d e a o f the p h e n o m e n o n b e i n g due t o f l o a t i n g p i e c e s o f g o s s a m e r o r t h i s t l e down. C a n any o f y o u r c o r r e s p o n d e n t s s u g g e s t w h a t i t w a s m y f r i e n d s a w ? — f o r i t a l t o g e t h e r b e a t s m e , w h o h a v e b e e n a n o b s e r v e r o f the s k y f o r a c o n s i d e r a b l e n u m b e r o f y e a r s , d u r i n g w h i c h I n e v e r r e m e m b e r a n y t h i n g o f the sort.

GLD-034

ELECTRICAL PHENOMENA NEAR WEYMOUTH

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 126:262, A u g u s t 16, 1930.

Gl-105

GLD-035

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

A u g . 17, 1876. E l e c t r i c a l P h e n o m e n a n e a r W e y m o u t h . — A t R i n g s t e a d B a y , near W e y m o u t h , D o r s e t , d u r i n g a sultry afternoon, on ground a b o v e the c l i f f s , a number o f g l o b e s o f l i g h t w e r e s e e n o f the s i z e o f b i l l i a r d b a l l s , extending f r o m a f e w i n c h e s a b o v e the s u r f a c e to a height of 7-8 ft. T h e y s l o w l y r o s e and f e l l v e r t i c a l l y , s o m e t i m e s within a f e w i n c h e s of the o b s e r v e r s but a l w a y s eluding the g r a s p . T h e n u m b e r o f t h e s e o b j e c t s v a r i e d f r o m twenty t o "thousands". N o sound a c c o m p a n i e d the d i s p l a y , but at 10 P. M. t h e r e w a s a t h u n d e r s t o r m . Quite p o s s i b l y , the g l o b e s r e p o r t e d above m i g h t b e b a l l lightning, but the v e r y l a r g e number o f t h e m m i l i t a t e s against t h i s .

Elusive spheres described in GLD-034

GLD-035

[MYRIADS OF LUMINOUS BODIES CROSS SKY]

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 22:64, May 20, 1880. A r e m a r k a b l e phenomenon w a s o b s e r v e d at Kattenau, near T r a k e h n e n , G e r m a n y , and in the surrounding d i s t r i c t , on M a r c h 2 2 . About h a l f an hour b e f o r e s u n r i s e a n e n o r m o u s number o f l u m i n o u s b o d i e s r o s e f r o m the h o r i z o n and p a s s e d in a h o r i z o n t a l d i r e c t i o n f r o m e a s t to w e s t . S o m e of t h e m s e e m e d of the s i z e of a walnut, o t h e r s r e s e m b l e d the s p a r k s f l y i n g from a chimney. T h e y m o v e d through s p a c e l i k e a s t r i n g of b e a d s , and shone w i t h a r e m a r k a b l y b r i l l i a n t l i g h t . T h e b e l t containing t h e m a p p e a r e d about 3 m e t r e s in l e n g t h and 2 / 3 m e t r e in b r e a d t h .

Gl-106

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE
GLD-036 BOUNCING BALL

GLD-038

H a z e l t i n e , K a t e R . ; F a t e , 17:117-118, O c t o b e r 1964. I w a s i n t r i g u e d b y the a r t i c l e A B o u n c e o f F o a m i n M e x i c o a s i t b r o u g h t t o mind a tale my late father, L e w i s M. Hazeltine, told of a s i m i l a r object or " t h i n g " h e s a w o n t h e K i a t o n e R o a d i n W a r r e n C o u n t y , P a . , i n t h e e a r l y 1870's when he w a s a young man. F a t h e r w a s d r i v i n g a t e a m o f h o r s e s out o f J a m e s t o w n , N . Y . , o v e r the K i a t o n e R o a d south t o w a r d s W a r r e n , P a . T h e d i r t r o a d had b e e n cut t h r o u g h t a l l t r e e s , m o s t l y p i n e s , and a s p a c e o r b u r n o f 2 5 f e e t had b e e n l e f t o n e a c h side to let in light. Suddenly t h e r e a p p e a r e d o n the r i g h t hand s i d e o f the r o a d a s o r t o f s p o n g y l o o k i n g w h i t e b a l l about f i v e f e e t i n d i a m e t e r . I t b o u n c e d a l o n g , c h a n g i n g s h a p e s o m e w h a t a s i t t o u c h e d the g r o u n d and k e e p i n g p a c e w i t h the h o r s e s and buggy. F a t h e r w a s b o t h s u r p r i s e d and f r i g h t e n e d — i n f a c t , h e s a i d , h i s h a i r l i t e r a l l y stood up on h i s head. H e m i g h t h a v e thought i t a n a p p a r i t i o n had not t h e h o r s e s a l s o b e c o m e f r i g h t e n e d and s o u n m a n a g e a b l e that t h e y l i t e r a l l y r a n a w a y , l e a v i n g the w o o d s and the b o u n c i n g b a l l b e h i n d . F a t h e r often w o n d e r e d what the s t r a n g e o b j e c t m i g h t h a v e b e e n and f r o m whence it c a m e . H e had, o f c o u r s e , n o o p p o r t u n i t y t o e x a m i n e i t a t c l o s e r a n g e , but h e r e c a l l e d that although i t c h a n g e d s h a p e a s i t b o u n d e d , i t a p p e a r e d not t o t e a r a s i t hit the t r e e s t u m p s . I t s e e m e d t o b e intact a s i t f a d e d f r o m view.

GLD-037

A DESTRUCTIVE "DUST D E V I L "
25:47, F e b r u a r y T 9 7 2 .

Anonymous; Fate,

A white ball of s m o k e b l e w through the h o m e of M r s . W i l l i n e H a m i l t o n of M c C l a i n , M i s s . , i n A p r i l 1971, r a t t l i n g p o t s and p a n s , b l o w i n g out a w a l l and d a m a g i n g the r o o f then spinning o f f w i t h s e v e r a l a r t i c l e s o f c l o t h i n g . Mrs. H a m i l t o n thought it w a s a t w i s t e r but the sun w a s shining. A W e a t h e r B u r e a u r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s a i d h e f i r s t thought the w h i t e b a l l w a s a s o n i c b o o m but c h a n g e d h i s •mind b e c a u s e b o o m s d o n ' t b l o w t h i n g s a w a y . L a m a r W o o d w a r d o f the W e a t h e r S e r v i c e s a i d h i s o f f i c e c o u l d n ' t i d e n t i f y the w h i t e b a l l p o s i t i v e l y a s a "dust d e v i l " but h e w e n t o n , " I h a v e s e e n dust d e v i l s that w e r e p r e t t y d e s t r u c t i v e . "

GLD-038

[ROUND OBJECTS PARADE OVER NEW YORK CITY]
H e n r y H o l t and C o m p a n y , N e w Y o r k , 1941.

Fort, Charles: The Books of Charles Fort,

U p o n the 21st o f S e p t e m b e r [1910] ( N e w Y o r k T r i b u n e , S e p t e m b e r 22) a g r e a t n u m b e r o f round o b j e c t s w e r e s e e n p a s s i n g f r o m w e s t t o e a s t o v e r the l o w e r p a r t o f N e w Y o r k C i t y . C r o w d s stood i n the s t r e e t s , watching them. T h e y w e r e thought t o b e l i t t l e b a l l o o n s . I have r e c o r d s of s i m i l a r objects, in l a r g e numbers, that c o u l d not b e c o n s i d e r e d l i t t l e b a l l o o n s . F o r s e v e r a l hours this p r o c e s s i o n c o n t i n u e d , ( p . 640)

Gl-107

GLD-039

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

GLD-039 ELECTRICAL ACITIVITY ASSOCIATED WITH THE BLACKWELL-UDALL TORNADO
V o n n e g u t , B . , and M o o r e , C . B . ; J o u r n a l o f M e t e o r o l o g y , 14:284-285, June 1957. R e f e r r i n g t o the e x p e r i m e n t s o f R . Gunn, w h i c h s e e m e d t o i n d i c a t e that the e l e c t r i c a l e f f e c t s o f a t o r n a d o a r e n o s t r o n g e r than t h o s e o f a n o r d i n a r y t h u n d e r s t o r m , V o n n e g u t and M o o r e p o i n t out that, i n the B l a c k w e l l - U d a l l t o r n a d o , l i g h t n i n g s t r o k e s w e r e o c c u r r i n g a t r a t e s b e t w e e n 2 and 2 5 p e r s e c o n d . This is 4-40 t i m e s f a s t e r than t h o s e d e s c r i b e d b y Gunn. F u r t h e r , t h e a u t h o r s c l a i m that Gunn's i n s t r u m e n t a t i o n h a d t o o l o n g a r e s p o n s e t i m e t o m e a s u r e the v e r y r a p i d c h a n g e s in electrical activity. T h e a u t h o r s then r e a f f i r m t h e i r b e l i e f that t o r n a d o e s a r e e x t r e m e l y a c t i v e e l e c t r i c a l l y and add the f o l l o w i n g e y e - w i t n e s s a c c o u n t s i n s u p p o r t of their thesis. E y e w i t n e s s e s to the tornado in B l a c k w e l l a l s o have r e p o r t e d e v i d e n c e of i n t e n s e e l e c t r i c a l a c t i v i t y . M o n t g o m e r y , w h o v i e w e d the t o r n a d o f r o m a d i s t a n c e o f about 3000 ft. , r e p o r t s : ' A s the s t o r m w a s d i r e c t l y e a s t o f m e , the f i r e u p n e a r the t o p o f the funnel l o o k e d l i k e a c h i l d ' s F o u r t h o f J u l y p i n w h e e l . T h e r e w e r e r a p i d l y r o t a t i n g c l o u d s p a s s i n g i n f r o n t o f t h e t o p o f the runnel. T h e s e c l o u d s w e r e i l l u m i n a t e d o n l y b y the l u m i n o u s band o f l i g h t . T h e light w o u l d g r o w d i m w h e n t h e s e c l o u d s w e r e i n f r o n t , and t h e n i t w o u l d g r o w b r i g h t a g a i n a s I c o u l d s e e b e t w e e n the c l o u d s . A s n e a r a s I c a n e x p l a i n , I w o u l d s a y that the l i g h t w a s t h e s a m e c o l o r a s a n e l e c t r i c a r c w e l d e r but v e r y m u c h brighter. T h e l i g h t w a s s o i n t e n s e that I h a d t o l o o k a w a y w h e n t h e r e w e r e n o clouds in front of i t . T h e l i g h t and the c l o u d s s e e m e d t o b e t u r n i n g t o the r i g h t l i k e a b e a c o n in a l i g h t h o u s e . ' M o n t g o m e r y a l s o t e l l s o f o t h e r e y e w i t n e s s e s w h o had d i f f e r e n t v i e w s o f t h e p h e n o m e n o n , such a s M r s . C a r l S j o b e r g w h o s e h o u s e i n the d i r e c t path w a s c o m p l e t e l y d e m o l i s h e d : 'She s a w l i g h t n i n g c o m i n g u p f r o m the g r o u n d t w o o r t h r e e f e e t h i g h and about h a l f a s w i d e a s a d d i n g m a c h i n e t a p e . I t w a s a d e e p b l u e and f o r k e d o n the end l i k e a ' Y ' o r l i k e a s n a k e ' s t o n g u e . ' A c c o r d i n g t o M o n t g o m e r y , L e e H u n t e r , w h o w a s 4 m i . north o f B l a c k w e l l , d e s c r i b e d the t o r n a d o a s f o l l o w s : ' T h e funnel f r o m the c l o u d t o the g r o u n d w a s l i t up. It w a s a steady, deep blue light v e r y bright. I t had a n o r a n g e c o l o r f i r e i n the c e n t e r f r o m the clouo" t o the g r o u n d . As it c a m e along my field, it t o o k a s w a t h about 100 y a r d s w i d e . As it swung f r o m left to right, it looked l i k e a g i a n t n e o n tube i n the a i r , o r a f l a g m a n a t a r a i l r o a d c r o s s i n g . As it swung a l o n g t h e g r o u n d l e v e l , the o r a n g e f i r e o r e l e c t r i c i t y w o u l d gush out f r o m the b o t t o m o f the funnel, and the u p d r a f t w o u l d t a k e i t u p i n t h e a i r causing a t e r r i f i c light and i t w a s g o n e ! A s i t s w u n g t o the o t h e r s i d e , the o r a n g e f i r e w o u l d f l a r e u p and d o the s a m e . '

GLD-040

THE NOTES OF CHARLES FORT

F o r t , C h a r l e s ; T h e F o r t e a n S o c i e t y M a g a z i n e , 1:12, S p r i n g 1944. A u g u s t 2 6 , 1826. F i e r y w h i r l . C a r c a s s o n e ( A u d e ) , g r e a t h e a t i n the m o r n i n g . At noon m a s s i n g c l o u d s in the w e s t . Then a thick b l a c k cloud suspended o v e r a field. C r a c k l i n g and h i s s i n g and a i r r u s h i n g t o w a r d the c l o u d . A loud detonation and a n e n o r m o u s c o l u m n o f f i r e h o v e r e d the f i e l d — t h r o w i n g d o w n w a l l s and p i c k i n g u p and k i l l i n g s h e e p . A s t r o n g sulfurous o d o r . N o b o d y said it burned anything.

Gl-108

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE
GLD-041 ATMOSPHERIC ELECTRICITY

GLD-042

Omond, R. T. ; N a t u r e , 40:102, M a y 30, 1889. I n N a t u r e o f M a y 1 6 ( p . 5 5 ) , M r . B o w l k e r d e s c r i b e s s o m e ' c u r i o u s ' and, a s h e b e l i e v e s , ' r a r e e l e c t r i c a l p h e n o m e n a ' w h i c h o c c u r r e d t o h i m and a f r i e n d on the W e l s h mountains. Such p h e n o m e n a a r e r a r e o n l y b e c a u s e competent o b s e r v e r s are so. T h e e f f e c t s d e s c r i b e d a r e b y n o m e a n s unc o m m o n , and t h e y m a y b e c l a s s e d u n d e r t h e b r u s h d i s c h a r g e and t h e g l o w , t h e o n e b e i n g a n i n t e r r u p t e d , and the o t h e r a c o n t i n u o u s , d i s c h a r g e t o the air. H . d e S a u s s u r e g i v e s the r e s u l t s o f h i s o b s e r v a t i o n s i n A m e r i c a , S w i t z e r l a n d , and o t h e r p l a c e s . H e r e m a r k s that t h e l i g h t i n g - u p o f t h e r o c k s a t night i s a n a l o g o u s t o t h e c u r i o u s f a c t o f e l e c t r i c i t y m o v i n g o v e r t h e p r a i r i e s . I t i s c o m p a r e d t o a kind o f m i n i a t u r e l i g h t n i n g d i s c h a r g e , r e s u l t i n g f r o m t h e e l e c t r i f i e d c l o u d b r u s h i n g o v e r t h e e a r t h , and d i s c h a r g i n g i t s e l f i n thousands o f s p a r k s c o u r s i n g o v e r the m e a d o w s . I n M e x i c o h e n o t i c e d t h e c r e p i t a t i o n o f the s t o n e s due t o e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e s , and i n S w i t z e r l a n d h e d e s c r i b e s c e r t a i n p r i c k i n g and b u r n i n g s e n s a t i o n s , and sounds l i k e that o f s i m m e r i n g w a t e r , e m i t t e d f r o m s t i c k s l a i d a g a i n s t t h e r o c k s , and f r o m t h e t o p s o f the a l p e n s t o c k s . T h i s h u m m i n g o f the m o u n t a i n s i s b y n o m e a n s r a r e , and i t s e e m s t o i n d i c a t e a f l o w o f e l e c t r i c i t y f r o m the ground into the a i r . When P r o f . J a m e s F o r b e s w a s a t w o r k o n the g l a c i e r s o f S w i t z e r l a n d , h e n o t i c e d o n o n e o c c a s i o n , n e a r M o n t C e r v i n a c u r i o u s sound p r o c e e d i n g from his alpenstock. The guide r e f e r r e d it to a w o r m eating the w o o d ; he r e v e r s e d t h e s t i c k , and t h e w o r m w a s a l r e a d y a t t h e o t h e r e n d . He r a i s e d h i s hand a b o v e h i s h e a d , and the f i n g e r s y i e l d e d a f i z z i n g sound w h i l e t h e a n g u l a r s t o n e s a l l round w e r e h i s s i n g l i k e p o i n t s n e a r a n e l e c t r i c a l m a c h i n e . T h e r e w a s h a i l a t t h e t i m e , and a t h u n d e r s t o r m s o o n s e t i n . M . T r e c u l r e l a t e s i n the C o m p t e s rendus the f o l l o w i n g curious c a s e : W h i l e w r i t i n g at an o p e n w i n d o w in A u g u s t 1876, b e t w e e n 7 and 8 a. m. , he noticed a number of small luminous columns descend obliquely on his paper, e a c h about 2 m e t r e s l o n g , and h a l f a d e c i m e t r e b r o a d a t t h e w i d e s t p a r t , o b t u s e a t t h e f a r t h e r end, but g r a d u a l l y t h i n n i n g t o w a r d s t h e t a b l e . They had m o s t l y a r e d d i s h - y e l l e w t i n t , but n e a r the p a p e r the t i n t s w e r e m o r e i n t e n s e and v a r i e d . I n d i s a p p e a r i n g t h e y l e f t t h e p a p e r w i t h a s l i g h t n o i s e , l i k e that p r o d u c e d b y p o u r i n g a l i t t l e w a t e r o n a hot p l a t e . L o u d thunder w a s h e a r d at the t i m e of the o b s e r v a t i o n .

GLD-042

MOUNTAIN PEAK POTENTIAL GRADIENTS

L a t h a m , J. ; W e a t h e r , 26:80, 1971. A f t e r c o m m e n t i n g o n t h e p o t e n t i a l g r a d i e n t m e a s u r e m e n t s o f M a r k s o n and N e l s o n ( G L D - 0 1 9 ) , L a t h a m m a k e s t h i s c o m m e n t a s t o t h e s o u r c e o f the p o t e n t i a l g r a d i e n t : A p o s s i b l e r e a s o n f o r the o c c u r e n c e o f " A n d e s G l o w " i s that i m m e n s e e l e c t r i c f i e l d s can b e g e n e r a t e d b y the b l o w i n g o f snow o v e r the mountain peaks ( L a t h a m and S t o w , 1967 Q u a r t . J . R . M e t . S o c . , 93, p p . 5 5 - 6 8 ) t h e r e b y producing a visible discharge.

Gl-109

GLP-043
GLD-043

ELECTRIC DISCHARGE

AN ELECTRICAL EFFECT ON CRIB GOCH, SNOWDONIA

Satow, R . F . W . ; W e a t h e r , 2 6 : 7 9 - 8 0 , 1971. On 14 N o v e m b e r 1970, I w a s c l i m b i n g Snowdon with t h r e e c o m p a n i o n s . W e w e r e g o i n g f r o m P e n - y - p a s s ( s u m m i t o f L l a n b e r i s P a s s ) v i a the s t e e p s i d e d r i d g e o f C r i b G o c h . About 1200 G M T a t the e a s t e r n end o f this r i d g e , a l l m e m b e r s o f m y p a r t y , and m o s t o f t h o s e i n a n o t h e r w e had j o i n e d , e x p e r i e n c e d a c u r i o u s sensation. F o r about f i v e m i n u t e s , an e a s i l y audible h i s s i n g sound could b e h e a r d , apparently o r i g i n a t i n g f r o m the b a c k s o r shoulders of our B r i - N y l o n anoraks. T h i s sound w a s not caused b y the m o d e r a t e snow and snow p e l l e t s b e i n g b l o w n against our a n o r a k s , as it maintained a steady intensity when the wind and p r e c i p i t a t i o n t e m p o r a r i l y abated. I l a t e r d i s c o v e r e d w e w e r e a t the t i m e c l o s e t o the c e n t r e o f a s m a l l ' P o l a r L o w . ' F a i r l y s t r o n g c o n v e c t i v e a c t i v i t y would p r o b a b l y h a v e b e e n p r e s e n t o v e r the mountains, and I have s u r m i s e d that w e m a y h a v e e x p e r i e n c e d a n e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e o n the sharp r i d g e .

GLD-044

THUNDERSTORM PHENOMENA ON THE MATTERHORN

L a r d e n , W a l t e r ; N a t u r e , 48:316-317, August 3 , 1893. On July 10 I w a s on the M a t t e r h o r n in v e r y doubtful w e a t h e r . It a p p e a r e d as though the F o h n ( o r s o u t h e r l y wind) w e r e s t r u g g l i n g with a n o r t h e r l y w i n d , and a s though the f o r m e r c o n q u e r e d . Clouds or mist p r e s s e d up f r o m Italy, and r o s e h i g h e r and h i g h e r , c o v e r i n g the o t h e r mountains b e f o r e the M a t t e r h o r n . W e had s o m e snow a t i n t e r v a l s e v e n b e f o r e m i d d a y , and b y the t i m e that we had, on r e t u r n f r o m the s u m m i t , d e s c e n d e d as f a r as the u p p e r hut, it w a s s n o w i n g s t e a d i l y . I think that, as r e g a r d s the M a t t e r h o r n , the e l e c t r i c a l h i s s i n g o f i c e - a x e s , r o c k s , e t c . , b e g a n about 3 . 3 0 p . m . o r 4 p . m . , and l i g h t n i n g b e g a n r a t h e r l a t e r . A t l a s t c a m e o n e f l a s h , apparently v e r y n e a r t o u s , the thunder f o l l o w i n g c l o s e with a c r a s h . B e f o r e the thunder, h o w e v e r , and apparently with the flash, c a m e a c u r i o u s splitting,, c r a c k i n g and s h i v e r i n g sound, with a kind of ' s p l a s h ' f r o m the r o c k s — a s i t s e e m e d . I g i v e many a d j e c t i v e s f o r want o f one g o o d e x p r e s s i v e w o r d . T h i s sound p r e c e d e d the thunder, and w a s both sharp and faint; I f e l t that I only h e a r d it b e c a u s e I w a s on the spot. I t w a s d a r k w h e n w e r e a c h e d the l o w e r hut; and all down the a r e t e the b r u s h e s of p u r p l e l i g h t that s t r e a m e d f r o m our f i n g e r s (when held up) and f r o m our a x e s , hats, h a i r , e t c . , w e r e v e r y beautiful. The fingers gave better brushes when wetted. T h e r e w e r e numerous brushes streaming f r o m the r o c k s , t h e s e b e i n g w e t with w a t e r m e l t e d f r o m the snow. S o m e o t h e r p e o p l e who w e r e o n the G o r n e r G r a t the s a m e day told m e , b e f o r e I m e n t i o n e d my e x p e r i e n c e s , that the l i g h t n i n g s e e m e d to g i v e a splashing sound o n the r o c k s . T h e y a l s o t o l d m e that t h o s e who w o r e f e l t hats, f e l t r e t u r n s h o c k s , w h i l e t h o s e with s t r a w hats d i d not. A l l the hats were wet.

Gl-110

LIGHTNING
GLL-001 VOLCANO LIGHTNING

GLL-003

G i l l m o r , D a n i e l S . , e d . ; S c i e n t i f i c Study o f U n i d e n t i f i e d F l y i n g O b j e c t s , B a n t a m B o o k s , I n c . , N e w Y o r k , 1969. T h e c h a r g e d m a t e r i a l e j e c t e d b y a c t i v e v o l c a n o e s often s e t s t h e s t a g e f o r s p e c t a c u l a r lightning d i s c h a r g e s , as d e s c r i b e d b e l o w . U n d e r s e a v o l c a n i c e r u p t i o n s b e g a n o n t h e m o r n i n g o f 1 4 N o v e m b e r 1963, o n l y 2 3 k m f r o m t h e s o u t h e r n c o a s t o f I c e l a n d , w h e r e t h e w a t e r depth w a s 130 m . Within 10 d a y s an i s l a n d w a s c r e a t e d w h i c h w a s n e a r l y 1 km l o n g and 100 m a b o v e s e a l e v e l . M o t i o n p i c t u r e s showed clouds r i s i n g v e r t i c a l l y at 12 m / s e c to an altitude o f 9 k m . T h e c l o u d o f 1 D e c e m b e r c o n t a i n e d i n t e n s e , a l m o s t continuous l i g h t , p r e s u m a b l y t h e r e s u l t o f l a r g e dust p a r t i c l e s and p e r h a p s e l e c t r i c e f f e c t s o f s u l fur. A i r c r a f t f l i g h t s t h r o u g h the v o l c a n i c c l o u d w e r e m a d e d u r i n g p e r i o d o f n o l i g h t n i n g . L a r g e e l e c t r i c f i e l d s w e r e m e a s u r e d , s o m e t i m e s e x c e e d i n g 11, 000 volt/m. T h e production of lightning by v o l c a n o e s is of considerable interest for a t m o spheric e l e c t r i c i t y . N e v e r t h e l e s s there is no evident relation between volcano l i g h t n i n g and U F O r e p o r t s , ( p p . 7 3 9 - 7 4 0 ) ( M a r t i n D . A l ' t s c h u l e r )

GLL-002

[EARTHQUAKE LIGHTNING]

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 21:19, N o v e m b e r 6, 1879. A violent shock of earthquake is r e p o r t e d to h a v e o c c u r r e d in W e s t C u m b e r land a t 5:30 A . M . o n Saturday w e e k . A v i v i d flash of lightning w a s seen at the same time

GLL-003

"INFERNITO"

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 4 0 : 4 2 9 , A u g u s t 29, 1889. F o l l o w i n g a d e s c r i p t i o n of the v i o l e n t e r u p t i o n s of hot w a t e r and p e t r o l e u m at a spot i n V e n e z u e l a b o u n d e d b y the r i v e r s Z u l i a and C a t a t u m b o and the C o r d i l l e r a , t h i s d e s c r i p t i o n o f a n unusual e l e c t r i c a l ( ? ) p h e n o m e n o n i s a p p e n d e d : C o n s i d e r i n g t h e i m m e n s e amount o f i n f l a m m a b l e g a s e s w h i c h m u s t b e g i v e n out b y t h e f l o w s and d e p o s i t s o f p e t r o l e u m a s d e s c r i b e d a b o v e , i t m a y b e e a s i l y b e l i e v e d that t h i s h a s a d i r e c t b e a r i n g upon the p h e n o m e n o n known s i n c e t h e c o n quest as the F a r o of M a r a c a i b o . T h i s , c o n s i s t i n g of constant lightning without e x p l o s i o n , m a y b e o b s e r v e d t o w a r d s t h e south f r o m the b a r a t the e n t r a n c e t o the l a k e , and C o d d a z z i i n h i s g e o g r a p h y e x p l a i n s i t a s b e i n g c a u s e d b y the v a p o r s a r i s i n g f r o m t h e hot w a t e r s w a m p s i t u a t e d about o n e l e a g u e t o the e a s t o f the m o u t h o f t h e E s c a l a n t e , a t t h e s o u t h e r n e x t r e m i t y o f the l a k e

Gl-111

GLL-004
GLL-004

LIGHTNING

THE FREAKS OF LIGHTNING

A b b o t t , J . ; H a r p e r ' s N e w M o n t h l y M a g a z i n e , 3 8 : 5 7 7 - 5 8 8 , A p r i l 1869. I n this f a s c i n a t i n g o l d a c c o u n t , the author i s j u s t a s c e r t a i n that e l e c t r i c i t y i s i m p o r t a n t i n w a t e r s p o u t f o r m a t i o n a s m a n y m o d e r n s c i e n t i s t s a r e s u r e i t i s not. One o f the m o s t s i n g u l a r and l e a s t u n d e r s t o o d o f the p h e n o m e n a c o n n e c t e d with the a g e n c y o f e l e c t r i c i t y i s the f o r m a t i o n o f W a t e r s p o u t s . The evidence i s c o m p l e t e that the i n f l u e n c e o f e l e c t r i c i t y i s v e r y l a r g e l y c o n c e r n e d i n t h e s e w o n d e r f u l g y r a t i o n s , but w h e t h e r a s c a u s e o r e f f e c t i s not s o c l e a r . They a r e m o s t f r e q u e n t l y o b s e r v e d a t s e a , though s o m e t i m e s t h e y a p p e a r i n a n i m p e r f e c t f o r m i n l a k e s o r upon o t h e r s m a l l b o d i e s o f w a t e r . And e v e n o n land, e s p e c i a l l y i n m o u n t a i n o u s r e g i o n s , a c o m m o t i o n i n the c l o u d s , attended b y a n i m m e n s e f a l l o f r a i n , has often o c c u r r e d , p r e s e n t i n g a p p e a r a n c e s c l o s e l y a n a l o g o u s i n t h e i r nature t o t h o s e o f the r e g u l a r Wcter-spout a s o b s e r v e d at sea. T h e c o n n e c t i o n o f e l e c t r i c i t y w i t h the p h e n o m e n o n i s i n d i c a t e d b y the fact that at the m o m e n t w h e n the u p p e r and l o w e r f o r m a t i o n s m e e t a flash of l i g h t n i n g i s o f t e n s e e n t o d a r t f r o m one t o the o t h e r , s h o w i n g that t h e w a t e r and the c l o u d a r e i n o p p o s i t e e l e c t r i c a l c o n d i t i o n s a t the m o m e n t b e f o r e t h e y unite. B e s i d e s this t h e r e a r e s o m e e x p e r i m e n t s w h i c h m a y b e m a d e with e l e c t r i c i t y a r t i f i c i a l l y e x c i t e d , i n w h i c h e f f e c t s a r e p r o d u c e d which s e e m i n a c o n s i d e r a b l e d e g r e e a n a l o g o u s t o t h o s e w i t n e s s e d i n this p h e n o m e n o n s u f f i c i e n t l y s o t o i n c r e a s e the p r o b a b i l i t y that the a g e n c y o f e l e c t r i c i t y i s i n s o m e w a y i n v o l v e d , though i t i s not k n o w n i n p r e c i s e l y what m a n n e r o r t o what e x t e n t . A b b o t a l s o p r e s e n t s one o f the c l a s s i c " p r a n k s " o f l i g h t n i n g . A great many curious tales a r e related of extraordinary interpositions of the e l e c t r i c f o r c e i n s o m e o f the m o s t s t r i k i n g d r a m a s o f human l i f e . Arago g i v e s a n a c c o u n t o f the c h i e f o f a band o f b r i g a n d s b e i n g s t r u c k d o w n i n the c o u r t - y a r d o f a p r i s o n i n B a v a r i a , i n the m i d s t o f h i s c o m r a d e s . He was s e a t e d on the p a v e m e n t , or on a s t o n e , b e i n g f a s t e n e d by an i r o n c h a i n to a f i x e d r i n g o r s t a p l e , h i s c o m p a n i o n s , bound i n a s i m i l a r m a n n e r , around him. T h e e l e c t r i c c h a r g e , c o n t r o l l e d probably i n s o m e d e g r e e b y the chain and the i r o n f i x t u r e t o w h i c h i t Was a t t a c h e d , p a s s e d t h r o u g h the b o d y o f the c h i e f and i n s t a n t l y k i l l e d h i m . H i s c o m r a d e s , k n o w i n g nothing o f t h e natural l a w s by which this t e r r i b l e agency is c o n t r o l l e d , w e r e struck with c o n s t e r nation, b e l i e v i n g that the l i g h t n i n g had i n t e l l i g e n t l y s e l e c t e d t h e i r r i n g l e a d e r , b y the s p e c i a l j u d g m e n t o f H e a v e n , i n r e t r i b u t i o n f o r h i s c r i m e s . L a s t l y , this o l d t a l e f r o m E g y p t m a y b e one o f the s o u r c e s o f a s s e r t i o n s b y P y r a m i d o l o g i s t s that the p y r a m i d s e x e r t o r f o c u s s o m e s t r a n g e f o r c e s that affect people in m y s t e r i o u s w a y s . T h e r e i s a n a c c o u n t o f a G e r m a n p h i l o s o p h e r w h o w a s v i s i t i n g the p y r a m i d s o f E g y p t , and h a v i n g a s c e n d e d t o the s u m m i t o f the P y r a m i d o f G i z e h , h e w a s a s t o n i s h e d t o o b s e r v e that the ends o f h i s f i n g e r s , w h e n h e r a i s e d t h e m i n t o the a i r , b e c a m e i n v e s t e d w i t h a l u m i n o u s h a l o . H e a l s o o b s e r v e d that a g o u r d m o u n t e d i n m e t a l , w h i c h one o f h i s A r a b g u i d e s c a r r i e d , g a v e out f r o m a m e t a l l i c button w h i c h w a s a t t a c h e d t o the c o v e r s c i n t i l l a t i o n s o f l i g h t , and even sparks, w h e n e v e r he approached his finger toward it. The guides w e r e

Gl-112

LIGHTNING

GLL-007

thrown into consternation at o b s e r v i n g t h e s e , to them, supernatural a p p e a r a n c e s , and t h e y i n s i s t e d o n r e t u r n i n g a t o n c e t o t h e g r o u n d .

GLL-005

LIGHTNING INDUCED BY THERMONUCLEAR DETONATIONS

U m a n , M . A . , e t a l ; J o u r n a l o f G e o p h y s i c a l R e s e a r c h , 7 7 : 1 5 9 1 - 1 5 9 6 , M a r c h 20, 1972. T h e lightning flashes induced by a t h e r m o n u c l e a r detonation at Eniwetok A t o l l i n the P a c i f i c i n [ O c t o b e r 31] 1952 a r e d e s c r i b e d . The five discharges w e r e u p w a r d - p r o p a g a t i n g and w e r e a p p a r e n t l y i n i t i a t e d f r o m i n s t r u m e n t a t i o n stations slightly above sea l e v e l . T h e l i k e l y m e c h a n i s m f o r the n e c e s s a r y c h a r g e and e l e c t r i c - f i e l d g e n e r a t i o n ( C o m p t o n e l e c t r o n s p r o d u c e d b y g a m m a r a y s f r o m the detonation) | s e x p l o r e d q u a n t i t a t i v e l y . The electric-field intensity c a l c u l a t e d 3 x 10 v / m is near the v a l u e needed to initiate lightning from surface projections. The charge estimated to be available, h o w e v e r , a p p e a r s to be insufficient to account f o r the o b s e r v e d lightning. Scattered t r a d e - w i n d c u m u l u s c l o u d s and s p r a y e l e c t r i f i c a t i o n f r o m the s a l t w a t e r a r e c o n s i d e r e d and r e j e c t e d a s c h a r g e s o u r c e s . (Abstract)

GLL-006

[VAGARIES OF LIGHTNING]

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 3 7 : 6 4 , N o v e m b e r 17, 1887. D u r i n g a h a i l s t o r m at M o r s , in D e n m a r k , a f e w days a g o , a flash of f o r k e d lightning-—-the only one o c c u r r i n g s t r u c k a f i r m , and, h a v i n g d e m o l i s h e d t h e c h i m n e y - s t a c k and m a d e a w r e c k o f the l o f t , d e s c e n d e d i n t o t h e l i v i n g - r o o m s o n the g r o u n d - f l o o r b e l o w . H e r e i t s c a r e e r a p p e a r s t o h a v e b e e n m o s t e x t r a o r d i n a r y ; , a l l t h e p l a s t e r around d o o r s and w i n d o w s h a v i n g b e e n t o r n d o w n , and t h e b e d - c u r t a i n s i n t h e b e d - r o o m s r e n t t o p i e c e s . A n o l d Dutch c l o c k w a s s m a s h e d i n t o a t o m s , but a c a n a r y and c a g e h a n g i n g ..a. f e w inches f r o m it w e r e quite uninjured. The lightning also broke sixty w i n d o w s and a l l t h e m i r r o r s i n the h o u s e . O n l e a v i n g t h e r o o m s i t p a s s e d c l e a n t h r o u g h t h e d o o r i n t o t h e y a r d , w h e r e i t k i l l e d a c a t , t w o f o w l s , and a p i g , and t h e n b u r i e d i t s e l f i n t h e e a r t h . I n o n e o f t h e r o o m s w e r e t w o w o m e n , both o f w h o m w e r e s t r u c k t o t h e g r o u n d , but n e i t h e r w a s i n j u r e d .

GLL-007

STRANGE PRANKS OF LIGHTNING
2 7 : 6 3 - 6 7 , June 1950.

Lane, Frank A . ; Science Digest,

T h i s a r t i c l e f i r s t r e v i e w s t h e p r o p e r t i e s o f both o r d i n a r y and b a l l l i g h t n i n g . T h e e m p h a s i s i s o n s o m e o f the s t r a n g e t h i n g s that l i g h t n i n g d o e s . T o t h i s end, a s c o r e o r s o c a s e h i s t o r i e s a r e p r e s e n t e d , f r o m which the f o l l o w i n g a r e s e l e c t e d . O n a n o t h e r o c c a s i o n l i g h t n i n g s t r u c k a c a r p e n t e r ' s shop. W h e n t h e m e n had l e f t i t t h e y had p l a c e d t h e i r t o o l s i n t w o l i n e s d o w n a b e n c h w i t h a c o a t l a i d b e -

Gl-113

GLL-008

LIGHTNING

t w e e n t h e l i n e s , but w i t h none o f t h e t o o l s t o u c h i n g i t . T h e l i g h t n i n g s t r u c k the b e n c h and t h e n t h e f l a s h a p p a r e n t l y d i v i d e d . It burnt a l l the handles of the t o o l s and s e a r e d a b r o a d p a t c h u n d e r t h e m o n t h e b e n c h . T h e c o a t i n the m i d d l e w a s undamaged. T h e l i g h t n i n g l e f t t h e shop b y t e a r i n g a h o l e t h r o u g h a w a l l . An amusing instance of the effect of the heat o c c u r r e d when a field of potatoes was struck. S o m e o f t h e s t a l k s w e r e burnt t o c i n d e r s , but t h e p o t a t o e s u n d e r neath w e r e c o o k e d t o a turn, j u s t a s i f t h e y had b e e n c o o k e d b e n e a t h hot a s h e s . B i r d s h a v e b e e n s e e n t o f a l l f r o m the s k y and w h e n e x a m i n e d , found t o b e partly roasted. F i s h , t o o , a r e o c c a s i o n a l l y k i l l e d when lightning strikes their w a t e r s . When a l a k e w a s hit 1 8 c a r t - l o a d s o f d e a d f i s h w e r e c a r r i e d a w a y . Lightning struck a r o o m w h e r e a g i r l sat at h e r s e w i n g machine with a p a i r of s c i s s o r s i n h e r hand. T h e r e w a s a b r i l l i a n t flash o f l i g h t , the s c i s s o r s w e r e s p i r i t e d a w a y and t h e g i r l found h e r s e l f s i t t i n g o n t h e s e w i n g m a c h i n e . T w o g i r l s w e r e standing b y a r e a p i n g m a c h i n e w h e n l i g h t n i n g s t r u c k . g i r l s w e r e s t r i p p e d t o t h e skin and t h e i r b o o t s w e r e t o r n f r o m t h e i r f e e t . w i s e they w e r e unharmed. The Other-

GLL-008

ON LIGHTNING FIGURES

T o m l i n s o n , C . ; N a t u r e , 12: 9 - 1 1 , M a y 6 , 1875. T h e l e t t e r h e a d e d " S t r u c k b y L i g h t n i n g , " and s i g n e d " D . P i d g e o n , " c o n t a i n e d i n N a t u r e , v o l . x i , p . 405, i s v a l u a b l e , and t h e m o r e s o b e c a u s e i t i s u n a c c o m p a n i e d b y any t h e o r y . F o r m e r l y , when ramified marks appeared on the p e r s o n s o f m e n o r a n i m a l s , t h e y w e r e a l w a y s r e f e r r e d t o s o m e n e a r o r distant t r e e , o f w h i c h t h e m a r k s f o r m e d "an e x a c t p o r t r a i t . " T h u s , i n the T i m e s o f S e p t e m b e r 10, 1866, i s a n a c c o u n t o f a b o y w h o had t a k e n r e f u g e u n d e r a t r e e d u r i n g a t h u n d e r s t o r m , h a v i n g b e e n s t r u c k b y l i g h t n i n g , and o n h i s b o d y w a s found " a p e r f e c t i m a g e o f t h e t r e e , the f i b r e s , l e a v e s , and branches being represented with photographic accuracy. " I n a p a p e r r e a d b y m e b e f o r e the B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n a t M a n c h e s t e r i n 1861, I a t t e m p t e d t o s h o w that such r a m i f i e d f i g u r e s a r e not d e r i v e d f r o m any t r e e w h a t e v e r , but r e p r e s e n t the f i e r y hand o f t h e l i g h t n i n g i t s e l f . T h e author n e x t d e s c r i b e s h i s e x p e r i m e n t s d e m o n s t r a t i n g h o w e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e s in glass create good representations of trees; i. e. , dendritic structures. H o w e v e r , the t h r e e c a s e s b e l o w c a n h a r d l y b e e x p l a i n e d a s n a t u r a l d e n d r i t i c l i g h t n i n g figures. 1 . I n S e p t e m b e r 1825, t h e b r i g I I Buon S e r v o , a n c h o r e d i n t h e B a y o f A r m i r o , w a s s t r u c k b y l i g h t n i n g , and a s a i l o r w h o w a s s i t t i n g a t t h e foot o f the m i z e n m a s t w a s k i l l e d . M a r k s w e r e found o n h i s b a c k , e x t e n d i n g f r o m t h e n e c k t o t h e l o i n s , i n c l u d i n g the i m p r e s s i o n o f a h o r s e - s h o e , p e r f e c t l y d i s t i n c t , and o f t h e s a m e s i z e a s t h e o n e that w a s f i x e d t o t h e m a s t . 2 . I n a n o t h e r c a s e that o c c u r r e d a t Z a n t e , t h e n u m b e r 4 4 i n m e t a l w a s attached t o t h e f i x e d r i g g i n g b e t w e e n the m a s t and t h e c o t o f o n e o f the s a i l o r s .

Gl-114

LIGHTNING

GLL-009

T h e m a s t w a s s t r u c k and the s a i l o r k i l l e d . O n h i s l e f t b r e a s t w a s found the n u m b e r 4 4 , w e l l f o r m e d and p e r f e c t l y i d e n t i c a l w i t h that o n the r i g g i n g . The s a i l o r s a g r e e d that t h e n u m b e r did not e x i s t o n the b o d y b e f o r e the m a n w a s struck. 3. M . J o s e M a r i a Dau, o f Havannah, s t a t e s that i n 1828, i n the p r o v i n c e o f C a n d e l a r i a , i n the i s l a n d o f Cuba, a y o u n g m a n w a s s t r u c k b y l i g h t n i n g , and o n h i s n e c k w a s found the i m a g e "d'un f e r a c h e v a l qui a v a i t e t e c l o u e a peu d e d i s t a n c e c o n t r e une f e n e t r e . " T o m l i n s o n c l a i m s that t h e s e o b v i o u s l y a r t i f i c i a l f i g u r e s a r e e s s e n t i a l l y s h a d o w s c a s t b y t h e e l e c t r i c c u r r e n t w h e n the a r t i f i c i a l o b j e c t i s s t r u c k .

Dendritic "breath figure" of an electric discharge. (Adapted from GLL-008, Fig. 1)

GLL-009

DEATH FROM THE SKY

F u l l e r , C u r t i s ; F a t e , 11:12, D e c e m b e r 1958. L a t e i n July, 1 5 - y e a r - o l d K e n n e t h L u k e r o f L a M a r q u e , T e x . w a s w a l k i n g t o w a r d the c o o p w h e r e h e w a s r a i s i n g c h i c k e n s and had n e a r l y 100 l a y i n g h e n s . Suddenly a l i g h t n i n g b o l t c a m e out o f the sky and s t r u c k h i m . H e w a s just s l i g h t l y s h o c k e d , h o w e v e r , and only o n e a r m w a s a f f e c t e d . But that night K e n n e t h ' s m o t h e r , M r s . A l l e n L u k e r , had a d r e a m . A voice c a m e t o h e r i n the d r e a m and s a i d : " T h e b o y i s d e a d . " T h r e e w e e k s l a t e r , o n A u g u s t 21, M r s . L u k e r ' s d r e a m c a m e t r u e . K e n n e t h w a s r i d i n g a b i c y c l e with a y o u n g e r b r o t h e r and a f r i e n d , G e o r g e A l l e n . There w a s no thunder, no r a i n , not e v e n any h e a v y b l a c k c l o u d s . But j u s t as a t r u c k w a s passing the l i t t l e c a v a l c a d e , another lightning bolt struck Kenneth. This time it killed him.

Gl-115

GLL-010
GLL-010

LIGHTNING

LIGHTNING PLAYS QUEER PRANKS

H i c k s , C l i f f o r d B . ; P o p u l a r M e c h a n i c s , 105:65-69, June 1956. H e r e a r e s o m e o l d and o f t e n - r e p e a t e d " p r a n k s " o f l i g h t n i n g . g i v e n and t h e y m a y b e j u s t " t a l l t a l e s . " No sources are

T h e r e ' s a h o r s e i n n o r t h e r n N e w Y o r k State that m u s t b e o n e o f the m o s t surprised animals of all t i m e . A b o l t s t r u c k O l d D o b b i n and k n o c k e d o f f h i s s h o e s but o t h e r w i s e l e f t h i m u n h a r m e d . A n d i t ' s h a r d t o beat the t r u e s t o r y o f the w o m a n w h o w a s l y i n g i n b e d , h e r h a i r i n b o b b y p i n s , w h e n l i g h t n i n g s t r u c k the h o u s e . T h e b o l t t u r n e d the b o b b y p i n s i n t o c u r l i n g i r o n s and g a v e the w o m a n a p e r m a n e n t w a v e , but d i d n ' t h a r m s o m u c h a s a h a i r o f h e r h e a d . Still another bolt e x e c u t e d a c o w in N e w H a m p s h i r e without e v e n touching the f a r m e r w h o w a s m i l k i n g h e r . O v e r in F r a n c e , lightning once k i l l e d all the b l a c k s h e e p in a f l o c k without t o u c h i n g a s i n g l e w h i t e mutton c h o p . A b o u t a y e a r a g o a b o l t s t r u c k a c h u r c h b e l f r y in M a r y l a n d . It s u r g e d t h r o u g h the a u t o m a t i c c h i m e s y s t e m , s h o r t - c i r c u i t e d k e y w i r e s and t o u c h e d off a long p r o g r a m of church h y m n s .

GLL-011

LIGHTNING STRIKES TWICE

A n o n y m o u s ; F a t e , 23:106, D e c e m b e r 1970. H a r r y B o w d e n o f Durham, England, has B r i t i s h d o c t o r s b e w i l d e r e d . Two lightning bolts have struck him, burned off his shoes, reduced his clothing to s h r e d s and l e f t h i m a l i v e and w e l l . A d o c t o r a t S h o r l e y R i d g e H o s p i t a l s a i d , " W e n e v e r h a v e s e e n anything l i k e this. W e p l a n t o s u b m i t a s p e c i a l r e p o r t t o the B r i t i s h M e d i c a l J o u r n a l . " T h e f i r s t t i m e H a r r y w a s s t r u c k , e a r l y i n 1968, the l i g h t n i n g t o r e a r a k e out o f h i s hand. E a r l y i n June, 1969, a b o l t r i p p e d h i s t r o u s e r s t o s h r e d s , t o r e o f f h i s j a c k e t , b u r n e d the b o t t o m s out o f h i s s o c k s and s p l i t the e l a s t i c s i d e s o f f h i s s h o e s . He escaped with minor burns.

GLL-012

ATMOSPHERIC ELECTRICITY

T o m l i n s o n , C . ; N a t u r e , 40:102, M a y 30, 1889.
4)

H e r e , T o m l i n s o n m e r e l y repeats a portion of a report g i v e n in an e a r l i e r issue of N a t u r e and d e s c r i b e d h e r e u n d e r G L D - 0 2 5 .

GLL-013

TORNADO LIGHTNING

G i l l m o r , D a n i e l S . , e d . ; S c i e n t i f i c Study o f U n i d e n t i f i e d F l y i n g O b j e c t s , B a n t a m B o o k s , I n c . , N e w Y o r k , 1969.

Gl-116

LIGHTNING

GLL-013

Although many c o n v e c t i v e e v e n t s , such as i s o l a t e d t h u n d e r s t o r m s , dust d e v i l s , h u r r i c a n e s , e t c . , o c c u r i n the a t m o s p h e r e , t h e s e have e n e r g y c o n c e n t r a t i o n s much s m a l l e r than that of a t o r n a d o . Consequently, s e v e r a l r e s e a r c h e r s b e l i e v e that a t o r n a d o can be maintained only by an intense and continuous l i g h t ning d i s c h a r g e a l o n g i t s a x i s . Such a d i s c h a r g e h e a t s the a i r w i t h i n the funnel, t h e r e b y causing v i o l e n t updrafts and v o r t e x m o t i o n s . W h e t h e r o r not t h i s t h e o r y i s c o r r e c t , t h e r e i s l i t t l e doubt that the e l e c t r i c a l p o w e r g e n e r a t e d d u r i n g a s i n g l e t o r n a d o e v e n t is at l e a s t 2 x 1 0 w a t t s , or about 1/10 of the c o m b i n e d p o w e r output of all the e l e c t r i c a l g e n e r a t o r s in the United States.
1 0

Such e s t i m a t e s m a y b e t o o c o n s e r v a t i v e . T o r n a d o lightning i s r e p o r t e d t o b e b r i g h t e r , b l u e r , and m o r e intense than i t s t h u n d e r s t o r m c o u n t e r p a r t . Long b e f o r e a t o r n a d o is o b s e r v e d , lightning i n t e r l a c e s the clouds . About 15 m i n utes p r i o r to the a p p e a r a n c e of the funnel, the lightning b e c o m e s intense and continuous. A f t e r the funnel d e s c e n d s , the sky i s r e p o r t e d t o b e i n a b l a z e o f l i g h t w i t h n e v e r c e a s i n g sheet l i g h t n i n g . L a r g e h a i l s t o n e s a r e c o m m o n l y p r o d u c e d both b y t o r n a d o e s and b y s e v e r e i s o l a t e d t h u n d e r s t o r m s . H a i l i s c l o s e l y c o r r e l a t e d with intense e l e c t r i c a l a c t i v i t y . O b s e r v a t i o n s of burned, w i l t e d , and d e h y d r a t e d v e g e t a t i o n , and o d o r s o f b r i m s t o n e (burning sulfur) p r o v i d e further e v i d e n c e o f e l e c t r i c a l a c t i o n . T h e t o r n a d o funnel is u s u a l l y p r e c e d e d by a p e c u l i a r - w h i n i n g sound, a n o i s e i n d i c a tive of coronal discharge. A f t e r t h i s g e n e r a l introduction, the f o l l o w i n g e y e - w i t n e s s accounts o f t o r n a d o l i g h t ning w e r e added.

" A f t e r a t o r n a d o p a s s e d o v e r N o r m a n , O k l a h o m a and headed north, p e r s o n n e l at T i n k e r F i e l d h e a r d a s h a r p h i s s i n g sound o v e r h e a d c o m b i n e d with a l o w p i t c h e d continuous r o a r . We w e r e c o n s c i o u s of an unusual and o p p r e s s i v e sensation. T h e n o i s e s o u r c e w a s d e f i n i t e l y above u s . When it w a s n e a r e s t us, I s a w the sky a b o v e g r a d u a l l y g r o w l i g h t e r , then fade t o b l a c k . T h e light w a s g r e e n i s h i n c o l o r . A s s o c i a t e d with the l i g h t w a s a s t r o n g sensation of heat r a d i a t i n g d o w n w a r d . T h e n o i s e i n c r e a s e d in v o l u m e and then faded out as though it c a m e f r o m the south and p a s s e d us g o i n g north. T h e r a i n had stopped w h i l e this phenomenon was o v e r h e a d . " T h i s s a m e uneasy f e e l i n g and i m p r e s s i o n of d o w n w a r d heat is noted in G S H - 0 0 8 . " T h e funnel f r o m the c l o u d to the ground w a s l i t up. It w a s a steady d e e p blue l i g h t v e r y b r i g h t . I t had a n o r a n g e - c o l o r f i r e i n the c e n t e r f r o m the cloud to the g r o u n d . As it c a m e along my f i e l d , it took a swath about 100 y a r d s w i d e . As it swung f r o m left to r i g h t , it l o o k e d l i k e a giant neon tube in the a i r , or a f l a g m a n at a r a i l r o a d c r o s s i n g . As it swung along the ground l e v e l , the o r a n g e f i r e or e l e c t r i c i t y would gush out f r o m the b o t t o m of the funnel and the updraft would t a k e it up in the a i r causing a t e r r i f i c l i g h t — a n d it w a s g o n e ! As it swung to the o t h e r s i d e , the o r a n g e f i r e would f l a r e up and do the s a m e . " " T h e r e w a s a s c r e a m i n g , h i s s i n g sound c o m i n g d i r e c t l y f r o m the end of the funnel. I l o o k e d up, and to my astonishment I s a w r i g h t into the h e a r t of the t o r nado. T h e r e w a s a c i r c u l a r opening in the c e n t e r of the funnel, about fifty to one hundred ft. (15 to 30 m) in d i a m e t e r and e x t e n d i n g straight upward f o r a d i s t a n c e of at l e a s t half a m i l e (800 m ) , as b e s t I c o u l d judge under the c i r c u m s t a n c e s . T h e w a l l s o f this opening w e r e r o t a t i n g c l o u d s and the w h o l e w a s b r i l l i a n t l y l i g h t e d with constant flashes o f lightning, which z i g - z a g g e d f r o m side t o s i d e . "

Gl-117

GLL-014

LIGHTNING

" W e l o o k e d u p i n t o what a p p e a r e d t o b e a n e n o r m o u s h o l l o w c y l i n d e r b r i g h t i n s i d e w i t h l i g h t n i n g f l a s h e s , but b l a c k a s b l a c k e s t n i g h t a l l r o u n d . The noise w a s l i k e t e n m i l l i o n b e e s plus a r o a r that b e g g a r s a l l d e s c r i p t i o n s . " " A f e w m i n u t e s a f t e r the s t o r m p a s s e d , t h e r e w a s a t a s t e and s m e l l i n t h e a i r l i k e that o f b u r n t sulfur. T h e a i r w a s c l a m m y , and i t w a s h a r d f o r m e t o breathe. The sensation was like being smothered. " " . . . b u r n e d u p t h e t r e e s that l a y w i t h i n i t s c i r c u m f e r e n c e , and u p r o o t e d t h o s e w h i c h w e r e upon i t s l i n e o f p a s s a g e . T h e f o r m e r , i n f a c t , w e r e found w i t h the s i d e w h i c h w a s e x p o s e d t o the s t o r m c o m p l e t e l y s c o r c h e d and b u r n e d , w h e r e a s t h e o p p o s i t e s i d e r e m a i n e d g r e e n and f r e s h . " " . . . suddenly i t turned white outside. T h i s w h i t e n e s s d e f i n i t e l y w a s not f o g . I would say it appeared to be g i v i n g off a light of its o w n . " " T h e b e a u t i f u l e l e c t r i c b l u e l i g h t that w a s around t h e t o r n a d o w a s s o m e t h i n g t o s e e , and b a l l s o f o r a n g e and l i g h t n i n g c a m e f r o m t h e c o n e point o f the t o r n a d o . " " T h e m o s t i n t e r e s t i n g thing I r e m e m b e r i s a s u r f a c e g l o w some three or four feet d e e p rolling noise, etc. " I f a r e s e a r c h e r had n e v e r h e a r d o f a t o r n a d o , and w e r e a s k e d t o c o m p a r e the e y e w i t n e s s a c c o u n t s o f t o r n a d o e s (such a s t h e s e ) w i t h t h o s e c o n c e r n i n g U F O s , h e w o u l d p r o b a b l y find the t o r n a d o r e p o r t s t o b e m o r e f a n t a s t i c and incredible. L u m i n o u s t o r n a d o c l o u d s w i t h n o funnels t o the g r o u n d a r e p o s s i b l e causes of s e v e r a l U F O r e p o r t s . (737-739) (Martin D Altschuler)

GLL-014

ON THUNDER AND LIGHTNING
2 6 : 8 1 - 1 4 4 , 1838.

A r a g o , M. ; Edinburgh N e w Philosophical Journal,

W i t h o u t h a v i n g the s l i g h t e s t w i s h t o r e v i v e antiquated i d e a s r e g a r d i n g t h u n d e r - s t o n e s * I s h a l l s i m p l y r e m a r k h e r e , that i t i s not p r o v e d that w e should a b s o l u t e l y r e g a r d a s f a l s e the w h o l e o f the n a r r a t i v e s , i n w h i c h a f a l l o f v a r i o u s m a t t e r s i s r e l a t e d t o h a v e a c c o m p a n i e d thunder s t o r m s . What p r e t e x t , f o r e x a m p l e , i s t h e r e f o r c o n s i d e r i n g a s untrue the f o l l o w i n g f a c t , w h i c h I e x t r a c t f r o m the w o r k s o f B o y l e . " I n J u l y 1681, a thunder s t o r m p r o d u c e d a g r e a t d e a l o f d a m a g e n e a r t o C a p e C o d , upon the E n g l i s h ship the A l b e m a r l e . A f l a s h o f l i g h t n i n g w a s f o l l o w e d b y the f a l l o f a b u r n i n g b i t u m i n o u s m a t t e r i n t o the boat h a n g i n g a t the s t e r n , w h i c h g a v e out a n o d o u r s i m i l a r t o that o f g u n powder. T h i s s u b s t a n c e w a s c o n s u m e d o n the spot, and i t w a s i n v a i n that t h e y a t t e m p t e d t o e x t i n g u i s h i t w i t h w a t e r , and t o s w e e p i t o v e r b o a r d w i t h a b r o o m . " C o n c e r n i n g the o d o u r s d e v e l o p e d b y t h e t h u n d e r b o l t . S o m e p h i l o s o p h e r s h a v e s u p p o s e d that t h e r e w a s n o n e c e s s i t y f o r i n q u i r i n g into the p a r t i c u l a r c a u s e s o f the p e r c e i v e d o d o u r i n e a c h f l a s h o f l i g h t n i n g . They have insinuated that the f u l m i n a t i n g m a t t e r i n i t s m o r e o r l e s s abundant p a s s a g e t h r o u g h the nervous papillae of our organs, may itself e x c i t e a m o v e m e n t analogous to that w h i c h r e s u l t s f r o m any g i v e n o d o u r . T h i s opinion might to a certain d e g r e e b e a d m i s s i b l e i f the s u b j e c t r e l a t e d o n l y t o s m e l l s w h i c h w e r e e x p e r i e n c e d a t the m o m e n t . But the t h u n d e r b o l t , w h e r e v e r i t p a s s e s , o c c a s i o n s , e v e n i n the open a i r , o d o u r s w h i c h a r e p e r c e p t i b l e f o r a l o n g t i m e . A g a i n , when l i g h t n i n g f o r c e s i t s w a y i n t o a c o n f i n e d s i t u a t i o n , i t s p a s s a g e i s f o l l o w e d b y sulphurous v a p o u r s , t h r o u g h w h i c h t h e e y e cannot p e n e t r a t e . There is e v i d e n t l y , t h e r e f o r e , s o m e s u b s t a n c e d i s s e m i n a t e d t h r o u g h the a i r . A r e we t o s u p p o s e that t h e s e s u b s t a n c e s a r e c a r r i e d a l o n g w i t h the l i g h t n i n g i n i t s c o u r s e , a s w e r e t h o s e p o w d e r y d e p o s i t s e x a m i n e d b y M . F u s i n i e r i , and w h i c h h a v e c o n t r i b u t e d t o supply a c o m m e n c e m e n t t o o u r e x p l a n a t i o n o f f i r e - b a l l s ;

Gl-118

LIGHTNING

GLL-016

o r r a t h e r , d o t h e y p r o c e e d f r o m the sudden e v a p o r a t i o n o f the d i f f e r e n t s u b s t a n c e s w h i c h a r e c o n t a i n e d i n the n e w o r o l d w o o d , v a r n i s h e d o r u n v a r n i s h e d , i n the w a l l s , s t o n e s , s o i l s , & c . & c . t h r o u g h w h i c h the l i g h t n i n g h a s p a s s e d ? T h e s e a r e p o i n t s w h i c h i n o u r p r e s e n t s t a t e o f i n f o r m a t i o n cannot b e d e t e r m i n e d : and w h a t e v e r m a y b e the fate o f t h e s e p r o p o s e d e x p l a n a t i o n s , w e m u s t not b e t o o c o n f i d e n t c o n c e r n i n g the a l l e g e d u n i f o r m i t y o f the nature o f the d e v e l o p e d odour. I h a v e found, i n truth, that i f , i n m o s t i n s t a n c e s , i t h a s b e e n s t a t e d t o r e s e m b l e the s m e l l o f sulphur; o n o t h e r o c c a s i o n s i t has b e e n c o m p a r e d t o that o f p h o s p h o r o u s , and not u n f r e q u e n t l y t o n i t r o u s v a p o u r . T h e odour of nitrous g a s , a s w i l l a f t e r w a r d s b e p o i n t e d out, c o u l d m o r e e a s i l y b e a c c o u n t e d f o r . * T h e p r e t e n d e d t h u n d e r - s t o n e s w h i c h s o m e n a t i o n s v e n e r a t e d , had g e n e r a l l y the f o r m o f a w e d g e , a n a x e , o r o f the i r o n p o i n t o f a n a r r o w o r l a n c e . The o r i g i n o f t h e s e s t o n e s i s not a t a l l doubtful, s i n c e p r e c i s e l y s i m i l a r o n e s h a v e b e e n found a m o n g t h e t o o l s and a r m s o f the n a t i v e s o f A m e r i c a , and s i n c e w e have l e a r n e d how they a r e made. The ancient Continent, a l s o , w a s o r i g i n a l l y i n h a b i t e d b y s a v a g e n a t i o n s ; and s i m i l a r r e q u i r e m e n t s , and a s i m i l a r s c a r c i t y o f i r o n , w o u l d p r o d u c e i n i t the s a m e kind o f i n d u s t r y . But w h e n the i m p r o v e m e n t i n m e t a l l u r g y p r o d u c e d s t r o n g e r i n s t r u m e n t s , m o r e c u t t i n g and m o r e c o n v e n i e n t , s t o n e s w e r e abandoned, and h a v e s i n c e b e e n p r e s e r v e d u n i n j u r e d b e l o w the s u r f a c e o f the g r o u n d . T h e s e s t o n e s h a v e often b e e n found i n the t r u n k s o f t r e e s , and h e n c e i t has b e e n c o n t e n d e d that t h e y o w e d t h e i r p o s i t i o n t h e r e t o a thunder s t o r m e v e r y other explanation w a s held to be an i m p o s s i bility. But, a t t h i s r a t e , i t m u s t h a v e b e e n thunder w h i c h i n t r o d u c e d t o a d s i n t o the t r u n k s o f t h o s e t r e e s w h e r e t h e y a r e c o n c e a l e d , and the s e v e r a l p i e c e s o f a n c i e n t m o n e y w h i c h the h a t c h e t i s f r e q u e n t l y r e v e a l i n g , ( p p . 8 5 - 8 6 )

GLL-015
Myers,

LIGHTNING FROM A CLEAR SKY, JANUARY 20, 1931
F r e d ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 5 9 : 3 9 - 4 0 , J a n u a r y 1931.

A t 4:17 a . m . a f l a s h o f l i g h t n i n g w a s o b s e r v e d o v e r h e a d and s l i g h t l y t o w a r d the n o r t h . T h e sky w a s c l e a r w i t h about 2 s t r a t o - c u m u l u s c l o u d s a l o n g the h o r i z o n f r o m the s o u t h w e s t t o the n o r t h w e s t . T h e r e w e r e six or eight f l a s h e s f r o m 4:17 a . m . t o 4:32 a . m . , n o m o r e b e i n g o b s e r v e d until 5:15 a . m . w h e n a s i n g l e f l a s h o c c u r r e d i n about the s a m e l o c a t i o n a s t h e o t h e r s . L i g h t r a i n had b e e n f a l l i n g d u r i n g t h e n i g h t , e n d i n g about 2:45 a . m . , t h e sky c l e a r i n g b y 4 a . m . , the s t a r s w e r e s h i n i n g b r i g h t l y and the c l o u d s c o u l d b e s e e n d i s t i n c t l y i n the w e s t . T h e l i g h t n i n g a p p e a r e d t o flash a c r o s s the sky and not t o the g r o u n d . N o thunder f o l l o w e d the f l a s h e s . T h i s is the f i r s t t i m e lightning has o c c u r r e d f r o m a c l e a r sky at this station as f a r as can be d e t e r m i n e d .

GLL-016

NOISE ASSOCIATED WITH LIGHTNING

C a v e , C . J . P . ; N a t u r e , 126:401, S e p t e m b e r 13, 1930. S o m e y e a r s a g o I d i r e c t e d a t t e n t i o n i n N a t u r e t o the s w i s h i n g sound that i s s o m e t i m e s h e a r d w h e n a f l a s h o f l i g h t n i n g i s v e r y c l o s e t o the o b s e r v e r . I had a t that t i m e n e v e r h e a r d the sound m y s e l f . I h e a r d i t , h o w e v e r , v e r y d i s t i n c t l y o n

Gl-119

GLL-017

LIGHTNING

the night o f A u g . 2 9 3 0 . 1 had b e e n e x p e c t i n g a f l a s h t o c o m e c l o s e , a s a v e r y a c t i v e s t o r m c e n t r e had b e e n m o v i n g d i r e c t l y t o w a r d s t h i s s p o t , w i t h s t e a d i l y d e c r e a s i n g i n t e r v a l s b e t w e e n t h e c l o u d t o e a r t h f l a s h e s and the t h u n d e r . I d i d not s e e the actual f l a s h , o n l y the i l l u m i n a t i o n o f t h e g a r d e n t h r o u g h t h e o p e n w i n d o w ; i t w a s v e r y b r i l l i a n t and w a s f o l l o w e d i n s t a n t l y b y a n o i s e a s though a s h o w e r o f l a r g e w a t e r d r o p s had b e e n t h r o w n o n t o a hot m e t a l p l a t e ; t h i s w a s f o l l o w e d a l m o s t i n s t a n t l y b y the t h u n d e r . I think t h e r e w a s a s l i g h t i n t e r v a l b e t w e e n the s w i s h and the t h u n d e r , but it m u s t h a v e b e e n o n l y a f r a c t i o n of a s e c o n d ; I had b e e n c o u n t i n g s e c o n d s a f t e r p r e v i o u s f l a s h e s , but w i t h t h i s o n e I had not t i m e t o b e g i n t o c o u n t b e f o r e the t h u n d e r c a m e . T h e flash must have struck a point w e l l within a hundred y a r d s o f m y r o o m , and I s u s p e c t that i t s t r u c k the l i g h t n i n g c o n d u c t o r o n t h e h o u s e . T h e n o i s e w a s h e a r d b y m y d a u g h t e r and b y t w o o t h e r p e o p l e i n the h o u s e . It was a l s o h e a r d b y t w o p e o p l e i n a c o t t a g e about 5 0 y a r d s f r o m the h o u s e ; o n e o f t h e m l i k e n e d i t t o a r e d - h o t p o k e r b e i n g p l u n g e d i n t o c o l d w a t e r , the o t h e r t o the sound o f the a r c w h e n t w o e l e c t r i c c a b l e s a r e s h o r t c i r c u i t e d . T h e o r i g i n o f the n o i s e i s o b s c u r e . I f e e l i n c l i n e d t o think that i t i s c a u s e d b y s o m e o f the b r a n c h e s i n t o w h i c h the m a i n d i s c h a r g e o f t e n d i v i d e s b e f o r e r e a c h i n g the g r o u n d ; i t m a y w e l l h a p p e n that a n u m b e r o f t h e s e m a y b e n e a r e r t o t h e o b s e r v e r than t h e m a i n d i s c h a r g e and s o b e h e a r d f i r s t . T h e n o i s e w a s not l i k e the c r a c k l e of a brush discharge on a l a r g e s c a l e . T h e chief argument against this e x p l a n a t i o n i s that a c o r r e s p o n d e n t i n N a t u r e d e s c r i b e d the sound a s o c c u r r i n g not a f t e r but b e f o r e the f l a s h . But i t s e e m s p o s s i b l e that o n s o m e o c c a s i o n s b r u s h d i s c h a r g e s m a y o c c u r just b e f o r e a f l a s h . A t any r a t e , t h i s s o m e t i m e s o c c u r s with a highly c h a r g e d W i m s h u r s t machine.

GLL-017

STRANGE KINDS OF LIGHTNING

A n o n y m o u s ; L i t e r a r y D i g e s t , 111:22, O c t o b e r 10, 1 9 3 1 . M r . T a l m a n b e g i n s with an account of an e x c e p t i o n a l l y w e i r d e l e c t r i c a l d i s p l a y r e p o r t e d b y D r . W a l t e r K n o c h e , f o r m a n y y e a r s d i r e c t o r o f the weather s e r v i c e of Chile. We read: " H e w a s t r a v e l i n g b y s t e a m b o a t d o w n t h e R i o P a r a g u a y i n South A m e r i c a , o n O c t o b e r 3 , 1927. A s e v e r e d r o u g h t had p r e v a i l e d i n the s u r r o u n d i n g c o u n t r y f o r m o n t h s . A t 7 o ' c l o c k i n the e v e n i n g tho no rain f e l l a tremendous electrical storm began. " ' I t d i d not a p p r o a c h , ' w r i t e s D r . K n o c h e i n the M e t e o r o l o g i s c h e Z e i t s c h r i f t , 'but w a s i n s t a n t l y t h e r e — a n d i t w a s t h e r e a s f a r a s the e y e c o u l d r e a c h , t o n o r t h , south, w e s t , and e a s t , and o v e r h e a d . I t w o u l d h a v e b e e n i m p o s s i b l e t o count e v e n a p p r o x i m a t e l y the n u m b e r o f the l i g h t n i n g f l a s h e s . M a n y o f t h e s e w e r e i n the f o r m o f s t r e a k l i g h t n i n g , but w e r e r e d d i s h o r y e l l o w i s h . A l m o s t e q u a l l y n u m e r o u s w e r e the f l a s h e s o f d a z z l i n g w h i t e 'beaded' lightning a phenomenon r e s e m b l i n g a string of g l o w i n g p e a r l s in the s k y . Such l i g h t n i n g i s , s o f a r a s a n y b o d y k n o w s , e x t r e m e l y r a r e , and the o c c u r r e n c e o f m o r e than o n e o r t w o e x a m p l e s o f i t i n a s i n g l e s t o r m i s a l m o s t u n h e a r d of. " D r . K n o c h e t e l l s a l s o o f g o r g e o u s g l o w s o f s h e e t l i g h t n i n g a l o n g the b o r d e r s o f the c l o u d s and o f v a r i o u s p h e n o m e n a that cannot r e a d i l y b e c l a s s i fied, including curious, rapidly moving, o r a n g e - c o l o r e d d i s c h a r g e s , which h e s a y s r e s e m b l e d c y l i n d r i c a l m a s s e s o f g l o w i n g g a s , f l a s h e s that r e v o l v e d l i k e p i n w h e e l s ; and, a t o n e p e r i o d o f the s t o r m , h u n d r e d s o f l u m i n o u s a r c s c r o w d e d t o g e t h e r n e a r the z e n i t h , s o d a z z l i n g that h e had t o c l o s e h i s e y e s .

Gl-120

LIGHTNING

GLL-018

" P e r h a p s the s t r a n g e s t f e a t u r e o f t h i s e x h i b i t i o n w a s that i t w e n t o n f o r h o u r s without t h u n d e r . T h u n d e r b e g a n a b r u p t l y i n the e a r l y m o r n i n g , and then b e c a m e a continuous r o l l . The s t o r m ended o r the s t e a m e r p a s s e d out o f i t about 8 o ' c l o c k , h a v i n g l a s t e d t h i r t e e n h o u r s . " T h e s a m e m e t e o r o l o g i s t has published accounts o f equally m a r v e l l o u s e l e c t r i c a l e x h i b i t i o n s i n a n o t h e r p a r t o f South A m e r i c a the s p e c t a c u l a r g l o w s and b e a m s s e e n o n s u m m e r e v e n i n g s a l o n g the c r e s t o f the A n d e s a s v i e w e d f r o m S a n t i a g o and p l a c e s a l o n g the w e s t c o a s t , a s w e l l a s f r o m v e s s e l s o n the P a c i f i c . " T h e m o u n t a i n s s e e m t o act a s g i g a n t i c l i g h t n i n g - r o d s , g i v i n g r i s e t o m o r e o r l e s s c o n t i n u o u s d i f f u s e d d i s c h a r g e s b e t w e e n t h e m s e l v e s and the c l o u d s , w i t h i n t e r m i t t e n t o u t b u r s t s s i m u l a t i n g the b e a m s o f a g r e a t s e a r c h - l i g h t . " D i s p l a y s o f s i m i l a r c h a r a c t e r have b e e n r e p o r t e d f r o m mountainous r e g i o n s i n o t h e r p a r t s o f the w o r l d , i n c l u d i n g the A l p s . Science has, as y e t , l i t t l e t o s a y about t h i s p h e n o m e n o n , w h i c h i s s t i l l i g n o r e d i n m o s t b o o k s o n meteorology." " L i g h t n i n g that s h o o t s u p f r o m the h o r i z o n a t t h e a p p a r e n t s p e e d o f a s k y r o c k e t , o r o c c a s i o n a l l y t r a v e l s h o r i z o n t a l l y f r o m the e d g e o f a c l o u d a t the s a m e d e l i b e r a t e p a c e , h a s b e e n r e p o r t e d s e v e r a l t i m e s d u r i n g the l a s t t w o c e n t u r i e s , but i t r e m a i n s o n e o f the g r e a t r a r i t i e s . A c a s e was o b s e r v e d on A u g u s t 18, 1927, f r o m the B r i t i s h s t e a m s h i p I n k u m , i n the B a h a m a s . Simil a r l i g h t n i n g w a s s e e n n e a r C a l c u t t a o n e e v e n i n g i n July, 1903. " S o m e o f the m o s t b i z a r r e m a n i f e s t a t i o n s o f l i g h t n i n g a r e t h o s e that f l a s h i n the c o l u m n o f s m o k e and v a p o r f r o m the c r a t e r o f a n a c t i v e v o l c a n o . The m a r v e l o u s e l e c t r i c a l d i s p l a y s that attended the e r u p t i o n o f P e l e e , i n 1902, a r e d e s c r i b e d i n G e o r g e K e n n a n ' s d r a m a t i c s t o r y o f that o u t b r e a k . The s t r e a k s o f l i g h t n i n g t e r m i n a t e d i n s t a r l i k e o u t b u r s t s , and e a c h flash w a s accompanied by a booming detonation. P r o b a b l y the t r u e e x p l a n a t i o n i s that the d i s c h a r g e s p a s s e d t h r o u g h and v o l a t i l i z e d f l y i n g chunks o f r o c k i n the m i d s t o f the s m o k e c l o u d . " In a c o n s i d e r a b l e number of reported c a s e s of ball lightning, M r . T a l m a n thinks that the o b j e c t d e s c r i b e d a s a f i e r y b a l l w a s a c t u a l l y a b r u s h d i s c h a r g e o f e l e c t r i c i t y f r o m s o m e p a r t i c l e o f m a t t e r f a l l i n g o r f l o a t i n g i n the a i r o r f r o m the f i x t s u r f a c e o n w h i c h the s u p p o s e d b a l l w a s s e e n . He explains: " T h e natural b r u s h d i s c h a r g e i s b e s t k n o w n a s a s m a l l tuft o f l i g h t i s s u i n g f r o m the t i p o f s o m e e l e v a t e d o b j e c t , such a s a s h i p ' s m a s t , a c h u r c h s p i r e , or a lightning-rod. In its s i m p l e r manifestations, the phenomenon is usually c a l l e d St. E l m o ' s f i r e , o r c o r p o s a n t s , and h a s b e e n f a m i l i a r t o mankind f r o m antiquity. " D u r i n g d u s t - s t o r m s and s a n d - s t o r m s i n the w e s t e r n U n i t e d S t a t e s i t i s not u n c o m m o n f o r i n s u l a t e d m e t a l o b j e c t s t o b e c o m e s o s t r o n g l y c h a r g e d w i t h e l e c t r i c i t y that t h e y g i v e off b r u s h d i s c h a r g e s , w h i c h a r e v i s i b l e a t night. O b s e r v e r s r e p o r t h e r d s o f c a t t l e w i t h ' b a l l s o f f i r e ' o n t h e i r h o r n s , and the barbs of w i r e f e n c e s a b l a z e with e l e c t r i c d i s c h a r g e s . During one of these s t o r m s , in w e s t e r n Kansas, sparks two or three inches long w e r e drawn f r o m a w i r e r u n n i n g t o a w i n d m i l l , and a p r a i r i e f i r e , i t w a s thought, w a s s t a r t e d b y s p a r k s a t the b r e a k o f a f e n c e w i r e . "

GLL-018

LIGHTNING FROM A CLEAR SKY

G i s b o r n e , H . F . ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 56:108, M a r c h 1928.

Gl-121

GLL-019

LIGHTNING

On July 2, 1927, Stanley L u k e n s , a f o r e s t r a n g e r , w a s s u p e r v i s i n g the opening o f the G o l d P e a k lookout o n the M i s s o u l a N a t i o n a l F o r e s t . W h i l e Lukens and h i s a s s i s t a n t w e r e setting up the f i r e f i n d e r they a i m e d the a l i d a d e a t v a r i o u s p r o m i n e n t t o p o g r a p h i c f e a t u r e s t o c h e c k the o r i e n t a t i o n o f the m a p . A s t h e y w e r e m a k i n g one o f t h e s e t e s t o b s e r v a t i o n s t o w a r d a point southeast of G o l d P e a k both m e n s a w a flash of lightning s t r i k e the ground a l m o s t on t h e i r l i n e of a l i d a d e sight, and about 15 m i l e s f r o m t h e m . T h i s flash w a s f o l l o w e d b y four o t h e r s w i t h i n the next f e w m i n u t e s . T h e f i r s t s t r i k e s t a r t e d a f o r e s t f i r e , the o t h e r s did not. T h e phenomenon w a s m o s t p e c u l i a r b e c a u s e all o f t h e s e s t r i k e s d e s c e n d e d a l m o s t v e r t i c a l l y , apparently out of a blue sky, the n e a r e s t c l o u d s b e i n g about 15 and 25 m i l e s , r e s p e c t i v e l y , f r o m the a r e a struck. Both Lukens and t h e lookout, a M r . W e r t z , w e r e g r e a t l y i m p r e s s e d b y this c o n d i t i o n b e c a u s e t h e i r g e n e r a l i m p r e s s i o n w a s that at that t i m e , 2:30 p . m . , the sky w a s p r a c t i c a l l y c l e a r . A s m a l l t h u n d e r s t o r m had p a s s e d o v e r Gold P e a k b e t w e e n 7:50 and 8:15 a. m. that day, then the sky had c l e a r e d . M r . L u k e n s r e m e m b e r s , h o w e v e r , that a t the t i m e o f t h e s e " b o l t s f r o m the b l u e , " t h e r e w e r e t w o s m a l l c u m u l o - n i m b u s c l o u d s south and southw e s t , 3 0 t o 4 0 m i l e s f r o m G o l d P e a k . T h e s e lightning b o l t s , all o f which struck within a s m a l l a r e a not o v e r half a m i l e in d i a m e t e r , a p p e a r e d to descend a l m o s t v e r t i c a l l y , and they w e r e not b e t w e e n the t w o c l o u d s , but in a n o r t h e a s t e r l y d i r e c t i o n and o v e r 15 m i l e s f r o m t h e m . N o thunder w a s h e a r d f r o m t h e s e f l a s h e s , and n o further b o l t s w e r e seen. About h a l f an hour a f t e r t h e s e s t r i k e s the cloud which had b e e n south o f Gold P e a k p a s s e d o v e r the s t r u c k a r e a and d e l i v e r e d sufficient r a i n t o extinguish the f i r e , which had b e e n s m o k i n g a p p r e c i a b l y . T h i s cloud i s r e p o r t e d by M r . L u k e n s to h a v e b e e n about 1 to 1-1/2 m i l e s l o n g by o n e half to t h r e e - q u a r t e r s of a m i l e w i d e , and w a s of the cumulus t y p e .

GLL-019

LIGHTNING WITHOUT CLOUDS

Baskin, Donald; A m e r i c a n M e t e o r o l o g i c a l S o c i e t y , B u l l e t i n , 33:348, 1952. On July 2 1 , 1952, at 2:15 p . m . l o c a l t i m e , the plane I w a s f l y i n g w a s struck by l i g h t n i n g . At the t i m e of this incident I w a s f l y i n g a m i s s i o n that kept me in the s a m e g e o g r a p h i c a l a r e a f o r m o r e than one h o u r . I w a s at 5, 000 f e e t altitude and had 5, 000 f e e t of v e r y s m a l l s t e e l c a b l e t r a i l i n g behind the a i r c r a f t with a c l o t h s l e e v e attached. I w a s f l y i n g on a h e a d i n g of 270 d e g r e e s m a g n e t i c , and off in the d i s t a n c e (about 50 m i l e s ) I n o t i c e d a f l a s h of lightning. About t w o minutes l a t e r the plane I w a s f l y i n g w a s s t r u c k b y lightning. T h e plane l u r c h e d and I w a s blinded m o m e n t a r i l y . T h e l i g h t n i n g struck the plane on the l e f t side of the n o s e and t r a v e l e d down the s i d e to the r e a r . It p a s s e d on to the s m a l l c a b l e at the r e a r of the plane and c o m p l e t e l y d e m o l i s h e d it by burning it to a c r i s p . My ordnance man r e p o r t e d that we had l o s t all the c a b l e . I l o o k e d b a c k and t h e r e w a s a t r a i l of s m o k e to the r e a r about 2, 000 o r 3 , 000 f e e t c a u s e d b y the burning c a b l e . This smoke trail was observed b y N a v a l p e r s o n n e l o n the ground s o m e s e v e n o r eight m i l e s a w a y . I t i s to be noted that no p r e c i p i t a t i o n w a s e n c o u n t e r e d f o r m o r e than one hour p r i o r to the d i s c h a r g e and t h e r e w e r e no c l o u d s of any t y p e p r e s e n t at my location. About ten m i l e s t o the e a s t , t h e r e w a s a n altocumulus cloud (bases 5, 500 f e e t , tops 7, 000 f e e t ) , e m i t t i n g a l i g h t d r i z z l e .

Gl-122

LIGHTNING
GLL-020 LIGHTNING

GLL-021

Vonnegut, B . ; W e a t h e r , 27:213, 1972. T h e f o l l o w i n g o b s e r v a t i o n of unusual lightning is an e x c e r p t f r o m a l e t t e r I recently r e c e i v e d from Wilson M. P o w e l l , P r o f e s s o r Emeritus of physics at the U n i v e r s i t y of C a l i f o r n i a at B e r k e l e y . It d e s c r i b e s a lightning e v e n t which o c c u r r e d w h i l e h e w a s doing e x p e r i m e n t s i n c o s m i c r a y s o n the s u m m i t of M t . Evans in C o l o r a d o at an altitude of 14,260 f e e t . 'I s a w l i g h t n i n g s t r i k e about 300 f e e t away and hit a r o c k so that t h e r e w a s a y e l l o w sodium f l a m e at the point of i m p a c t . T h e lightning s e e m e d to be about 30 to 50 f e e t in d i a m e t e r and to h a v e pointed f l a m e s on both s i d e s . I m i s s e d the f i r s t b o l t and s a w only the l a t e r f l a s h e s . M y c o - w o r k e r d e s c r i b e d the s a m e thing f o r another s t r o k e o f lightning, having s e e n it out of the back w i n d o w of a c a r . He w a s a l s o w e a r i n g g l a s s e s , and at the t i m e I w o n d e r e d if this might h a v e b e e n caused by r e f l e c t i o n s in h i s g l a s s e s . My o b s e r v a t i o n w a s m a d e out in the open, and I w a s w e a r i n g no g l a s s e s . ' P r o f e s s o r P o w e l l concludes his o b s e r v a t i o n s a y i n g , ' I h a v e n e v e r found anybody able to c o r r o b o r a t e my o b s e r v a t i o n and am hoping that you m a y be able t o d o s o .
1

Body of Flash

Sketch of peculiar lightning strike (Adapted from GLL-020)

GLL-021

PHENOMENA PRECEDING LIGHTNING

M c A d i e , A l e x a n d e r ; Monthly W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 56:219-220, June 1928, In the M e t e o r o l o g i c a l M a g a z i n e June. 1928, p. 113, M r . R. S. B r e t o n , w r i t i n g f r o m Tung Sung, Southern S i a m , states that on a number of o c c a s i o n s he has noticed a sharp " v i t " or " c l i c k " a c c o m p a n y i n g lightning that has struck s o m e t h i n g in the i m m e d i a t e n e i g h b o r h o o d , p r e c e d i n g the thunder by a p e r c e p t i b l e f r a c t i o n of a s e c o n d .

Gl-123

GLL-022

LIGHTNING

H e a d d s that h e h a s t h r e e t i m e s n o t i c e d that a n i m a l s s h o w a l a r m i m m e d i a t e l y b e f o r e a f l a s h and that i n o n e c a s e a d o g w a l k i n g o n g r a s s t u r n e d and b e g a n t o b a r k a n g r i l y i n the d i r e c t i o n o f a v e r y s t r o n g f l a s h that c a m e o n e f o u r t h s e c o n d a f t e r , s t r i k i n g s e v e r a l o f a g r o u p o f t r e e s 200 y a r d s a w a y . H e m e n t i o n s t w o o c c a s i o n s w h e n f o w l s r u s h e d f o r s h e l t e r f r o m the o p e n i n a l a r m b e f o r e a v e r y near discharge actually took p l a c e . I n e a c h c a s e the d i s c h a r g e w a s a v e r y p o w e r f u l o n e , t a k i n g p l a c e o n d r y s o i l b e f o r e r a i n had fallen. H e a s k s " i f i t m a y b e that the s e n s i t i v e f e e t o f the d o g c o u l d d e t e c t vibrations b e f o r e the d i s c h a r g e took p l a c e . " T h e e d i t o r s o f the m a g a z i n e a n s w e r "that the ' v i t ' o r ' c l i c k * a c c o m p a n y i n g l i g h t n i n g w h i c h h a s s t r u c k c l o s e b y a p p e a r s t o b e n e w ; n o r e f e r e n c e t o any s i m i l a r o b s e r v a t i o n c a n b e found i n the l i t e r a t u r e and a t p r e s e n t i t i s not p o s s i b l e t o o f f e r any e x p l a n a t i o n . " C l i c k s p r e c e d i n g intense lightning flashes a r e c o m m o n at Blue Hill O b s e r v a t o r y and u n d o u b t e d l y c a n b e h e a r d e l s e w h e r e u n d e r c e r t a i n c o n d i tions, when an insulated m e t a l l i c conductor is exposed, in a strong e l e c t r i c f i e l d , and a g r o u n d e d c o n d u c t o r i s c l o s e b y . A t B l u e H i l l e v e r y i n t e n s e f l a s h w i t h i n a r a d i u s o f 1 , 000 m e t e r s g i v e s t h i s c l i c k p r e c e d i n g thunder b y a n i n t e r v a l w h i c h i s a function o f the d i s t a n c e o f the f l a s h . R e g a r d i n g the b e h a v i o r o f the d o g , i t w o u l d s e e m t o b e not s o m u c h a q u e s t i o n o f s e n s i t i v e f e e t a s a m a t t e r o f i n s u l a t i o n and i n c r e a s i n g e l e c t r i f i c a t i o n t o a d e g r e e that the h a i r s , f o r i n s t a n c e , b e c o m e d i s c h a r g i n g p o i n t s . T h i s b r i s t l i n g can be seen r e a d i l y on a n i m a l s caught in thunderstorms near the t o p o f a m o u n t a i n . I r e c a l l b e i n g n e a r the s u m m i t o f Mount W h i t n e y ( 4 , 4 2 0 m e t e r s a b o v e s e a l e v e l , 14, 502 f e e t ) , d u r i n g a t h u n d e r s t o r m . T h e h a i r s o f t h e b u r r o s ( p a c k a n i m a l s ) stood out s t r a i g h t , and a faint h i s s i n g c o u l d be he'ard. A m e t a l button on my c a p g a v e a t i n g l i n g s e n s a t i o n . I kept w o n d e r i n g h o w l o n g i t w o u l d b e b e f o r e a f l a s h o f l i g h t n i n g w o u l d d e m o l i s h the e n t i r e p a r t y o f a s t r o n o m e r s a s t h e y p r o c e e d e d i n c l o s e f o r m a t i o n t o the summit. I think w e had a n a r r o w e s c a p e f r o m d i s a s t e r . During a w e e k ' s stay a t the s u m m i t w e had s e v e r a l t h u n d e r s t o r m s , w h e n the l i g h t n i n g s e e m e d to be below us. T h e f e e l i n g o f uneasiness p r e c e d i n g lightning flashes may b e due, aside f r o m e f f e c t s o f p r e s s u r e , t e m p e r a t u r e , and h u m i d i t y , t o the i n c r e a s i n g e l e c t r i c a l s t r a i n , a s a c h a r g e d c l o u d c o m e s o v e r t h e p o s i t i o n o f the o b s e r v e r . W e k n o w f r o m o u r q u a d r a n t - e l e c t r o m e t e r m e a s u r e m e n t s that a t such t i m e s the p o t e n t i a l g r a d i e n t i n c r e a s e s s t e a d i l y f r o m 5 0 v o l t s p e r m e t e r t o 1 0 , 0 0 0 or m o r e . A jet of w a t e r f r o m an insulated c o l l e c t o r exhibits many i n t e r e s t i n g c h a n g e s a s the c h a r g e d c l o u d a p p r o a c h e s . I n f a c t w e c a n t e l l just about w h e n the f l a s h w i l l o c c u r . W e c a n a l s o d e t e c t and r e c o r d d i s c h a r g e s w h i c h a n o b s e r v e r f a i l s t o d e t e c t , i f d e p e n d e n t o n the e y e a l o n e . W i t h e a c h f l a s h t h e r e i s a n i n s t a n t a n e o u s e q u a l i z a t i o n o f p o t e n t i a l and r e t u r n o f the needle to z e r o .

GLL-022

DEATH BY LIGHTNING

A n o n y m o u s ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 47:729, O c t o b e r 1919, A. G. N e w e l l d e s c r i b e s an interesting phenomenon in connection with the b u r n s r e c e i v e d b y a m a n w h o w a s k i l l e d b y a l i g h t n i n g s t r o k e i n L o n d o n . T h e m a n and h i s w i f e w e r e w a l k i n g i n t h e o p e n , n e a r a r o w o f e l m t r e e s

Gl-124

LIGHTNING

GLL-024

when he was struck. T h e w i f e w a s m o m e n t a r i l y stunned, but upon r e c o v e r i n g she s a w h e r husband s t a n d i n g e r e c t w i t h a b l a z i n g l i n e u p and d o w n t h e back of his coat. H e d i e d i m m e d i a t e l y , and f e l l b a c k w a r d a g a i n s t a n i r o n fence. S e v e r e b u r n s o n h i s b a c k i n d i c a t e d that h e w a s s t r u c k f r o m the r i g h t side of his back. F r o m t h e r i g h t s h o u l d e r and a c r o s s t h e c h e s t and d o w n t o t h e l o w e r o f the f r o n t o f t h e a b d o m e n i m p r e s s i o n s o f b r a n c h e s and l e a v e s w e r e c l e a r l y i m p r i n t e d on the skin, showing l i k e an X - r a y plate how c e r t a i n r a y s of light w e r e i m p e d e d b y t h e b r a n c h e s and f o l i a g e , w h i l s t o t h e r s m a d e the c o n t o u r s of these. T h e r e w e r e t w o d i s t i n c t b r a n c h e s w i t h l e a v e s , o n e o c c u p y i n g the s p a c e b e t w e e n t h e r i g h t i l i a c c r e s t t o n e a r t h e e n s i f o r m c a r t i l a g e and the o t h e r p r o c e e d i n g d o w n o n t h e l e f t s i d e f r o m t h e s t o m a c h t o the l e f t i l i a c crest. T o m y mind i t would appear a s i f t h e s e w e r e implanted w h i l e the man w a s falling back with a flash c o m i n g o v e r the right shoulder. T h e p a t t e r n o f b r a n c h e s and f o l i a g e i s u s u a l l y e x p l a i n e d i n t e r m s o f t h e n o r m a l dendritic pattern c r e a t e d by lightning on other e l e c t r i c a l discharges in various media. (See G L L - 0 0 8 )

GLL-023

EFFECT OF LIGHTNING ON THE HUMAN BODY

v o n S z a l a y - U j f a l u s s y , L a d i s l a u s ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 4 7 : 7 2 9 , O c t o b e r 1919. r A b s t r a c t e d f r o m M e t e o r o l o g i s c h e Z e i t s c h r i f t , J u l y - A u g u s t , 1918, v o l . 3 5 , p p . 192-194] T h o s e w h o a r e k i l l e d b y l i g h t n i n g a l w a y s h a v e m a r k s upon t h e i r b o d i e s . A photograph of a d e n d r i t i c pattern on a w o m a n ' s back is r e p r o d u c e d . Where m a r k s a r e l a c k i n g , there is s o m e question as to whether they w e r e actually k i l l e d b y t h e l i g h t n i n g o r b y the sudden s h o c k , w h i c h w o u l d r e s u l t i n h e a r t f a i l u r e or f a i l u r e of other o r g a n s to continue to function. I t i s a l s o t r u e that i n such c a s e s t h e v i c t i m s a r e g e n e r a l l y found l y i n g o n t h e i r b a c k s . This t e n d s t o g i v e w e i g h t t o the a r g u m e n t that t h e i r e y e s w e r e d i r e c t e d s o a s t o s e e the l i g h t n i n g , and thus t o c a u s e t h e f a l l i n g b a c k w a r d . T h e author s t r o n g l y c o n t e n d s that t h e p s y c h o l o g i c a l e l e m e n t h a s a l a r g e i n f l u e n c e o n the f a t a l i t y o f the s t r o k e , c i t i n g t h e c a s e s w h e r e s m a l l c h i l d r e n w e r e u n i n j u r e d , although t h e m o t h e r w h o h e l d t h e m i n h e r a r m s w a s k i l l e d ; and, a l s o , t h e f a c t that sleeping or drunken people are l e s s frequently v i c t i m s of lightning.

GLL-024

LIGHTNING FROM A CLOUDLESS SKY
2 8 : 4 8 9 , D e c e m b e r 1900.

Ashcraft, C h a r l e s E . , Jr. ; Monthly Weather R e v i e w ,

T h e p h e n o m e n o n o f l i g h t n i n g f r o m a c l o u d l e s s sky s e e m s t o b e r e g a r d e d i n the S t a t e s a s o n e o f v e r y r a r e o c c u r r e n c e , a s i t v e r y l i k e l y i s . I cannot r e m e m b e r o f e v e r o b s e r v i n g i t w h i l e i n t h e S t a t e s , but d o w n h e r e i n t h e W e s t I n d i e s i t i s o f v e r y f r e q u e n t o c c u r r e n c e , s o f r e q u e n t i n fact that i t i s not r e g a r d e d a s r e m a r k a b l e b y the p e o p l e . When first I saw this phenomenon a f t e r a r r i v i n g i n t h e t r o p i c s i t c a u s e d m e c o n s i d e r a b l e w o n d e r , and I w a s a l s o i n doubt a s t o w h e t h e r i t w a s r e a l l i g h t n i n g o r not. So I made inquiries a m o n g the r e s i d e n t s and found t o m y s u r p r i s e that i t o c c a s i o n e d n o w o n d e r

Gl-125

V

GLL-025

LIGHTNING

t o t h e m , and t h e y e v i d e n t l y f a i l e d t o u n d e r s t a n d w h y i t should t o m e . Subsequently I h a v e o b s e r v e d i t n u m e r o u s t i m e s t i l l f i n a l l y the n o v e l t y h a s w o r n off, and I , l i k e t h e r e s i d e n t s , a c c e p t i t n o w a s o n l y a n o r d i n a r y o c c u r r e n c e . H o w e v e r , I b e l i e v e t h i s l e t t e r i s j u s t i f i e d , i n a s m u c h a s the p h e n o m e n o n i s r a r e i n the States and any i n f o r m a t i o n r e l a t e d t h e r e t o m a y b e w e l c o m e . T h e a p p e a r a n c e o f the f l a s h i s that o f s h e e t l i g h t n i n g , g e n e r a l l y s i n g l e f l a s h e s b e i n g s e e n a t i n t e r v a l s o f f r o m t w o t o f i v e m i n u t e s , and a g a i n o n l y two or three occasional flashes will be seen during an evening. They do not s e e m t o b e c o n f i n e d t o any p a r t i c u l a r q u a r t e r o f t h e sky f o r l o c a l r e a s o n s , as I h a v e o b s e r v e d t h e m in all q u a r t e r s . I d o not think f l a s h e s a r e due t o f a l l i n g m e t e o r s , but t h e y m a y b e t h e r e f l e c t e d f l a s h e s o f distant t h u n d e r s t o r m s , although a c l e a r sky c e r t a i n l y d o e s not o f f e r s o g o o d a r e flecting surface as a clouded one. H o w e v e r , I a m i n c l i n e d t o b e l i e v e that the t h e o r y o f the e x c h a n g e o f e l e c t r i c i t i e s b e t w e e n v e r t i c a l c u r r e n t s o f a i r i s a v e r y p l a u s i b l e e x p l a n a t i o n f o r the f o l l o w i n g r e a s o n s : I n the f i r s t p l a c e the p h e n o m e n o n h a s a l w a y s b e e n o b s e r v e d i n the e v e n i n g , u s u a l l y b e t w e e n 7 and 9 p . m . , n e v e r b e f o r e 7 , I b e l i e v e , but s e v e r a l t i m e s a f t e r 9 o ' c l o c k . A s this latitude i s f r e e f r o m the disturbing e f f e c t s o f e v e r - p a s s i n g a r e a s o f high and l o w p r e s s u r e , t h e d i u r n a l p h a s e s o f the w e a t h e r a r e t h e r e f o r e v e r y constant and m u c h a l i k e f r o m d a y t o d a y . S o that o r d i n a r i l y b e t w e e n 7 and 9 p . m . the t e m p e r a t u r e f a l l s , c o o l b r e e z e s s p r i n g u p , a r a p i d c l e a r i n g c o n d i t i o n s e t s i n , t h e c l o u d s d i s a p p e a r i n g s o m e t i m e s l i k e m a g i c , and b y 9 p . m . the sky i s u s u a l l y c l e a r . N o w , i t i s a l w a y s a t t h i s t i m e w h e n the c o l d e r c u r r e n t s o f a i r a r e d e s c e n d i n g , c a u s i n g the c o o l b r e e z e s and c l e a r i n g c o n d i t i o n and s e t t i n g u p a v e r t i c a l c i r c u l a t i o n w i t h s t e e p g r a d i e n t s , that the lightning is seen. S o m e t i m e s the sky i s not a b s o l u t e l y c l e a r , a f e w c l o u d s n e a r l y a l w a y s h a n g i n g o v e r the m o u n t a i n s t o the e a s t o f s t a t i o n , but the l i g h t n i n g w i l l b e s e e n f a r out t o s e a , p e r h a p s , t o t h e w e s t w a r d , w h e r e not the l e a s t v e s t i g e o f c l o u d i s v i s i b l e . T h e n i t i s about t h i s t i m e i n the e v e n i n g that the m a x i m u m e l e c t r i f i c a t i o n o f the a i r o c c u r s , and i n v i e w o f the f a c t that the l i g h t n i n g a l w a y s o c c u r s a t the o n e t i m e , i s i t not p r o b a b l e that t h e e x c h a n g e o f e l e c t r i c i t i e s b e t w e e n the d e s c e n d i n g and a s c e n d i n g c u r r e n t s h a v i n g d i f f e r e n t t e m p e r a t u r e s and h u m i d i t i e s , and t h e r e f o r e d i f f e r e n t e l e c t r i c a l p o t e n t i a l s , i s the c a u s e t h e r e o f . I m a y add that t h e s e l i g h t n i n g f l a s h e s h a v e b e e n o b s e r v e d m o r e f r e q u e n t l y d u r i n g the h u r r i c a n e s e a s o n , but just what w e a t h e r c o n d i t i o n s p r e v a i l e d o n the d a t e s o f o c c u r r e n c e I a m u n a b l e t o s a y , a s I f a i l e d t o m a k e n o t e o f the dates. F u r t h e r m o r e , the p h e n o m e n o n c a n not b e p e c u l i a r t o the r e g i o n o f Dominica alone, as I have talked to a number of p e r s o n s who have l i v e d long i n t r o p i c a l p a r t s , and they a r e a l l a g r e e d that l i g h t n i n g f r o m a c l e a r sky i s no u n c o m m o n thing.

GLL-025

LIGHTNING FROM A CLOUDLESS SKY

P a g u e , B . S . ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 2 8 : 4 2 9 - 4 3 0 , O c t o b e r 1900. I w a s m u c h i n t e r e s t e d i n the r e p o r t o f J . N . W e e d , o f N e w b u r g , N . Y . , c o n c e r n i n g l i g h t n i n g f r o m a c l o u d l e s s sky and the c o m m e n t s t h e r e o n , a s p u b l i s h e d o n P a g e s 292 and 293 o f the M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w f o r July, 1900. A f e w h o u r s a f t e r r e a d i n g the r e p o r t and the c o m m e n t s I had the o p p o r t u n i t y to o b s e r v e lightning f r o m a cloudless sky. The circumstances w e r e as f o l l o w s : O n O c t o b e r 4 , 1900, t h e w e a t h e r m a p s h o w e d c o n d i t i o n s s o m e w h a t

Gl-126

LIGHTNING

GLL-026

f a v o r a b l e f o r t h u n d e r s t o r m s o v e r the g r e a t e r p o r t i o n o f upper and l o w e r M i c h i g a n and o v e r the surrounding r e g i o n ; the l o c a l f o r e c a s t f o r D e t r o i t w a s f o r f a i r w e a t h e r ; during the afternoon o f O c t o b e r 4 , o w i n g t o d a r k a p p e a r i n g clouds in the southwest, it l o o k e d as though a t h u n d e r s h o w e r might o c c u r i n this v i c i n i t y b e f o r e m i d n i g h t . T h e c l o u d s kept w e l l t o the south and w e r e of the cumulus f o r m . About 5 o ' c l o c k r a i n apparently w a s f a l l i n g o v e r in Canada about 10 m i l e s south and southeast of t h i s station. As sunset approached the c l o u d s d i s a p p e a r e d f r o m the h o r i z o n , e x c e p t on the south and southeast s i d e s . About 7:45 p. m. ( l o c a l , sun t i m e ) I started on a b i c y c l e , r i d i n g out W o o d w a r d A v e n u e , w h i c h i s i n a straight l i n e n o r t h w e s t w a r d f r o m the thunder and lightning then p r e v a i l i n g o v e r i n Canada. After r i d i n g about t h i r t y minutes, and b e i n g then about 15 m i l e s f r o m w h e r e the thunderstorm was in p r o g r e s s , I o b s e r v e d flashes of lightning. The evening w a s n e a r l y c a l m , the t e m p e r a t u r e v e r y p l e a s a n t , and not a cloud w a s o b s e r v e d in the s k y . A f t e r r i d i n g about t w o m i l e s ' m o r e I dismounted and l o o k e d c a r e f u l l y f o r clouds, but none w e r e v i s i b l e . Lightning w a s v e r y d i s tinct in the south and east; w i t h my back to the p l a c e w h e n c e I k n e w the lightning c a m e , I could s e e o v e r h e a d f l a s h e s of lightning, in the f o r m of sheets, w h i c h , l i k e M r . W e e d , I would c h a r a c t e r i z e a s o f r a t h e r d e l i c a t e t y p e . It continued and i n c r e a s e d , w a x i n g and waning. T h e lightning o c c u r r e d at frequent i n t e r v a l s a l l along the h o r i z o n f r o m the south to the southeast, with f l a s h e s o v e r h e a d . Returning to my r e s i d e n c e I w a s then facing and r i d i n g t o w a r d the h o r i z o n w h e n c e c a m e the distant f l a s h e s ; a f t e r r i d i n g about four m i l e s I w a s in a p o s i t i o n to s e e what a p p e a r e d to be a l o n g s t r e a k of clouds extending f r o m the main body n o r t h w e s t w a r d ; f r o m this extended cloud the l i g h t n i n g a p p e a r e d t o c o m e . T h e e x p e r i e n c e o f M r . W e e d w a s the s a m e a s m i n e , with this d i f f e r e n c e , I knew a t h u n d e r s t o r m w a s p r e v a i l i n g beyond my night h o r i z o n and he did not. It is w e l l known that the night h o r i z o n of an o b s e r v e r is much l e s s than it is in day t i m e , and this I think accounts f o r the lightning f r o m a c l o u d l e s s sky as w e l l as f o r r a i n f r o m a c l o u d l e s s sky, both phenomena b e i n g r e p o r t e d , as a r u l e , as h a v i n g b e e n o b s e r v e d at night.

GLL-026

LIGHTNING FROM A CLOUDLESS SKY

A n o n y m o u s ; Monthly W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 28:292-293, July 1900. At 7:30 p . m . [August 3, 1899] t h e r e w a s a l i g h t wind in this l o c a l i t y [ N e w b u r g , N . Y . ] f r o m the n o r t h w e s t , m e r e b r e a t h i n g s . A t about 9 p . m . t h e r e c a m e a sudden gust of wind, l a s t i n g but the f r a c t i o n part of a minute, and then, s o m e minutes l a t e r s u c c e e d e d b y another gust o f m o r e f o r c e . , A f t e r this they c a m e m o r e frequently, and soon d e v e l o p e d into a c o l d , gusty, northeast wind, which l a s t e d with v a r i a b l e f o r c e until 1 a. m . , when I r e t i r e d . At that hour the wind was strong but m o r e to the north. Our h o r i z o n in the northeast quadrant i s l o w . I n the southeast, l i m i t e d b y mountain c r e s t s f r o m four to s e v e n m i l e s distant, and ranging f r o m one thousand to s i x t e e n hundred feet h i g h . B e y o n d this h o r i z o n a r e a s u c c e s s i o n of o t h e r mountains hidden f r o m our v i e w , with d e e p v a l l e y s b e t w e e n , including the v a l l e y o f the Hudson River. T h e night w a s c l o u d l e s s until the wind c a m e . Soon a f t e r this a f e w c l o u d l e t s of stratus f o r m e d n e a r the north end of the mountains, say e a s t - n o r t h e a s t , near the h o r i z o n , but d i s a p p e a r e d b e f o r e the

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GLL-027

LIGHTNING

a p p e a r a n c e o f the p h e n o m e n o n I a m about t o m e n t i o n . A t the m o m e n t o f the r i s i n g o f F o m a l h a u t a b o v e the m o u n t a i n s s o u t h e a s t , w e n o t i c e d a g l e a m o f l i g h t n i n g , o f r a t h e r d e l i c a t e t y p e , just t o t h e l e f t o f the s t a r , and b a c k o f t h e m o u n t a i n s . T h e c o n d i t i o n s w e r e such that w e c o u l d h a r d l y b e l i e v e that i t w a s l i g h t n i n g , but i t c o n t i n u e d and i n c r e a s e d , w a x i n g and w a n i n g until w e d i s c o n t i n u e d o b s e r v a t i o n s a t 1 a . m . It s e e m e d to me that i t c h a n g e d i n t e n s i t y w i t h the w i n d . T h e lightning o c c u r r e d at frequent i n t e r v a l s a l l a l o n g t h e h o r i z o n f r o m the p o i n t o f o r i g i n t o n e a r t h e e a s t p o i n t , and w a s u n d o u b t e d l y t r u e l i g h t n i n g . T h i s i s the f i r s t t i m e I e v e r s a w l i g h t n i n g i n a c l o u d l e s s s k y , and i t o c c u r r e d t o m e that i t m i g h t b e o f i n t e r e s t t o the W e a t h e r B u r e a u t o q u e s t i o n t h e i r o b s e r v e r s about i t , a s such p h e n o m e n a a r e r a r e . M y f i r s t i m p r e s s i o n w a s that i t w a s the r e f l e c t i o n f r o m a d i s t a n t t h u n d e r s t o r m , a s the l i g h t n i n g s e e m e d a l w a y s b e y o n d the m o u n t a i n s and t h e p l a c e o f o r i g i n b e l o w the c r e s t l i n e . O n i n q u i r y o f s o m e f r i e n d s w h o w e r e a t H e m s t e a d , L . I . , that e v e n i n g , t h e y i n f o r m e d m e that the night t h e r e w a s c l o u d l e s s , and that a t o n e t i m e l i g h t n i n g o c c u r r e d , a s t h e y then thought, but l a t e r c o n c l u d e d i t w a s p r o d u c e d b y a f a l l i n g m e t e o r o f the A u g u s t s t r e a m , m a n y o f w h i c h w e r e v i s i b l e that night t h e r e a s w e l l a s h e r e . This information seems to exclude the t h u n d e r s t o r m t h e o r y . I t s e e m e d t o m e p o s s i b l e that the c o l d , g u s t y w i n d c u r r e n t s f a l l i n g a t a s t e e p g r a d i e n t , a s s h o w n b y the g u s t y t y p e o f the w i n d , m i g h t e x c h a n g e e l e c t r i c i t i e s w i t h the w a r m e r s u r f a c e a i r f o r c e d u p w a r d , and thus e x p l a i n the p h e n o m e n o n . T h e c h a r a c t e r o f the t o p o g r a p h y w o u l d s e e m f a v o r a b l e , u n d e r such c o n d i t i o n s , t o the f o r m a t i o n o f c o n v e c t i o n c u r r e n t s with steep g r a d i e n t s . O n T u e s d a y , A u g u s t 7 , about 5 p . m . a c c o r d i n g t o a n e w s d i s p a t c h f r o m R i c h m o n d , V a . , l i g h t n i n g f r o m a n a p p a r e n t l y c l e a r s k y , without w a r n i n g , s t r u c k M r . W . R . W h i t e and a c o l o r e d f a r m hand n e a r C o l d h a r b o r , H a n o v e r County, w h i l e b o t h w e r e w o r k i n g i n the o p e n f i e l d . T h e w e a t h e r m a p g i v e s n o i n d i c a t i o n o f any t h u n d e r s t o r m o r r a i n i n t h i s n e i g h b o r h o o d a t that t i m e ; a n a r e a o f h i g h p r e s s u r e p r e v a i l e d , w i t h v e r y hot a t m o s p h e r e n e a r the g r o u n d . D u r i n g the s u b s e q u e n t night i t w a s c l o u d l e s s throughout t h i s r e g i o n ; a c o o l n o r t h w e s t e r l y w i n d s p r a n g up. The circumstances a r e p a r a l l e l to those attending the s m a l l lightning flashes seen at N e w b u r g , e x c e p t that the l a t t e r o c c u r r e d a t n i g h t - t i m e . I n both c a s e s a c o o l b r e e z e s u c c e e d e d t o a hot d a y , w h e n c e w e i n f e r that a v e r t i c a l c i r c u lation of air was in p r o g r e s s . O r d i n a r i l y w e think o f the l i g h t n i n g that attends a t h u n d e r s t o r m a s b e i n g i n s o m e w a y the r e s u l t o f the f o r m a t i o n o f c l o u d and r a i n o r h a i l , but the f r e q u e n t r e p o r t s o f l i g h t n i n g f r o m a p e r f e c t l y c l e a r s k y s e e m t o s u g g e s t that the a s c e n t and d e s c e n t o f the c u r r e n t s o f a i r i s the i m p o r t a n t f e a t u r e i n both c a s e s . See a reply by B. S. Pague in G L L - 0 2 5 .

GLL-027

LIGHTNING PHENOMENON

A n o n y m o u s ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 31:534, N o v e m b e r 1903. T h e f o l l o w i n g f r o m the C l e v e l a n d L e a d e r i s k i n d l y c o m m u n i c a t e d b y F a t h e r O d e n b a c h o f I g n a t i u s C o l l e g e i n that c i t y : Geneva, Ohio, N o v e m b e r 19.— A phenomenon w a s seen in Unionville between

Gl-128

LIGHTNING

GLL-029

5 and 6 o ' c l o c k y e s t e r d a y a f t e r n o o n , d u r i n g t h e s n o w s t o r m . T h e r e w a s a f l a s h o f l i g h t n i n g , s e e m i n g t o e m a n a t e f r o m t h e s n o w i t s e l f and i l l u m i n a t i n g s u r r o u n d i n g b u i l d i n g s and o b j e c t s q u i t e b r i g h t l y . I t c o n s i s t e d o f t w o a l m o s t s i m u l t a n e o u s , f l a s h e s , o n e s t r o n g e r than t h e o t h e r , and o f a p u r p l e and m i l k y - w h i t e c o l o r . They w e r e f o l l o w e d b y a faint r o l l o f thunder l i k e t h e a p p r o a c h o f a d i s t a n t s t o r m . Such a f r e a k o f nature w a s known t o o c c u r d u r i n g a s n o w s t o r m t w e n t y y e a r s o r m o r e ago.

GLL-028

NOTABLE LIGHTNING

A n o n y m o u s ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 28: 2 9 0 - 2 9 1 , July 1900. I n c o n n e c t i o n w i t h the p r e c e d i n g n o t e M r . H e i s k e l l , o f t h e W e a t h e r Bureau, sends the following d e s c r i p t i o n of t w o interesting c a s e s of lightning: D u r i n g the e v e n i n g o f Sunday, A u g u s t 26, 1900, w h i l e n e a r G a p l a n d , M d . o n t h e e a s t s l o p e o f the B l u e R i d g e M o u n t a i n s (12 m i l e s north o f W e v e r t o n ) I s a w a m o s t beautiful d i s p l a y of l i g h t n i n g without t h u n d e r . The flashes appeared in the southwest c o r n e r of the v a l l e y known as M i d d l e t o w n V a l l e y , f o l l o w e d t h e P o t o m a c R i v e r and m o u n t a i n s o n t h e V i r g i n i a s i d e , then p a s s e d t o the B l u e R i d g e a t W e v e r t o n and f o l l o w e d the m o u n t a i n t o p , m a k i n g a c i r c u i t of at l e a s t 60 m i l e s , this appeared to o c c u r t w i c e , when gradually the f l a s h e s s p r e a d , a s i t w e r e , t o the v a l l e y , i n a p p e a r a n c e r e s e m b l i n g the d i s c h a r g e o f a r o m a n c a n d l e . T h i s m o s t beautiful p h e n o m e n o n l a s t e d f r o m about 7 t o 10:30 p . m , , and when n e a r the h o u s e the l i g h t w a s s o v i v i d that a t t i m e s o n e c o u l d e a s i l y h a v e r e a d a b o o k . A n old r e s i d e n t r e m a r k e d that w h e n e v e r t h e y had such " l i g h t n i n g s t o r m s " i t p u r i f i e d the a i r , and the next d a y w a s a l w a y s b r i g h t and c l e a r . T h i s d i s p l a y o f l i g h t n i n g without thunder r e c a l l s a t h u n d e r s t o r m that o c c u r r e d s e v e r a l y e a r s a g o i n the B l u e R i d g e M o u n t a i n s i n the m o n t h o f July. I w a s o n a t r a i n g o i n g t o E m m i t s b u r g , M d . ; w h e n w e c h a n g e d c a r s a t R o c k y R i d g e , t h e sky w a s h e a v i l y o v e r c a s t w i t h l a r g e c u m u l o - n i m b u s c l o u d s . A s w e m o v e d a l o n g b y the s i d e o f the m o u n t a i n about a m i l e d i s tant, a t e r r i b l e t h u n d e r s t o r m , a c c o m p a n i e d b y h i g h w i n d b u r s t b e f o r e u s . T h e l i g h t n i n g w a s s o v i v i d a s t o b e n e a r l y b l i n d i n g , and a s the s t o r m o r c l o u d s f o l l o w e d t h e m o u n t a i n s the l i g h t n i n g a p p e a r e d t o t h o s e o n t h e t r a i n t o l e a p f r o m p e a k t o p e a k , i n f a c t s e v e r a l p e r s o n s r e m a r k e d "that mountain m u s t b e full o f i r o n . " T h e s t o r m p a s s e d o f f o v e r E m m i t s b u r g and the sun c a m e out a s b r i g h t and hot a s b e f o r e . T h e o c c u r r e n c e o f " t h u n d e r l e s s l i g h t n i n g " i s s o c o m m o n that o n l y a f e w c a s e s have been c o l l e c t e d f o r this Sourcebook. T h e n o t e about l i g h t n i n g l e a p i n g f r o m p e a k t o p e a k r e c a l l s t h e p h e n o m e n o n r e p o r t e d b y E l l s w o r t h Huntington f r o m t h e Euphrates V a l l e y in G L D - 0 2 0 .

GLL-029

[LIGHTNING MELTS EYEGLASSES]

A n o n y m o u s ; T h e F o r t e a n S o c i e t y M a g a z i n e , 1:2, O c t o b e r 1937. Lightning flashed h o r i z o n t a l l y a c r o s s a s t r e e t in the B r o n x (7-10-37) knocking d o w n A l b e r t K u n t z , 22, and c o n t i n u i n g — t o s t r i k e d o w n a man a c r o s s the s t r e e t . T h e m a n s a y s h e i s M a x H a a s , 23, but c a n r e m e m b e r nothing e l s e about h i m s e l f . " H e w a s r i g i d w h e n h e w a s p i c k e d u p . " T h e l e n s e s o f h i s e y e g l a s s e s had m e l t e d in their metal f r a m e s . His wrist-watch was thrown several feet.

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GLL-030
GLL-030

LIGHTNING

A LIGHTNING STROKE FAR FROM THE THUNDERSTORM CLOUD

V . , B . M . ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 54:344, A u g u s t 1926. M r . J. H. A r m i n g t o n sends us f r o m Indianapolis the r e p o r t printed b e l o w , which w a s sent t o h i m b y P r o f . Z . A . M c C a u g h a n , o f B l o o m i n g t o n , Ind. T h e s t r o k e o c c u r r e d about 1 p . m . o n July 23, 1926, i n M o n r o e C o u n t y ; i t k i l l e d t w o children. " I d r o v e t o t h e p l a c e r e f e r r e d t o and m a d e p e r s o n a l i n q u i r y o f p e o p l e w h o w e r e w i t h i n 100 y a r d s o f the p l a c e . T h e sun w a s s h i n i n g , the n e a r e s t c l o u d s e e m e d t o the w i t n e s s e s 2 1/2 o r 3 m i l e s n o r t h ( t o w a r d C l e a r C r e e k and B l o o m ington). T h e y had h e a r d n o t h u n d e r p r e v i o u s t o t h i s s t r o k e and h e a r d o n l y t w o o r t h r e e o f distant thunder a f t e r w a r d . T h e i r sky s t a y e d c l e a r f o r t w o h o u r s afterwards. A t the t i m e o f this s t r o k e w e w e r e having frequent s t r o k e s o f l i g h t n i n g and t h u n d e r h e r e a t B l o o m i n g t o n and w e had 0 . 2 3 i n c h o f r a i n . Three m i l e s s o u t h e a s t o f B l o o m i n g t o n t h e r e w a s a s m a l l t o r n a d o that b r o k e l i m b s o f t r e e s and c a r r i e d a w a y anything s m a l l that w a s l o o s e . The lightning was s e v e r e . W i t n e s s e s n e a r w h e r e the c h i l d r e n w e r e k i l l e d s a y the l i g h t n i n g t r a v e l e d h o r i z o n t a l l y f r o m north t o south. I t p a s s e d t h r e e b u i l d i n g s , m i s s i n g t h e m b y about 100 f e e t , and s t r u c k t h i s l i t t l e h o u s e j u s t a b o v e the t o p o f the c o r n e r foundation p o s t . " T h e striking of lightning, through c l e a r sky, at points somewhat distant f r o m the r e g i o n i m m e d i a t e l y b e n e a t h the s t o r m c l o u d , w h i l e r e l a t i v e l y r a r e , o c c u r s p r o b a b l y m o r e f r e q u e n t l y than i s r e a l i z e d . D u r i n g a t h r e e - y e a r r e s i d e n c e i n e a s t - c e n t r a l F l o r i d a I o b s e r v e d the p h e n o m ena a t l e a s t t h r e e t i m e s . T h e t y p i c a l l o c a l t h u n d e r s t o r m o f the F l o r i d a s u m m e r g r o w s w i t h g r e a t r a p i d i t y , and i s u s u a l l y a n e n t i t y q u i t e u n c o n n e c t e d w i t h s t o r m s o f the s a m e kind that m a y b e d e v e l o p i n g e l s e w h e r e w i t h i n the o b s e r v e r ' s f i e l d o f view. O p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r w a t c h i n g the l i g h t n i n g s t r o k e s f r o m i n d i v i d u a l c l o u d s are therefore excellent. I t i s m y r e c o l l e c t i o n that the d i s t a n c e a l o n g the g r o u n d b e t w e e n a v e r t i c a l d r o p p e d f r o m the e d g e o f the c l o u d and t h e s t r i k i n g p o i n t o f the b o l t w a s o f t h e o r d e r o f the h e i g h t o f the c l o u d b a s e a b o v e g r o u n d . How foreshortening affected this e s t i m a t e is of c o u r s e i m p o s s i b l e to say. But i t i s p r o b a b l y t r u e that the d i s t a n c e s w e r e n e v e r o f t h e o r d e r o f 2 t o 3 m i l e s , a s i n the e x t r a o r d i n a r y c a s e d e s c r i b e d by P r o f e s s o r McCaughan. I n o n e i n s t a n c e (and I think t h i s w a s t r u e o f a l l t h e s e f a r flung b o l t s ) the s p a r k s e e m e d t o l e a v e the c l o u d f r o m a point a t l e a s t h a l f w a y u p f r o m c l o u d b a s e t o s u m m i t , and i n t h i s o n e i n s t a n c e w h i c h I r e c a l l e s p e c i a l l y v i v i d l y i t w a s a b o u t t h r e e q u a r t e r s o f the w a y . T h e f r e q u e n t c a s e s o f l i g h t n i n g without c l o u d s r a i s e the p o s s i b i l i t y that o r d i n a r y l i g h t n i n g , l i k e b a l l l i g h t n i n g , m a y m a t e r i a l i z e out o f "thin a i r . "

Gl-130

M E T E O R - L I K E PHENOMENA
GLM-001 A CATALOGUE OF OBSERVATIONS OF LUMINOUS METEORS

GLM-002

P o w e l l , B a d e n ; R e p o r t o f the B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , 239, 1852. P o w e l l q u o t e s the f o l l o w i n g f r o m a l e t t e r f r o m a D r . B r u i t , r e s i d i n g i n I n d i a . M o d e r n s c i e n c e w o u l d g e n e r a l l y c a l l the c o i n c i d e n c e o f m e t e o r s and t h u n d e r s t o r m s f o r t u i t o u s . " W e h a v e had t h r e e i n s t a n c e s t h i s s e a s o n o f w h a t s e e m s t o h a v e b e e n t h e f a l l of an a e r o l i t e during thunder-storms. O n the 25th o f S e p t e m b e r a v i o l e n t e x p l o s i o n o c c u r r e d i n the a i r a t B o m b a y , f o l l o w e d b y a w i l d r u s h i n g sound o v e r h e a d , h e a r d a t v a r i o u s p o i n t s o v e r a n a r e a o f t h i r t y m i l e s i n l e n g t h and e i g h t i n b r e a d t h , f o l l o w e d b y a s e v e r e c o n c u s s i o n , a s i f a h e a v y b o d y had f a l l e n , just b e f o r e the o c c u r r e n c e o f w h i c h a l a r g e f i r e - b a l l w a s s e e n p l u n g i n g into the s e a . O n t h e 18th o f M a r c h , d u r i n g a v i o l e n t t h u n d e r - s t o r m n e a r Dhutmah i n the n o r t h west p r o v i n c e s , at seven p. m. , a thunderbolt, as it was c a l l e d , w a s seen to f a l l and s t r i k e t h e g r o u n d , g i v i n g out i n the c o u r s e o f the c o n c u s s i o n a c l e a r r i n g i n g sound l i k e t h e c r a c k o f a r i f l e ; t h e r e w a s n o e c h o o r r e v e r b e r a t i o n a t a l l l i k e thunder. I t a p p e a r e d 150 y a r d s f r o m C h o k i , and r e s e m b l e d i n i t s d e s c e n t a huge b a l l of r e d - h o t i r o n w i t h a band of f i r e e s t i m a t e d at about t h i r t y f e e t in length. O n the 30th o f A p r i l , about m i d n i g h t a v i o l e n t e x p l o s i o n w a s h e a r d d u r i n g a s t o r m of w i n d and r a i n at K u r r a c h e e , r e s e m b l i n g the d i s c h a r g e of a v a s t a r t i l l e r y b a t t e r y , and about h a l f a m i n u t e a f t e r w a r d s a m e t e o r , p a r t i a l l y o b s c u r e d b y t h e r a i n , but s t i l l d i s t i n c t and v i s i b l e , w a s s e e n d e s c e n d i n g into the s e a . I t i s n o w w e l l - e s t a b l i s h e d that i n I n d i a a t a l l e v e n t s e a r t h q u a k e s a r e a l m o s t a l w a y s a c c o m p a n i e d b y f u r i o u s s t o r m s o f t h u n d e r , l i g h t n i n g , w i n d and r a i n : i t i s d i f f i c u l t t o t r a c e the c a u s e o f c o i n c i d e n c e s s o r e m a r k a b l e i n the c o m m o t i o n s o f t h e e a r t h and a i r , s t i l l m o r e s o t o i m a g i n e any c o n n e c t i o n w h a t e v e r b e t w i x t t h e p e r t u r b a t i o n s w i t h i n the l i m i t s o f o u r a t m o s p h e r e and the m o v e m e n t s of solid bodies entering it f r o m r e g i o n s beyond its boundaries; yet i t i s s u r e l y p o s s i b l e t o s u p p o s e a t h u n d e r s t o r m p r o p i t i o u s t o the p r e c i p i t a t i o n o n t h e s u r f a c e o f the g r o u n d o f b o d i e s w h i c h m i g h t o t h e r w i s e h a v e p a s s e d o n i n their c a r e e r . " S o m e o f the " m e t e o r s " m e n t i o n e d a b o v e m i g h t w e l l b e b a l l l i g h t n i n g .

GLM-002

YELLOW GLOWING UFO

A l - A n ' , M a r i e c h e n ; F a t e , 14:109-110, June 1961. This purported U F O might actually be m e t e o r i c in o r i g i n . similar reports exit. L i t e r a l l y thousands o f

I t a p p e a r e d f i r s t l i k e a n e n o r m o u s s t a r i n the e a s t , w h e r e n o s t a r o f such m a g n i t u d e c o u l d b e . I s a w i t f i r s t and p o i n t e d i t out t o D a n a l . T h e t h i n g w a s m o v i n g t o w a r d u s and g r o w i n g l a r g e r b y the m o m e n t . Danal s a y s w e s a w i t f o r about f i v e m i n u t e s a s i t m o v e d a c r o s s the s k y . I t w a s l o s t w h e n i t w a s a l m o s t o v e r h e a d ( s l i g h t l y t o the r i g h t ) , a s the l a r g e b u i l d i n g n e x t t o o u r s b l o c k e d the v i e w . T h e o b j e c t w a s a d e f i n i t e y e l l o w i s h l i g h t w h i c h did not t w i n k l e o r p u l s e . I did s e e a w h o l e s e r i e s of light f r a m e s when it was still a little distance f r o m us. D a n a l s a y s h e d i d not s e e t h e s e l i g h t f r a m e s until a f t e r h e had g o n e into the h o u s e and g o t t e n b i n o c u l a r s . D u r i n g t h i s t i m e the o b j e c t had c o m e q u i t e c l o s e , although

Gl-131

GLM-003

M E T E O R - L I K E PHENOMENA

I h a v e n o w a y o f d e t e r m i n i n g its d i s t a n c e f r o m us, i t s altitude, speed o r s i z e . It had no l i g h t s l i k e p l a n e s h a v e , just a g e n e r a l g l o w of y e l l o w i s h l i g h t . Danal and I d i f f e r c o n c e r n i n g the l i g h t f r o m the s e v e r a l f r a m e s f o r m i n g a l o n g band l i k e w i n d o w s in a r a i l c a r . I said t h e y e m i t t e d a bluish w h i t e l i g h t , w h i l e Danal said it w a s a l l y e l l o w . At any r a t e , it made no sound w h a t e v e r , although the night w a s s t i l l and c o l d . N e i t h e r did i t d i s p l a y a t a i l o f l i g h t o r s m o k e . I t w a s m o v i n g i n a n a l m o s t d i r e c t e a s t - w e s t d i r e c t i o n . W e w e r e unable t o m a k e out the shape of the bulk. E v e n a f t e r it had p a s s e d , t h e r e w a s no b a c k w a s h of sound f r o m it. In fact, one had a s t r o n g s e n s e of the utter s t i l l n e s s of the e v e n t . T h i s I h a v e found c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of all the s i g h t i n g s to which I h a v e b e e n party.

GLM-003

THAT BLACKOUT

F u l l e r , C u r t i s ; F a t e , 19:18, M a r c h 1966. T h e f o l l o w i n g i t e m w a s r e p o r t e d b y R o b e r t W a l s h . H e d e s c r i b e s luminous phenomena he saw at the S y r a c u s e , N. Y. , a i r p o r t on N o v e m b e r 9, 1965, just a f t e r the b e g i n n i n g o f the famous N o r t h e a s t blackout, which s o m e c l a i m w a s s t i m u l a t e d b y a U F O . D u r i n g this t i m e " a s t r a n g e thing happened, " W a l s h said l a t e r . "I was sitting on the ground with o t h e r s when we saw a sudden b a l l of f i r e south of u s — t o w a r d T h o m p s o n R o a d and C a r r i e r t r a f f i c c i r c l e . "It a p p e a r e d to be about 100 f e e t in the a i r and 50 f e e t in d i a m e t e r . A l l I could think of w a s a m u s h r o o m e f f e c t . About 10 m i n u t e s l a t e r the g r o u p with ^Valsh saw another b a l l of f i r e w h i c h r e s e m b l e d the f i r s t . " I h a v e y e t t o s e e a n explanation, " h e c o m m e n t e d . A f t e r W a l s h ' s s t o r y was published i n the S y r a c u s e H e r a i d - J o u r n a l , new r e ports began to c o m e in. W e l d o n R o s s , a f l i g h t i n s t r u c t o r and h i s student, J a m e s B r o o k i n g , w e r e aloft when the l i g h t s went out. A f e w minutes l a t e r they s a w "a b a l l o f o r a n g e - r e d d i s h f i r e which f l a r e d u p b i g g e r than a house f i r e . W e w e r e o v e r the high l i n e w h i c h runs f r o m C l a y t o N i a g r a F a l l s when w e s a w the f i r e flash. It l o o k e d l i k e a b a r n f i r e — a b a r n full of hay and l a s t e d f o r p e r h a p s 10 seconds," Ross said. T o m D o x s e e of 27 M a r i e D r . , Town of Manlius, near Syracuse, an insurance man, r e p o r t e d s e e i n g a b a l l o f f i r e s o m e t i m e w i t h i n a n hour o f the t i m e the l i g h t s went out. A w o m a n n e i g h b o r of D o x s e e told h i m she s a w a b r i g h t y e l l o w o b j e c t , o v a l - s h a p e d r a t h e r than round, which stood o n end. M r s . E v e r e t t B . J o n e s , o f C a m i l l u s , N . Y . , r e p o r t e d s e e i n g a "huge b a l l o f f i r e " h a n g i n g o v e r C a m i l l u s P l a z a on Route 5 s h o r t l y a f t e r the l i g h t s went out. She told r e p o r t e r s R i c h a r d G. C a s e and Joseph V. G a n l e y that she watched the huge o r a n g e b a l l sink b e l o w E a s t H i l l just outside C a m i l l u s .

GLM-004

THOSE FLYING SAUCERS

W y l i e , C. C. ; S c i e n c e , 118:125-127, July 31, 1953. (Quotations b e l o w with p e r m i s s i o n o f the A m e r i c a n A s s o c i a t i o n f o r the A d v a n c e m e n t o f S c i e n c e . ) T h e t w o t h e m e s o f this l e t t e r a r e : ( 1 ) all U F O s can b e e x p l a i n e d a s m i s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s

Gl-132

M E T E O R - L I K E PHENOMENA

GLM-004

o f c o m m o n o b j e c t s , p a r t i c u l a r l y s p e c u l a r r e f l e c t i o n s o f sunlight f r o m a i r c r a f t and the l i g h t b r e a s t s of h a w k s ; and ( 2) the g r e a t m e t e o r p r o c e s s i o n of 1913 w a s r e a l l y o n l y a single, l a r g e f i r e b a l l accompanied by shooting stars. W y l i e , a m e t e o r s p e c i a l i s t , c l a i m s that the o n l y " s a u c e r s " r e p o r t e d by p e o p l e a r e simply spots of r e f l e c t e d light. His reasoning goes as follows: T h e fact that I r e c e i v e s c o r e s , e v e n h u n d r e d s o f r e p o r t s o n a b r i g h t m e t e o r , but o n l y o n e on a s a u c e r , s h o w s in i t s e l f that the s a u c e r s a r e not s p a c e s h i p s , e n e m y p r o j e c t i l e s , o r s e c r e t w e a p o n s , but only s p o t s o f r e f l e c t e d l i g h t s e e n f r o m the c r i t i c a l a n g l e . R e f r a c t i o n p l a y s a r o l e , t o o , a s i n the f o l l o w i n g i n s t a n c e : A n i n t e r e s t i n g r e p o r t f r o m a n a e r o n a u t i c a l e n g i n e e r w a s that t w o h a z y s t a r s , one a b o v e the o t h e r , m o v e d a c r o s s t h e n o r t h e r n sky f r o m w e s t t o e a s t . This was e v i d e n t l y a m i r a g e e f f e c t , t h e r e f l e c t i o n i n the s k y , f r o m a r a t h e r s h a r p t e m p e r a t u r e i n v e r s i o n l a y e r , o f the l i g h t s o f a c a r w h i c h c o u l d not b e s e e n d i r e c t l y . A n o t h e r r e p o r t , but f r o m a m o r e i m a g i n a t i v e p e r s o n , w a s that a b r i g h t l y l i g h t e d ship a p p e a r e d b r i e f l y i n t h e s k y . T h i s m a y h a v e b e e n the i n v e r t e d r e f l e c t i o n o f a bus w i t h the i n t e r i o r l i g h t s t u r n e d o n m o m e n t a r i l y . Occasionally, on c l e a r moonl e s s nights, when a c o l d front is m o v i n g in, highway p a t r o l m e n r e p o r t s e e i n g what t h e y c a l l " g o o f l i g h t s . " T h e s e a r e h a z y s p o t s o f l i g h t that m o v e a c r o s s the sky w i t h a n u n d u l a t o r y m o t i o n . The goof lights are presumably mirage reflections f r o m a wavy inversion l a y e r , or l a y e r of light haze. The " g o o f l i g h t s " a r e t e r m e d "nocturnal l i g h t s " i n this Sourcebook, T h e d e f l a t i o n o f the F e b r u a r y 9 , Subsection G L N .

1913 m e t e o r p r o c e s s i o n i s a c c o m p l i s h e d a s f o l l o w s :

To show the e x a g g e r a t i o n p o s s i b l e in an apparently well-authenticated s t o r y , c o n s i d e r the s t o r y o f the f i r e b a l l s w h i c h a p p e a r e d o v e r the R e g i n a a r e a o f S a s k a t c h e w a n , C a n a d a , on t h e e v e n i n g of F e b r u a r y 9, 1913, and m o v e d s o u t h e a s t w a r d a c r o s s C a n a d a and the U n i t e d States p a s s i n g n e a r l y o v e r W i n n i p e g , T o r o n t o , and o t h e r i m p o r t a n t c i t i e s i n c l u d i n g N e w Y o r k C i t y , t h r i l l i n g and s t a r t l i n g thousands o f p e r s o n s i n the U n i t e d S t a t e s and C a n a d a . T h i s s t o r y has b e e n f e a t u r e d i n s e v e r a l r e c e n t m a g a z i n e a r t i c l e s , f o r e x a m p l e , g i v i n g the n u m b e r o f f i r e b a l l s p a s s i n g a l o n g that path as 200 t o .400 ( C o r o n e t , X X X I I I , N o . 5, 131-132 [19531) and s t a t i n g that i f the f i r e b a l l s had c o m e t o e a r t h e a r l i e r , i n s t e a d o f p l u n g i n g i n t o the A t l a n t i c O c e a n , t h e y would h a v e s p r e a d f i r e and f l a m e o v e r the d e n s e l y p o p u l a t e d a r e a b e t w e e n N e w Y o r k C i t y and P h i l a d e l p h i a . T h e o r i g i n a l r e p o r t s a r e a v a i l a b l e o n this d i s p l a y and they s h o w that o n l y one r e a l f i r e b a l l a p p e a r e d a l o n g that path o v e r N o r t h A m e r i c a a t that t i m e . The f i r e b a l l w a s not v e r y l a r g e , a s i t d i s i n t e g r a t e d a t a h e i g h t o f t w e n t y - f i v e m i l e s n e a r Hamilton, Ontario. T h i s f i r e b a l l and a s s o c i a t e d s h o o t i n g s t a r s a t t r a c t e d c o n s i d e r a b l e a t t e n t i o n i n the T o r o n t o a r e a o f C a n a d a , but t h e y w e r e not t r a v e l l i n g h o r i zontally. T h e y w e r e f a l l i n g d o w n w a r d a t a n a n g l e o f t w e n t y d e g r e e s , and t h e y w e r e not t r a v e l l i n g i n the d i r e c t i o n o f N e w Y o r k C i t y . The horizontal motion was i n the g e n e r a l d i r e c t i o n o f W a s h i n g t o n , D . C . , r a t h e r than t o w a r d N e w Y o r k C i t y . O b v i o u s l y what r e a l l y happened w a s a s h o w e r o f s h o o t i n g s t a r s w h i c h w a s e x c e p t i o n a l l y g o o d i n the T o r o n t o a r e a , but a t t r a c t e d r e l a t i v e l y l i t t l e attention e l s e where. T h e o n l y r e p o r t f r o m the d e n s e l y p o p u l a t e d N e w Y o r k C i t y a r e a w a s f r o m a l a d y w h o w a t c h e d the sky f o r a w h i l e and c o u n t e d s e v e n s h o o t i n g s t a r s . The p o p u l a r s t o r y i s i m p o s s i b l e , o f c o u r s e ; and i t i s e v i d e n t that a n e x c e l l e n t but unp r e d i c t e d s h o w e r o f s h o o t i n g s t a r s has b e e n " b l o w n u p " into a m a r v e l o u s p r o -

Gl-133

GLM-005

M E T E O R - L I K E PHENOMENA

cession of fireballs. O t h e r s c i e n t i s t s d i s a g r e e w i t h W y l i e o n t h i s g r e a t p h e n o m e n o n ( G L M - 0 0 6 and G L M 011). F r a n k E d w a r d s , a p o p u l a r w r i t e r , adds that s t r a n g e , d a r k o b j e c t s p a s s e d o v e r T o r o n t o the n e x t d a y . ( G L M - 0 1 5 )

GLM-005

[BALLOON-SHAPED METEOR]

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 4:169, A p r i l 27, 1871. On February 4, an extraordinary m e t e o r was seen at Pichieani in P e r u . I t w a s b a l l o o n - s h a p e d , w i t h the p o i n t e d end t o w a r d s the e a r t h , and r e d - c o l o u r e d I t d e s c e n d e d r a p i d l y t o the e a r t h , and i t s d e s c e n t w a s attended b y a n e x p l o s i o n , l e a v i n g a dense cloud o v e r the p l a c e . I t i n j u r e d the r o o f s o f s e v e r a l huts, and k n o c k e d d o w n a f e n c e f o r about 500 y a r d s . O n the s p o t , i t i s r e p o r t e d s e v e r a l d e a d f i s h w e r e found o f d i f f e r e n t s p e c i e s , w h i c h a r e s u p p o s e d t o h a v e b e e n l i f t e d out o f the r i v e r , and d a s h e d a g a i n s t t h e s t o n e s . S i m i l a r events happened n e a r H u a n o c h u l l o and A t u c a c h i . The identical note appeared in Nature, 3:512.

GLM-006

THE GREAT FIREBALL PROCESSION OF 1913

M e b a n e , A l e x a n d e r D. ; S c i e n c e , 118:725-726, D e c e m b e r 11, 1953. I n C . C . W y l i e ' s account o f the " g r e a t f i r e b a l l p r o c e s s i o n " o f 1913 [ G L M - 0 0 4 ] , i t i s p e r h a p s not m a d e s u f f i c i e n t l y c l e a r that t h i s d e s c r i p t i o n o f t h e p h e n o m e n o n d i f f e r s c o n s i d e r a b l y f r o m that w h i c h h a s p r e v i o u s l y a p p e a r e d i n the a s t r o n o m i c a l l i t e r a t u r e . T h e v e r s i o n o f the e v e n t s o s e v e r e l y c r i t i c i z e d b y P r o f e s s o r W y l i e i s not ( a s r e a d e r s o f h i s a r t i c l e m i g h t tend t o a s s u m e ) a p o s t - f a c t u m " p o p u l a r " a c c r e t i o n , but i s that p r e s e n t e d i n the o r i g i n a l r e p o r t o n the o c c u r r e n c e b y C . A . Chant o f T o r o n t o , t h e e d i t o r o f the J o u r n a l o f the R o y a l A s t r o n o m i c a l S o c i e t y o f Canada. Subsequent w r i t e r s o n the e v e n t s a w n o g r o u n d s f o r q u e s t i o n i n g C h a n t ' s t r e a t m e n t , and w e r e e v e n a b l e t o u n e a r t h f u r t h e r d a t a o f a s t r o n g l y c o n f i r m a t o r y character. P r o f e s s o r W y l i e ' s s t a t e m e n t that c l o s e r study r e v e a l s the f a c t s t o h a v e b e e n e n t i r e l y d i f f e r e n t f r o m what t h e s e a s t r o n o m e r s thought t h e m t o b e i s t h e r e f o r e m o r e n o v e l and s u r p r i s i n g than h i s r a t h e r c a s u a l r e f e r e n c e t o the m a t t e r m i g h t l e a d the r e a d e r t o s u p p o s e . What W y l i e i n 1953 c o n f i d e n t l y i d e n t i f i e s a s "an e x c e l l e n t s h o w e r o f s h o o t i n g s t a r s " w a s p o s i t i v e l y s t a t e d b y P i c k e r i n g i n 1922 t o h a v e b e e n " i n n o s e n s e a m e t e o r s h o w e r , but a d i f f e r e n t kind o f e v e n t a l t o g e t h e r . " (GLM-011) I t i s t o b e h o p e d that W y l i e ' s n e w i n t e r p r e t a t i o n w i l l s o o n b e s u p p o r t e d b y a m o r e f o r m a l publication with citation of e v i d e n c e , since at present it must be a c k n o w l e d g e d that i t i s d i f f i c u l t t o c o n n e c t the d e s c r i p t i o n g i v e n b y h i m w i t h t h e o r i g i n a l o b s e r v a t i o n s p u b l i s h e d b y Chant. T h e s e v e r y numerous r e p o r t s unanim o u s l y d e s c r i b e d a unique p r o c e s s i o n , l a s t i n g f o r t h r e e m i n u t e s , o f a g r e a t n u m b e r o f b r i g h t f i r e b a l l s i n c l u s t e r s m o v i n g s l o w l y and s t r i c t l y h o r i z o n t a l l y . W y l i e ' s d e s c r i p t i o n o f the e v e n t a s l o c a l i n c h a r a c t e r i s l i k e w i s e a r e v i s i o n o f the p r e v i o u s l y a c c e p t e d v e r s i o n and i s not e a s y t o r e c o n c i l e w i t h the d a t a . An extraordinary

Gl-134

M E T E O R - L I K E PHENOMENA

GLM-008

f i r e b a l l p r o c e s s i o n m o v i n g f r o m northwest t o southeast w a s seen s u c c e s s i v e l y i n S a s k a t c h e w a n , i n O n t a r i o , o v e r the N o r t h A t l a n t i c , i n B e r m u d a , and f i n a l l y b y a ship i n m i d - A t l a n t i c south o f the E q u a t o r . T h e s e s u c c e s s i v e appearances defined a t r a j e c t o r y ( r o u g h l y a g r e a t c i r c l e ) 5200 m i l e s l o n g . " A v e r y f e w f i r e b a l l s o r s h o o t i n g s t a r s o b s e r v e d i n o t h e r p l a c e s " d o e s not s e e m t o b e a n a d e q u a t e s u m m a r y of this situation. I f i t i s t o b e a r g u e d that t h e s e s u c c e s s i v e a p p e a r a n c e s o f a unique p h e n o m e n o n w e r e due t o m e r e c o i n c i d e n c e , s t r o n g e v i d e n c e w i l l h a v e t o b e adduced. A f u l l y s a t i s f a c t o r y e x p l a n a t i o n of t h i s s p e c t a c u l a r o c c u r r e n c e of 1913 h a s never been achieved. W y l i e ' s proposal to explain it as simply an ordinary event which was m i s i n t e r p r e t e d i s , at least, a fresh approach. H o w e v e r , i t should b e r e c o g n i z e d that the r e c o r d e d e v i d e n c e i s d i f f i c u l t , i f not i m p o s s i b l e , t o r e c o n c i l e with P r o f e s s o r W y l i e ' s description. W y l i e r e p l i e d t o M e b a n e i n the s a m e i s s u e o f S c i e n c e . G e n e r a l l y , h e a t t a c k e d t h e o r i g i n a l o b s e r v a t i o n s a s p h y s i c a l l y i m p o s s i b l e b e c a u s e : ( 1 ) the f i r e b a l l s c o u l d not s u r v i v e 5000 m i l e s ; ( 2 ) none o f the f i r e b a l l s w a s s e e n t o r i s e f r o m o r d r o p b e h i n d o b j e c t s o n t h e h o r i z o n ; ( 3 ) such a p r o c e s s i o n m u s t h a v e b e e n s e e n b y t h e inhabitants o f the b i g U . S . c i t i e s i t must h a v e p a s s e d o v e r .

GLM-007

CURIOUS PHENOMENON DURING THE LATE GALE

J . , A . W . B . ; N a t u r e , 1 7 : 1 0 - 1 1 , N o v e m b e r 1 , 1877. Y o u r correspondent, " G . A . M . " ( v o l . x v i . p . 551), may b e interested t o k n o w that the " b a l l o f f i r e " h e s a w d e s c e n d o n the e v e n i n g o f the 14th i n s t . w a s s e e n h e r e b y m e , and b y t h o s e w h o a c c o m p a n i e d m e , a t p r e c i s e l y the s a m e t i m e ( 6 . 5 0 p . m . ) that h e m e n t i o n s . W e w e r e w a l k i n g i n a s o u t h - e a s t e r l y d i r e c t i o n , and i t s e e m e d t o f a l l f r o m about h a l f - w a y b e t w e e n that p o i n t o f t h e c o m p a s s and the m o o n , w h i c h w a s due south o f u s , and s h i n i n g b r i g h t l y . The ball itself a p p e a r e d t o u s l u m i n o u s w h i t e , w h i l e the " w a k e " l e f t i n i t s p a s s a g e t h r o u g h the a i r , w a s b l u i s h g r e e n . I t w a s v i s i b l e , I should s a y , f o r t w e n t y s e c o n d s . Occurr i n g , a s i t d i d , a t a t i m e w h e n thousands w e r e w e n d i n g t h e i r w a y t o c h u r c h , i t must have been v e r y g e n e r a l l y o b s e r v e d .

GLM-008

[METEOR AND SEVERE STORM]
17:475, A p r i l 4 , 1878.

Anonymous; Nature,

M r . A . O . T h o r l a c i u s , the o b s e r v e r f o r the S c o t t i s h M e t e o r o l o g i c a l S o c i e t y a t S t y k k i s h o l m , i n the n o r t h - w e s t o f I c e l a n d , r e p o r t s the o c c u r r e n c e , o n M a r c h 4 , o f the s e v e r e s t t h u n d e r s t o r m e v e r e x p e r i e n c e d i n that p a r t o f I c e l a n d . T h u n d e r and l i g h t n i n g c o n t i n u e d without i n t e r r u p t i o n f r o m 5 . 3 0 a . m . t o 8 a . m . , a c c o m p a n i e d a t i n t e r v a l s w i t h r a i n and h a i l . F o r the p a s t t h i r t y - t h r e e y e a r s , d u r i n g w h i c h M r . T h o r l a c i u s h a s o b s e r v e d , n e a r l y a l l the t h u n d e r s t o r m s h a v e o c c u r r e d d u r i n g the w i n t e r m o n t h s . A t 7 a . m . a v e r y fine m e t e o r p a s s e d o v e r the v i l l a g e o f S t y k k i s h o l m and e x p l o d e d into i n n u m e r a b l e f r a g m e n t s o v e r the h a r b o u r , u n a c c o m p a n i e d , h o w e v e r , w i t h any a u d i b l e r e p o r t , and s h o r t l y a f t e r a n o t h e r f i n e m e t e o r p a s s e d o v e r the v i l l a g e and d i s a p p e a r e d without b e i n g o b s e r v e d to explode. I t i s added that t h i s i s the f i r s t t i m e such m e t e o r s h a v e

Gl-135

GLM-009

M E T E O R - L I K E PHENOMENA

b e e n o b s e r v e d b y any o n e a t S t y k k i s h o l m . T h e c o i n c i d e n c e o f m e t e o r s and a s e v e r e s t o r m i s t h e p o i n t o f i n t e r e s t h e r e , though n o c o n n e c t i n g p h y s i c a l m e c h a n i s m i s k n o w n . al-

GLM-009

ON THE FACTS OF EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA

M a l l e t , R o b e r t ; R e p o r t o f t h e B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , 130-131, 1854. D e c e m b e r 2 9 , 1820; M o r e a and I o n i a n I s l e s . T h e r e seemed to be three shocks. T h e w e a t h e r had b e e n s t o r m y f o r s o m e d a y s b e f o r e . At 4 1 0 A. M. there w a s an e x t r a o r d i n a r y gust of wind, which suddenly c e a s e d , it b e c a m e c a l m , and s o o n a f t e r t h e e a r t h q u a k e o c c u r r e d . T h e shocks w e r e preceded by a dreadful subterranean bellowing noise. A f t e r the e a r t h q u a k e t h e c l o u d s g r o u p e d t h e m s e l v e s i n t o l a r g e m a s s e s , and d i s c h a r g e d t o r r e n t s o f r a i n , and h a i l o f s u c h a s i z e t h a t s o m e of the stones w e i g h e d ten ounces. O n t h e n i g h t o f t h e 30th t h e r e w a s a n o t h e r terrible storm of rain. T h e wind r e m a i n e d i n the S . E . for t w e n t y - f i v e d a y s a f t e r the e a r t h q u a k e . T h r e e o r four m i n u t e s b e f o r e the f i r s t shock a v e r y l a r g e i g n e o u s m e t e o r (apparently 4 to 6 feet in d i a m e t e r ) w a s o b s e r v e d o v e r the s e a off P o i n t G e r a c a s , and r e m a i n e d v i s i b l e f o r f i v e o r s i x m i n u t e s . O n t h e 30th a l u m i n o u s m e t e o r d e s c r i b e d a v a s t p a r a b o l a o v e r t h e t o w n , and f e l l i n t o t h e s e a
n m

T r u e m e t e o r s d o not r e m a i n v i s i b l e f o r f i v e o r s i x m i n u t e s .

GLM-010

[MASS OF FIRE FALLS INTO SEA]

A n o n y m o u s ; S c i e n c e , 5:242, M a r c h 20, 1885. T h e f o l l o w i n g a c c o u n t o f unusual p h e n o m e n a w a s r e c e i v e d M a r c h 19, a t t h e H y d r o g r a p h i c o f f i c e , W a s h i n g t o n , f r o m t h e b r a n c h o f f i c e i n San F r a n c i s c o . The b a r k I n n e r w i c h , C a p t . W a t e r s , has just a r r i v e d a t V i c t o r i a f r o m Y o k o h a m a . A t m i d n i g h t o f F e b . 24, i n latitude 3 7 ° north, l o n g i t u d e 170° 15' east, the c a p t a i n w a s a r o u s e d b y t h e m a t e , and w e n t o n d e c k t o f i n d t h e s k y c h a n g i n g t o a fiery red. A l l a t o n c e a l a r g e m a s s o f f i r e a p p e a r e d o v e r the v e s s e l , c o m p l e t e l y b l i n d i n g the s p e c t a t o r s ; and, a s i t f e l l i n t o t h e s e a s o m e f i f t y y a r d s t o l e e w a r d , i t c a u s e d a h i s s i n g s o u n d , w h i c h w a s h e a r d a b o v e the b l a s t , and m a d e the v e s s e l q u i v e r f r o m s t e m to stern. H a r d l y had t h i s d i s a p p e a r e d , w h e n a l o w e r i n g m a s s o f w h i t e f o a m w a s s e e n r a p i d l y a p p r o a c h i n g the v e s s e l . The n o i s e f r o m the a d v a n c i n g v o l u m e o f w a t e r i s d e s c r i b e d a s deafening. The bark w a s s t r u c k f l a t a b a c k ; but, b e f o r e t h e r e w a s t i m e t o t o u c h a b r a c e , t h e s a i l s had f i l l e d a g a i n , and t h e r o a r i n g w h i t e s e a had p a s s e d a h e a d . T o i n c r e a s e the h o r r o r o f the situation, another 'vast sheet o f f l a m e ' ran down the m i z z e n - m a s t , and ' p o u r e d i n m y r i a d s o f s p a r k s ' f r o m t h e r i g g i n g . T h e strange redness of the sky r e m a i n e d f o r twenty minutes. T h e m a s t e r , a n o l d and e x p e r i e n c e d m a r i n e r , d e c l a r e s that t h e a w f u l n e s s o f t h e s i g h t w a s b e y o n d d e s c r i p t i o n , and c o n s i d e r s that t h e s h i p had a n a r r o w e s c a p e f r o m d e s t r u c t i o n . I n the a b o v e r e p o r t t h e r e i s a n i n t e r e s t i n g a s s o c i a t i o n b e t w e e n e l e c t r i c d i s c h a r g e p h e n o m e n a and p a s s a g e o f a n a d m i t t e d l y s t r a n g e m e t e o r .

Gl-136

M E T E O R - L I K E PHENOMENA
GLM-011 THE METEORIC PROCESSION OF FEBRUARY 9 1913
f

GLM-011

P i c k e r i n g , W i l l i a m H . ; P o p u l a r A s t r o n o m y , 3 0 : 6 3 2 - 6 3 7 , 1922. T h i s r e m a r k a b l e phenomenon w a s in no sense a m e t e o r i c shower. It w a s a d i f f e r e n t k i n d o f e v e n t a l t o g e t h e r , and w h i l e u n d o u b t e d l y m u c h l e s s s p e c t a c u l a r than a g r e a t s h o w e r , such a s that o f N o v . 1833, w a s i n s o m e r e s p e c t s m o r e i n t e r e s t i n g and i n s t r u c t i v e . I t c o n s i s t e d o f a p r o c e s s i o n o f f i r e b a l l s and m e t e o r s a l l m o v i n g v e r y s l o w l y , i n p r a c t i c a l l y t h e s a m e path a c r o s s the s k y , f r o m h o r i zon to h o r i z o n . It w a s first seen near M o r t l a c h , 65 m i l e s w e s t of Regina, Saskatchewan, lat. 5 0 ° . 5 N . , long. 106° W. It t r a v e r s e d s u c c e s s i v e l y Manitoba, M i n n e s o t a , M i c h i g a n , O n t a r i o , N e w Y o r k , P e n n s y l v a n i a , and N e w J e r s e y a f e w m i l e s t o t h e south o f N e w Y o r k C i t y . I t t h e n w e n t out t o s e a , and a p p e a r e d next i n B e r m u d a , w a s seen f r o m the steamship B e l l u s i a , lat. 17° 35' N . , l o n g . 5 1 ° 1 1 W . , and l a s t f r o m t h e s t e a m e r N e w l a n d s , l a t . 3 ° 2 0 ' S . , l o n g . 32°30* W . T h e d i s t a n c e b e t w e e n the f i r s t and l a s t s t a t i o n s i s 5659 m i l e s . Computation i n d i c a t e s that t h e m e t e o r s t r a v e r s e d s e v e r a l thousand m i l e s m o r e , w h i l e s t i l l w i t h i n t h e l i m i t s o f t h e e a r t h ' s a t m o s p h e r e , thus f o r m i n g p r i o r t o t h e i r f i n a l destruction a s e r i e s of minute t e m p o r a r y t e r r e s t r i a l s a t e l l i t e s .
!

T h e r e a p p e a r , w h e n f i r s t and l a s t s e e n , t o h a v e b e e n s o m e 4 0 t o 6 0 f i r e b a l l s , arranged at first in 4 or 5 separate g r o u p s . S e v e r a l o f t h e s e had l o n g t a i l s . I n p a r t o f t h e r o u t e t h e y w e r e a c c o m p a n i e d b y i n n u m e r a b l e f i n e r p a r t i c l e s that w e r e swept off of t h e m in t h e i r rush through our a t m o s p h e r e . The interval during w h i c h the l a r g e r f i r e b a l l s w e r e v i s i b l e under f a v o r a b l e c i r c u m s t a n c e s s e e m s t o h a v e b e e n f r o m 3 0 t o 4 0 s e c o n d s , and t h e d u r a t i o n o f t h e d i s p l a y about 5 m i n u t e s . I n C a n a d a t h e i r c o l o r w a s u s u a l l y d e s c r i b e d a s y e l l o w o r r e d d i s h , but not w h i t e . G e n e r a l l y t h e y w e r e c o m p a r e d t o b r i g h t s t a r s , s o m e t i m e s t o V e n u s , but i n B e r m u d a the t w o l e a d e r s l o o k e d l i k e l a r g e a r c l i g h t s , slightly v i o l e t i n c o l o r and o f d i a m e t e r e q u a l t o t h e m o o n . T h e i r true angular d i a m e t e r w a s of c o u r s e m u c h l e s s than t h i s . An incandescent steel globule 0. 2 inches in d i a m e t e r , at a d i s t a n c e o f o n e h a l f m i l e w a s found b y P r o f e s s o r I . L . S m i t h i n 1857 t o a p p e a r o f t h e m o o n ' s d i a m e t e r ( J o u r . R . A . S . C a n a d a , 1914, 8 , 1 0 9 ) . T h i s w o u l d c o r r e s p o n d t o a d i a m e t e r o f 2 4 f e e t . I t t h e r e f o r e a p p e a r e d 1400 t i m e s i t s t r u e s i z e . If the m e t e o r s w e r e at a d i s t a n c e of 70 m i l e s f r o m B e r m u d a , this would i n d i c a t e that the d i a m e t e r o f t h e t w o l e a d e r s w a s about 2 8 i n c h e s . A v e r y full d e s c r i p t i o n o f t h e m , w i t h a c o m p u t a t i o n o f t h e i r path, and e s t i m a t e s o f t h e i r h e i g h t , s p e e d , and s i z e i s g i v e n b y P r o f e s s o r Chant i n t h e J o u r n . R. A. S. C a n a d a 1913, 7, 145 ( S e e a l s o 404, 438; 8, 108, 112; 9, 2 8 7 , and 10, 294). T h e l a s t t w o p a p e r s a r e b y M r . D e n n i n g , and a r e p a r t i c u l a r l y v a l u a b l e as g i v i n g the data of the t w o o b s e r v a t i o n s m a d e at s e a . T h e s e w e r e not a v a i l a b l e w h e n P r o f e s s o r Chant m a d e h i s c a l c u l a t i o n s , and t h e y not o n l y p e r m i t u s t o c o r r e c t t h e m , but t h e y s e r v e t o g i v e u s m u c h m o r e d e f i n i t e i n f o r m a t i o n r e g a r d i n g t h e h e i g h t , s p e e d , and s i z e o f t h e m e t e o r s , r e g a r d i n g w h i c h h i s p a p e r l e f t u s i n c o n s i d e r a b l e doubt. T h e path o f t h e m e t e o r s a c r o s s t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s w a s about a s l o n g a s i t w a s i n C a n a d a , and t h e y must h a v e b e e n v i s i b l e o v e r a n a r e a o f r a t h e r m o r e than a q u a r t e r o f a m i l l i o n s q u a r e m i l e s , i n c l u d i n g a l l t h e l a r g e c i t i e s and o b s e r v a t o r i e s o f the i m p o r t a n t states o f M i c h i g a n , N e w Y o r k , P e n n s y l v a n i a , N e w J e r s e y , D e l a w a r e , M a r y l a n d , t h e D i s t r i c t o f C o l u m b i a , and s o u t h e r n N e w E n g l a n d . I n f a c t i f the s k i e s w e r e c l e a r t h e y m i g h t h a v e b e e n s e e n b y o v e r 30, 0 0 0 , 000 p e o p l e . I t i s r e g r e t t a b l e that i t did not o c c u r t o any o n e i n t h i s a r e a that t h i s v e r y unusual p h e n o m e n o n w a s w o r t h i n v e s t i g a t i n g . A collection o f o b s e r v a t i o n s m i g h t a t that t i m e h a v e b e e n m a d e , c u l l e d f r o m n e w s p a p e r s and b y p r i v a t e c o r r e s p o n d e n c e , s i m i l a r t o that s e c u r e d b y P r o f e s s o r Chant.

Gl-137

GLM-012

M E T E O R - L I K E PHENOMENA

H i s c o l l e c t i o n i s m o s t v a l u a b l e and u n i q u e , and i t i s p r o p e r t o s a y that a l l that w e k n o w about the m e t e o r s i s r e a l l y due t o h i m , s i n c e i t w a s h i s w o r k w h i c h c a l l e d M r . D e n n i n g ' s a t t e n t i o n t o the m a t t e r . M y o w n f i r s t k n o w l e d g e o f the p h e n o m e n o n w a s due t o r e a d i n g h i s p a p e r s . T h e total number of r e p o r t s on which our knowledge is based is 141. O f t h e s e 135 c a m e f r o m C a n a d a , 1 f r o m s o u t h e r n M i c h i g a n , 1 f r o m a l a d y in N e w J e r s e y , 2 f r o m B e r m u d a , and 2 at sea.

GLM-012

[REMARKABLE METEOR]

A n o n y m o u s ; E n g l i s h M e c h a n i c , 7:351, July 10, 1868. A r e m a r k a b l e m e t e o r w a s s e e n a t the R a d c l i f f e O b s e r v a t o r y , O x f o r d , o n the 8th u l t . , at 9h. 5 0 m . W h e n f i r s t s e e n by M r . L u c a s it had the a p p e a r a n c e of a f i n e w h i t e c l o u d about 5 ° i n l e n g t h and 1 ° i n b r e a d t h , a l i t t l e t o the w e s t o f Polaris. A s the o b s e r v e r w a s p o i n t i n g out i t s c o m e t - l i k e a p p e a r a n c e t o s o m e p e r s o n s w h o h a p p e n e d t o b e w i t h h i m i n the l o w e r m e a d o w o f the O b s e r v a t o r y , i t a p p e a r e d t o s t a r t i n t o m o t i o n , t a k i n g a c o u r s e d i r e c t l y w e s t , and p a s s i n g just b e l o w x and 0 U r s a e M a j o r i s , and l e a v i n g a t r a i n b e h i n d of a g r e a t e r b r e a d t h than i t s e l f , w h i c h r e m a i n e d v i s i b l e t h r o u g h i t s w h o l e c o u r s e a f t e r i t had d i s a p p e a r e d b e l o w the N . W . h o r i z o n . W h e n i t a p p r o a c h e d L e o i t d e v i a t e d f r o m the s t r a i g h t l i n e w h i c h i t had p r e v i o u s l y t a k e n , and t u r n e d s o m e w h a t t o w a r d s the south, p a s s i n g n e a r R e g u l u s , and then b e n t n o r t h w a r d s a g a i n . The t i m e that i t w a s v i s i b l e m u s t h a v e b e e n n e a r l y f o u r m i n u t e s . Its appearance at o n e t i m e w a s v e r y l i k e that o f the f l a m e and s m o k e c o m b i n e d w h i c h s o m e t i m e s i s s u e f r o m a r a i l w a y e n g i n e , o n l y v e r y faint o n a c c o u n t o f the b r i g h t n e s s o f the still remaining t w i l i g h t . T h e r e w a s a t h i c k h a z e a l l the n i g h t . A p a r s e l e n e s , o r m o c k m o o n , w a s s e e n o n the s a m e night a t 13h. 4 0 m . T h e unusual m o t i o n o f t h i s l i g h t w o u l d s e e m t o p l a c e i t i n the U F O c a t e g o r y , though i n a p p e a r a n c e , a t l e a s t , i t w a s m e t e o r i c . al-

GLM-013

[ERRATIC METEOR]
55:34, M a r c h 4 , 1892.

Anonymous; English Mechanic,

" I n the e n v i r o n s o f H o c h l a n d a , " s a y s the p a r a g r a p h i n the S t o c k h o l m j o u r n a l , " t h e r e w a s s e e n , b e t w e e n 9 and 10 o ' c l o c k at night, in the d i r e c t i o n of the N o r t h , t o the w e s t o f the G r e a t B e a r , and p r e t t y h i g h u p i n the s k y , a l a r g e s t a r , w h i c h s e e m e d t o b e o f the f i r s t m a g n i t u d e , and w h i c h r e n d e r e d i t s e l f c o n s p i c u o u s b y its e x t r a o r d i n a r y m o v e m e n t . A t f i r s t i t a d v a n c e d w i t h g r e a t r a p i d i t y , and i n a s t r a i g h t l i n e , t o w a r d s the E a s t f o r a n e s t i m a t e d d i s t a n c e o f 125 y d s . ( ! ) , a p p e a r i n g then to be o b l o n g , and a p p r o x i m a t e l y 12 i n . l o n g by about a q u a r t e r of that w i d e , and t o b e o f a f i e r y - r e d c o l o u r . I t then r e t u r n e d t o i t s f i r s t p o s i t i o n , a f t e r w a r d s t o m o v e not l e s s r a p i d l y t o w a r d s the W e s t t o r e g a i n , a f t e r about a n equal i n t e r v a l , i t s o r i g i n a l p o s i t i o n ; s u b s e q u e n t l y r i s i n g s l o w l y , then d e s c e n d i n g c o n s i d e r a b l y b e l o w i t , and f i n i s h i n g b y r e c o v e r i n g i t . I t m o v e d p r i n c i p a l l y i n s t r a i g h t l i n e s , w i t h a v e r y s l i g h t e l l i p t i c a l c u r v a t u r e , but i n c e s s a n t l y c h a n g ing c o l o u r . T h i s agitation ( o r m o v e m e n t ) continued f o r 10 hours, when it ceased. The phenomenon was observed by s e v e r a l people. The sole hypothe-

Gl-138

METEOR—LIKE PHENOMENA

GLM-015

s i s a d m i s s i b l e a t p r e s e n t , " the w r i t e r g o e s o n t o s a y , " i n the study o f t h e s e m e t e o r s , w h i c h a r e b o l i d e s o f w h i c h t h e t r a j e c t o r i e s a r e often p e r t u r b e d i n t h e i r i n i t i a l d i r e c t i o n , i s that i t m a y h a p p e n that a f t e r h a v i n g e n c o u n t e r e d a t m o s p h e r i c s t r a t a o f g r e a t e r and g r e a t e r d e n s i t y , the b o l i d e s e x p e r i e n c e a kind o f r i c o c h e t , w h i c h p r e v e n t s t h e i r f u r t h e r a p p r o a c h t o the e a r t h , and s e n d s t h e m b a c k t o w a r d s the u p p e r r e g i o n s o f the a t m o s p h e r e circumstances which'may o c c a s i o n c h a n g e s i n the f o r m and c u r v a t u r e o f the t r a j e c t o r i e s o f b o l i d e s . We m u s t , n e v e r t h e l e s s , add that the s y m m e t r y o f the m o v e m e n t i n the p r e s e n t phenomenon is without p r e c e d e n t in the catalogue which t r e a t s of t h e s e p h e n o m e n a . " I should think s o . An e l l i p t i c a l b o l i d e of a f i e r y r e d , but c o n t i n u a l l y c h a n g i n g c o l o u r , w h i c h o s c i l l a t e s l i k e a p e n d u l u m and r e m a i n s v i s i b l e f o r 1 0 h o u r s ! ! ! i s not l i k e l y t o b e i n c l u d e d i n any " c a t a l o g u e w h i c h t r e a t s o f t h e s e phenomena." A s s u m e d b y the w r i t e r t o b e a n e r r a t i c m e t e o r , nal l i g h t . this light s e e m s m o r e l i k e a noctur-

GLM-014

ELECTRICAL PHENOMENON

H i g g i n , T h o m a s ; N a t u r e , 35:173, D e c e m b e r 2 3 , 1886. " Y l o i l o , O c t o b e r 1 , 1886, L a s t night a m o s t e x t r a o r d i n a r y p h e n o m e n o n w a s v i s i b l e in the h e a v e n s . About 9 o ' c l o c k the sky w a s p e r f e c t l y c l e a r , a l l the s t a r s v i s i b l e , but n o m o o n , when s u d d e n l y the w h o l e h e a v e n s w e r e l i t u p a s i f b y e l e c t r i c l i g h t , a v e r y l a r g e g l o b e o f f i r e b e c a m e v i s i b l e (about the s i z e t h e m o o n a p p e a r s when f u l l ) and f l o a t e d s l o w l y n o r t h w a r d s . I w a s i n rather a bad p o s i t i o n f o r s e e i n g w h e r e it actually went, a house b e i n g b e t w e e n m e and t h e h o r i z o n . This ball was followed by s m a l l e r ones, which w e r e c l o s e t o t h e b i g o n e , and g r a d u a l l y g o t s m a l l e r , t i l l t h e y a p p e a r e d l i k e f a l l i n g s t a r s , only they went much m o r e s l o w l y . " T h e t i t l e i m p l i e s a n e l e c t r i c a l p h e n o m e n o n akin p e r h a p s t o r e p o r t s o f f l o a t i n g b a l l o o n - l i k e ^balls o f f i r e i n G L B and G L D s e c t i o n s , but a m e t e o r p r o c e s s i o n c o u l d a l s o h a v e b e e n seen..

GLM-015
Edwards,

UFO'S, NATURAL SATELLITES OR METEORS?
F r a n k ; F a t e , 16:49-54, D e c e m b e r 1963. s c i e n t i f i c r e p o r t s o n t h e m e t e o r p r o c e s s i o n o f 1913, E d w a r d s adds

After r e v i e w i n g the the f o l l o w i n g : "

O n the a f t e r n o o n o f the f o l l o w i n g d a y , s t i l l a n o t h e r c h a p t e r w a s added t o t h i s b i z a r r e and b a f f l i n g r e p o r t . T h e T o r o n t o S t a r s a y s that i n b r o a d d a y l i g h t , m a n y p e r s o n s w a t c h e d t h r e e g r o u p s o f s o l i d , d a r k o b j e c t s p a s s h i g h a b o v e the c i t y . " T h e y p a s s e d f r o m w e s t t o e a s t i n t h r e e g r o u p s , " s a y s the S t a r , "and then r e turned in m o r e scattered formation, s e v e n or eight in all. " I t e m s d e s c r i b i n g t h i s m e t e o r p r o c e s s i o n (the m a i n p r o c e s s i o n , a b o v e b y E d w a r d s ) a r e G L M - 0 0 4 , G L M - 0 0 6 , and G L M - 0 1 1 . not the one m e n t i o n e d

Gl-139

GLM-016
GLM-016

M E T E O R - L I K E PHENOMENA

A BALL OF FIRE
20:136, M a r c h 1967.

Thomason, E. M. ; Fate,

I n e a r l y N o v e m b e r , 1 9 5 1 , i n T e x a s C i t y , T e x . , o n e a f t e r n o o n about f i v e o ' c l o c k I l o o k e d i n t o t h e sky t o s e e b l a c k s t o r m c l o u d s t h r e a t e n i n g . I thought i t m i g h t s t a r t r a i n i n g any m i n u t e o r e v e n t u r n i n t o a t o r n a d o . While I was l o o k i n g a l a r g e g r e e n b a l l o f f i r e s u d d e n l y c a m e out o f the n o r t h t r a i l i n g a t a i l o f g r e e n f i r e . I t w a s v e r y l o w , b e n e a t h t h e c l o u d s , and w h e n i t w a s a l m o s t d i r e c t l y o v e r the c i t y i t m a d e a r i g h t - a n g l e t u r n and f l e w out o v e r t h e G u l f o f M e x i c o . I t d i d n ' t t a k e m o r e than t h r e e o r f o u r s e c o n d s . I h a v e n e v e r s e e n anything m o v e s o fast.

GLM-017

WHAT SHAPE?
2 0 : 2 6 , M a y 1967.

Fuller, Curtis; Fate,

N e a r San D i e g o l a s t D e c e m b e r 1 9 [1966] a g r o u p o f L e m o n G r o v e r e s i d e n t s and t w o H o o v e r H i g h S c h o o l students i n A l l i e d G a r d e n s d e s c r i b e d t h r e e s m a l l o r a n g e s p h e r e s that c a m e o v e r t h e h o r i z o n f r o m t h e n o r t h . They w e r e on v i e w f o r about f i v e m i n u t e s . T h e n t h e y c l i m b e d t o "about t h e z e n i t h o f t h e s k y " and shattered in a s h o w e r of sparks. In another r e p o r t , a bright o r a n g e object w a s s e e n t o m o v e f r o m e a s t t o w e s t and b a c k t o e a s t . T h e n i t f a d e d and d i s appeared.

GLM-018

A CATALOGUE OF OBSERVATIONS OF LUMINOUS METEORS

P o w e l l , B a d e n ; R e p o r t o f t h e B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , 2 3 5 - 2 3 7 , 1852. I h a v e t h e h o n o r to t r a n s m i t an account of a s i n g u l a r p h a e n o m e n o n w i t n e s s e d b y m y s e l f and m y f a m i l y o n t h e m o r n i n g o f t h e 4th o f S e p t e m b e r 1850. " I w a s t h e n r e s i d i n g a t the V i c a r a g e , South M i m m s , M i d d l e s e x , i n a s i t u a tion p e c u l i a r l y favourable for a s t r o n o m i c a l o b s e r v a t i o n . " I had b e e n e n g a g e d f o r s e v e r a l c o n s e c u t i v e d a y s i n o b s e r v i n g t h e p l a n e t M e r c u r y d u r i n g h i s a p p r o a c h t o t h e sun; p a r t l y t o t e s t t h e a c c u r a c y o f m y p o w e r o f o b s e r v a t i o n b y t h e c a l c u l a t i o n s o f the N a u t i c a l A l m a n a c k , but c h i e f l y t o r e m a r k h o w n e a r l y I c o u l d t r a c e the p l a n e t i n h i s c o u r s e t o t h e sun, b e f o r e h e should b e w h o l l y l o s t i n h i s r a y s . " F o r this p u r p o s e I used the m o s t careful adjustments my instrument w a s c a p a b l e of, and c o n t i n u e d m y o b s e r v a t i o n s w i t h o u t n o t i c i n g anything p e c u l i a r . " W h e n , h o w e v e r , o n the m o r n i n g o f the 4th o f S e p t e m b e r I w a s p r e p a r i n g m y equatoreal b e f o r e it w a s f i x e d on the planet, I o b s e r v e d , passing through the f i e l d o f v i e w , i n a c o n t i n u o u s s t r e a m , a g r e a t n u m b e r o f l u m i n o u s b o d i e s ; and I cannot m o r e c o r r e c t l y d e s c r i b e the w h o l e a p p e a r a n c e , than b y e m p l o y i n g t h e s a m e language which I used when I c o m m u n i c a t e d the c i r c u m s t a n c e to the R o y a l A s t r o n o m i c a l S o c i e t y , i n t h e M o n t h l y N o t i c e s o f D e c . 13, 1850, and D e c . 12th, 1851. " W h e n I f i r s t s a w t h e m I w a s f i l l e d w i t h s u r p r i s e , and e n d e a v o u r e d t o a c count f o r t h e s t r a n g e a p p e a r a n c e b y s u p p o s i n g that t h e y w e r e b o d i e s f l o a t i n g i n the a t m o s p h e r e , such a s t h e s e e d s o f p l a n t s , a s w e a r e a c c u s t o m e d t o w i t n e s s

Gl-140

M E T E O R - L I K E PHENOMENA

GLM-018

t h e m i n t h e o p e n c o u n t r y about t h i s s e a s o n ; but nothing w a s v i s i b l e t o the naked eye. " T h e s k y w a s p e r f e c t l y c l o u d l e s s ; and s o s e r e n e w a s the a t m o s p h e r e , that t h e r e w a s not a b r e a t h o f w i n d t h r o u g h t h e d a y , e v e n s o m u c h a s t o c a u s e any p e r c e p t i b l e t r e m o r o f the i n s t r u m e n t ; and I s u b j e c t e d the l u m i n o u s b o d i e s t o e x a m i n a t i o n b y a l l the e y e - p i e c e s and c o l o u r e d g l a s s e s that w e r e n e e d f u l ; but t h e y b o r e e v e r y such e x a m i n a t i o n j u s t a s the p l a n e t s M e r c u r y and V e n u s d i d , b o t h o f w h i c h w e r e f r e q u e n t l y l o o k e d a t b y m e , f o r the p u r p o s e o f c o m p a r i s o n , d u r i n g the d a y ; s o that i t w a s i m p o s s i b l e I c o u l d r e s i s t the c o n c l u s i o n ( m u c h a s I w a s e a r l y d i s p o s e d t o h e s i t a t e ) that t h e y w e r e r e a l c e l e s t i a l b o d i e s m o v i n g i n a n o r b i t o f t h e i r o w n , and f a r r e m o v e d b e y o n d the l i m i t s o f o u r a t m o s p h e r e . " T h e y c o n t i n u e d p a s s i n g , o f t e n i n i n c o n c e i v a b l e n u m b e r s , f r o m 1/2 p a s t 9 a . m . , w h e n I f i r s t s a w t h e m , a l m o s t w i t h o u t i n t e r m i s s i o n , t i l l about 1/2 p a s t 3 p . m . , w h e n t h e y b e c a m e f e w e r , parsed a t l o n g e r i n t e r v a l s , and then finally ceased. " T h e b o d i e s w e r e a l l p e r f e c t l y r o u n d , w i t h about the b r i g h t n e s s o f V e n u s , s e e n i n t h e s a m e f i e l d o f v i e w w i t h t h e m ; and t h e i r l i g h t w a s w h i t e , o r w i t h a s l i g h t t i n g e o f b l u e ; and t h e y a p p e a r e d s e l f - l u m i n o u s , a s though they d i d not c r o s s t h e s u n ' s d i s c ; y e t w h e n s e e n n e a r h i m t h e y d i d not c h a n g e t h e i r s h a p e , diminish in brightness.

as

or

" T h e y p a s s e d w i t h d i f f e r e n t v e l o c i t i e s , s o m e s l o w l y , and o t h e r s w i t h g r e a t r a p i d i t y ; and t h e y w e r e v e r y v a r i o u s i n s i z e , s o m e h a v i n g a d i a m e t e r , a s n e a r l y a s I c o u l d e s t i m a t e , about 2 " , w h i l e o t h e r s w e r e a p p r o a c h i n g t o 2 0 " . " I t r i e d v a r i o u s p o w e r s upon t h e m , and u s e d b o t h d i r e c t and d i a g o n a l e y e p i e c e s ; but w i t h e v e r y o n e I e m p l o y e d t h e y s h o w e d t h e s a m e a p p e a r a n c e , b e i n g a s s h a r p l y d e f i n e d a s the p l a n e t J u p i t e r , w i t h o u t h a z e o r s p o t , o r i n e q u a l i t y o f brightness. "I n a t u r a l l y a n t i c i p a t e d s o m e such a p p e a r a n c e at night, but a f t e r 1/2 p a s t 3 I s a w nothing p e c u l i a r , though I w a i t e d t i l l 1 1 p . m . ; but h a v e s i n c e b e e n i n f o r m e d that a t 1/2 p a s t 1 1 (it i s b e l i e v e d o n t h e s a m e n i g h t ) a m e t e o r o f a m a z i n g b r i l l i a n c e and s i z e , and p a s s i n g i n the s a m e d i r e c t i o n and about the s a m e a l t i t u d e , w a s o b s e r v e d b y M r . B a l l a n o f W r o t h a m P a r k , i n the i m m e d i a t e n e i g h b o r h o o d o f South M i m m s . " I r e p e a t e d m y o b s e r v a t i o n s the f o l l o w i n g m o r n i n g , and then s a w o n e such s i n g l e b o d y p a s s i n the s a m e d i r e c t i o n a s t h o s e o f the p r e c e d i n g d a y . " T h e y o c c u p i e d a t o l e r a b l y w e l l - d e f i n e d z o n e o f about 1 8 ° i n b r e a d t h ; and, though w i t h s o m e e x c e p t i o n s j t h e i r d i r e c t i o n w a s due e a s t and w e s t . Their m o t i o n w a s p e r f e c t l y u n i f o r m , s o f a r a s I w a s a b l e t o f o l l o w t h e m w i t h the i n s t r u m e n t a t l i b e r t y ; and t h e y w e r e o b s e r v e d c o n t i n u o u s l y b y m y s e l f and m e m b e r s o f m y f a m i l y , a c c u s t o m e d t o the u s e o f i n s t r u m e n t s , both b y d a y and n i g h t . " T h e t e l e s c o p e I e m p l o y e d on this o c c a s i o n is one of 3 - 1 / 2 feet focal length, and 2 - 3 / 4 i n c h e s a p e r t u r e , b y M r . D o l l o n d , o f f a u l t l e s s p e r f o r m a n c e and m o u n t e d e q u a t o r e a l l y b y M r . J o n e s o f C h a r i n g C r o s s , the c i r c l e s d i v i d e d b y M r . R o t h w e l l o f L o n d o n , and r e a d i n g o f f t o 5 " . " I u n d e r s t a n d that a s i m i l a r p h a e n o m e n o n h a s b e e n w i t n e s s e d b y M r . C o o p e r o f M a r k r e e C a s t l e , County o f S l i g o , though I h a v e not c o m m u n i c a t e d w i t h that g e n t l e m a n on the s u b j e c t ; but I t a k e t h e o p p o r t u n i t y of s u b j o i n i n g a p o r t i o n of the contents of a l e t t e r to me f r o m C h a r l e s B. C h a l m e r s , E s q . , F. R. A. S., now r e s i d i n g at Jugon, C o t e s du N o r d , F r a n c e . " H e thus w r i t e s : - ' A b o u t the l a t t e r end o f t h e y e a r 1849, I w i t n e s s e d a p h a e n o m e n o n s i m i l a r t o that w h i c h y o u s a w i n S e p t e m b e r 1850, i n e v e r y r e s p e c t , e x c e p t i n g that I thought s o m e o f the b o d i e s w e r e e l o n g a t e d , though c e r t a i n l y the m a j o r i t y w e r e g l o b u l a r ; and t h e i r b r i g h t n e s s a p p e a r e d t o m e about e q u a l t o that o f V e n u s , a s s e e n a t the s a m e t i m e .

Gl-141

GLM-019
n ,

M E T E O R - L I K E PHENOMENA

I w a s then r e s i d i n g a t W e s t o n - S u p e r - M a r e , i n S o m e r s e t s h i r e ; and the instrument with which I saw them was a 5-feet t e l e s c o p e , equatoreally mounted, in a fixed o b s e r v a t o r y . ' " I w a s e n g a g e d s i m i l a r l y t o y o u r s e l f i n o b s e r v i n g the p l a n e t M e r c u r y ; about 1/2 p a s t 1 0 a . m . I w a s a t f i r s t i n c l i n e d t o b e l i e v e i t m u s t b e the s e e d o f s o m e p l a n t s o f t h e t h i s t l e n a t u r e f l o a t i n g i n the a i r , but f r o m m y p o s i t i o n that c o u l d not h a v e b e e n the c a s e . ' " T h e w i n d o n the day I o b s e r v e d the p h a e n o m e n o n w a s v e r y s l i g h t ; but such a s i t w a s i t c a m e f r o m the s e a . The bodies all appeared sharply defined, no f e a t h e r y a p p e a r a n c e s that I c o u l d d e t e c t ; and I d i d not o b s e r v e any d i f f e r e n c e i n t h e i r b r i g h t n e s s d u r i n g the t i m e I o b s e r v e d t h e m ' . "

GLM-019
Mallet,

ON THE FACTS OF EARTHQUAKE PHAENOMENA
R o b e r t ; R e p o r t o f the B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , 259, 1854.

A p r i l 24, 1836; I t a l y . A t e r r i b l y destructive earthquake. In Rossano, an instant a f t e r the s h o c k , a l l the h o u s e s w e r e s e e n e i t h e r t h r o w n d o w n o r c r u m b l i n g i n t o r u i n s ; and i n C r o s c i a not a s i n g l e h o u s e w a s l e f t s t a n d i n g . L o n g and d e e p f i s s u r e s o p e n e d i n the e a r t h . A n i g n e o u s m e t e o r w a s s e e n , h a v i n g the a p p e a r a n c e of great beams of fire

GLM-020

UFO IN 1800: METEOR?

P o w e r s , W i l l i a m T . ; S c i e n c e , 160:1260, June 14, 1968. T h e U F O c o n t r o v e r s y h a s f o c u s s e d a t t e n t i o n o n unusual a t m o s p h e r i c p h e n o m e n a . T h e f a m o u s " C o n d o n R e p o r t " o f the U n i v e r s i t y o f C o l o r a d o , w h i l e o s t e n s i b l y d e b u n k i n g U F O s , d i d d i s c u s s m a n y unusual, o f t e n u n e x p l a i n e d p h e n o m e n a that happen a b o v e t h e earth's surface. In a s i m i l a r vein, old observations of strange events a r e once again being scrutinized. P o w e r s q u o t e d t h e f o l l o w i n g f r o m the T r a n s a c t i o n s o f the A m e r i c a n P h i l o s o p h i c a l S o c i e t y , 6:25, 1804. A p h e n o m e n o n w a s s e e n t o p a s s B a t o n R o u g e o n the night o f the 5th A p r i l 1800, o f w h i c h t h e f o l l o w i n g i s the b e s t d e s c r i p t i o n I h a v e b e e n a b l e t o o b t a i n . I t w a s f i r s t s e e n i n the South W e s t , and m o v e d s o r a p i d l y , p a s s i n g o v e r the h e a d s of the s p e c t a t o r s , as to d i s a p p e a r in the N o r t h E a s t in about a q u a r t e r of a minute. I t a p p e a r e d t o b e o f a s i z e o f a l a r g e h o u s e , 7 0 t o 8 0 f e e t l o n g and o f a f o r m nearly resembling F i g . 5 in Plate I V . I t a p p e a r e d t o b e about 200 y a r d s a b o v e the s u r f a c e o f the e a r t h , w h o l l y l u m i nous, but not e m i t t i n g s p a r k s ; o f a c o l o u r r e s e m b l i n g t h e sun n e a r t h e h o r i z o n i n a cold frosty evening, which may be called a c r i m s o n r e d . When passing right o v e r the h e a d s o f t h e s p e c t a t o r s , the l i g h t o n the s u r f a c e o f the e a r t h , w a s l i t t l e s h o r t o f the e f f e c t o f s u n - b e a m s , though a t the s a m e t i m e , l o o k i n g a n o t h e r w a y , the s t a r s w e r e v i s i b l e , w h i c h a p p e a r s t o b e a c o n f i r m a t i o n o f the o p i n i o n f o r m e d of its m o d e r a t e e l e v a t i o n . I n p a s s i n g , a c o n s i d e r a b l e d e g r e e o f h e a t w a s f e l t but no e l e c t r i c sensation. I m m e d i a t e l y a f t e r i t d i s a p p e a r e d i n the N o r t h E a s t , a v i o l e n t r u s h i n g n o i s e w a s h e a r d , a s i f the p h e n o m e n o n w a s b e a r i n g d o w n the f o r e s t b e f o r e i t , and i n a f e w s e c o n d s a t r e m e n d o u s c r a s h w a s h e a r d s i m i l a r t o that

Gl-142

M E T E O R - L I K E PHENOMENA

GLM-023

o f the l a r g e s t p i e c e o f o r d n a n c e , c a u s i n g a v e r y s e n s i b l e e a r t h q u a k e . I h a v e b e e n i n f o r m e d , that s e a r c h h a s b e e n m a d e i n the p l a c e w h e r e the b u r n i n g b o d y f e l l , and that a c o n s i d e r a b l e p o r t i o n o f the s u r f a c e o f the e a r t h w a s found b r o k e n up, and e v e r y v e g e t a b l e b o d y b u r n e d o r g r e a t l y s c o r c h e d . I h a v e not y e t r e c e i v e d a n s w e r s t o a n u m b e r o f q u e r i e s I h a v e s e n t on, w h i c h m a y p e r h a p s b r i n g to light m o r e particulars.

GLM-021
Olmsted,

OBSERVATIONS ON THE METEORS OF NOVEMBER 13TH, 1833
D e n i s o n ; A m e r i c a n J o u r n a l o f S c i e n c e , 1:26:132-174, 1834.

T h e f o l l o w i n g o b s e r v a t i o n w a s not c o n n e c t e d w i t h the 1833 m e t e o r d i s p l a y , but Olmsted included it because of its p e c u l i a r i t i e s . " I n N o v e m b e r , 1825, about o n e h o u r a f t e r s u n s e t , a m e t e o r w a s s e e n i n t h e t o w n o f N e w t o n , T r u m b u l l C o . O h i o , r a p i d l y c r o s s i n g the sky i n a d i r e c t i o n s o m e what e a s t o f south, i n s i z e s u r p a s s i n g the full m o o n , but s o m e w h a t i r r e g u l a r i n its f o r m . A t a c e r t a i n point i n i t s c o u r s e , a p o r t i o n o f the m e t e o r w a s s e e n t o s e p a r a t e , and d e s c e n d t o the e a r t h i n a n o b l i q u e d i r e c t i o n , w h i l e the m a i n b o d y p a s s e d o n , and s o o n d i s a p p e a r e d . A t the s a m e t i m e , and a t the p l a c e w h e r e the m e t e o r w a s s e e n t o f a l l , t w o l a d i e s w h o w e r e w a l k i n g i n the r o a d i n the s a m e d i r e c t i o n i n w h i c h t h e m e t e o r w a s m o v i n g , found t h e m s e l v e s s u d d e n l y e n v e l o p e d in a m a s s of light. A ball of f i r e or light, s e v e r a l feet in d i a m e t e r , s e e m i n g to c o m e f r o m a b o v e and behind f e l l upon t h e m and the g r o u n d , b r e a k i n g , a s i t s t r u c k i n t o a thousand s m a l l e r b a l l s , r o l l i n g upon t h e e a r t h and b r e a k i n g a g a i n into still s m a l l e r b a l l s , till it d i s a p p e a r e d . L o o k i n g up, t h e y s a w the o t h e r p o r t i o n o f t h e m e t e o r j u s t a s i t d i s a p p e a r e d i n the d i s t a n c e b e f o r e t h e m . This p h e n o m e n o n w a s a t t e n d e d w i t h n o n o i s e o r h e a t , and t h e i r c l o t h i n g e x h i b i t e d n o t r a c e s o f h a v i n g b e e n i n c o n t a c t w i t h any f o r e i g n s u b s t a n c e . " E . N . S i l l , E s q . , o f C u y a h o g a F a l l s , ( c o m m u n i c a t e d t o the w r i t e r . ) T h e f r a g m e n t a t i o n o f the f i r e b a l l i s a p r o p e r t y o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g . Possibly there was n o m e t e o r a t a l l , o r p e r h a p s b a l l l i g h t n i n g w a s s o m e h o w g e n e r a t e d b y the m e t e o r .

GLM-022

A CATALOGUE OF LUMINOUS METEORS

P o w e l l , B a d e n ; R e p o r t o f the B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , 5 4 - 5 5 , 1856. A u g u s t 11, 1853. T i l l i n g t o n , n e a r P e t w o r t h , E n g l a n d . A b r i g h t l i g h t b e h i n d the h i l l s p r e c e d e d the r i s i n g o f a b r i g h t b o d y l i k e the full m o o n . Gradually diminished to a s m a l l star. R a y s p r o c e e d i n g f r o m i t o n a l l s i d e s , not s h o o t i n g out b y s t a t i o n a r y .

GLM-023

[SLOW METEORS OVER AUSTRALIA]

F o r t , C h a r l e s ; T h e B o o k s o f C h a r l e s F o r t , H e n r y H o l t and C o m p a n y , N e w Y o r k , 1941. F o r t o b t a i n e d t h e f o l l o w i n g f r o m the Sydney H e r a l d and M e l b o u r n e L e a d e r .

G1-143

GLM-024

M E T E O R - L I K E PHENOMENA

T h e r e w a s a m e t e o r i c e x p l o s i o n , a t P a r r a m a t t a , N o v e m b e r 13th [1902]. A f i r e b a l l f e l l and e x p l o d e d t e r r i f i c a l l y , a t C a r c o a r . A t M u r r u m b u r r a h , N . S . W . , dust and a l a r g e f i r e b a l l f e l l , upon t h e 18th. A f i r e b a l l p a s s e d o v e r the t o w n o f N y n g a n , n i g h t o f t h e 22nd, i n t e n s e l y i l l u m i n a t i n g s k y and g r o u n d . U p o n t h e night o f the 20th, a s r e p o r t e d b y S i r C h a r l e s T o d d , o f t h e A d e l a i d e O b s e r v a t o r y , a l a r g e f i r e ball was seen, moving so slowly that i t w a s w a t c h e d f o u r m i n u t e s . A t 11 o ' c l o c k , night of t h e 21st, a f i r e b a l l of t h e a p p a r e n t s i z e of t h e sun w a s s e e n at Towitta. An hour l a t e r , s e v e r a l towns w e r e illuminated by a g r e a t fire b a l l . Upon the 23rd, a f i r e ball e x p l o d e d at I p s w i c h , Queensland. It is of e s p e c i a l i m p o r t a n c e t o n o t e t h e r e c o r d o f o n e o f t h e s e b o m b s , o r m e t e o r s , that m o v e d s o s l o w l y that i t w a s w a t c h e d f o r f o u r m i n u t e s .

GLM-024

[PHENOMENA DURING THE CHARLESTON EARTHQUAKE]

F o r t , C h a r l e s ; T h e B o o k s o f C h a r l e s F o r t , H e n r y H o l t and C o m p a n y , N e w Y o r k , 1941. A u g . 31, 1886 "Just b e f o r e t h e sun d r o p p e d b e h i n d the h o r i z o n , i t w a s e c l i p s e d b y a m a s s o f i n k y , b l a c k c l o u d s . " P e o p l e noted t h i s a p p e a r a n c e . I t w a s l i k e the " d e n s e , m o u n t a i n - l i k e c l o u d " that a p p e a r e d a t C a l l a o , P e r u , b e f o r e the e a r t h q u a k e o f Sept. 4 , 1868. But t h e s e p e o p l e w e r e i n a N o r t h A m e r i c a n c i t y . M e t e o r s w e r e seen. T h e y w e r e l i k e the f i r e b a l l s that h a v e shot f r o m t h i s e a r t h ' s volcanoes. L u m i n o u s c l o u d s , such a s h a v e b e e n s e e n a t t i m e s o f t h i s e a r t h ' s e r u p t i o n s , a p p e a r e d , and p e o p l e w a t c h e d t h e m . T h e r e w a s n o thought o f d a n g e r . There was a glare. M o r e m e t e o r s . T h e c i t y o f C h a r l e s t o n , South C a r o l i n a w a s smashed. P e o p l e running f r o m t h e i r h o u s e s t e l e g r a p h p o l e s f a l l i n g around t h e m they w e r e m e s h e d i n c o i l s o f w i r e s . S t r e e t l a m p s and l i g h t s i n h o u s e s w a v e d a b o v e , l i k e l i g h t s o f a f i s h i n g f l e e t that had c a s t out n e t s . I t w a s a c a t c h o f b o d i e s , but that w a s b e c a u s e m i n d s had b e e n m e s h e d i n t h e net o f a c u l t , w o v e n out o f the i m p u d e n c e o f t h e D e B a l l o r e s and t h e s i l e n c e s o f the D a v i s o n s , s p r e a d t o t h i s d a y upon e v e r y s c h o o l o f t h i s e a r t h . T h e g r o u n d w e n t o n q u a k i n g . D o w n f r o m t h e unknown c a m e , p e r h a p s , a v o l c a n i c d i s c h a r g e upon t h i s q u a k i n g g r o u n d . W h e t h e r i t w e r e v o l c a n i c dust, o r not, i t i s s a i d , i n t h e N e w Y o r k W o r l d , S e p t e m b e r 4 , that " v o l c a n i c d u s t " w a s f a l l i n g , at Wilmington, North Carolina. S e p t e m b e r 5th a s e v e r e s h o c k , at C h a r l e s t o n , and a f e w m i n u t e s l a t e r c a m e a brilliant m e t e o r , which left a long train of f i r e . A t the s a m e t i m e , t w o b r i l l i a n t m e t e o r s w e r e s e e n , a t C o l u m b i a , S . C . S e e a l m o s t any n e w s p a p e r o f t h e t i m e . I happen t o t a k e f r o m the L o n d o n T i m e s , S e p t e m b e r 7 . ( p . 788)

M e t e o r s kept o n c o m i n g t o C h a r l e s t o n . T h e y kept on a r r i v i n g at this quaking p a r t o f t h e e a r t h ' s s u r f a c e , a s i f a point o n a s t a t i o n a r y b o d y . The most extraordi n a r y d i s p l a y w a s upon the night o f O c t o b e r 22nd. T h e r e was a s e v e r e quake, at C h a r l e s t o n , w h i l e t h e s e m e t e o r s w e r e f a l l i n g . About f i f t y a p p e a r e d ( N e w Y o r k Sun, N o v e m b e r I ) . A b o u t m i d n i g h t , O c t o b e r 2 3 - 2 4 , a m e t e o r e x p l o d e d o v e r A t l a n t a G e o r g i a , c a s t i n g a l i g h t s o i n t e n s e that s m a l l o b j e c t s o n the ground w e r e v i s i b l e ( N e w Y o r k H e r a l d , O c t o b e r 25). A l a r g e m e t e o r , a t C h a r l e s t o n , night o f O c t o b e r 24th ( M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 1886-296). A n e x t r a o r d i n a r y m e t e o r , a t C h a r l e s t o n , night o f the 28th, i s d e s c r i b e d , i n t h e N e w s and C o u r i e r , o f t h e 29th, a s " a strange celestial v i s i t o r . " "It w a s only a c o i n c i d e n c e . " T h e r e i s n o c o n v e n t i o n a l s e i s m o l o g i s t , and t h e r e i s n o o r t h o d o x a s t r o n o m e r ,

Gl-144

M E T E O R - L I K E PHENOMENA

GLM-025

who says otherwise. I n t h e F r i e n d o f I n d i a , June 2 2 , 1897, i s a n o t h e r r e c o r d o f s o m e o f t h e m e t e o r s that w e r e s e e n o v e r C h a r l e s t o n : that, a t t h e t i m e o f t h e g r e a t q u a k e , P r o f . O s w a l d s a w m e t e o r a f t e r m e t e o r shoot f r o m a n a p p a r e n t r a d i a n t n e a r L e o . Carl McKinley, i n h i s D e s c r i p t i v e N a r r a t i v e o f t h e E a r t h q u a k e o f A u g u s t 31, 1886, r e c o r d s a r e p o r t f r o m C a p e R o m a i n L i g h t Station, upon " a n unusual f a l l o f m e t e o r s d u r i n g t h e n i g h t . " ( p . 789) T h e a b o v e i t e m t y p i f i e s F o r t ' s m e t h o d o l o g y , although h e f r e q u e n t l y e m p l o y e d m u c h m o r e humor. He c o l l e c t e d d a t a — o f t e n incongruous d a t a — f r o m d i v e r s e sources and then c h a l l e n g e d s c i e n c e t o e x p l a i n the i n c o n s i s t e n c i e s a n d / o r the c o n t r a d i c t i o n s w i t h the s c i e n c e o f h i s t i m e .

GLM-025

REMARKABLE METEORS

S c h o f i e l d , F r a n k H . ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 32:115, M a r c h 1904. T h e f o l l o w i n g r e p o r t , a s k i n d l y c o m m u n i c a t e d b y t h e e d i t o r o f the P i l o t C h a r t , i s d a t e d U . S . S . Supply, a t s e a , l a t i t u d e 3 6 ° 2 0 ' n o r t h ; l o n g i t u d e 127° 3 6 ' w e s t , F e b r u a r y 28, 1904: 1 . I h a v e t h e h o n o r t o r e p o r t that t h r e e s o m e w h a t r e m a r k a b l e m e t e o r s w e r e o b s e r v e d f r o m t h i s ship at 6:10 a. m. ( G r e e n w i c h m e a n t i m e 3 h o u r s 12 m i n u t e s ) F e b r u a r y 28, 1904, i n l a t i t u d e 3 5 ° 58' n o r t h , l o n g i t u d e 128° 3 9 ' w e s t . 2 . T h e m e t e o r s a p p e a r e d n e a r t h e h o r i z o n and b e l o w the c l o u d s , t r a v e l l i n g i n a g r o u p f r o m n o r t h w e s t b y north ( t r u e ) d i r e c t l y t o w a r d the ship. A t f i r s t t h e i r a n g u l a r m o t i o n w a s r a p i d and c o l o r a r a t h e r b r i g h t r e d . As they approached the ship t h e y a p p e a r e d t o s o a r , p a s s i n g a b o v e the c l o u d s a t a n e l e v a t i o n o f about 4 5 ° . A f t e r r i s i n g a b o v e the c l o u d s t h e i r a n g u l a r m o t i o n b e c a m e l e s s and l e s s until i t c e a s e d , w h e n t h e y a p p e a r e d t o b e m o v i n g d i r e c t l y a w a y f r o m the e a r t h a t a n e l e v a t i o n o f about 7 5 " and i n a d i r e c t i o n w e s t - n o r t h w e s t ( t r u e ) . I t w a s n o t e d that the c o l o r b e c a m e l e s s p r o n o u n c e d a s t h e m e t e o r s g a i n e d i n a n g u l a r e l e v a t i o n . 3 . W h e n s i g h t e d , the l a r g e s t m e t e o r w a s i n t h e l e a d , f o l l o w e d b y the s e c o n d i n s i z e a t a d i s t a n c e o f l e s s than t w i c e t h e d i a m e t e r o f the l a r g e r , and then b y the third in s i z e at a s i m i l a r distance f r o m the second in s i z e . They appeared to be t r a v e l l i n g i n e c h e l o n , and s o continued a s l o n g a s i n s i g h t . 4 . T h e l a r g e s t m e t e o r had a n a p p a r e n t a r e a o f about s i x suns. I t w a s e g g shaped, t h e s h a r p end f o r w a r d . T h i s end w a s j a g g e d i n o u t l i n e . T h e a f t e r end w a s r e g u l a r and f u l l i n o u t l i n e . 5 . T h e s e c o n d and t h i r d m e t e o r s w e r e round and s h o w e d n o i m p e r f e c t i o n s i n shape. T h e s e c o n d m e t e o r w a s e s t i m a t e d t o b e t w i c e t h e s i z e o f the sun i n a p p e a r a n c e , and the t h i r d m e t e o r about the s i z e o f t h e sun. 6. When the m e t e o r s r o s e there w a s no change in r e l a t i v e positions; nor was t h e r e a t any t i m e any e v i d e n c e o f r o t a t i o n o r t u m b l i n g o f the l a r g e r m e t e o r . 7 . I e s t i m a t e d t h e c l o u d s t o b e not o v e r o n e m i l e h i g h . 8 . T h e n e a r a p p r o a c h o f t h e s e m e t e o r s t o t h e s u r f a c e and t h e subsequent flight away f r o m the surface appear to be most r e m a r k a b l e , e s p e c i a l l y so as their actual s i z e c o u l d not h a v e b e e n g r e a t . T h a t t h e y d i d c o m e b e l o w t h e c l o u d s and soar instead of continuing t h e i r southeasterly c o u r s e is also equally c e r t a i n , as the a n g u l a r m o t i o n c e a s e d and the c o l o r f a d e d a s t h e y r o s e . T h e clouds in p a s s i n g b e t w e e n t h e m e t e o r s and the ship c o m p l e t e l y o b s c u r e d t h e f o r m e r . B l u e sky could be seen in the i n t e r v a l s b e t w e e n the c l o u d s . 9 . T h e m e t e o r s w e r e i n s i g h t o v e r t w o m i n u t e s and w e r e c a r e f u l l y o b s e r v e d

Gl-145

GLM-026

M E T E O R - L I K E PHENOMENA

by t h r e e p e o p l e , w h o s e accounts a g r e e as to d e t a i l s . T h e o f f i c e r o f the d e c k , A c t i n g B o a t s w a i n F r a n k G a r v e y , U . S . N a v y , s i g h t e d t h e m e t e o r s and w a t c h e d t h e m until t h e y d i s a p p e a r e d . H e sent a m e s s e n g e r t o m e w h o b r o u g h t a n u n i n t e l l i g i b l e m e s s a g e . W h e n I a r r i v e d o n the b r i d g e t h e m e t e o r s had b e e n o b s c u r e d f o r about o n e - h a l f of a m i n u t e . I n m a n y r e s p e c t s , the a b o v e r e s e m b l e s m a n y m o d e r n U F O r e p o r t s .

GLM-026

THE NOTES OF CHARLES FORT

F o r t , C h a r l e s ; T h e F o r t e a n S o c i e t y M a g a z i n e , 1:15, O c t o b e r 1937. 1812, M a y 1 . B l a c k r a i n and d e t o n a t i o n s , m e t e o r s o r g l o b e s o f f i r e and a g l o w i n the s k y " r e s e m b l i n g the A u r o r a B o r e a l i s , " l a r g e f l o c k o f b i r d s , "sand and a s h e s . " Schornburgh's H i s t o r y of B a r b a d o e s , p. 69.

GLM-027

[DIGRESSING METEOR]

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 2 7 : 4 2 3 , M a r c h 1 , 1883. O n F e b r u a r y 5 , a t 6 . 4 5 p . m . , a m e t e o r o f unusual s i z e and a p p e a r a n c e w a s observed near A r v i k a , in Sweden. A n o b s e r v e r w h o h a p p e n e d a t the t i m e t o b e passing a lake Glasfjorden s t a t e s that h e f i r s t o b s e r v e d the m e t e o r h i g h o n the h o r i z o n , g o i n g f r o m south-east t o n o r t h - w e s t , w h e n , a f t e r about e i g h t e e n seconds, it suddenly changed i t s c o u r s e to south-east. During its p r o g r e s s to north-west, calculated at eighteen seconds, the m e t e o r made s e v e r a l digressions f r o m i t s p l a n e , w h i l e i t s s i z e v a r i e d f r o m that o f a n o r d i n a r y s t a r t o that o f the sun, s o m e t i m e s e m i t t i n g a w h i t e , a t o t h e r s a y e l l o w l i g h t , and a t t i m e s d i s charging showers of sparks. A t the p o i n t o f c h a n g i n g i t s d i r e c t i o n , w h e n i t w a s s o n e a r the s u r f a c e o f the l a k e that i t s path w a s r e f l e c t e d t h e r e i n , i t p o s s e s s e d a d i s t i n c t t a i l , and w i t h t h i s adjunct it p a s s e d out of the r a n g e of s i g h t in a s o u t h - e a s t e r l y d i r e c t i o n , a f t e r b e i n g o b s e r v e d f o r n e a r l y fifty s e c o n d s .

GLM-028

A CATALOGUE OF OBSERVATIONS OF LUMINOUS METEORS

P o w e l l , B a d e n ; R e p o r t o f the B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , 1 8 8 - 1 8 9 , 1852. " O n t h e e v e n i n g o f F r i d a y , M a r c h 1 9 [ 1 8 4 7 ] , A . and I l e f t A l b i o n R o a d [ H o l l o w a y ] about h a l f - p a s t 8 . N o t any s t a r s w e r e then v i s i b l e , but w h e n w e w e r e i n H i g h b u r y P l a c e , A . c a l l e d m y a t t e n t i o n t o w h a t w e thought a f i r e b a l l o o n a s c e n d i n g s l o w l y . I t w a s i n the w e s t , a l i t t l e i n c l i n i n g t o t h e south. A s i t p a s s e d o n s l o w l y t o the w e s t i t s i n t e n s e b r i l l i a n c e c o n v i n c e d m e that i t w a s not a n e a r t h l y t h i n g . W h e n i t a p p e a r e d t o b e o v e r H a m p s t e a d (but a s high i n the h e a v e n s a s t h e sun i s a t 6 o ' c l o c k i n t h e e v e n i n g w h e n the d a y s a r e l o n g e s t ) , i t shot f o r t h s e v e r a l f i e r y c o r u s c a t i o n s , and w h i l s t w e w e r e g a z i n g a t it, b r o k e into an i n t e n s e l y radiant cloud. T h i s c l o u d s a i l e d o n s l o w l y , and w e n e v e r took our e y e s off i t . A t this t i m e the s t a r s w e r e shining. When w e w e r e

Gl-146

M E T E O R - L I K E PHENOMENA

GLM-030

i n the g r a v e l path o p p o s i t e t o H i g h b u r y T e r r a c e , the c l o u d w a s r a t h e r h i g h e r i n the h e a v e n s , and m o r e t o the W . I t c a s t a m o s t b r i l l i a n t l i g h t o n the h o u s e s t h e r e , b r i g h t e r than m o o n l i g h t , and u n l i k e any l i g h t I e v e r s a w . It a p p e a r e d of a b l u e tint on the b r i c k s , but t h e r e w a s no b l u e l i g h t in the c l o u d i t s e l f . Suddenl y o v e r the r a d i a n t c l o u d a p p e a r e d a n o t h e r c l o u d s t i l l m o r e b r i l l i a n t , but I n o w f e l t s o a w e - s t r u c k that I cannot say p r e c i s e l y h o w l o n g they hung o n e o v e r the o t h e r , b e f o r e the m o s t w o n d e r f u l s i g h t h a p p e n e d . P e r h a p s they r e m a i n e d so f o r t w o o r t h r e e m i n u t e s , when f r o m the u p p e r c l o u d a s m a l l f i e r y b a l l (about the s i z e that the l a r g e s t p l a n e t s a p p e a r t o the naked e y e ) d r o p p e d i n t o the l o w e r c l o u d , and w a s i n s t a n t l y a b s o r b e d . Soon a f t e r a n o t h e r s i m i l a r b a l l d r o p p e d f r o m the u p p e r t o the l o w e r c l o u d ; and then a b a l l a p p a r e n t l y f o u r o r f i v e t i m e s the s i z e o f the t w o p r e c e d i n g f e l l f r o m o n e c l o u d t o the o t h e r i n the s a m e w o n d e r ful w a y . S h o r t l y a f t e r this both c l o u d s d i s a p p e a r e d , a p p a r e n t l y a b s o r b e d i n the h e a v e n s , though I d i d s e e a f e w p a r t i c l e s o f the b r i l l i a n t c l o u d s f l o a t i n g about for a minute or s o . P r e s e n t l y the m o o n a p p e a r e d c o n s i d e r a b l y t o the n o r t h w a r d o f the p l a c e w h e r e the c l o u d s had hung. W e then s a w the b r i g h t l i g h t a c r o s s the h e a v e n s w h i c h y o u t o l d m e w a s z o d i a c a l l i g h t , w h i c h l a s t e d f o r m o r e than a n hour."

GLM-029

OBSERVATIONS OF THE METEORS OF NOVEMBER 13TH, 1833

O l m s t e d , D e n i s o n ; A m e r i c a n J o u r n a l o f S c i e n c e , 1;25:363-411, 1834. T h e f o l l o w i n g o b s e r v a t i o n s w e r e m a d e around the t i m e o f t h e f a m o u s 1833 m e t e o r display. At P o l a n d , T r u m b u l l County, O h i o . A luminous body was distinctly v i s i b l e i n the n o r t h e a s t , f o r m o r e than a n h o u r . T h e Hon. Calvin P e a s e i n f o r m s me that h e d i s c o v e r e d i t a t 4 o ' c l o c k , n e a r the s t a r A l i o t h , i n U r s a M a j o r ; that i t w a s then v e r y b r i l l i a n t i n the f o r m o f a p r u n i n g h o o k , and a p p a r e n t l y t w e n t y f e e t l o n g and e i g h t e e n i n c h e s b r o a d , and that i t g r a d u a l l y s e t t l e d t o w a r d s the h o r i z o n , until it d i s a p p e a r e d . I f i r s t saw it at 5 o ' c l o c k , when it r e s e m b l e d a new m o o n , t w o or t h r e e h o u r s h i g h , s h i n i n g t h r o u g h a c l o u d , about f i f t e e n m i n u t e s a f t e r w a r d s , n o v e s t i g e of it could be seen. (Dr. Jared P. Kirtland's letter to Prof. Silliman.) At N i a g r a F a l l s . T h e y w e r e s e e n a s e a r l y a s t w o o ' c l o c k , and s o o n a f t e r , a l a r g e l u m i n o u s b o d y , l i k e a s q u a r e t a b l e , w a s s e e n n e a r l y i n the z e n i t h , r e m a i n i n g f o r a t i m e n e a r l y s t a t i o n a r y ; and f r o m t h i s w e r e e m i t t e d l a r g e s t r e a m s of light. ( M r . Horatio A. Parson's letter to Prof. Silliman.) Prof. S i l l i m a n w a s f o u n d e r o f the A m e r i c a n J o u r n a l o f S c i e n c e .

GLM-030

[EARTHQUAKES AND METEORS]

F o r t , C h a r l e s ; T h e B o o k s o f C h a r l e s F o r t , H e n r y H o l t and C o m p a n y , N e w Y o r k , 1941. In P o n t o n ' s E a r t h q u a k e s , p. 118, it is s a i d that, upon the 8th of O c t o b e r , 1857, t h e r e had b e e n , i n I l l i n o i s , a n e a r t h q u a k e , p r e c e d e d b y " a l u m i n o u s a p p e a r a n c e , d e s c r i b e d b y s o m e a s a m e t e o r and b y o t h e r s a s v i v i d f l a s h e s o f l i g h t n i n g . " T h o u g h f e l t i n . I l l i n o i s , t h e c e n t e r o f the d i s t u r b a n c e w a s a t St. L o u i s , M o . One n o t e s t h e m i s l e a d i n g and o b s c u r i n g o f such w o r d i n g : i n a l l c o n t e m p o r a n e o u s

Gl-147

GLM-031

METEOR—LIKE PHENOMENA

a c c o u n t s t h e r e i s n o such i n d e f i n i t e n e s s a s o n e d e s c r i p t i o n b y " s o m e " and a n o t h e r n o t i o n b y " o t h e r s . " S o m e t h i n g e x p l o d e d t e r r i f i c a l l y i n the sky, a t St. L o u i s , and shook the g r o u n d " s e v e r e l y " o r " v i o l e n t l y , " a t 4:20 A . M . , O c t . 8 , 1857. A c c o r d i n g t o T i m b s * Y e a r B o o k o f F a c t s , 1858-271, " a b l i n d i n g m e t e o r i c b a l l f r o m t h e heavens" was seen. " A l a r g e and b r i l l i a n t m e t e o r shot a c r o s s the h e a v e n s " (St. L o u i s I n t e l l i g e n c e r , O c t o b e r 8). O f c o u r s e the s u p p o s e d e a r t h q u a k e w a s c o n c u s s i o n f r o m a n e x p l o s i o n i n the s k y , but o u r o w n i n t e r e s t i s i n a s e r i e s that i s s i m i l a r t o o t h e r s that w e h a v e r e c o r d e d . A c c o r d i n g t o the N e w Y o r k T i m e s , O c t o b e r 12, a s l i g h t s h o c k w a s s a i d t o h a v e b e e n f e l t T o u r h o u r s b e f o r e the g r e a t c o n c u s s i o n , and a n o t h e r t h r e e d a y s b e f o r e . But s e e M i l n e ' s C a t a l o g o f D e s t r u c t i v e Earthquakes-— not a m e n t i o n o f a n y t h i n g that w o u l d l e a d o n e a w a y f r o m s a f e and s t a n d a r d i z e d s u p p o s i t i o n s . S e e B u l l . S e i s . S o c . A m e r . , 3-68 h e r e the " m e t e o r " i s m e n t i o n e d , but t h e r e i s n o m e n t i o n o f the p r e c e d i n g c o n c u s s i o n s . T i m e a f t e r t i m e , i n a p e r i o d o f about t h r e e d a y s , c o n c u s s i o n s w e r e f e l t i n and around St. L o u i s . O n e o f t h e s e c o n c u s s i o n s , w i t h i t s "sound l i k e thunder o r t h e r o a r of a r t i l l e r y " ( N e w Y o r k T i m e s , O c t o b e r 8) w a s f r o m an explosion in the sky. I f the o t h e r s w e r e o f t h e s a m e o r i g i n how could detonating m e t e o r s so repeat in o n e s m a l l l o c a l s k y , and n o w h e r e e l s e , i f t h i s e a r t h b e a m o v i n g b o d y ? ( p . 406)

GLM-031

[HAYCOCK REVOLVES THROUGH AIR]
D e c e m b e r 12, 1872.

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 7:112,

A n o t h e r p h e n o m e n o n o f a s i m i l a r kind i s r e c o r d e d a s f o l l o w s b y a c o r r e s pondent o f the B i r m i n g h a m M o r n i n g N e w s . T h e p e o p l e l i v i n g n e a r K i n g ' s Sutton, B a n b u r y , s a y that about o n e o ' c l o c k o n Saturday they s a w s o m e t h i n g l i k e a h a y c o c k r e v o l v i n g t h r o u g h the a i r , a c c o m p a n i e d b y f i r e and d e n s e s m o k e . I t m a d e a n o i s e r e s e m b l i n g that o f a r a i l w a y t r a i n , but v e r y m u c h l o u d e r , and t r a v e l l e d w i t h g r e a t e r r a p i d i t y . I t w a s s o m e t i m e s h i g h i n the a i r , and s o m e t i m e s n e a r the g r o u n d . I t p a s s e d o v e r the e s t a t e o f C o l o n e l N o r t h , M . P . , S i r W . R . B r o w n , B a r t . , and M r . L e s l i e M e l v i l l e - C a r t w r i g h t , w h o s e p a r k w a l l i t t h r e w d o w n t o the foundation i n s e v e r a l p l a c e s , and a t o n e p l a c e f o r u p w a r d s o f sixty y a r d s . A m a n n a m e d A d a m s w a s b r e a k i n g s t o n e s , and a m i n u t e b e f o r e h e w a s s t a n d i n g u n d e r a t r e e that w a s t o r n u p b y the r o o t s and the b r a n c h e s scattered in e v e r y direction. T w o o r t h r e e t r e e s n e a r h i m w e r e t o r n up, and o n e o f t h e m , the l a r g e s t b e e c h o n S i r W i l l i a m B r o w n ' s e s t a t e , w h i c h t o r e u p w i t h i t t w e l v e o r f i f t e e n tons o f e a r t h . F o r a distance of nearly two m i l e s , h e d g e s , r a i l s , t r e e s , h o v e l s , and r i c k s h a v e b e e n k n o c k e d d o w n o r i n j u r e d . A w h i r l w i n d f o l l o w e d the f i r e - m e t e o r , and c a r r i e d e v e r y t h i n g b e f o r e i t . S t o n e s f r o m the w a l l s k n o c k e d d o w n w e r e c a r r i e d f o r t y y a r d s a w a y , and the w a t e r i n a pond d i s a p p e a r e d o n the p a s s a g e o f the p h e n o m e n o n . A f t e r t r a v e l l i n g about t w o m i l e s the m e t e o r s e e m e d t o e x p e n d i t s e l f and d i s a p p e a r e d a l l a t o n c e . T h e r e w a s a h e a v y f a l l o f r a i n a t t h e t i m e , and a v i v i d flash o f l i g h t n i n g just before. T h e d i r e c t i o n taken b y the m e t e o r w a s f r o m south t o n o r t h , and i t t r a v e l l e d a l m o s t in a straight l i n e . T h e m a s s o f f i r e d e s c r i b e d a b o v e d o e s not r e s e m b l e b a l l l i g h t n i n g and i s c e r t a i n l y not a m e t e o r a s w e u n d e r s t a n d t h e m . The phenomenon is probably atmospheric i n n a t u r e and p o s s i b l y e l e c t r i c a l i n o r i g i n .

Gl-148

N O C T U R N A L LIGHTS
GLN-001 [THE PALATINE LIGHT]

GLN-002

G a d d i s , V i n c e n t ; I n v i s i b l e H o r i z o n s , C h i l t o n B o o k s , P h i l a d e l p h i a , 1965. N o c t u r n a l l i g h t s a r e l u m i n o u s p h e n o m e n a that u s u a l l y p e r s i s t i n a s p e c i f i c l o c a l i t y sometimes for centuries. T h e l i g h t s m a y v a r y i n n u m b e r , s i z e , and c o l o r and s e e m t o b e a b l e t o e l u d e p u r s u e r s b y m a n e u v e r i n g o r just d i s a p p e a r i n g . T h e y a r e not the p r o d u c t s o f s t o r m s , a s b a l l l i g h t n i n g s e e m s t o b e , although they o f c o u r s e m a y b e atmospheric aberrations of some sort. N o c t u r n a l l i g h t s a r e r a r e l y r e p o r t e d i n the scientific literature. T h u s , t h e r e i s i n t h i s s u b s e c t i o n a h e a v i e r d e p e n d e n c e upon p o p u l a r m a g a z i n e s and b o o k s . T h e s e accounts, h o w e v e r , are certainly no m o r e fantastic than t h o s e o f b a l l l i g h t n i n g . T h e f i r s t n o c t u r n a l l i g h t , the P a l a t i n e L i g h t , i s s e e n o f f B l o c k I s l a n d , R L I n h i s d e s c r i p t i o n , Gaddis quotes Samuel L i v e r m o r e s A H i s t o r y of B l o c k Island:
r

T h e light is actually seen, s o m e t i m e s one-half m i l e f r o m shore, w h e r e it l i g h t s u p the w a l l s o f a g e n t l e m a n ' s r o o m s t h r o u g h the w i n d o w s T h e p e o p l e h e r e a r e s o f a m i l i a r i z e d w i t h t h e s i g h t t h e y n e v e r think o f g i v i n g n o t i c e t o t h o s e w h o d o not happen t o b e p r e s e n t , o r e v e n m e n t i o n i n g i t a f t e r w a r d s , unless they hear s o m e particular inquiries have been made. It b e a m s with v a r ious magnitudes. S o m e t i m e s i t i s s m a l l , r e s e m b l i n g the l i g h t t h r o u g h a d i s t a n t w i n d o w , a t o t h e r s e x p a n d i n g t o the h i g h n e s s o f a s h i p w i t h a l l h e r c a n v a s s p r e a d . T h e b l a z e actually e m i t s luminous r a y s T h e c a u s e o f t h i s ' r o v i n g b r i g h t n e s s ' i s a c u r i o u s subject f o r p h i l o s o p h i c a l speculation. S o m e , p e r h a p s , w i l l s u p p o s e i t d e p e n d s upon a p e c u l i a r m o d i f i c a t i o n o f e l e c t r i c i t y ; o t h e r s upon the i n f l a m m a t i o n o f p h l o g o g i s t o u s ( s i c ) g a s . ( p . 91) T h e P a l a t i n e L i g h t h a s b e e n s e e n b y m a n y r e l i a b l e p e o p l e through the y e a r s . I t s n a m e c o m e s f r o m that o f a s h i p that m e t a f i e r y d o o m o f f B l o c k I s l a n d . T h e tale of the P a l a t i n e l i g h t a p p a r e n t l y h a s m u c h i n c o m m o n w i t h g h o s t s t o r i e s .

GLN-002

PSYCHOLOGICAL ASPECTS OF THE WELSH REVIVAL

F r y e r , A . T . ; P r o c e e d i n g s o f the S o c i e t y f o r P s y c h i c a l R e s e a r c h , 1 9 : 8 0 - 1 6 1 , 1905. — D u r i n g the g r e a t W e l s h r e l i g i o u s r e v i v a l o f 1 9 0 4 - 1 9 0 5 , s t r a n g e l i g h t s w e r e s e e n along with other curious phenomena. A . T . F r y e r ' s c l a s s i c study o f the r e v i v a l p r o v i d e s m a n y f a s c i n a t i n g c a s e h i s t o r i e s a s w e l l a s h i s o w n thoughtful c o m m e n t s . I n t i m e s o f g r e a t e m o t i o n a l s t r e s s , p e o p l e s e n s e s t r a n g e t h i n g s , and d o s t r a n g e things, t o o . T h i s p s y c h i c d i m e n s i o n i s p a r t o f the p r o b l e m perhaps in some p h y s i c a l p h e n o m e n a a s w e l l a s i n the p s y c h i c a l r e a l m . C e r t a i n l y s o m e o f the t h i n g s s e e n d u r i n g t o r n a d o e s and e a r t h q u a k e s s t r o n g l y r e s e m b l e t h o s e s e e n d u r i n g the W e l s h r e v i v a l , a s the f o l l o w i n g c a s e h i s t o r i e s w i l l d e m o n s t r a t e . I t should a l s o b e p o i n t e d out that the S o c i e t y f o r P s y c h i c a l R e s e a r c h d u r i n g F r y e r ' s day e n j o y e d the s u p p o r t o f m a n y o f E n g l a n d ' s m o s t p r o m i n e n t m e n o f s c i e n c e . First, F r y e r ' s g e n e r a l c o m m e n t s o n the W e l s h " l i g h t s " :

Gl-149

GLN-002

N O C T U R N A L LIGHTS

I n o w c o m e t o that p a r t o f the s u b j e c t w h i c h h a s p e r h a p s c a u s e d m o r e e x c i t e m e n t i n the p u b l i c m i n d than any o t h e r f e a t u r e o f the R e v i v a l . A l l my r e a d e r s m u s t h a v e h e a r d o f the m y s t e r i o u s l i g h t s i n M e r i o n e t h s h i r e a s s o c i a t e d w i t h the n a m e o f M r s . J o n e s o f I s l a w r f f o r d d , n e a r D y f f r y n . This good lady i s , I a m t o l d , a v e r y s i m p l e , q u i e t p e r s o n , w h o s e l i f e until r e c e n t l y h a s b e e n passed in obscurity. S o m e t i m e a g o she r e a d S h e l d o n ' s b o o k , I n H i s S t e p s , and w a s much m o v e d by it. She d e t e r m i n e d t o w o r k f o r the s p i r i t u a l g o o d o f h e r n e i g h b o u r s , and she b e g a n h e r m i n i s t r y e a r l y i n D e c e m b e r , 1904. The story i s that she i s attended b y l i g h t s o f v a r i o u s k i n d s w h e r e v e r she g o e s , and a s I s h a l l s h o w p r e s e n t l y , t h e r e i s m o r e i n t h i s p e r s o n a l a t t e n t i o n than m i g h t b e supposed. I a m s p a r e d the n e c e s s i t y o f g i v i n g m i n u t e d e t a i l s , s i n c e M r . B e r i a h G . E v a n s , a C a r n a r v o n j o u r n a l i s t , h a s t a k e n c a r e t o i n f o r m the w o r l d a s t o the l i g h t s , and h i s a c c o u n t o f what h e and o t h e r s h a v e s e e n m a y b e r e a d i n T h e O c c u l t R e v i e w f o r M a r c h , A p r i l , and June, 1905. T h e n u m b e r s a r e i n the S . P . R . Library. I t i s i m p o r t a n t t o n o t i c e that the c o a s t i n the n e i g h b o u r h o o d o f D y f f r y n h a s b e e n f a v o u r e d o r d i s f a v o u r e d w i t h l i g h t s o f m a n y s h a p e s and s i z e s i n f o r m e r times. P e n n a n t i n h i s T o u r i n W a l e s g i v e s a full a c c o u n t o f the a p p e a r a n c e s o f m i s c h i e v o u s b l u e f l a m e s that a l a r m e d p e o p l e and did m a t e r i a l d a m a g e n e a r H a r l e c h i n 1694, L i g h t s o f a b l u e c o l o u r a p p e a r e d a l s o i n the n e i g h b o u r h o o d o f P w l l h e l i i n 1875, and the p u b l i c a t i o n o f M r . P i c t o n - J o n e s ' account o f what h e then s a w e l i c i t e d f r o m a c o r r e s p o n d e n t the r e l a t i o n o f a s i m i l a r o c c u r r e n c e i n 1869 o r 1870. A g a i n i n 1877 l i g h t s o f v a r i o u s c o l o u r s w e r e s e e n m o v i n g o v e r the e s t u a r y o f the D y s y n n i . T h r o u g h the k i n d n e s s o f the e d i t o r o f the O s w e s t r y A d v e r t i z e r I h a v e r e c e i v e d the e x t r a c t s f r o m h i s " B y e - g o n e s " c o l u m n s , w h i c h g i v e the n o t e s o n l i g h t s f o r the t h r e e y e a r s 1869, 1876, and 1877. These are quoted in my Appendix (16). I a m not s a t i s f i e d w i t h the i n v e s t i g a t i o n s that h a v e t a k e n p l a c e , and I think now as I d i d at the f i r s t , that the S o c i e t y m i g h t w e l l e m p l o y a g e o l o g i c a l e x p e r t t o g o o v e r the d i s t r i c t and d i s c o v e r , i f p o s s i b l e , what c o n d i t i o n s a r e p r e s e n t f a v o u r a b l e t o the natural p r o d u c t i o n o f i n c a n d e s c e n t v a p o u r s . M r . B e r n a r d B . R e d w o o d (son o f the w e l l - k n o w n s c i e n t i f i c e x p e r t , S i r B o v e r t o n R e d w o o d ) w a s sent d o w n b y the D a i l y M a i l i n F e b r u a r y , 1905, but h i s r e p o r t , w h i c h I g i v e i n the A p p e n d i x (17) i s not t o b e c o n c l u s i v e . He planned h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n on the s u p p o s i t i o n of e l e c t r i c a l d i s t u r b a n c e , and I am not s u r p r i s e d that h e w a s d i s a p p o i n t e d a t t h e r e s u l t . He says, with m o r e a p p r o x i m a t i o n t o what I think i s the c a u s e o f s o m e o f the l i g h t s , that i t i s j u s t p o s s i b l e that t h e r e m a y h a v e b e e n s o m e l i g h t s c a u s e d b y spontaneous i g n i t i o n o f p h o s p h u r e t t e d h y d r o g e n g e n e r a t e d i n the m a r s h a t E g r y n and d i s t o r t e d b y m i s t . H e adds that " M e t h a n e o r m a r s h g a s i s n e v e r s e l f - i g n i t e d , and m a y b e l e f t out o f the q u e s t i o n . " W i t h h i s p e r s o n a l o p i n i o n o f M r s . J o n e s I a m not d i s p o s e d t o a g r e e ; but g r a n t i n g i t s truth, w e h a v e s t i l l t o r e c k o n w i t h the w i t n e s s e s I shall q u o t e a s t o the r e a l i t y o f both s u b j e c t i v e and o b j e c t i v e l i g h t s . The evidence r e c e i v e d I p r o c e e d t o g i v e , f i r s t , h o w e v e r , s t a t i n g m y c o n v i c t i o n that M e r i o n e t h s h i r e h a s b e e n the s c e n e o f l a t e o f a l a r g e amount o f e x a g g e r a t i o n and m i s c o n c e p t i o n , and p e r h a p s t r i c k e r y . But h a v i n g m a d e alt a l l o w a n c e f o r p e r s o n s who mistook m e t e o r s , brightly-shining planets, f a r m lanterns, railway signals, and b o d i e s o f i g n i t e d g a s e s f o r t o k e n s o f h e a v e n l y a p p r o v a l o f M r s . J o n e s and the R e v i v a l , t h e r e r e m a i n s u f f i c i e n t i n s t a n c e s o f a b n o r m a l p h e n o m e n a t o e n courage further inquiry. Evidence of misapprehensions I have r e c e i v e d .
1

A v i c a r i n the n e i g h b o u r h o o d has sent m e the f o l l o w i n g : " A v e r y r e l i a b l e man i n f o r m e d m e that one m o r n i n g l a s t w e e k [in F e b r u a r y , 1905] o n l o o k i n g out t h r o u g h h i s b e d r o o m w i n d o w about 6 a . m . h e s a w s o m e r e m a r k a b l e l i g h t s r i s i n g o v e r the m a r s h i n d i c a t i n g a w a v e , b l u i s h c o l o u r , and a s c e n d i n g u p i n t o the T h i s r e p o r t w a s not p u b l i s h e d i n the D a i l y M a i l , but M r . R e d w o o d kindly sent a copy of it to u s . — E d i t o r .

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h e a v e n s and v a n i s h i n g a w a y , but h e d i d not i n any w a y c o n n e c t t h e l i g h t w i t h the R e v i v a l i n any s h a p e o r f o r m . " C o r r e s p o n d e n t s f r o m w h o m I have m a n a g e d to obtain e v i d e n c e r e l a t e v a r i o u s experiences. M r s . J o n e s o f I s l a w r f f o r d d w r o t e o n J a n u a r y 16th, 1905: " I h a v e s e e n [the l i g h t ] e v e r y night f r o m the b e g i n n i n g o f the R e v i v a l about s i x w e e k s ago. S o m e t i m e s i t a p p e a r s l i k e a m o t o r - c a r l a m p f l a s h i n g and g o i n g out, and i n j u r e s nothing a t a l l ; o t h e r t i m e s l i k e t w o l a m p s and t o n g u e s o f f i r e a l l r o u n d t h e m , g o i n g out i n o n e p l a c e and l i g h t n i n g a g a i n i n a n o t h e r p l a c e f a r o f f s o m e t i m e s ; o t h e r t i m e s a q u i c k f l a s h and g o i n g out i m m e d i a t e l y , and when the f i r e g o e s out a v a p o u r o f s m o k e c o m e s i n i t s p l a c e ; a l s o a r a i n b o w o f v a p o u r and a v e r y b r i g h t s t a r . " She s a i d that the l i g h t s w e r e a l w a y s s e e n out o f d o o r s , and a t about s i x o ' c l o c k i n the e v e n i n g . I a s k e d i f t h e y had b e e n s e e n b y a n y o n e w h o had not b e e n c o n v e r t e d , and the a n s w e r w a s " Y e s . " A m a n at D o l g a u s a y s (January 25th, 1 9 0 5 ) : " W e h a v e not s e e n it n o w f o r a fortnight. W e s a w i t f o r e i g h t nights s o m e t i m e b a c k a t about 1 1 o ' c l o c k . W e w e r e a f t e r w a r d s a w e e k without s e e i n g i t , and then w e s a w i t o n c e m o r e . . . . I t w a s v e r y l i k e the l i g h t o f a l a m p , but not s o b r i g h t , and a p p e a r e d t o m e t o m o v e gradually. Once I saw it m o v e swiftly. It was in a p l a c e w h e r e t h e r e w a s no l i g h t t o b e . I t a p p e a r e d v e r y l o w d o w n , a l o n g the g r o u n d , I should think. " I n r e p l y t o q u e r i e s h e s a y s that the c o l o u r w a s a w e a k w h i t e l i g h t , a l w a y s v e r y m u c h t h e s a m e ; i t a p p e a r e d a t f i r s t a c c i d e n t a l l y , i t w a s not e x p e c t e d . There is a d i t c h running t h r o u g h a r a v i n e n e a r t h e s p o t . A n o t h e r c o r r e s p o n d e n t s a y s that o n l y o n c e d i d h e s e e the l i g h t , o n J a n u a r y 2nd, 1905. " I t w a s h o v e r i n g a b o v e a c e r t a i n f a r m h o u s e , and i t a p p e a r e d t o m e a s t h r e e l a m p s about t h r e e y a r d s a p a r t , i n the shape o f a P r i n c e o f W a l e s ' s f e a t h e r s , v e r y b r i l l i a n t and d a z z l i n g , m o v i n g and j u m p i n g l i k e a s e a - w a v e u n d e r the i n f l u e n c e o f the sun o n a v e r y hot d a y . T h e l i g h t continued s o f o r t e n m i n u t e s . A l l m y f a m i l y s a w i t the s a m e t i m e . I t w a s 10. 4 0 p . m . a t the t i m e . " M y q u e s t i o n s w e r e t r e a t e d b y h i m a s e v i d e n c e o f u t t e r u n b e l i e f , and r e p e a t e d r e q u e s t s f o r farther i n f o r m a t i o n m e t with r e f u s a l s . A y o u n g w o m a n o f s o m e e d u c a t i o n w r o t e ( F e b r u a r y 4th, 1905): " I s a w t h e l i g h t y o u r e f e r t o o n e night i n the b e g i n n i n g o f J a n u a r y [ b e t w e e n 1 0 and 10. 3 0 p . m . ] . A t f i r s t I s a w t w o v e r y b r i g h t l i g h t s , about h a l f a m i l e a w a y " [it w a s b e t w e e n D y f f r y n and L l a n b e d r ] , " o n e a b i g w h i t e l i g h t , the o t h e r s m a l l e r and red in colour. T h e l a t t e r f l a s h e d b a c k w a r d s and f o r w a r d s , and f i n a l l y s e e m e d t o b e c o m e m e r g e d i n the o t h e r . Then all was darkness again. I t did not a p p e a r i n the s a m e p l a c e a g a i n , but a f e w m i n u t e s a f t e r w e s a w a n o t h e r l i g h t w h i c h s e e m e d t o b e a f e w y a r d s a b o v e the g r o u n d . I t n o w l o o k e d l i k e one b i g f l a m e , and a l l around i t s e e m e d l i k e o n e b i g g l a r e o f l i g h t . I t f l a m e d u p and w e n t out a l t e r n a t e l y f o r about t e n m i n u t e s , v e r y m u c h i n the s a m e w a y a s s o m e l i g h t houses. " I t i s p r o b a b l e that the t w o p e r s o n s w h o s e a c c o u n t s I h a v e just g i v e n s a w the s a m e light f r o m different points of v i e w . O n D e c e m b e r 22nd, 1904, a t 5 . 1 8 p . m . , a n o t h e r deponent s a w , i n c o m p a n y w i t h t w o o t h e r p e r s o n s , a l a r g e l i g h t "about h a l f w a y f r o m the e a r t h t o t h e s k y , o n the south s i d e o f C a p e l E g r y n , and i n the m i d d l e o f i t s o m e t h i n g l i k e [ a ] b o t t l e o r b l a c k p e r s o n , a l s o s o m e l i t t l e l i g h t s s c a t t e r i n g around the l a r g e l i g h t in many c o l o u r s . L a s t o f a l l the w h o l e t h i n g c a m e t o a l a r g e p i e c e o f f o g , out of sight." T h e l i g h t s s e e n i n July w e r e , I b e l i e v e , not any o f t h e m due t o e x t r a n e o u s physical causes. I f they a r e c a l l e d s u b j e c t i v e , the t e r m m u s t b e h e l d o n l y t o b e e q u i v a l e n t t o a n o p e r a t i o n w i t h i n the p h y s i c a l l i m i t s o f the p e r c i p i e n t s , and the l i g h t s m u s t b e c o n s i d e r e d i n r e l a t i o n t o the sounds and c h a n g e s o f b o d i l y t e m -

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\ . p e r a t u r e e x p e r i e n c e d b y s e v e r a l p e r s o n s e l s e w h e r e a s r e l a t e d i n t h i s p a p e r and Appendix. I n t h e a s c e n d i n g s c a l e o f v i b r a t i o n s the o r d e r i s sound, h e a t , and light w a v e s . I s i t p r o b a b l e that p e r s o n s a f f e c t e d b y such s t i m u l i a s the R e v i v a l p r o v i d e d h e a r d , f e l t , o r s a w a c c o r d i n g l y (1) t o t h e i n t e n s i t y o f t h e s t i m u l u s i n e a c h c a s e , and ( 2 ) t o t h e s u s c e p t i b i l i t y o f the p e r c i p i e n t ? I f o n e m a n ' s m e n t a l organs w e r e excited to a certain d e g r e e , he would hear a v o i c e ; if to higher d e g r e e , he would e x p e r i e n c e a v i s i o n ; e i t h e r operation, h o w e v e r , being e n t i r e l y w i t h i n t h e b r a i n o f the s u b j e c t . I a d v a n c e the t h e o r y o f p h y s i c a l v i b r a t o r y o p e r a t i o n w i t h c o n s i d e r a b l e h e s i t a t i o n , and o n l y b e c a u s e I a m not s a t i s f i e d w i t h t h e p r o p o s a l t o a t t r i b u t e t h e o c c u r r e n c e s e i t h e r t o d i s e a s e d i m a g i n a t i o n ( i f b y that t e r m is meant a s p e c i e s of s e l f - d e c e p t i o n ) or to s o m e mental operation apart o r d i s t i n c t f r o m the o r g a n i s m b y w h i c h the m i n d w o r k s . I f a s h a r p b l o w upon a c e r t a i n p o r t i o n o f the h e a d c a u s e s a m a n t o " s e e s t a r s , " m a y i t not b e p o s s i b l e f o r a m e n t a l s t i m u l u s f r o m without t o a c t i n a s i m i l a r w a y ? W h e n i t i s known h o w mind can affect mind at a d i s t a n c e it w i l l be p o s s i b l e , p e r h a p s , to e x p l a i n the o p e r a t i o n w i t h i n a m a n ' s s e l f w h i c h i n t e r p r e t s s t i m u l i now a s sound, now as heat, or again in v i s i o n . M y c h i e f c o n c e r n h e r e i s t o a s k that the t h r e e kinds o f e x p e r i e n c e s m a y b e e x a m i n e d i n c o r r e l a t i o n and a l l o f t h e m w i t h due r e g a r d t o the a s c e r t a i n e d l a w s o f v i b r a t i o n and m o d e s o f e n e r g y . The theory m a y b e put thus: A g e n t , e x e r c i s i n g i n f l u e n c e and s u g g e s t i n g f o r m . R e c i p i e n t o f m e n t a l s t i m u l u s w h o s e b r a i n t r a n s l a t e s the m e s s a g e i n t o sound, h e a t , o r l i g h t f o r m a c c o r d i n g t o i t s o w n c a p a c i t y o f m o t i o n . I n t h i s i n q u i r y t h e p h y s i c a l and the p s y c h i c a l cannot s a f e l y b e d i s s e v e r e d , h o w e v e r n e c e s s a r y i t m a y b e t o s p e c i a l i s e f o r the s a k e o f a d e q u a t e r e s e a r c h . F r y e r ' s A p p e n d i x b e g i n s w i t h a c c o u n t s o f l i g h t s s e e n p r i o r t o the r e v i v a l . The following accounts of p r e v i o u s appearances of lights at various places a l o n g the c o a s t o f T r e m a d o c B a y a r e t a k e n f r o m B y e - G o n e s ( a s e r i e s o f n o t e s o n a n t i q u a r i a n s u b j e c t s w h i c h a p p e a r s w e e k l y i n the B o r d e r C o u n t i e s A d v e r t i z e r , O s w e s t r y , and i s r e p r i n t e d i n q u a r t e r l y p a r t s ) , t h e e x t r a c t s h a v i n g b e e n k i n d l y f u r n i s h e d t o m e b y the e d i t o r : F r o m " B y e - G o n e s , " M a r c h 1865 ( p . 1 9 8 ) . M r . P i c t o n - J o n e s has b e e n kind enough t o a d d r e s s t o u s the f o l l o w i n g l e t t e r , i n r e s p o n s e t o the r e q u e s t w h i c h w e m a d e l a s t w e e k f o r f u r t h e r i n f o r m a t i o n : " Y o k e H o u s e , P w l l h e l i , 2nd M a r c h , 1875. The curious lights appeared a g a i n o n Sunday n i g h t . W e s a w t w e l v e a t the s a m e t i m e ; t w o w e r e v e r y b r i g h t , the o n e o f a r e d , the o t h e r o f a b l u e c o l o u r . T h e y w e r e inland, the s a m e a s b e f o r e , but f r o m what w e c o u l d o b s e r v e t h e y d i d not c o n f i n e t h e m s e l v e s t o m a r s h y g r o u n d , although a t f i r s t t h e y s e e m e d t o r i s e f r o m the g r o u n d w h e r e w e k n e w t h e r e w e r e s w a m p s . I t w a s a v e r y d a r k and f o g g y night, and m y b r o t h e r , m y son P e r c y , m y k e e p e r and I w e n t out about a m i l e t o s e e i f w e c o u l d g e t n e a r t h e m . When we had g o n e about h a l f a m i l e w e o b s e r v e d f o u r o r f i v e b e h i n d u s . W e w e n t t o the f a r m a d j o i n i n g , and c a l l e d t h e i r a t t e n t i o n t o t h e m . M r s . P i c t o n - J o n e s and t w o s e r v a n t s w a t c h e d t h e m f o r a n h o u r and a half, and had, f r o m t h e i r d e s c r i p t i o n , a b e t t e r v i e w than w e had, a s w e w e r e o c c a s i o n a l l y i n h o l l o w s . On our w a y h o m e f r o m B r y n t a n i f a r m w e s a w a b r i g h t l i g h t a t Y o k e H o u s e , w h i c h w e a l l thought w a s a l a m p put out t o d i r e c t u s h o m e , the night b e i n g s o d a r k and o u r c o u r s e a c r o s s country. T h e other servants by this t i m e , having c o m e h o m e f r o m church and c h a p e l , w e r e w a t c h i n g the c u r i o u s a n t i c s o f the l i g h t s . I should m e n t i o n that we c a m e to banks or d i t c h e s . T h o s e a t Y o k e H o u s e s a w the s a m e l i g h t , and thought i t w a s o u r l a m p , but w e r e a l l m i s t a k e n , a s , when w e g o t w i t h i n about 200 y a r d s o f o u r pond, the l i g h t t u r n e d i n t o a d e e p b l u e c o l o u r and d i s a p p e a r e d . In A. B.

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front o f the o t h e r p o o l t h e r e a r e s o m e s h e d s , and o n e l i g h t that had a p p e a r e d b e f o r e w e s t a r t e d s e e m e d t o g o i n and out, round t h e c o r n e r , o n t o t h e c a r t h o r s e s t a b l e , round i t s g a b l e end, t h e n o n t o t h e b a r n , e x a c t l y t h e s a m e a s i f i t w e r e a h u m a n b e i n g , w i t h t h e e x c e p t i o n o f r i s i n g t o such a h e i g h t that e v e n ' T a l l A g r i p p a ' c o u l d not c o m e u p t o i t . T h e i r m o v e m e n t s and t h e d i s t a n c e w h i c h t h e y s p r e a d w e r e the s a m e a s d e s c r i b e d b e f o r e . O u r h o u s e i s about t h r e e - q u a r t e r s o f a m i l e f r o m t h e C a r d i g a n B a y , and t h e p r o m o n t o r y i s about s e v e n m i l e s a s t h e crow flies. L a s t n i g h t they did not a p p e a r , but w e s a w s e v e r a l f l a s h e s o f l i g h t ning. l a m , s i r , y o u r obedient servant, G . T . P i c t o n - J o n e s . " (Cambrian News). F r o m " B y e - G o n e s , " M a r c h , 1875 ( p . 2 1 0 ) . " H a v i n g r e a d t h e account b y M r . P i c t o n - J o n e s o f t h e s t r a n g e l i g h t s s e e n b y h i m n e a r P w l l h e l i , I b e g t o s a y that I w i t n e s s e d a v e r y s i m i l a r p h e n o m e n o n o n the m a r s h y ground near Borth. Some five or six y e a r s ago, owing to an accident on t h e C a m b r i a n R a i l w a y , I had t o p o s t f r o m M a c h y n l l e t h t o the n e i g h b o u r h o o d o f T o w y n , w h e r e I w a s then r e s i d i n g . I t w o u l d then b e about 1 2 o ' c l o c k p . m . when I c a m e i n s i g h t o f t h e l o w g r o u n d and sandy dunes b e t w e e n B o r t h and t h e D o v e y , the night b e i n g p e r f e c t l y c l e a r and s t i l l and t h e s t a r s shining, w h e n , t o m y a s t o n i s h m e n t , I s a w f o u r o r f i v e l i g h t s m o v i n g a p p a r e n t l y o n t h e sand h i l l s n e a r the f a r m o f Y n y s l a s . I c a l l e d the p o s t - b o y ' s a t t e n t i o n t o t h e m , and n e v e r did I s e e a m a n so p a r a l y s e d w i t h f r i g h t : I thought he w o u l d h a v e f a l l e n o f f the b o x , and t h e p e r s p i r a t i o n , a s I c o u l d s e e b y the l i g h t o f t h e l a m p s , f a i r l y r a n d o w n h i s face. He evidently considered them of supernatural o r i g i n , as he told me an incoherent story of a boat's c r e w of shipwrecked f o r e i g n e r s having been murdered w h e n t h e y c a m e a s h o r e t h e r e m a n y y e a r s a g o (upon f u r t h e r i n q u i r y I found t h e r e w a s s o m e t r a d i t i o n o f the s o r t ) . H o w e v e r , t h e r e the l i g h t s w e r e , m o v i n g about in a sort of a i m l e s s way until, as near as I can r e m e m b e r , we r e a c h e d within a m i l e o r t w o o f A b e r d o v e y . T h e y w e r e w h i t e , and about the s i z e and b r i l l i a n c y o f the l a m p s c a r r i e d b y r a i l w a y g u a r d s and p o r t e r s . T h e r e is yet another phenomenon o f w h i c h n o s a t i s f a c t o r y e x p l a n a t i o n h a s e v e r y e t b e e n g i v e n . O n t h e 24th o f S e p t e m b e r , 1854 ( I r e f e r t o m y g a m e b o o k o f that y e a r ) , a f r i e n d w a s s h o o t i n g w i t h m e a t H e r e f o r d s h i r e . T h e d a y w a s p e r f e c t l y s t i l l , the sky c l o u d l e s s , w h e n sounds l i k e d i s c h a r g e s o f h e a v y a r t i l l e r y c a m e f r o m the w e s t , w h i c h , s t r i k i n g a g a i n s t a r a n g e o f w o o d e d h i l l s running north and south u n d e r w h i c h we w e r e shooting, made most wonderfully distinct e c h o e s . T h e s e d i s c h a r g e s , or w h a t e v e r they w e r e , continued f o r s e v e r a l hours at r e g u l a r i n t e r v a l s of about t w o m i n u t e s . Since then s i m i l a r sounds h a v e b e e n h e a r d t w o o r t h r e e t i m e s ( j u d g i n g f r o m the t e t t e r s t o the p a p e r s ) , and p r i n c i p a l l y b y p e r s o n s l i v i n g i n C a r d i g a n s h i r e , but t h e i r o r i g i n has n e v e r y e t , s o f a r a s I c a n s e e , b e e n d i s covered. " P s y c h o l o g i c a l A s p e c t s o f the W e l s h R e v i v a l . T h e f o l l o w i n g p a r a g r a p h i s t a k e n f r o m the W e s t e r n M a i l o f M a r c h 13th, 1905: " M y s t e r i o u s lights w e r e seen i n W a l e s b e f o r e this y e a r o f r e v i v a l . H e r e i s a n o l d e x t r a c t : 1694. A p r i l 2 2 . ' A f i e r y e x h a l a t i o n r i s i n g out o f the s e a o p e n e d i t s e l f i n M o n t g o m e r y s h i r e a f u r l o n g b r o a d and m a n y m i l e s i n l e n g t h , b u r n i n g a l l s t r a w , h a y , t h a t c h , and g r a s s , but d o i n g n o h a r m t o t r e e s , t i m b e r , o r any s o l i d t h i n g s , o n l y f i r i n g b a r n s o r thatched h o u s e s . I t l e f t such a taint o n the g r a s s e a s t o k i l l a l l the c a t t l e that e a t e o f i t . I s a w the a t t e s t a t i o n s i n the hands o f t h e s u f f e r e r s . I t l a s t e d m a n y m o n t h s . ' F r o m M e m o i r s o f E v e l y n (1819 edition). A l s o i n the P o w y s - L a n d P a p e r s f o r 1883. " E x t r a c t f r o m P e n n a n t ' s T o u r i n W a l e s , V o l . I I . , p . 372, e d . 1810: " W i n t e r o f 1694. A pestilential vapour r e s e m b l i n g a weak blue f l a m e

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a r o s e d u r i n g a f o r t n i g h t o r t h r e e w e e k s out o f a s a n d y , m a r s h y t r a c t c a l l e d M o r f a B y d e n , and c r o s s e d o v e r a c h a n n e l o f 8 m i l e s t o H a r l e c h . I t s e t f i r e o n that s i d e t o 1 6 r i c k s o f hay and 2 b a r n s , o n e f i l l e d w i t h h a y , t h e o t h e r w i t h c o r n . I t i n f e c t e d the g r a s s i n such a m a n n e r that c a t t l e , e t c . , d i e d , y e t m e n e a t o f it with impunity. I t w a s e a s i l y d i s p e l l e d : any g r e a t n o i s e , sounding o f h o r n s , discharging of guns, at once r e p e l l e d it. M o v e d o n l y b y night, and a p p e a r e d a t t i m e s , but l e s s f r e q u e n t l y ; a f t e r t h i s i t d i s a p p e a r e d . " A p p e n d i x 17. I n v e s t i g a t i o n o f r e p o r t e d p h e n o m e n a l l i g h t s i n N o r t h W a l e s . F e b r u a r y 21st, 1905. In accordance with instructions, I p r o c e e d e d to B a r m o u t h o n M o n d a y , F e b r u a r y 13th, a r r i v i n g t h e r e a t 6 . 5 0 a . m . o n T u e s d a y the 14th, w i t h the o b j e c t o f i n v e s t i g a t i n g a r e p o r t t h a t - m y s t e r i o u s l i g h t s had b e e n s e e n o n the h i l l s i d e s a b o v e E g r y n , w h i c h i s a l i t t l e v i l l a g e about f o u r miles from Barmouth. I w a s accompanied by an assistant to help with the i n s t a l l a t i o n and w o r k i n g o f the e l e c t r i c a l a p p a r a t u s . T h i s apparatus c o n s i s t e d o f a n e l e c t r i c a l c o l l e c t o r r a i s e d 2 0 f e e t a b o v e the g r o u n d o n a p o l e and s u p p o r t e d on an insulator. A t t a c h e d t o t h i s c o l l e c t o r w a s a p h o s p h o r - b r o n z e w i r e about 300 y a r d s i n l e n g t h and c a r r i e d o n p o r c e l a i n i n s u l a t o r s . T h i s w i r e constituted the p o s i t i v e e l e c t r i c l e a d , and i n t h e c i r c u i t I p l a c e d a g a l v a n o m e t e r and a t e l e phone r e c e i v e r , w h i c h l a t t e r i s the m o s t s e n s i t i v e i n d i c a t o r o f a b n o r m a l a t m o s pheric e l e c t r i c a l conditions. I a l s o p l a c e d a d e l i c a t e c o m p a s s b e t w e e n the g a l v a n o m e t e r and the t e l e p h o n e r e c e i v e r w h e r e i t w o u l d i n s t a n t l y r e s p o n d t o the s l i g h t e s t e l e c t r i c a l i n f l u e n c e ; the n e g a t i v e p o l e s o f t h e s e i n s t r u m e n t s w e r e w e l l " e a r t h e d . " O n t e s t i n g t h i s l i n e w i t h a s i n g l e s m a l l d r y c e l l , a l l the i n s t r u m e n t s responded. I spent the g r e a t e r p a r t o f the day o f the 14th i n i n v e s t i g a t i n g l o c a l r e p o r t s and i n s u r v e y i n g the g r o u n d w h e r e the l i g h t s w e r e r e p o r t e d t o h a v e b e e n s e e n . I v i s i t e d the l o c a l t e l e p h o n e and t e l e g r a p h s t a t i o n s , and i n q u i r e d i f t h e i n s t r u m e n t s t h e r e had b e e n i n t e r f e r e d w i t h b y a t m o s p h e r i c e l e c t r i c i t y . In no instance w a s t h i s t h e c a s e , although the m e n i n c h a r g e t o l d m e that i n c o n s e q u e n c e o f the p r e s e n c e o f a l a r g e sun spot t h e y had r e c e i v e d o r d e r s t o pay s p e c i a l a t t e n t i o n t o the w o r k i n g o f the i n s t r u m e n t s . I then i n q u i r e d i f t h e r e w a s a " M a r c o n i S t a t i o n " in the n e i g h b o u r h o o d , but I l e a r n t that the n e a r e s t o n e w a s at H o l y h e a d . It o c c u r r e d t o m e that the l i g h t s m i g h t h a v e b e e n due t o a d i s c h a r g e o f what i s known a s " g l o b u l a r l i g h t n i n g , " but this f o r m o f e l e c t r i c a l d i s t u r b a n c e i s u s u a l l y a c c o m p a n i e d b y a n e x p l o s i o n , and m u c h d a m a g e i s d o n e i n the v i c i n i t y . A careful e x a m i n a t i o n o f t h e h i l l s i d e f a i l e d t o s h o w any s i g n s o f t h i s . I e r e c t e d m y a p p a r a t u s o n the h i l l s i d e o n t h e spot w h e r e the l i g h t s w e r e r e p o r t e d t o h a v e b e e n s e e n , and r e m a i n e d b y i t f o r m a n y h o u r s o f d a r k n e s s w i t h out o b s e r v i n g the s l i g h t e s t d e f l e c t i o n o f the i n s t r u m e n t s o r s e e i n g anything a b n o r m a l , w i t h the e x c e p t i o n o f t w o b r i l l i a n t f l a s h e s t o w a r d s the n o r t h . These, I a f t e r w a r d s l e a r n t , w e r e due t o a n a t t e m p t o n the p a r t o f s o m e n e w s p a p e r c o r r e s p o n d e n t s t o p h o t o g r a p h the c h a p e l b y f l a s h l i g h t . W e d n e s d a y , 15th F e b r u a r y . O n m y b e h a l f M r . D i l n o t w i r e d M r . J o n e s o f D y f f r y n t o ask f o r t h e w h e r e a b o u t s o f h i s w i f e , w h o w a s r e p o r t e d t o b e the originator of these lights. M r s . Jones u n e x p e c t e d l y returned to D y f f r y n , so I p r o c e e d e d t h e r e and i n t e r v i e w e d h e r . This interview was unsatisfactory; it is o b v i o u s t o m e that the w o m a n i s a r e l i g i o u s m a n i a c , and that n o r e l i a n c e c a n b e p l a c e d o n h e r s t a t e m e n t s , w h i c h w e r e v a g u e and i n d e f i n i t e . Another long night w a t c h r e s u l t e d i n nothing. I certainly saw s e v e r a l lights which might have a p p e a r e d t o b e a b n o r m a l t o the o v e r w r o u g h t i m a g i n a t i o n , but w h e n r e s o l v e d b y a p o w e r f u l p r i s m a t i c night f i e l d g l a s s w h i c h I had w i t h m e t u r n e d out t o b e f a r m lanterns. O n T h u r s d a y , F e b r u a r y 16th, I r e t u r n e d h o m e v i a P o r t m a d o c , w h e r e M r s . J o n e s had b e e n p r e a c h i n g , i n o r d e r t o i n v e s t i g a t e the l o c a l r e p o r t s . Here

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again I failed to obtain one s i n g l e definite statement by an e y e - w i t n e s s . C o n c l u s i o n . I t i s just p o s s i b l e that t h e r e m a y h a v e b e e n s o m e l i g h t s c a u s e d b y s p o n t a n e o u s i g n i t i o n o f p h o s p h u r e t t e d h y d r o g e n g e n e r a t e d i n the m a r s h a t E g r y n and d i s t o r t e d b y m i s t , although I n e v e r s a w a n y . Methane, or marsh g a s , i s n e v e r s e l f - i g n i t e d , and m a y b e l e f t out o f the q u e s t i o n . The presence o f a t m o s p h e r i c e l e c t r i c i t y I think I h a v e d i s p r o v e d . I n v i e w o f the f a c t that M r s . J o n e s s o l u m n l y stated t o m e that V e n u s , w h i c h w a s p a r t i c u l a r l y b r i l l i a n t a t that p e r i o d , w a s a n e w s t a r , had o n l y a p p e a r e d s i n c e the R e v i v a l , and w a s s i t u a t e d a s h o r t d i s t a n c e a b o v e h e r h o u s e , I think we may d i s m i s s these lights as phantasies of overwrought brains. Bernard B. Redwood. A p p e n d i x 18. F r o m M r . J. J., of D , M e r i o n e t h s h i r e . T h e o r i g i n a l account, which I r e c e i v e d i n J a n u a r y , 1905, i s i n W e l s h ; I g i v e h e r e a t r a n s l a t i o n o f i t : I n r e f e r e n c e t o the f i r e c o n c e r n i n g w h i c h y o u w r o t e t o m e . There are s e v e r al h e r e who have seen it in varying f o r m s s o m e t i m e s near Chapel E g r y n , s o m e t i m e s o n the r o o f t h e r e o f , and s o m e t i m e s s o m e h a l f m i l e o r m o r e f r o m the p l a c e . W h e n I s a w i t , i t w a s about h a l f a m i l e f r o m t h e c h a p e l and about a m i l e f r o m w h e r e I stood. T h a t w a s about 5 o ' c l o c k i n the e v e n i n g . The first f o r m in which i t a p p e a r e d t o m e w a s that o f a p i l l a r o f c l e a r f i r e q u i t e p e r p e n d i c u l a r . It was about 2 f e e t w i d e and about 3 y a r d s in h e i g h t . Suddenly a n o t h e r s m a l l f i r e b e g a n b y i t s s i d e s o m e 2 y a r d s distant f r o m the f i r s t p i l l a r . I t r a p i d l y i n c r e a s e d until i t a s s u m e d the s a m e m e a s u r e m e n t and f o r m a s t h e f i r s t . T h e n another small f i r e suddenly a r o s e o n the o t h e r s i d e o f the f i r s t p i l l a r , and i n c r e a s e d r a p i d l y until i t a s s u m e d t h e s a m e s i z e and f o r m a s the o t h e r t w o c o l u m n s . So there w e r e t h r e e p i l l a r s o f the s a m e s i z e and f o r m . A n d a s I g a z e d upon t h e m I s a w t w o a r m s o f f i r e e x t e n d i n g u p w a r d s f r o m the t o p o f e a c h o f the p i l l a r s . T h e t h r e e p i l l a r s and t h e i r a r m s a s s u m e d e x a c t l y the s a m e shape and r e m a i n e d s o f o r about a m i n u t e o r t w o . A s I l o o k e d t o w a r d s the sky I s a w s m o k e a s c e n d i n g f r o m the p i l l a r s , and i m m e d i a t e l y t h e y b e g a n t o d i s a p p e a r . Their disappearance w a s equally swift with t h e i r g r o w t h . It was a gradual d i s a p p e a r a n c e ; t h e f i r e b e c a m e s m a l l and w e n t out. I thought t h e y w e r e natural f i r e , but i t w a s a v e r y w o n d e r f u l f i r e . I n e v e r saw f i r e the s a m e as it in my l i f e t h r e e p i l l a r s o r c o l u m n s o f the s a m e m e a s u r e and o f e x a c t l y the s a m e s h a p e and e q u i d i s t a n t f r o m e a c h o t h e r . I d o not p r o p o s e t o o f f e r any kind o f e x p l a n a t i o n . I l e a v e that t o y o u . A p p e n d i x 19. F r o m M r . L. M . , of H . M a y 30, 1905. W i t h r e g a r d t o the l i g h t s which appear in this neighbourhood, perhaps one instance of my e x p e r i e n c e w i l l s u f f i c e . I h a v e b e e n a n e y e - w i t n e s s o f t h e m o n m o r e than o n e o c c a s i o n . I h a p p e n e d t o b e w i t h M r . B e r i a h E v a n s , C a r n a r v o n , o n that night, the r e p o r t o f w h i c h h a s b e e n g i v e n t o the w o r l d b y M r . E v a n s h i m s e l f . I can testify to the truth of the r e p o r t . T h e night w h i c h I a m g o i n g t o r e l a t e y o u m y e x p e r i e n c e w a s Saturday e v e n i n g , M a r c h 2 5 , 1905, w h e n M r s . J o n e s , the e v a n g e l i s t , o f E g r y n , w a s c o n d u c t i n g a s e r v i c e i n the C a l v i n i s t i c M e t h o d i s t C h a p e l a t L l a n f a i r , a p l a c e about a m i l e and h a l f f r o m H a r l e c h o n the m a i n r o a d b e t w e e n H a r l e c h and B a r m o u t h . M y w i f e and m y s e l f w e n t d o w n that night s p e c i a l l y t o s e e i f the l i g h t a c c o m panied M r s . Jones f r o m outside E g r y n . W e h a p p e n e d t o r e a c h L l a n f a i r about 9 . 1 5 p . m . I t w a s a r a t h e r d a r k and d a m p e v e n i n g . I n n e a r i n g the c h a p e l , w h i c h can b e s e e n f r o m a distance, w e saw b a l l s o f l i g h t , d e e p r e d , ascending f r o m one

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s i d e o f the c h a p e l , the s i d e w h i c h i s i n a f i e l d . T h e r e w a s nothing i n t h i s f i e l d to cause this phenomenon i . e . n o h o u s e s , e t c . A f t e r that w e w a l k e d t o and f r o o n the m a i n r o a d f o r n e a r l y t w o h o u r s w i t h o u t s e e i n g any l i g h t e x c e p t f r o m a d i s t a n c e i n the d i r e c t i o n o f L l a n b e d r . This t i m e it appeared brilliant, ascending h i g h i n t o the sky f r o m a m o n g s t the t r e e s w h e r e l i v e s the w e l l - k n o w n R e v . C . E . T h e d i s t a n c e b e t w e e n u s and the l i g h t w h i c h a p p e a r e d t h i s t i m e w a s about a m i l e . T h e n about e l e v e n o ' c l o c k , w h e n t h e s e r v i c e w h i c h M r s . J o n e s c o n d u c t e d w a s b r o u g h t t o a c l o s e , t w o b a l l s o f l i g h t a s c e n d e d f r o m t h e s a m e p l a c e and o f s i m i l a r appearance to those we saw first. In a few minutes afterwards M r s . Jones w a s p a s s i n g u s h o m e i n h e r c a r r i a g e , and i n a f e w s e c o n d s a f t e r s h e p a s s e d , o n the m a i n r o a d , and w i t h i n a y a r d o f u s , t h e r e a p p e a r e d a b r i l l i a n t l i g h t t w i c e , tinged with blue. In t w o or t h r e e seconds after this d i s a p p e a r e d , on our right hand, w i t h i n 150 o r 200 y a r d s , t h e r e a p p e a r e d t w i c e v e r y h u g e b a l l s o f s i m i l a r a p p e a r a n c e a s that w h i c h a p p e a r e d o n the r o a d . I t w a s s o b r i l l i a n t and p o w e r ful t h i s t i m e that w e w e r e d a z e d f o r a s e c o n d o r t w o . Then immediately there a p p e a r e d a b r i l l i a n t l i g h t a s c e n d i n g f r o m t h e w o o d s w h e r e the R e v . C . E . l i v e s . It appeared t w i c e this t i m e . O n the o t h e r s i d e o f the m a i n r o a d , c l o s e b y , t h e r e a p p e a r e d , a s c e n d i n g f r o m a f i e l d high i n t o the s k y , t h r e e b a l l s o f l i g h t , d e e p red. T w o o f t h e s e a p p e a r e d t o s p l i t up, w h i l s t the m i d d l e o n e r e m a i n e d u n c h a n g ed. Then we left f o r h o m e , having been watching these last phenomena f o r a quarter of an hour. P e r h a p s I ought to s a y that I had an i n t e n s e d e s i r e to s e e the l i g h t t h i s night f o r a s p e c i a l p u r p o s e ; i n f a c t , I p r a y e d f o r i t , not a s a m e r e c u r i o s i t y , but f o r a h i g h e r o b j e c t , w h i c h I n e e d not m e n t i o n . S o m e w i l l r i d i c u l e t h i s i d e a , but I h a v e a g r e a t faith i n p r a y e r . . . . Appendix 21. F r o m the R e v . E . W . E . June 26, 1905. M r s . J o n e s o f E g r y n ' s l a s t m e e t i n g at , b e i n g r a t h e r l a t e o n W e d n e s d a y , M a y 24th, i t w a s t h e r e f o r e a f t e r m i d n i g h t that M r s . E . and m y s e l f r e t i r e d u p s t a i r s t o r e s t . A f t e r putting out the l i g h t i n o u r b e d r o o m I c o u l d not g o t o b e d . T h e n l o o k e d out o f the w i n d o w , but could s e e nothing. T h e n I w e n t t o the b a c k b e d r o o m , w h e r e o u r t w o b o y s s l e e p ; and w h i l s t I w a s l o o k i n g out o f t h i s w i n d o w t o w a r d s the P e n r h y s h i l l , m y w i f e c a m e b e h i n d and put h e r hand o n m y s h o u l d e r , then a s k e d m e i f I w e r e l o o k i n g f o r s o m e t h i n g . I s a i d y e , that I w a s l o o k i n g f o r s o m e t h i n g s t r a n g e , b e c a u s e I felt v e r y strange. M r s . E . had just pushed the c u r t a i n o n o n e s i d e w h e n she e x c l a i m e d , ^ T h e r e ' s s o m e t h i n g ! " I s a i d , " W h e r e ? " W h e n she t o l d m e the d i r e c t i o n I then e x c l a i m e d , " Y e s , r e a l l y , t h e r e i s t h e s t r a n g e l i g h t . " I t a p p e a r e d t o u s i n the f o r m o f a c o l u m n o f f i r e about t w o f e e t w i d e and s e v e r a l f e e t h i g h , q u i t e d i s t i n c t , and o f t h e tint o f a f i e r y v a p o u r . A f t e r l o o k i n g a t the c o l u m n f o r a s e c o n d o r t w o , then s o m e b r i g h t b a l l s o f f i r e a p p e a r e d i n the c o l u m n n e a r i t s b a s e , then t h e s e b r i l l i a n t b a l l s w o u l d b u r s t and d i s a p p e a r u p w a r d s . T h e n the c o l u m n w o u l d d i s a p p e a r , but i n a m o m e n t w o u l d a p p e a r a g a i n i n the s a m e f o r m , i n the v e r y s a m e s p o t , and then the b a l l s w o u l d a p p e a r i n the c o l u m n , and the b a l l s b u r s t and d i s a p p e a r u p w a r d s i n the s a m e w a y . This we distinctly saw six times (6 t i m e s ) . I t w a s , a s n e a r l y a s w e c o u l d j u d g e , about 1 2 . 4 5 o n T h u r s d a y m o r n , M a y 25, and l a s t e d i n a l l about t h r e e m i n u t e s . I s a w M r . E . o n June 2 1 , 1905, and h e p o i n t e d out t o m e the e x a c t spot o n the h i l l s i d e w h e r e the l i g h t a p p e a r e d t o b e . T h e spot i n t h i s c a s e i s o n the w e s t e r n s i d e o f the v a l l e y (it w a s o n the e a s t e r n i n D r . M . ' s c a s e ) ; n o h o u s e s near. T h e r e is a path by a w a l l , and it w a s at a s l i g h t b r e a k on the t o p l i n e of the w a l l that the l i g h t a p p e a r e d t o b e . I a f t e r w a r d s sent a s e r i e s of questions to M r . E . , which I print h e r e with h i s a n s w e r s , d a t e d June 28th, 1905:

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H a v e you e v e r s e e n a c o r p s e - l i g h t ? No. ( 2 ) I s y o u r b i r t h - p l a c e i n South o r N o r t h W a l e s ? Dowlais, Glam. Also m y f a t h e r and m y m o t h e r w e r e b o r n a t D o w l a i s . ( 3 ) H a v e y o u s e e n much o f M r s . J o n e s b e f o r e o r d u r i n g h e r v i s i t ? N e v e r b e f o r e h e r c o m i n g h e r e , and o n l y a t o u r m e e t i n g s , until the Saturday a f t e r I s a w the s t r a n g e l i g h t . T h e n I h a d , w i t h a f e w o t h e r s , about t w o h o u r s ' s e m i - p r i v a t e c o n v e r s a t i o n with M r s . Jones. ( 4 ) D i d y o u h o p e o r e x p e c t t o s e e any l i g h t s ? N o . Neither M r s . E. nor m y s e l f had any d e s i r e o r l o n g i n g t o s e e the l i g h t . I f e e l a l m o s t c e r t a i n that what M r s . J o n e s s a i d i n the m e e t i n g about the l i g h t s that a p p e a r e d t o h e r around E g r y n , n e a r B a r m o u t h , c o u l d h a v e nothing t o d o w i t h the f o r m , the t i m e , o r the p l a c e o f the s t r a n g e l i g h t M r s . E . and m y s e l f s a w . M r s . E . d o e s not u n d e r s t a n d W e l s h , s o M r s . J o n e s ' a d d r e s s e s c o u l d h a v e n o d i r e c t i n f l u e n c e upon h e r . M r s . E . ' s r e p o r t o f what she s a w w o u l d b e s i m i l a r to m i n e , and I b e l i e v e that I sent y o u as faithful and a c c u r a t e a r e p o r t of what w e s a w , and h o w and w h e n w e s a w i t , a s c a n b e put i n a f e w w r i t t e n w o r d s . A p p e n d i x 27. T h e f o l l o w i n g a r e the a c c o u n t s o f s o m e o f the w i t n e s s e s w h o s a w the l i g h t a t Y n y s y b w l o n J u l y 2 3 r d , 1905. ( a ) F r o m M r . M . J . P . A u g u s t 3 r d , 1905. R e the l i g h t s s e e n a t Y n y s y b w l o n the 2 3 r d o f July l a s t , I a m s e n d i n g y o u m y v e r s i o n o f the a f f a i r , a s I had the p l e a s u r e of s e e i n g it, which w a s as f o l l o w s : I w e n t on the night of the 2 3 r d , w h i c h w a s Sunday, f o r a w a l k a f t e r s u p p e r ; although not i n the habit o f t a k i n g a w a l k , s o m e t h i n g c o m p e l l e d m e t o g o , s o i n c o m p a n y w i t h a f e w f r i e n d s w e w e n t a l o n g the s t r e e t f o r a s h o r t d i s t a n c e , w h e n w e w e r e a t t r a c t e d b y a v o i c e r a i s e d i n p r a y e r o n the mountain s i d e , and w e a t o n c e w e n d e d o u r w a y t h i t h e r , w h e r e w e had the p l e a s u r e o f j o i n i n g i n w i t h the c o m p a n y a l r e a d y a s s e m b l e d i n p r a y e r and p r a i s e t o G o d , and o u r M a k e r m e t w i t h u s , and w e r e c e i v e d a g r e a t b l e s s i n g t o e a c h o f o u r s o u l s , p r a i s e G o d . W e l l , a f t e r about a n h o u r and a h a l f w e d r e w the m e e t i n g t o a c l o s e , and c o m menced our way h o m e w a r d . B y n o w w e had g o t a s f a r a s what i s c a l l e d the R o b e r t T o w n Square, when we again c o m m e n c e d to p r a i s e God, when my attent i o n w a s suddenly d r a w n t o a m y s t e r i o u s l i g h t w h i c h a p p e a r e d i n the s k y , w h i c h I had the p l e a s u r e o f s e e i n g . F i r s t l y , it appeared to my startled g a z e to be a b a l l o f l i g h t about the s i z e o f the m o o n , w i t h a s l i g h t m i s t o v e r i t . I g a z e d a t it f o r a s h o r t t i m e and then the s t a r s b e g a n to shoot out around i t ; then it g r a d u a l l y r o s e h i g h e r i n the h e a v e n s , and a s i t r o s e i t g r e w b r i g h t e r and s m a l l e r and the s m a l l e r i t got the b r i g h t e r i t s e e m e d t o g r o w , and the l a s t I s a w o f i t , i t w a s a l i t t l e l a r g e r than the e v e n i n g s t a r , and v e r y b r i g h t . I m i g h t a l s o s a y that w h i l e t h e m i s t c o v e r e d the l i g h t i t w o u l d o p e n and b r i g h t e n a t i n t e r v a l s , s o that [ i s ] a l l I s a w o f the M y s t e r i o u s L i g h t . (b) F r o m M r . R . J . A u g u s t 2nd, 1905. R e the l i g h t s e e n a t Y n y s y b w l o n Sunday night, t h e 2 3 r d o f J u l y , I a m sending y o u m y v e r s i o n o f the m a t t e r a s s e e n b y myself, which is as follows: I m i g h t say to c o m m e n c e that I as a Sunday S c h o o l t e a c h e r , w i t h the m o s t of m y c l a s s , e l e v e n i n n u m b e r , w e n t o n Sunday e v e n i n g t o a p l a c e c a l l e d Y n y s y b o e t h , a d i s t a n c e o f about f i v e m i l e s , t o a s e r v i c e c o n d u c t e d b y M r s . J o n e s , E g r y n , the l a d y that h a s b e e n s e e i n g a l l the m y s t e r i o u s l i g h t s . So we enjoyed o u r s e l v e s g r a n d , and a f t e r the c l o s e o f the m e e t i n g w e w e n t o u r w a y b a c k h o m e t o Y n y s y b w l ; but w e a r r i v e d s o f a r a s the mountain s i d e that l e a d s d o w n t o Y n y s y b w l , w h e n w e f e l t a s i f w e w e r e c o m p e l l e d t o hold a p r a y e r m e e t i n g t h e r e , w h i c h w e d i d , and w a s in a v e r y short t i m e joined by a g o d l y company, w h e r e we m e t with God in p r a y e r and p r a i s e , and G o d w o n d e r f u l l y b l e s s e d u s i n o u r s o u l s , and e n c o u r a g e d

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u s t o p r e s s o n t o t h a t m a r k o f o u r c a l l i n g , w h i c h i s i n C h r i s t J e s u s , and a l s o t o show u s that H e w a s p l e a s e d w i t h us, w e had a c o n v e r t . P r a i s e God for it. Now d o n ' t y o u think G o d m e t with us ? W e c l o s e d t h e r e i n about a n h o u r and a h a l f , and w e n t d o w n h o m e w a r d s ; but w h e n w e g o t t o a p l a c e c a l l e d R o b e r t T o w n S q u a r e , w e a g a i n s t a r t e d t o p r a i s e G o d , but w e h a d h a r d l y s t a r t e d w h e n t h e mysterious light already r e f e r r e d to appeared, which as I saw it is as follows: F i r s t o f a l l m y a t t e n t i o n w a s d r a w n t o i t b y a p e r s o n i n t h e c r o w d , and I l o o k e d and s a w a b l o c k o f f i r e a s i t w a s r i s i n g f r o m t h e m o u n t a i n s i d e , and i t f o l l o w e d a l o n g t h e m o u n t a i n s i d e f o r a b o u t 200 o r 3 0 0 y a r d s , b e f o r e i t g r a d u a l l y r o s e to heaven. T h e n a s t a r , a s i t w e r e , s h o t out t o m e e t i t , and t h e y c l a p p e d t o g e t h e r and f o r m e d i n t o a b a l l o f f i r e . It also g r e w brighter as it r o s e higher, and t h e n i t s e e m e d t o s w a y a b o u t a l o t ; t h e n i t s e e m e d t o f o r m i n t o s o m e t h i n g l i k e the h e l m of a s h i p . T h e s i z e o f i t a t t h i s t i m e w o u l d b e about t h e s i z e o f t h e m o o n , but v e r y m u c h b r i g h t e r , and l a s t e d a b o u t a q u a r t e r o f a n h o u r . I then w e n t h o m e t o c a l l m y w i f e t o s e e i t ( w h i c h i s a d i s t a n c e o f a b o u t 3 0 0 y a r d s ) , and [ t h e ] s t r a n g e [ t h i n g ] a b o u t i t w a s I c o u l d not s e e i t f r o m t h e r e , a l t h o u g h m y h o m e faces the mountain side. But w h e n I g o t b a c k t o t h e s q u a r e a l r e a d y m e n t i o n e d i t was again quite v i s i b l e . T h i s , s i r , is the m a n n e r in which I saw the light; mind, s a w i t , I m e a n , not i m a g i n e d i t ; not a t a l l . (c) F r o m M r . J. J. T h e a c c o u n t w a s r e c e i v e d o n A u g u s t 6th, 1 9 0 5 . I n a c c o r d a n c e w i t h m y p r o m i s e t o y o u I w r i t e y o u a full a c c o u n t o f h o w I s a w t h e " l i g h t . " E l e v e n o f u s f r o m Y n y s y b w l h a d g o n e o v e r o n e Sunday e v e n ing to Ynysyboeth to a meeting at which M r s . Jones, Egryn, was present. We h a d a g r a n d m e e t i n g , and t w o s i n n e r s g a v e t h e m s e l v e s u p . A f t e r the m e e t i n g w a s o v e r , w e m a d e our way h o m e w a r d , singing h y m n s all the w a y t o A b e r c y n o n . A f t e r s t a r t i n g a c r o s s the mountain, s o m e o f u s f e l t i n c l i n e d t o h a v e a p r a y e r m e e t i n g , but t h e m a j o r i t y w e r e f o r h a v i n g i t o n t h e Y n y s y b w l s i d e , and a g l o r i ous m e e t i n g i t w a s . T h e h e a v e n l y p o w e r s d e s c e n d e d w i t h f o r c e , and a n o t h e r convert was made. W e h a d n o w s w e l l e d c o n s i d e r a b l y i n n u m b e r , and p r o c e e d e d t o t h e s q u a r e o p p o s i t e t h e R o b e r t T o w n H o t e l , and w h i l e w e w e r e s i n g i n g t h e s t a r a p p e a r e d , l i k e a b a l l o f f i r e i n t h e s k y , g l i t t e r i n g and s p a r k l i n g , and a s i t w e n t u p i t s e e m ed to be bubbling o v e r . T h i s c o n t i n u e d f o r about 2 0 m i n u t e s . . . . (d) F r o m M r s . C . J . T h e account w a s r e c e i v e d e a r l y i n A u g u s t , 1905. T h e m a n n e r i n w h i c h the l i g h t s a p p e a r e d t o m e a t the R o b e r t T o w n H o t e l Square was as f o l l o w s : F i r s t l y , t h e r e a p p e a r e d i n the h e a v e n s a v e r y l a r g e and b r i g h t b a l l o f f i r e . I t w a s o f a m u c h m o r e b r i l l i a n t l u s t r e than a n o r d i n a r y s t a r v e r y much the colour of a piece of iron white-heated. I t had t w o b r i l l i a n t a r m s w h i c h p r o t r u d e d t o w a r d s the e a r t h . Between these a r m s there appeared a further light or lights r e s e m b l i n g a cluster of stars, which s e e m e d to be quivering with v a r y i n g b r i g h t ness. T h i s w a s i t s f o r m w h e n I s a w i t , b u t o t h e r s w h o had s e e n i t b e f o r e m e had n o t i c e d i t g r o w i n g f r o m s m a l l e r d i m e n s i o n s . It lasted for ten minutes or more. F r y e r ends his paper with this note quoting W i l l i a m C r o o k e s , an e a r l y e x p e r i m e n t e r w i t h e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e s and a s t r o n g a d v o c a t e o f p s y c h i c r e s e a r c h . Note, In his Presidential A d d r e s s (1897), Sir W i l l i a m C r o o k e s g a v e a table o f t h e v e l o c i t y o f v i b r a t i o n s i n 6 3 s t e p s , and s u g g e s t e d that the " X - r a y s " w o u l d b e f o u n d t o l i e b e t w e e n the 58th and 62nd s t e p s , and h e a d d e d that, " I t s e e m s t o m e that i n t h e s e r a y s w e m a y h a v e a p o s s i b l e m o d e o f t r a n s m i t t i n g i n t e l l i g e n c e . L e t i t b e c o n c e i v e d that the b r a i n c o n t a i n s a c e n t r e w h i c h u s e s t h e s e r a y s a s t h e v o c a l c h o r d s u s e sound v i b r a t i o n s and s e n d s t h e m out, w i t h t h e v e l o c i t y

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N O C T U R N A L LIGHTS

GLN-004

o f l i g h t , t o i m p i n g e o n the r e c e i v i n g g a n g l i o n o f a n o t h e r b r a i n . I n t h i s w a y s o m e o f the p h e n o m e n a o f t e l e p a t h y and the t r a n s m i s s i o n o f i n t e l l i g e n c e f r o m o n e s e n s i t i v e t o a n o t h e r t h r o u g h l o n g d i s t a n c e s , s e e m t o c o m e into the d o m a i n o f l a w , and c a n b e g r a s p e d I s i t i n c o n c e i v a b l e that i n t e n s e thought c o n c e n t r a t e d t o w a r d s a s e n s i t i v e with w h o m the thinker is in c l o s e sympathy m a y induce a t e l e p a t h i c c h a i n o f b r a i n - w a v e s , a l o n g w h i c h the m e s s a g e o f thought c a n g o s t r a i g h t t o i t s g o a l without l o s s o f e n e r g y due t o d i s t a n c e ? " I h a v e s u g g e s t e d i n t h e S . P . R . J o u r n a l ( A p r i l , 1 9 0 5 ) , that t h e c o n t e n t s o f a t e l e p a t h i c m e s s a g e p r o b a b l y amount i n v o l u m e t o n o m o r e than a w o r d o r t w o , a s i n c o d e t e l e g r a p h y , and that the e n l a r g e m e n t o f t h e m e s s a g e i n t o a s c e n e o r lengthy v e r b a l c o m m u n i c a t i o n is the w o r k of the r e c i p i e n t mind. A c c e p t i n g the p r o b a b i l i t y of a b r a i n w a v e of sufficient intensity to c a r r y a w o r d o r s i g n t o a m i n d i n c o n s c i o u s o r u n c o n s c i o u s s y m p a t h y w i t h the a g e n t , i t w o u l d a p p e a r that t h e o p e r a t i o n w i t h i n t h e b r a i n o f t h e r e c i p i e n t , i f s e n s i t i v e t o the m e s s a g e , i s o f a t o t a l l y d i f f e r e n t c h a r a c t e r . T h e m i n d then i s not s i m p l y p e r c e p t i v e but c o n s t r u c t i v e , and, n e e d l e s s t o s a y , w o r k s b y t h e o r d i n a r y m a c h i n e r y and v i b r a t o r y m e t h o d s i t d a i l y e m p l o y s . T h e m e s s a g e i s r e a l i s e d i n the f o r m o f sounds, c h a n g e s o f t e m p e r a t u r e , o r v i s i o n s , i n a c c o r d a n c e w i t h the m e n tal p o t e n t i a l i t y o f t h e p e r c i p i e n t . W h e t h e r t h e d i f f e r e n c e i n m o d e o f r e a l i s a t i o n h a s any r e l a t i o n o r not t o t h e m e n t a l c a p a c i t y and habitual thought m e t h o d s o f the operator in other matters might be worth examination. A t any r a t e , t h e l i m i t a t i o n o f the i n i t i a l m e s s a g e t o a n a g e n t ' s w o r d o r s i g n and the a t t r i b u t i o n o f t h e r e s u l t a n t sounds o r s i g h t s t o t h e p e r c i p i e n t , not o n l y g o e s f a r t o e x p l a i n "the c l o t h e s o f g h o s t s " and the e l a b o r a t i o n o f s c e n i c s e t t i n g s , the m i s u n d e r s t a n d i n g s and e r r o n e o u s i m p r e s s i o n s , that a r e found i n o u r r e c o r d s , but m a y d o a l i t t l e t o r e m o v e s o m e o f the o b j e c t i o n s t o t e l e p a t h y f e l t b y many s c i e n t i f i c m i n d s e v e n when they a r e t h e s u b j e c t s o f i t s o p e r a t i o n . T h e r e a r e s o m e r e m a r k a b l e s i m i l a r i t i e s b e t w e e n the W e l s h l i g h t s and the " m o r e c o n v e n t i o n a l " n o c t u r n a l l i g h t s and b a l l l i g h t n i n g . C o u l d t h e s a m e f o r c e s physical and/or psychic b e a t w o r k i n a l l such m a n i f e s t a t i o n s ?

GLN-003

THE NOTES OF CHARLES FORT

F o r t , C h a r l e s ; T h e F o r t e a n S o c i e t y M a g a z i n e , 1:16, O c t o b e r 1937. 1812-1814, D e c . 2 . ( A n e w s p a p e r c l i p p i n g ) M Y S T E R Y W A R O F 1812. T h e m y s t e r y o f the " b l u e l i g h t s , " w h i c h a p p e a r e d o n t h e s h o r e s o f N e w L o n d o n h a r b o r , C o n n . , o n t h e night o f D e c e m b e r 2 , w h e n C o m m o d o r e D e c a t u r planned t o run the British blockade, has n e v e r been s o l v e d . ( A s i d e : T h e clipping is f r o m an A m e r i can p a p e r s e r v e d b y the " P r e m i e r S y n d i c a t e " 1924, T . T . ) T . T . stands f o r T i f f a n y T h a y e r , t h e S e c r e t a r y o f the F o r t e a n S o c i e t y .

GLN-004

BACK TO UFO'S
1 4 : 2 6 - 2 7 , January 1961. F i v e N a n a i m o hunters o b s e r v e d a bouncing,

Fuller, Curtis; Fate,

N a n a i m o , B . C . , O c t . 2 1 , 1959.

Gl-159

GLN-005

NOCTURNAL LIGHTS

g l o w i n g b a l l o v e r L o n e Mound one night this past w e e k e n d . A f t e r bouncing a w h i l e , the o b j e c t w i t h d r e w to a point s o m e e i g h t m i l e s a w a y , l a t e r r e t u r n e d and b e g a n bouncing up and down n e a r the ground. T h e n it r a c e d t o w a r d the w e s t , stopped f o r an hour and f i n a l l y z o o m e d o f f at g r e a t s p e e d and d i s a p p e a r e d . At l e a s t 3 5 o t h e r U F O s i g h t i n g s w e r e r e p o r t e d i n the a r e a during the p r e c e d i n g week.

GLN-005
Fuller,

BACK TO UFO'S
Curtis; Fate, 14:26-27, January 1961.

" A w e i r d - l o o k i n g l i g h t i n the sky s p o i l e d a fox-hunting t r i p n e a r the L e s t e r Connell f a r m i n the Jadwin c o m m u n i t y l a s t F r i d a y night. " I n the hunting p a r t y w e r e F r a n k A n d r e s and son R i c h a r d o f St. L o u i s , who own a p l a c e n e a r the T u r t l e c o m m u n i t y , and M r . C o n n e l l and son Johnnie. T h e A n d r e s f a m i l y had g o n e o v e r to the Connell p l a c e to run the d o g s and had gotten about a m i l e f r o m the house when about 9:35 they s a w in the sky the s t r a n g e f o r m a t i o n which a p p e a r e d to be about 10 to 12 f e e t f r o m t o p to b o t t o m and about 25 to 30 f e e t in l e n g t h . It w a s v e r y b r i g h t but had an a m b e r - c o l o r e d g l o w . It appeared t o w a v e r around but s e e m e d t o b e c o m i n g i n the g e n e r a l d i r e c t i o n o f the h u n t e r s . T h e fox hounds quit t h e i r c h a s e and c a m e running t o w a r d the hunters. " T h e four hunters watched the o b j e c t about 25 m i n u t e s and when it got to what w a s e s t i m a t e d at a q u a r t e r of a m i l e a w a y , M r . A n d r e s flashed his l i g h t t o w a r d i t but could s e e nothing b e c a u s e the other l i g h t s w e r e s o b r i g h t . Howe v e r , as soon as he turned h i s flashlight on, the s t r a n g e object q u i c k l y v a n i s h e d o v e r the r i d g e at a t e r r i f i c s p e e d . No n o i s e w a s h e a r d f r o m the unusual phenomena.

GLN-006

DANCING LIGHTS OF ADA, OKLA.
15:16-18, N o v e m b e r 1962.

Fuller, Curtis; Fate,

R e c e n t l y c r o w d s of f o l k s h a v e b e e n l i n i n g up at the Busby Ranch n e a r A d a to watch the fox f i r e d a n c e . F i n a l l y John Bennett of the A d a Evening N e w s went out t o w a t c h the g o i n g s on. H e r e i s part o f h i s r e p o r t . " . . . and t h e r e i t w a s . I t l o o k e d o r a n g e , l i k e l i g h t f i l t e r i n g through t r e e s f r o m a w i n d o w of a house. "That's just a house l i g h t , ' I s c o f f e d . T h e b o y s and g i r l s (watching the n i g h t l y show) a n s w e r e d in a c h o r u s that if that w a s a house l i g h t , it w a s the f i r s t one they e v e r had s e e n that danced and changed c o l o r s . And, by g o l l y , it did. "It s t a r t e d g l o w i n g b i g g e r and b i g g e r and g i v i n g off a diffused o r a n g e , then r e d , then y e l l o w l i g h t . F o r a full f i v e minutes the l i g h t g l o w e d l i k e a d y i n g e m b e r . T h e n things s t a r t e d happening. " T h e l i g h t s b e g a n to d a n c e . T h e y flickered e e r i l y up and down l i k e a b o u n c ing luminous b a l l , then d a r t e d s i d e w a y s . T h e s i n g l e b a l l o f light a p p e a r e d about t h r e e feet in d i a m e t e r . . . . During its fantastic flight back and forth it changed c o l o r s : f i r s t o r a n g e , then y e l l o w , then r e d . But i t stayed i n one g e n e r a l a r e a , behind what l o o k e d l i k e a s p a r s e g r o w t h o f t r e e s . . . .

Gl-160

N O C T U R N A L LIGHTS

GLN-008

" I n the t r e e l i n e the l i g h t had c h a n g e d c o l o r s a g a i n and w a s b e g i n n i n g t o g e t more active. Suddenly a p i e c e o f the g l o w b r o k e a w a y and s t a r t e d a r a p i d b o u n c y c o u r s e a c r o s s the field in front of us. I t l o o k e d l i k e a l u m i n o u s b a s k e t b a l l , and about t h e s a m e s i z e . I t d a n c e d b e f o r e o u r e y e s about 100 y a r d s out f r o n t . We t r a c e d the g l o w i n g t r a j e c t o r y that a p p e a r e d l i k e a g i a n t l i g h t n i n g bug, until i t went o u t . . . . " T h e b i g show ended t h e r e . S h o r t l y a f t e r the f i e l d o r b i t b y the s a t e l l i t e the g l o w r e s u m e d but i t d i d n ' t d a n c e around m u c h . I n about a n h o u r I l e f t . My susp i c i o n is that it is a hoax but I c a n ' t e x p l a i n the d a n c i n g l i g h t s . It w o u l d t a k e a c l e v e r manipulation of light. A n d i t ' s b e y o n d m e h o w anyone c o u l d m a k e the darn things go so fast. " D u r i n g h i s v i s i t Bennett t a l k e d w i t h o n e o f the b o y s , R o n n i e B l a c k , w h o s a i d that a w e e k b e f o r e a p i e c e o f a b a l l o f f i r e had bounded a w a y f r o m the m a i n b o d y and c a m e r i g h t u p t o the f e n c e . " I t just b o u n c e d a c r o s s the f i e l d and c a m e r i g h t u p a f e w f e e t f r o m m e , " R o n n i e s a i d . " I d i d n ' t m o v e and i t w a s l i k e i t w a s l o o k i n g r i g h t a t m e . I t w a s n ' t any h i g h e r than the t o p s t r a n d o f the f e n c e h e r e and y o u c o u l d s e e the t o p s o f the weeds under its g l o w . Then it darted off fast as lightning. "

GLN-007
Fuller,

TEXAS GHOST LIGHT
Curtis; Fate, 19:29, J a n u a r y 1966.

F r a n k X . T o l b e r t , a c o l u m n i s t f o r the D a l l a s M o r n i n g N e w s , r e p o r t s the f o l k s a l o n g B r a g g R o a d n e a r S a r a t o g a i n E a s t T e x a s a r e s e e i n g the " g h o s t light" again. B r a g g Road is a straight r e d clay t r a i l through a forest of pines and o t h e r t a l l t r e e s , running o n a f o r m e r r a i l r o a d r i g h t - o f - w a y . N o t l o n g a g o H e n r y K i r b y P i t t s , a y o u n g d e p u t y s h e r i f f o f H a r d i n County b a s e d a t Sour L a k e , s a w the l i g h t . "Some have d e s c r i b e d it as r e d , " he says. "It l o o k e d y e l l o w t o m e . " P i t t s ' s i g h t i n g w a s u n d e r a full m o o n . A b i g y e l l o w light appeared far b e hind h i s c a r , m o v e d i n s w i f t l y t o r i g h t i n b a c k , then v a n i s h e d . P i t t s i s a y o u n g f e l l o w w i t h a m a s t e r ' s d e g r e e f r o m Sam H o u s t o n State w h o has d e c i d e d to m a k e l a w e n f o r c e m e n t a c a r e e r . H e t a k e s a s c i e n t i f i c attitude t o w a r d the m y s t e r i o u s l i g h t . , " T h e r e ' s a n a t u r a l c a u s e f o r t h i s w e i r d l i g h t w h i c h i s s c a r i n g f o l k s around h e r e , and I ' m g o i n g t o find out what i t i s , " h e asserts. The s a m e nocturnal lights are d e s c r i b e d in G L N - 0 1 0 .

GLN-008

MEXICAN MYSTERY LIGHT

M a c k , B i l l ; F a t e , 2 3 : 6 3 - 6 5 , June 1970. B a h i a K i n o u s e d t o b e a s l e e p y l i t t l e M e x i c a n f i s h i n g v i l l a g e . But p r o g r e s s has changed K i n o . M o t e l s , r e s t a u r a n t s and b e a u t i f u l o c e a n - v i e w h o m e s h a v e m a d e i t o n e o f t h e m o s t p o p u l a r Gulf o f C a l i f o r n i a r e s o r t s . Despite this rapid g r o w t h o f the p i c t u r e s q u e l i t t l e t o w n o n e t h i n g r e m a i n s the s a m e the m y s t e r y light of K i n o . T h i s light, g e n e r a l l y seen o n w a r m s u m m e r nights, has baffled amateur

Gl-161

GLN-009

NOCTURNAL LIGHTS

i n v e s t i g a t o r s and q u a l i f i e d s c i e n t i s t s a l i k e . M y own i n t r o d u c t i o n t o the e e r i e phenomenon c a m e during a fishing e x p e d i t i o n to K i n o . I p a r k e d my c a m p e r t r u c k on the b e a c h and b e c a u s e of the l o n g d r i v e I had made to r e a c h my f a v o r i t e spot I went to b e d quite e a r l y in the e v e n i n g . About 10:00 p. m. I w a s w a k e d f r o m a d e e p s l e e p by a s t r a n g e bluish l i g h t c o m i n g through the c a m p e r w i n d o w . I t l o o k e d e l e c t r i c a l i n o r i g i n and r e m i n d e d me of a s i m i l a r l i g h t I o n c e w i t n e s s e d d u r i n g a s e v e r e Japanese e a r t h q u a k e . But the Japanese l i g h t had had a s i m p l e explanation: it w a s caused by snapped t r o l l e y l i n e s a r c i n g out on the c o n c r e t e . It had b e e n a t r u e e l e c t r i c b l u e . But K i n o B a y i s a l o n g w a y f r o m having t r o l l e y s a t that t i m e t h e r e w e r e n ' t even telephones and the l i g h t s o u r c e w a s a p p r o x i m a t e l y 300 y a r d s f r o m m y c a m p i n g spot, o r i g i n a t i n g s m a c k I n the m i d d l e o f the d e s e r t g r o w t h . I t a p p e a r e d to be about 50 y a r d s l o n g and I e s t i m a t e d i t s p h o s p h o r e s c e n c e extended about 25 feet into the a i r . T h e r e it sat, just a b l o b of blue l i g h t ! B a f f l e d , I got up and w a l k e d s o m e w h a t a p p r e h e n s i v e l y t o w a r d and i n t o the strange luminosity. But although the light w a s intense t h e r e w a s nothing t h e r e , only the usual c a c t u s . T h e r e w a s no o d o r , no p a r t i c u l a r sensation and no apparent s o u r c e . . . . F r o m Juan I l e a r n e d the l i g h t has b e e n s e e n f o r y e a r s and w a s g r e a t l y f e a r e d b y the p r i m i t i v e S e r i Indians who l i v e i n the a r e a . T h i s i s another p e r p l e x i n g p r o b l e m p o s e d b y the l i g h t . I t a l w a y s a p p e a r s I n the s a m e spot. A s f a r a s anyone knows i t s l o c a t i o n n e v e r has v a r i e d a n inch. . . . o n m y t h i r d t r i p a p p r o x i m a t e l y a month l a t e r I hit pay d i r t , o r m o r e c o r r e c t ly pay l i g h t . T h e l i g h t began to g l o w about 11:00 p. m. on a s t i l l , s u l t r y night. Starting s l o w l y i t s e e m e d t o build i n i n t e n s i t y until i t r e a c h e d i t s peak g l o w a t a p p r o x i m a t e l y 11:45. T h e l i g h t r e m a i n e d v i s i b l e f o r n e a r l y t w o h o u r s d u r i n g w h i c h t i m e , a r m e d w i t h a c o m p a s s and m e t a l d e t e c t o r , I m a d e s e v e r a l t o u r s around i t . I had r e a s o n e d that If the i o n i z a t i o n t h e o r y w a s c o r r e c t and if the l i g h t a p p e a r ed only in that spot s o m e t h i n g l a r g e and m e t a l l i c m i g h t be the c o l l e c t i n g agent. S e c r e t l y I had hoped to find a m e t e o r although the ground s u r f a c e showed a b s o l u t e l y n o i n d i c a t i o n o f e v e r h a v i n g b e e n d i s t u r b e d . But, l i k e e v e r y o n e e l s e ' s , m y efforts w e r e doomed to failure. N e i t h e r the c o m p a s s nor the m e t a l d e t e c t o r w e r e affected i n any w a y b y t h e . g h o s t l y g l o w . T h i s l i g h t can be p h o t o g r a p h e d . I m a d e s e v e r a l e x p o s u r e s w i t h a t w i n l e n s Y a s h i c a - M a t c a m e r a and w a s r e w a r d e d w i t h a set o f p i c t u r e s o f e x t r e m e l y p o o r q u a l i t y which could be duplicated by holding a dull o r a n g e l i g h t bulb in front of the c a m e r a . T h e l i g h t showed as a tiny g l o w in the c e n t e r of an o t h e r w i s e i n t e n s e black.

GLN-009

BALLS OF FIRE

A n d r e , G e o r g e , J r . ; F a t e , 14:112-113, January 1961. T h e author f i r s t d e s c r i b e s how he w a s r a i s e d in Ineu, a s m a l l town in R o m a n i a . Then, he r e l a t e s a s t o r y he h e a r d and an actual event he e x p e r i e n c e d , both of which i n v o l v e d b a l l s of f i r e though p e r h a p s of d i f f e r e n t o r i g i n s . T h e s t o r y i n v o l v e s a tunnel in a hill in Romania:

Gl-162

NOCTURNAL

LIGHTS

GLN-011

A c c o r d i n g t o t h e s e p e r s o n s , e v e r y s o often s o m e o n e would a l m o s t g o b e r s e r k b e c a u s e h e found h i m s e l f c h a s e d b y a r e d - y e l l o w b a l l o f f i r e w h i c h o r i g i n a t e d o n t o p o f the h i l l and r o l l e d d o w n i n t o the v a l l e y , d i s a p p e a r i n g a s i t c r o s s e d the r i v e r bridge. I t a l w a y s c a m e d o w n the s a m e s t r e e t and d i s a p p e a r e d b y the r i v e r . T h e r e w e r e n o autos and n o auto h e a d l i g h t s a t the t i m e t h e s e i n c i d e n t s r e p o r t edly took p l a c e . I n 1924 m y m o t h e r , m y s i s t e r and I w e r e a l l a w a k e i n one b e d r o o m w h e n , f r o m the foot o f the d o u b l e b e d , a b r i l l i a n t o r a n g e - y e l l o w b a l l o f f i r e r o s e and s p l a t t e r e d upon the c e i l i n g . W e n o t i c e d n o h e a t f r o m i t and nothing w a s b u r n e d o r s c o r c h e d . T h e f i r s t b a l l o f f i r e h a s the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f a n o c t u r n a l l i g h t , s i m i l a r to ball lightning. w h i l e the s e c o n d is

GLN-010

BALL OF FIRE
14:22-23, M a y 1961.

Fuller, Curtis; Fate,

H u n d r e d s o f s i g h t s e e r s h a v e b e e n s w a r m i n g t o t h e m a r s h c o u n t r y around S a r a t o g a , T e x . , t o w a t c h the f i r e b a l l s . T h e y b o u n c e around the B i g T h i c k e t s w a m p l a n d a t night and l a t e i n the s u m m e r . B r a g g R o a d north of Saratoga, w h e r e the f i r e b a l l s w e r e s e e n m o s t f r e q u e n t l y , w a s c r o w d e d w i t h s i g h t s e e r s . T h i n g s g o t s o t h i c k that S h e r i f f W h i t W h i t a k e r had t o p o s t a n o r d e r p r o h i b i t i n g f i r e a r m s i n the a r e a . S o m e s i g h t s e e r s w e r e a t t e m p t i n g t o shoot the f i r e b a l l s out o f the a i r . ' I n c a s e y o u w o n d e r what the f i r e b a l l s a r e , any s c i e n t i s t c a n t e l l y o u . Dr. E d w i n H a y s , h e a d o f t h e b i o l o g y d e p a r t m e n t o f L a m a r State C o l l e g e o f T e c h n o l o g y i n B e a u m o n t , T e x . , e x p l a i n s that t h e y a r e c a u s e d b y " s w a m p g a s " i g n i t e d b y spontaneous combustion. Such b a l l s o f f i r e , s a y s D r . H a y s , a r e not u n c o m m o n in marsh country. W e w o u l d l i k e t o c h a l l e n g e D r . H a y s and e v e r y o t h e r p r o p o n e n t t o t h i s o l d chestnut o f a t h e o r y t o p r o v e i t . A c o m m o n s c i e n t i f i c c r i t i c i s m o f p s y c h i c p h e n o m e n a i s that i t i s not r e p e a t a b l e u n d e r l a b o r a t o r y c o n d i t i o n s . W e l l , w e c h a l l e n g e the s w a m p g a s t h e o r i s t s t o produce a little s w a m p gas under l a b o r a t o r y conditions, ignite it spontaneously, and p r o d u c e t h e i r o w n l i t t l e f i r e b a l l s that g o b o u n c i n g m e r r i l y a l o n g f o r m i n u t e s at a t i m e . The s a m e nocturnal lights are described in G L N - 0 0 7 .

GLN-011

A "SPOOK LIGHT" MYSTERY SOLVED?

A n o n y m o u s ; F a t e , 13:85, S e p t e m b e r 1960. T h e famous "spook light" of Hornet, M o . , a phenomenon which for y e a r s has baffled i n v e s t i g a t o r s , is b e l i e v e d to have been explained by a 1 7 - y e a r - o l d boy, W i l l i a m E. Underwood, of Carthage, M o . His report of his investigations p l a c e d h i m a m o n g t h e t o p 4 0 w i n n e r s o f 1960's S c i e n c e T a l e n t S e a r c h c o n d u c t e d by Science S e r v i c e of Washington, D. C. T h e "spook l i g h t " appears along a l o n e l y g r a v e l road two m i l e s southwest of the v i l l a g e o f H o r n e t . W i l l i a m ' s d e s c r i p t i o n o f the p h e n o m e n o n i s t y p i c a l o f

Gl-163

GLN-012

N O C T U R N A L LIGHTS

what h a s b e e n o b s e r v e d f o r y e a r s . Soon a f t e r dusk, h e r e p o r t e d , a g r e e n i s h - y e l l o w b a l l a p p e a r e d t o d e s c e n d out o f the h i l l s and t o a d v a n c e r a p i d l y t o w a r d h i m a l o n g the r o a d . When he m o v e d t o w a r d the l i g h t , i t v a n i s h e d . T h e l i g h t v a r i e d i n i n t e n s i t y and i n the t i m e of its appearance. It sometimes appeared to be two lights. W i l l i a m s a i d v i e w i n g the l i g h t t h r o u g h a s p e c t r o t e l e s c o p e s h o w e d i t had a continuous s p e c t r u m . T h i s l e d h i m t o d e d u c e that t h e l i g h t had a n i n c a n d e s cent s o u r c e . I n f r a r e d f i l m s o f the p h e n o m e n o n c o n v i n c e d h i m i t w a s p r o d u c e d b y the d o u b l e r e f r a c t i o n o f c a r h e a d l i g h t s . H e b e l i e v e s h i s t h e o r y i n f u r t h e r s u p p o r t e d b y the p h y s i c a l f e a t u r e s o f the a r e a i n w h i c h the l i g h t a p p e a r s . U . S . R o u t e 66, e a s t and w e s t , w a s i n a d i r e c t l i n e w i t h h i s o b s e r v a t i o n point and S p r i n g R i v e r c r o s s e d c l o s e b y b e t w e e n the g r a v e l r o a d and the h i g h w a y . F o r t h i s r e a s o n W i l l i a m c o n c l u d e d that the " s p o o k " w a s n o t h i n g m o r e n o r l e s s than the l i g h t o f c a r h e a d l a m p s r e f r a c t e d o v e r the r a n g e o f l o w - l y i n g h i l l s .

GLN-012

PULSATING BALL
12:12, N o v e m b e r 1959.

Fuller, Curtis; Fate,

M r . and M r s . Dana F r a n k l i n o f M e l b o u r n e V i l l a g e had w a t c h e d the l a t e - l a t e T V s h o w and w e r e g e t t i n g r e a d y t o g o t o b e d e a r l y T h u r s d a y m o r n i n g , M a y 14. F r a n k l i n s a w a l i g h t a l m o s t a s l a r g e a s the m i l m o o n a b o v e the t r e e s f r o m h i s bedroom window which faces north-east. T h e light appeared to be m o v i n g v e r y s l o w l y f r o m n o r t h t o south. A t f i r s t h e thought i t m i g h t b e a n a i r p l a n e but d i s m i s s e d the n o t i o n w h e n h e heard no noise. " I t w a s a huge y e l l o w b a l l , g l o w i n g b r i l l i a n t l y and c o m i n g s l o w l y t o w a r d the h o u s e . I n the c e n t e r w a s a s m a l l f i e r y r e d b a l l . I t g o t v e r y c l o s e t o the h o u s e and then t u r n e d at about a 4 0 - d e g r e e a n g l e to the l e f t , t o w a r d the s o u t h e a s t , and a s i t t u r n e d the b r i l l i a n t l i g h t w e n t out and i t w e n t i n t o soft c o l o r s , l i k e p a s t e l s but w i t h m o r e b r i l l i a n c e , " F r a n k l i n c o n t i n u e d . H e e s t i m a t e d the o b j e c t m i g h t b e about 600 f e e t a b o v e the g r o u n d . He is a f o r m e r airplane pilot, incidentally. " I s a w r e d s , g r e e n and b l u e s , s o r t o f i n t e r m i n g l e d , and i t w a s p u l s a t i n g , l i k e the c o l o r s w e r e c o n t r a c t i n g and e x p a n d i n g and a l l the t i m e i t w a s m o v i n g v e r y s l o w l y , a l m o s t a t a s t a n d s t i l l a t t i m e s , " h e w e n t on. " W h e n it t u r n e d it a p p e a r e d to be a d i f f e r e n t s h a p e . It w a s no l o n g e r a round b a l l , but had a c i g a r or c o n i c a l s h a p e , t a p e r i n g o f f at the t a i l , and then it put on a l i t t l e b u r s t of s p e e d . " T h e o b j e c t t o o k a n o t h e r s l i g h t turn t o t h e e a s t and then r o s e f a s t , a l m o s t s t r a i g h t up, g o i n g a w a y t o w a r d the e a s t , g e t t i n g s m a l l e r and s m a l l e r , until all they c o u l d s e e w a s a w h i t e l i g h t . " W h e n it g o t w a y up it g a v e out a b u r s t of l i g h t and in a c o u p l e of s e c o n d s disappeared, " Frankie said. A b o u t t w o m i n u t e s l a t e r F r a n k l i n h e a r d a r u m b l i n g o f s o m e kind but s a i d i t could have been thunder. H e s a y s h e ' s s e e n l o t s o f m e t e o r s but t h i s w a s n ' t one of those. " I t w a s 1 0 t o 2 0 t i m e s a s b r i g h t a s a m i s s i l e a t t h i s d i s t a n c e f r o m the Cape."

Gl-164

N O C T U R N A L LIGHTS
GLN-013 THE NIGHT THE SKY TURNED ON
20:30-37, September, 1967.

GLN-014

K e e l , John A . ; F a t e ,

C o m p i l e r ' s Summary: John K e e l , a w e l l - k n o w n p o p u l a r w r i t e r o n unusual s u b j e c t s g a t h e r e d m a n y a c c o u n t s o f the s t r a n g e l i g h t s s e e n o v e r much o f the M i d w e s t o n the night o f A u g u s t 16, 1966. The m o r e interesting of these are summarized b e l o w . Flandreau, S. D . : L o w , b r i g h t l i g h t h a n g i n g o v e r c o r n f i e l d ; l o o k e d l i k e the m o o n .

W e s t B a t t l e L a k e , 200 m i l e s n o r t h o f F l a n d r e a u , S . D . : L a r g e b a l l o f l i g h t s a i l e d t o w a r d f i s h e r m e n ; surrounded by a mist; changed f r o m white to r e d ; joined by s e c o n d b a l l ; faded a w a y w i t h s l i g h t p o o f . Cass Lake, Minn. : Pink, h o r s e s h o e - s h a p e d light; turned blue; m e l t e d away.

Warroad, Minn.: C i r c u l a r shape e n c o m p a s s e d b y g r e e n h a z e ; c h a n g e d c o l o r s ; shrank and faded a w a y . W a l k e r , M i n n . : D i s k ; t w o o r t h r e e f e e t i n d i a m e t e r ; bounced a l o n g t r e e t o p s ; d i s charged bluish f l a m e . Ranier, near International F a l l s , than l o c a l w a t e r t o w e r . Minn.: Reddish object wobbles o v e r town; l a r g e r

Duluth, M i n n . : M u l t i c o l o r e d g l o b e ; a p p e a r e d t o r o t a t e ; b i g g e r than f o o t b a l l f i e l d ; c a r w i n d o w s s t e a m e d up. Cameron, W i s . : s t e a m e d up. Racine, Wis.: O b l o n g shape p a s s e s o v e r c a r ; c h a n g e d c o l o r s ; w i n d s h i e l d

Flat,

round o b j e c t ; r e d l i g h t o n t o p ,

w h i t e l i g h t s around p e r i m e t e r . radio

Minneapolis-St. Paul airport, M i n n . : stations r e c e i v e o v e r 75 c a l l s . F o r t Smith, A r k . : ing o v e r h e a d . Paragould, Ark.:

Luminous object passes o v e r city,

1500 p e o p l e stand i n s t r e e t s w a t c h i n g m u l t i - c o l o r e d l i g h t s p a s s -

L i g h t s m o v e i n c i r c l e a b o v e t o w n ; m o v e u p and d o w n ; z o o m a w a y .

K e e l a l s o m e n t i o n s the U F O " f l a p s " o f M a r c h 30, 1966, w h i c h c o v e r e d N . Y . , N . J . , M i n n . , I o w a , O h i o , C a l i f . , S . C . , and W i s e . ; and July 13, 1966, o v e r N e b . K e e l d i v i d e d the s i g h t i n g i n t o t h r e e c a t e g o r i e s : (1) s m a l l , l o w - f l y i n g o b j e c t s ; (2) c o l o r - c h a n g i n g l i g h t s w h i c h faded a w a y ; and (3) h i g h - f l y i n g l i g h t s .

GLN-014
Bayless,

OZARK SPOOK LIGHT --A SCIENTIFIC REPORT
R a y m o n d ; F a t e , 17:27-33, S e p t e m b e r 1964.

C o m p i l e r ' s Summary:

B a y l e s s d e s c r i b e s h i s v i s i t t o the M O - O K a r e a t o i n v e s t i -

Gl-165

GLN-015

N O C T U R N A L LIGHTS

g a t e the H o r n e t , M o . s p o o k l i g h t , w h i c h i s a c t u a l l y s e e n i n O k l a h o m a . H i s s i g h t i n g i n v o l v e s : a d o u b l e l i g h t w i t h r e f l e c t i o n f r o m the d i r t r o a d c l e a r l y s e e n ; a p p e a r a n c e and d i s a p p e a r a n c e o f t h e l i g h t due t o the h i l l y n a t u r e o f the c o u n t r y ; t e l e s c o p i c examination r e v e a l i n g up to 16 s e p a r a t e l i g h t s ; l i g h t s w e r e roughly c i r c u l a r in shape, golden a m b e r , s o m e t i m e s with a r e d d i s h tint. O b s e r v a t i o n s a t t r i b u t e d t o G e o r g e W . W a r d i n d i c a t e the l i g h t w a s f r o m f o u r t o s i x feet in d i a m e t e r . T h e l i g h t a p p r o a c h e d W a r d and e n v e l o p e d h i s c a r . E a r l i e s t p u b l i s h e d a c c o u n t o f t h i s n o c t u r n a l l i g h t w a s i n the K a n s a s C i t y S t a r i n 1936. A n u m b e r o f t a l e s about the l i g h t d a t e f r o m the 1800s, h o w e v e r , and t h e r e a r e a l s o Indian l e g e n d s . B a y l e s s d i s c u s s e s the p o s s i b l e e x p l a n a t i o n s , d i s m i s s i n g the w i l l - o ' - w i s p t h e o r y a s i n c o n s i s t e n t w i t h the f a c t s . T h e v a r i o u s e x p e r i m e n t s t e s t i n g the a u t o m o b i l e h e a d light theory are mentioned. T h e s e t h e o r i e s i n d i c a t e that h e a d l i g h t s f r o m n e a r b y h i g h w a y s c a n i n d e e d b e s e e n f r o m the a r e a o f the n o c t u r n a l l i g h t due t o a t m o s p h e r i c refraction. T h e p r o b l e m w i t h t h i s e x p l a n a t i o n i s that the l i g h t w a s a p p a r e n t l y known w e l l b e f o r e a u t o m o b i l e s and h i g h w a y s e x i s t e d , although t h e r e i s n o s u p p o r t ing l i t e r a t u r e f o r this c l a i m .

GLN-015

WILL-O'-THE-WISPS
7:222, J a n u a r y 23, 1873.

Fox, Howard; Nature,

P r o f . G e i k i e , i n h i s i n t r o d u c t o r y l e c t u r e o f the M u r c h i s o n C h a i r o f G e o l o g y a t E d i n b u r g h , w h i c h a p p e a r e d i n N a t u r e , v o l . v i i , p . 184, m e n t i o n s that h e n e v e r had t h e g o o d f o r t u n e t o e n c o u n t e r o n e o f t h e s e l e g e n d a r y s p r i t e s . I t m a y not b e u n i n t e r e s t i n g t o s o m e o f y o u r r e a d e r s t o know that they a r e s t i l l e x t a n t . On O c t o b e r 5 l a s t I w a s w a l k i n g to the " L i z a r d " w i t h a f r i e n d , and n e a r Ruan M a j o r w e s a w a l i g h t t r a v e l l i n g fast o v e r the c o u n t r y , w h i c h my friend took to be the light of a d o g - c a r t . A s t h e r e w a s n o r o a d i n the n e i g h b o u r h o o d w e w a t c h e d , and s o o n saw t w o o t h e r s r i s i n g f r o m the s a m e p l a c e and bounding o v e r the c o i i n t r y t i l l t h e y s e e m e d t o b e about t h i r t y f e e t f r o m the g r o u n d i n a s w a m p y f i e l d o p p o s i t e u s , w h e n t h e y d i s a p p e a r e d . A n o t h e r r o s e f r o m the o t h e r s i d e o f the f i e l d , and a f t e r r e a c h i n g t h e m i d d l e o f the f i e l d , i t a l s o d i s a p p e a r e d . I n about t e n m i n u t e s w e s a w f i v e o r s i x , but none a f t e r w a r d s . I h a v e a s k e d s e v e r a l f a r m e r s o f the d i s t r i c t and m a n y o f m y f r i e n d s i f they had e v e r s e e n any, but h a v e o n l y m e t w i t h o n e f a r m e r w h o s a i d that when a b o y he used to see them on Goonhilly Downs adjoining. T h e g e o l o g i c a l f o r m a t i o n of this d i s t r i c t is s e r p e n t i n e .

GLN-016
Robertson,

MARYLAND'S GHOST LIGHT ROAD
H. C h a r l e s ; F a t e , 1 1 : 9 2 - 9 6 , July 1958.

C o m p i l e r ' s S u m m a r y : O n the c l e a r , s u l t r y night o f July 16, 1952, o n a m i l e - l o n g s t r e t c h o f sandy r o a d o u t s i d e H e b r o n , M d . , t w o s t a t e t r o o p e r s o b s e r v e d a s h i m m e r ing o r b c o m i n g t o w a r d t h e i r c a r . T h e p o l i c e c h a s e d the l i g h t . When their c a r r e a c h e d 4 0 m p h , the l i g h t d i s a p p e a r e d . O n the f o l l o w i n g night, s i x m e n t r i e d t o

Gl-166

N O C T U R N A L LIGHTS
s u r r o u n d the l i g h t , field.

GLN-019

but as the m e n n e a r e d it it w e n t out and r e a p p e a r e d in a n e a r b y

A f t e r t h e s e s i g h t i n g s , h u n d r e d s o f p e o p l e d r o v e t o H e b r o n t o g e t a l o o k a t the l i g h t . O l d e r r e s i d e n t s s a i d that the l i g h t had b e e n s e e n f o r y e a r s . L o c a l l e g e n d s t i e the * light to an old m u r d e r .

GLN-017
Fuller,

CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN
Curtis; Fate, 12:16, July 1959.

T h e s a m e kind o f thing [ S e e G L N - 0 1 8 ] i s g o i n g o n i n the M o l l o y C o m m u n i t y , about 1 0 m i l e s w e s t o f V e r n o n , A l a . A l i g h t a p p e a r s n i g h t l y a l o n g a r u r a l g r a v e l r o a d south o f H i g h w a y 1 8 n e a r a n o l d w e l l . G a r d n e r L a m p k i n , 74, s a y s the l i g h t has b e e n around s i n c e h e w a s 1 0 and h e ' s seen it many t i m e s . B a c k i n t h o s e d a y s m e n shot a t the l i g h t , but t h e y never killed it. L a m p k i n s a i d that b e f o r e the shots the l i g h t w o u l d b e s m a l l and b r i g h t , s u s p e n d e d i n m i d - a i r . A f t e r the s h o t s i t w o u l d s e e m t o s p r e a d out, but i t a l w a y s s t a y e d t h e r e .

GLN-018
Fuller,

CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN
C u r t i s ; F a t e , 12:16, J u l y , 1959.

" S p o o k l i g h t s " t o o a r e a m o n g the t h i n g s that s e e m t o b e c o m i n g i n b u n c h e s these days. A l i g h t w a s r e p o r t e d f l i c k e r i n g a l o n g the Sac R i v e r n e a r E l D o r a d o S p r i n g s , M o . , l a t e i n M a r c h . S o m e p e o p l e r e p o r t e d the l i g h t w a s r e d , c h a n g i n g t o w h i t e and g r e e n . A m a n by the n a m e of Duane W i t t , w h o w o r k s in a p r i n t s h o p in El D o r a d o S p r i n g s , s a y s h e s a w the l i g h t four t i m e s d u r i n g M a r c h . He said it w a s near Blackjack, 10 m i l e s east of El Dorado Springs. W i t t and s o m e o f h i s f r i e n d s c h a s e d i t around a f i e l d . T h e y s a i d i t l o o k e d t o b e about the s i z e o f a f o o t b a l l , but they c o u l d n ' t g e t c l o s e r than a b l o c k . " I t just s e e m s to b o b and d r i f t a w a y , " Witt said. " S o m e b o d y i s out c h a s i n g i t a l m o s t e v e r y night. O n e night w e counted 4 0 c a r s l i n e d u p a l o n g the r o a d l e a d i n g b y that f i e l d . "

GLN-019

AN ATMOSPHERIC PHENOMENON IN THE NORTH CHINA SEA

N o r c o c k , C h a s . J . ; N a t u r e , 4 8 : 7 6 - 7 7 , M a y 2 5 , 1893. D u r i n g a r e c e n t w i n t r y c r u i s e i n H . M . S . C a r o l i n e i n the N o r t h C h i n a S e a , a curious phenomenon was seen which m a y be of interest to your r e a d e r s . The s h i p w a s o n p a s s a g e b e t w e e n Shanghai and the w e s t e r n e n t r a n c e o f the f a m o u s inland s e a o f Japan. O n 24th F e b r u a r y , a t 1 0 p . m . , w h e n i n l a t i t u d e 3 2 ° 5 8 ' N . , l o n g i t u d e 1 2 6 ° 3 3 ' E . , w h i c h , o n r e f e r e n c e t o the m a p , w i l l b e s e e n t o b e s i x t e e n t o s e v e n t e e n m i l e s south o f Q u e l p a r t I s l a n d (south o f the K o r e a n p e n i n s u l a ) s o m e unusual l i g h t s w e r e r e p o r t e d b y the o f f i c e r o f the w a t c h b e t w e e n the s h i p

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NOCTURNAL LIGHTS

and Mount A u c k l a n d , a mountain 6 , 0 0 0 f e e t h i g h . I t w a s a w i n d y , c o l d , m o o n light night. M y f i r s t i m p r e s s i o n w a s that t h e y w e r e e i t h e r s o m e f i r e s o n s h o r e , a p p a r e n t l y h i g h e r f r o m the h o r i z o n than a s h i p ' s m a s t h e a d , o r s o m e j u n k ' s " f l a r e up" lights r a i s e d by m i r a g e . T o t h e naked e y e t h e y a p p e a r e d s o m e t i m e s a s a m a s s ; a t o t h e r s , s p r e a d out i n a n i r r e g u l a r l i n e , and, b e i n g g l o b u l a r i n f o r m , t h e y r e s e m b l e d C h i n e s e l a n t e r n s f e s t o o n e d b e t w e e n the m a s t s o f a l o f t y vessel. T h e y b o r e n o r t h ( m a g n e t i c ) , and r e m a i n e d o n that b e a r i n g until l o s t s i g h t o f about m i d n i g h t . A s the s h i p w a s p a s s i n g the land t o the e a s t w a r d a t the r a t e o f s e v e n k n o t s a n h o u r , i t s o o n b e c a m e o b v i o u s that the l i g h t s w e r e not o n t h e l a n d , though o b s e r v e d w i t h the m o u n t a i n b e h i n d t h e m . O n the f o l l o w i n g night, F e b r u a r y 25th, about the s a m e t i m e , 1 0 p . m . , the ship h a v i n g c l e a r e d P o r t H a m i l t o n , w a s s t e e r i n g e a s t , o n the p a r a l l e l o f 3 4 ° . when t h e s e c u r i o u s l i g h t s w e r e a g a i n o b s e r v e d o n the s a m e b e a r i n g , a t a n a l t i t u d e o f 3 ° o r 4°. a b o v e the h o r i z o n . I t w a s a c l e a r , s t i l l , m o o n l i g h t night, and c o l d . O n t h i s o c c a s i o n t h e r e w a s n o land i n s i g h t o n a n o r t h b e a r i n g w h e n the l i g h t s w e r e f i r s t o b s e r v e d , but s o o n a f t e r w a r d s a s m a l l i s l e t w a s p a s s e d , w h i c h f o r t h e t i m e e c l i p s e d the l i g h t s . A s the ship s t e a m e d o n a t a r a t e o f s e v e n knots a n h o u r , the l i g h t s m a i n t a i n e d a c o n s t a n t b e a r i n g ( m a g n e t i c ) o f N . 2 ° W . , a s i f c a r r i e d b y s o m e v e s s e l t r a v e l l i n g i n the s a m e d i r e c t i o n and a t the s a m e s p e e d . T h e g l o b e s o f f i r e a l t e r e d i n t h e i r f o r m a t i o n a s o n the p r e v i o u s n i g h t , n o w i n a m a s s e d g r o u p , w i t h a n o u t l y i n g l i g h t a w a y t o the r i g h t , then the i s o l a t e d o n e w o u l d d i s a p p e a r , and the o t h e r s w o u l d t a k e the f o r m o f a c r e s c e n t or diamond, or hang festoon-fashion in a c u r v e d l i n e . A clear r e f l e c t i o n o r g l a r e c o u l d b e s e e n o n the h o r i z o n b e n e a t h the l i g h t s . Through a t e l e s c o p e the g l o b e s a p p e a r e d to be of a r e d d i s h c o l o u r , and to e m i t a thin smoke. I w a t c h e d t h e m f o r s e v e r a l h o u r s , and c o u l d d i s t i n g u i s h n o p e r c e p t i b l e a l t e r a t i o n i n t h e i r b e a r i n g o r a l t i t u d e , the c h a n g e s o c c u r r i n g o n l y i n t h e i r r e l a t i v e f o r m a t i o n , but e a c h l i g h t m a i n t a i n e d i t s o v a l , g l o b u l a r f o r m . T h e y r e m a i n e d i n s i g h t f r o m 1 0 p . m . until d a y l i g h t (about 5 . 3 0 a . m . ) . W h e n l o s t s i g h t o f t h e b e a r i n g w a s one o r t w o p o i n t s t o the w e s t w a r d o f n o r t h . A t d a y l i g h t land 1300 f e e t high w a s s e e n t o the north and n o r t h - n o r t h - w e s t , distant f i f t y m i l e s , t h e m i r a g e b e i n g e x t r a o r d i n a r y . T h u s , t h e s e l i g h t s w e r e s e e n f i r s t i n l o n g i t u d e 1 2 6 ° 3 3 ' E . , and l a s t i n longitude 128° 29' E. A t f i r s t the land w a s b e h i n d t h e m , but d u r i n g the g r e a t e r p a r t o f the d i s t a n c e run i t w a s f o r t y - f i v e o r fifty m i l e s a w a y t o the n o r t h ; and the b e a r i n g o f the l i g h t s f o r a t l e a s t t h r e e - f o u r t h s o f the d i s t a n c e did not change. On a r r i v a l at K o b e I r e a d in a d a i l y p a p e r that the " U n k n o w n l i g h t of J a p a n " had, a s w a s c u s t o m a r y a t this s e a s o n o f the y e a r w h e n the w e a t h e r i s v e r y c o l d , s t o r m y , and c l e a r , b e e n o b s e r v e d b y f i s h e r m e n i n the S h i m b a r a G u l f and Japanese w a t e r s . T h e a r t i c l e w e n t o n t o s a y that t h e s e l i g h t s w e r e r e f e r r e d t o i n n a t i v e s c h o o l - b o o k s , and a t t r i b u t e d t o e l e c t r i c a l p h e n o m e n a . On mentioni n g the m a t t e r , h o w e v e r , t o the l e a d i n g E u r o p e a n s i n Y o k o h a m a and T o k i o , t h e y a p p e a r e d t o h a v e n o k n o w l e d g e o f the m a t t e r . C a p t a i n C a s t l e , o f H . M . S . L e a n d e r , i n f o r m e d m e that, not l o n g a g o , the o f f i c e r s o f h i s s h i p s a w l i g h t s i n the s a m e l o c a l i t y w h i c h they thought a t f i r s t w e r e caused by a ship on f i r e . T h e c o u r s e o f the v e s s e l w a s a l t e r e d a t o n c e w i t h a v i e w o f r e n d e r i n g a s s i s t a n c e , but f i n d i n g that the l i g h t s i n c r e a s e d t h e i r altitude as he approached, he attributed t h e m to s o m e v o l c a n i c disturbance, and b e i n g p r e s s e d f o r t i m e , r e s u m e d h i s c o u r s e . T h e b a c k g r o u n d o f high land s e e n o n the f i r s t night d i s p e l s a l l i d e a o f t h e s e e x t r a o r d i n a r y l i g h t s b e i n g due t o a distant v o l c a n o . T h e u n i f o r m i t y o f the b e a r i n g r e n d e r s the t h e o r y o f t h e i r b e i n g f i r e s o n the s h o r e m o s t i m p r o b a b l e . I a m i n c l i n e d t o t h e b e l i e f that t h e y w e r e s o m e t h i n g i n the nature o f St. E l m o ' s

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fires. I t i s p r o b a b l e that t h e r e a r e t r a v e l l e r s a m o n g t h e r e a d e r s o f y o u r i n t e r e s t i n g j o u r n a l w h o h a v e s e e n o r h e a r d o f t h i s p h e n o m e n o n , and w i l l b e a b l e t o d e s c r i b e i t s o r i g i n and t h e a t m o s p h e r i c c o n d i t i o n s n e c e s s a r y f o r i t s appearance.

GLN-020

THE QUEER LIGHTS ON BROWN MOUNTAIN

A n o n y m o u s ; L i t e r a r y D i g e s t . 87:48-49, N o v e m b e r 7 , 1925. T h e f o l l o w i n g is attributed to R o b e r t Sparks W a l k e r , w r i t i n g in the publication, Light: " W h a t would y o u think o r say, i f y o u w e r e standing o n R a t t l e s n a k e K n o b , o n t h e M o r g a n t o n , N o r t h C a r o l i n a , r o a d a b o u t 7:30 p . m . and s a w i n a s o u t h e a s t e r l y d i r e c t i o n a c u r i o u s l i g h t , about t h e s i z e o f a t o y b a l l o o n , s m a l l e r t h a n t h e f u l l m o o n , and v e r y r e d , r i s e m y s t e r i o u s l y o v e r B r o w n M o u n t a i n , p r o c e e d i n t o t h e a i r a s h o r t d i s t a n c e , w a v e r a s i f i t w e r e p a l s i e d , and t h e n i n l e s s than a m i n u t e disappear? " T h e l i g h t s , h o w e v e r , d o not a p p e a r r e g u l a r l y a t t h e s a m e s p o t . B r o w n M o u n t a i n h a s a t a b l e - s h a p e d t o p a t 2 , 600 f e e t e l e v a t i o n . Small t r i b u t a r i e s of t h e J o h n R i v e r f l o w i n g south m a k e m a n y i n d e n t a t i o n s i n i t s s u r f a c e . Geologists s a y t h a t t h e r e i s n o t h i n g unusual i n t h e f o r m a t i o n o f B r o w n M o u n t a i n that i t is simply a pile of Cranberry granite. " I n 1913, a t t h e r e q u e s t o f o n e o f N o r t h C a r o l i n a ' s r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s i n C o n g r e s s , the U n i t e d States G e o l o g i c a l S u r v e y sent a m a n d o w n t h e r e to study the o r i g i n o f the s t r a n g e l i g h t s . H e d i d not t a r r y l o n g b e f o r e h e b r a n d e d t h e m a s c o m i n g f r o m the h e a d l i g h t s o f l o c o m o t i v e s flashing u p o v e r the mountain. The people laughed at his simple explanation. T h e y continued t o l e t the s t r a n g e l i g h t s a m u s e and e n t e r t a i n t h e m , and w o r k upon t h e i r i m a g i n a t i o n s . " T h e d e s c r i p t i o n s o f the s t r a n g e l i g h t m a d e b y v a r i o u s o b s e r v e r s d o not agree. O n e p e r s o n s a y s that i t i s p a l e w h i t e , a s i s o r d i n a r i l y o b s e r v e d through a g r o u n d - g l a s s g l o b e , with a faint, i r r e g u l a r halo e n c i r c l i n g it. He c l a i m s t h a t i t i s r e s t r i c t e d t o a p r e s c r i b e d c i r c l e , and a p p e a r s f r o m t h r e e t o f o u r t i m e s i n r a p i d s u c c e s s i o n , then c o n c e a l s i t s e l f f o r t w e n t y m i n u t e s , w h e n it r e a p p e a r s within the s a m e c i r c l e . A n o t h e r o b s e r v e r , who w a s standing about e i g h t m i l e s f r o m B r o w n M o u n t a i n , s a y s that s u d d e n l y a f t e r s u n s e t t h e r e b l a z e d i n t o the s k y a b o v e t h e m o u n t a i n a s t e a d y g l o w i n g b a l l o f l i g h t . To him, t h e l i g h t a p p e a r e d y e l l o w i s h , and i t l a s t e d about h a l f a m i n u t e , w h e n i t d i s appeared rather abruptly. It appeared to h i m l i k e a star f r o m a bursting skyr o c k e t , but m u c h b r i g h t e r . " T o s o m e people it appears stationary; to others, it m o v e s s o m e t i m e s upw a r d , d o w n w a r d , or h o r i z o n t a l l y . A m i n i s t e r s a y s that it a p p e a r e d l i k e a b a l l of incandescent light in which he could o b s e r v e a seething motion. " S o m e p e r s o n s h a v e s u g g e s t e d t h e w i l l - o ' - t h e - w i s p a s a n e x p l a n a t i o n , but s i n c e B r o w n Mountain b e a r s the reputation of o w n i n g no m a r s h y ground, it could h a r d l y be such a p h e n o m e n o n . T h e n s o m e one said it might be phosphorus, but p h o s p h o r u s i s o x i d i z e d s o r e a d i l y t h a t i t i s n e v e r found i n a f r e e s t a t e . Of c o u r s e a n u m b e r o f p e o p l e t h o u g h t i t m i g h t b e f o x - f i r e , but f o x - f i r e m a k e s s u c h a v e r y w e a k , p a l e l i g h t that t h e i r g u e s s e s w e r e o b v i o u s l y e r r o n e o u s . " A n d o f c o u r s e , s o m e p e r s o n mentioned 'St. E l m o ' s f i r e ' an electrical discharge from sharp objects during a thunder-storm. St. E l m o ' s f i r e i s

Gl-169

GLN-020

NOCTURNAL LIGHTS

b r u s h l i k e i n a p p e a r a n c e , and s i n c e the s t r a n g e l i g h t s c o u l d not b e i t , the a m a t e u r s c i e n t i s t ' s n e x t a s s e r t i o n w a s that p r o b a b l y the p h e n o m e n o n k n o w n a s ' A n d e s l i g h t ' w a s t h e g u i l t y c h a p ! T h e W e a t h e r B u r e a u s a y s that the A n d e s l i g h t i s a s t r i k i n g l u m i n o u s d i s c h a r g e o f e l e c t r i c i t y o b s e r v e d o v e r the c r e s t o f the A n d e s i n C h i l e , w h e r e t h u n d e r - s t o r m s a r e a l m o s t unknown. Silent d i s c h a r g e s o f e l e c t r i c i t y t a k e p l a c e b e t w e e n the p e a k s and the c l o u d s . The Andes light is said often t o p r o d u c e g l i m m e r i n g lights with c i r c u l a r b o r d e r s , s o m e t i m e s o b s e r v e d f o r m o r e than 300 m i l e s . " T h e c i t i z e n s o f the m o u n t a i n o u s p a r t o f s o u t h w e s t e r n V i r g i n i a , w h e r e the r i d g e s run p a r a l l e l w i t h each, o t h e r , s e p a r a t e d b y d e e p , n a r r o w v a l l e y s , r e p o r t that t h e y s o m e t i m e s o b s e r v e a n o i s e l e s s e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e f r o m o n e s u m m i t t o the a i r . H o w e v e r , the c o n t o u r o f B r o w n M o u n t a i n i s said t o b e u n f a v o r a b l e f o r any p h e n o m e n o n l i k e A n d e s l i g h t . T h e f i r s t g e o l o g i s t w h o v i s i t e d B r o w n M o u n t a i n i n 1913, a f t e r c h e c k i n g u p the t r a i n s c h e d u l e , and w a t c h i n g the l i g h t s , l e t the s c h e d u l e and l i g h t s c o n v i n c e h i m , M r . W a l k e r t e l l s u s , that the h e a d l i g h t s f r o m l o c o m o t i v e s w e r e r e s p o n s i b l e f o r i t a l l , and i n s h o r t o r d e r l e f t the m o u n t a i n . O b j e c t i o n s f o l l o w e d , f o r the s i m p l e r e a s o n that h e a d l i g h t s m a k e a b e a m i n the a i r l i k e a s e a r c h - l i g h t , the s u g g e s t i o n o f a u t o m o b i l e l i g h t s w a s o b j e c t e d t o f o r the s a m e r e a s o n . I n 1922, when the l i g h t s o f B r o w n M o u n t a i n had p e r s i s t e d i n a r o u s i n g the c u r i o s i t y o f the p e o p l e , a n o t h e r r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f the p e o p l e a s k e d the D e p a r t m e n t t o send a second geologist to make a m o r e complete investigation. T h i s w a s m a d e i n the same year. S a y s the w r i t e r : W i t h m a p s s p r e a d out o n the t a b l e , and d i r e c t i o n s p r o p e r l y noted and l a n d m a r k s s i g h t e d and m a r k e d , the i n v e s t i g a t o r p r o c e e d e d t o m a k e o b s e r v a t i o n s . W h e n the o b s e r v a t i o n o f the l i g h t s w a s m a d e , the t i m e o f a r r i v a l and d i s a p p e a r a n c e o f the s t r a n g e l i g h t s w a s c h e c k e d w i t h the t r a i n s c h e d u l e , and a f t e r r e m a i n i n g t h e r e a f o r t n i g h t , the i n v e s t i g a t o r c a m e t o the c o n c l u s i o n that h e had o b s e r v e d a f a i r r e p r e s e n t a t i o n o f the ' s t r a n g e l i g h t s ' o f B r o w n M o u n t a i n , and that 4 7 p e r cent o f them o r i g i n a t e d f r o m automobile headlights; 3 3 p e r cent f r o m l o c o m o t i v e h e a d l i g h t s ; 1 0 p e r c e n t f r o m f i x t l i g h t s , and 1 0 p e r cent b r u s h f i r e s . " I t w a s a g r e e d that w h i l e the q u e e r l i g h t s a p p e a r e d a b o v e B r o w n M o u n t a i n , none o f t h e m o r i g i n a t e d t h e r e , but i n a b r o a d v a l l e y s e v e r a l m i l e s b e y o n d . " T h e a t m o s p h e r i c c o n d i t i o n s i n the v a l l e y b e y o n d a r e s a i d t o b e i d e a l f o r j u g g l i n g d i s t a n t l i g h t s that p e n e t r a t e the a t m o s p h e r e . The air v a r i e s in density, which m a k e s it v e r y r e f r a c t i v e . T h e dust and m i s t a r e c r e d i t e d w i t h g i v i n g the l i g h t s the v a r i o u s c o l o r s and t i n t s . "So m u c h f o r the c o n c l u s i o n o f the g e o l o g i c a l i n v e s t i g a t o r . Last y e a r when I h e a r d that i n t e l l i g e n t p e o p l e l i v i n g i n that p a r t o f N o r t h C a r o l i n a r e f u s e d t o a c c e p t the r e p o r t of the i n v e s t i g a t o r , I sent a l e t t e r of i n q u i r y to a f e w p r o m i n e n t b u s i n e s s m e n t h e r e , t h o s e w h o had b e e n o b s e r v i n g the l i g h t s f o r m a n y y e a r s . One o f t h e s e m e n e x p r e s t the o p i n i o n that t h e g e o l o g i s t had t r i e d h a r d t o find out the s o u r c e o f the s t r a n g e l i g h t s , but had f a i l e d . T h a t the l i g h t s had b e e n o b s e r v e d f o r the l a s t s i x t y y e a r s , and l o n g b e f o r e r a i l r o a d s w e r e c o n s t r u c t e d i n that p a r t o f the c o u n t r y , and b e f o r e the a d v e n t o f the a u t o m o b i l e ; that the f l o o d o f 1916 put the r a i l r o a d s out o f b u s i n e s s f o r a s o l i d w e e k , a s w e l l a s the a u t o m o b i l e s , y e t the s t r a n g e l i g h t s c o n t i n u e d t o put i n t h e i r r e g u l a r a p p e a r a n c e . As conclus i v e p r o o f that t h e l i g h t s d o not o r i g i n a t e f r o m h e a d l i g h t s , h e s t a t e s that the m y s t e r i o u s l i g h t s f a i l t o a p p e a r f o l l o w i n g a l o n g d r o u t h ; that a f t e r the r e p o r t w a s m a d e , h e w e n t t o a c e r t a i n s i t e , t u r n e d h i s b a c k t o the r a i l r o a d and h i g h w a y , and w i t n e s s e d the s t r a n g e l i g h t s u d d e n l y c o m e u p f r o m the m o u n t a i n - t o p , and k e e p m o v i n g until it w a s l o s t in the s k y . "

Gl-170

NOCTURNAL LIGHTS
GLN-021
Fuller,

GLN-023

LIGHTS IN THE OUTBACK
13:23-24, A u g u s t 1960.

Curtis; Fate,

T h i s note in F u l l e r ' s c o l u m n d e s c r i b e s r e p e a t e d sightings of nocturnal lights in A u s t r a l i a b y W i l l i a m E . Young, A l e x a n d r i a Station. L a t e at night when h e ' s d r i v i n g through the m o o n l i g h t , b e t w e e n the c l u m p s of t a l l g r a s s and t h e h i g h r e d a n t h i l l s , h e s e e s w h a t s e e m t o b e c a r h e a d l a m p s o n the r o a d ahead. T h e lights g l o w brightly as his c a r approaches them. T h e n they suddenly vanish. H e n e v e r finds c a r t r a c k s ahead, o r e m b e r s o f a c a m p f i r e . " T h e a b o r i g i n e s c a l l t h e m the ' M i n M i n ' l i g h t s , " Y o u n g r e c e n t l y t o l d R i c h a r d C T r i m b l e of the C h i c a g o Daily N e w s . "Nobody has e v e r explained them. "

GLN-022
Fuller,

SPOOKLIGHT EXPLAINED?
C u r t i s ; F a t e , 18:12, D e c e m b e r 1965.

P o p u l a r M e c h a n i c s M a g a z i n e r e c e n t l y sent w r i t e r R o b e r t Gannon d o w n into the O z a r k f o o t h i l l s in an attempt to s o l v e the m y s t e r i o u s " O z a r k S p o o k l i g h t " seen f o r many y e a r s in the v i c i n i t y of Hornet, M o . With the aid of G e o l o g i c a l Survey topographic m a p s , a e r i a l photographs, a c o m p a s s and a n o d o m e t e r , G a n n o n b e l i e v e s h e h a s s o l v e d the p r o b l e m . The " S p o o k l i g h t " i s n o t h i n g m o r e o r l e s s than h e a d l a m p s f r o m a u t o m o b i l e s o n U . S . Route 66 10 to 15 m i l e s a w a y . T h o s e a u t o m o b i l e s d r i v e in a d i r e c t line with " S p o o k l i g h t R o a d " f o r a d i s t a n c e of 15 m i l e s , Gannon s a y s . W i t h G a n n o n u s i n g c o l o r e d c e l l o p h a n e o v e r h i s h e a d l a m p s , and b l i n k i n g h i s lights a c c o r d i n g to a fixed t i m e t a b l e , Gannon's a s s o c i a t e w a s able to spot e v e r y blink of his c o l o r e d lights. However, o l d - t i m e r s say the light w a s s e e n l o n g b e f o r e t h e r e w e r e c a r s o r a Route 66.

GLN-023
Fuller,

WHAT SHAPE?
Curtis; Fate, 20:26-27, M a y 1967.

F r o m M e l b o u r n e , A u s t r a l i a , l a s t A p r i l 11, 1966, w e h a v e a r e p o r t o f a m y s terious column of light witnessed by an R. Sullivan, a steel c o n t r a c t o r . Near W y c h e p r o o f , about 100 m i l e s f r o m M e l b o u r n e , S u l l i v a n w a s d r i v i n g d o w n a s t r a i g h t , t r e e - l i n e d h i g h w a y when his c a r suddenly swung to the r i g h t . He b r a k e d and found h i m s e l f f a c i n g a c o l u m n o f " l i g h t " about 2 5 f e e t h i g h and s h a p e d l i k e an i c e c r e a m c o n e . I t w a s about t h r e e f e e t w i d e a t the b o t t o m and 1 0 f e e t w i d e a t the t o p . T h e b o t t o m w a s b r i l l i a n t w h i t e and s e e m e d t o r e s t o n t h e g r o u n d . The rest was rainbow-hued. T h e c o l u m n r o s e s i l e n t l y f r o m the ground "at t r e mendous s p e e d . " T h i s t a l e i s n o s t r a n g e r than m a n y i n t h e s c i e n t i f i c l i t e r a t u r e d e s c r i b i n g b a l l l i g h t n i n g or tornado luminous phenomena.

Gl-171

GLN-024
GLN-024

N O C T U R N A L LIGHTS

SWAMP GAS, WILL-O'-THE-WISP OR UFO'S?

U t k e , A l l e n R . ; F a t e , 2 0 : 3 2 - 4 0 , O c t o b e r 1967. Descriptions of luminous swamp gas by those c l a i m i n g to have seen it usually a g r e e quite c l o s e l y . They w i l l t e l l you they saw f l a m e - l i k e , t o r c h like, balloon-shaped or mushroom-shaped lights on a windless summer or w a r m autumn e v e n i n g . T h e l i g h t s w e r e e i t h e r o n the g r o u n d o r just a b o v e i t ; they w e r e p a l e b l u e w i t h a n o c c a s i o n a l t i n g e o f s o m e o t h e r c o l o r but t h e y a r e never d e s c r i b e d as white. T h e lights are usually only a few inches in s i z e and s e l d o m l a r g e r than f o u r o r f i v e f e e t l o n g o r i n d i a m e t e r . T h e y may a p p e a r t o b e s t e a d y o r they m a y f l i c k e r o n and o f f a s i f e x t i n g u i s h e d and r e i g n i t e d . I f t h e y d o not a c t u a l l y m o v e t h e y g i v e the i m p r e s s i o n o f m o v i n g i f s e v e r a l o f t h e m f l i c k e r o n and off i n c l o s e p r o x i m i t y . O r they m a y a c t u a l l y r i s e i n t o the a i r . But t h e y r a r e l y r i s e m o r e than f i v e t o 1 0 f e e t o f f the ground b e f o r e they a r e extinguished. No single f l a m e or ball of swamp gas e v e r i s d e s c r i b e d a s l a s t i n g m o r e than a m i n u t e b e f o r e i t i s e x t i n g u i s h e d . T h e o n l y sound e v e r d e s c r i b e d i n c o n n e c t i o n w i t h t h e s e l i g h t s i s a n o c c a s i o n a l p o p p i n g sound.

GLN-025

THE ROCKIES' POT OF GOLD, COLORADO

L i n e h a n , E d w a r d J . ; N a t i o n a l G e o g r a p h i c M a g a z i n e , 1 3 6 : 1 5 7 - 2 0 1 , A u g u s t 1969. (Quotation w i t h the p e r m i s s i o n o f the N a t i o n a l G e o g r a p h i c S o c i e t y . ) I r e c a l l q u i t e v i v i d l y the l a s t such t o w n I v i s i t e d b e f o r e l e a v i n g C o l o r a d o a p l a c e c a l l e d S i l v e r C l i f f i n the W e t M o u n t a i n V a l l e y w e s t o f P u e b l o . T o d a y i t counts about 110 y e a r - r o u n d r e s i d e n t s , w h e r e o n c e 5 , 0 0 0 l i v e d . " B e s u r e t o g e t t h e r e a f t e r d a r k , " a f e l l o w c a m p e r f r o m K a n s a s had t o l d m e , "and d r i v e out t o the o l d c e m e t e r y . Y o u ' l l s e e s o m e t h i n g m i g h t y s t r a n g e . " W e had b o u n c e d about a m i l e out o f S i l v e r C l i f f a c r o s s p i t c h - b l a c k p r a i r i e w h e n B i l l K l e i n e , * w h o runs the l o c a l c a m p g r o u n d , t o l d m e t o pull u p and s w i t c h m y h e a d l i g h t s off. " D o y o u b e l i e v e i t ? " I a s k e d h i m . " A b o u t the l i g h t s i n the g r a v e y a r d ? " " I ' v e seen t h e m plenty of t i m e s . T h i s i s a g o o d night f o r t h e m overcast, no m o o n . " W e c l i m b e d out b e s i d e the o l d b u r y i n g g r o u n d , and f o r l o n g m i n u t e s I strained to see something, anything. Slowly, vague outlines of g r a v e m a r k e r s emerged, in ragged rows. " T h e r e . " B i l l ' s v o i c e w a s quiet, a l m o s t a w h i s p e r . "And o v e r t h e r e ! " I s a w t h e m t o o . D i m , round s p o t s o f b l u e - w h i t e l i g h t g l o w e d e t h e r e a l l y a m o n g the g r a v e s . I found a n o t h e r , and s t e p p e d f o r w a r d f o r a b e t t e r l o o k . They vanished. F o r 1 5 m i n u t e s w e w a l k e d about the p l a c e , p u r s u i n g o n e w i l l - o ' - t h e - w i s p , then a n o t h e r . I a i m e d my f l a s h l i g h t at o n e e e r i e g l o w and s w i t c h e d it o n . It r e v e a l e d only a tombstone. " S o m e p e o p l e think i t ' s p h o s p h o r e s c e n c e , " s a i d B i l l . " Y o u k n o w , f r o m d e c a y i n g w o o d i n the c r o s s e s o r s o m e t h i n g . O t h e r s s a y i t ' s just r e f l e c t i o n s f r o m the l i g h t s o f S i l v e r C l i f f , o r W e s t c l i f f e d o w n t h e r e . " I l o o k e d b a c k a t the t w o t o w n s . Those small clusters of lights seemed far t o o faint t o r e f l e c t w a y out h e r e . S t i l l , i t w a s p o s s i b l e . " O n l y t r o u b l e i s , " said B i l l , " m y w i f e and I h a v e both s e e n t h e s e l i g h t s

Gl-172

NOCTURNAL LIGHTS

GLN-027

when the f o g w a s so thick you couldn't s e e the t o w n s at a l l . " N o doubt s o m e o n e , s o m e d a y , w i l l p r o v e t h e r e ' s nothing a t a l l s u p e r n a t u r a l in the l u m i n o u s m a n i f e s t a t i o n s of S i l v e r C l i f f ' s c e m e t e r y . A n d I w i l l f e e l a tinge of disappointment, ( p . 201)

GLN-026

SPOOKLIGHTS A N D FIRE D E V I L S
Award Books, New York, 1969,

Norman, Eric; W e i r d Unsolved Mysteries, pp. 116-129.

Compiler's Summary: The first portion of this chapter deals with f i r e s of m y s t e r i ous o r i g i n , which a r e not pertinent t o this s e c t i o n . T h e bulk o f the c h a p t e r , h o w e v e r , d e s c r i b e s p e c u l i a r l i g h t s and f i r e b a l l s v e r y m u c h i n o r d e r h e r e . The more interesting of these are s u m m a r i z e d below. M a r c h 2 1 , 1 9 1 6 ; J o l i e t , 111: D u r i n g a p e c u l i a r t h u n d e r s t o r m , b l u e f i r e b a l l s w e r e seen. O v e r 20 windows w e r e broken. T h e w i n d o w s l a t e r turned a strange burned color. S u m m e r 1923: T w o b e a m s of light w e r e seen swishing a c r o s s a y a r d in a s c i s s o r s movement. No place given. O r i g i n a l s o u r c e w a s M a r c h 1968 i s s u e o f S e a r c h . J u l y 1966; L l a n o , N . M . : bluish or g r a y i s h . Bouncing lights accompanied by flying r o c k s . Balls were

T h e g h o s t l i g h t o f S i l v e r C l i f f , C o l o , and t h e H o r n e t , M o . l i g h t a r e d i s c u s s e d i n s o m e detail, with the accounts based on p r e v i o u s l y published accounts. A p r i l 1 5 . 1 9 1 8 ; A t l a n t a , G a . : Y a r d i s l i t up, o b j e c t r e s e m b l i n g a " s t a t u e " f l i e s o v e r h e a d , sky g l o w r e m a i n s 10 minutes. Afterwards, a fireball emerged from bedroom. T h i s account i s s i m i l a r t o s o m e i n the G L B s e c t i o n d e s c r i b i n g l a r g e luminous aerial objects splitting or engendering ball lightning. M o s t o f t h e a b o v e i n c i d e n t s a r e u n d o c u m e n t e d and r a t h e r s e n s a t i o n a l i n n a t u r e .

GLN-027
Edwards,

GHOST LIGHTS
Frank; Strange W o r l d , L y l e Stuart, N e w Y o r k , 1964, p p . 3 5 - 3 9 .

Compiler's Summary: Chapter 6 of Frank E d w a r d ' s book is a short one which touches b r i e f l y o n the B r o w n Mountain, N . C . l i g h t s , the H o r n e t , M o . s p o o k l i g h t , and t h e S i l v e r C l i f f , C o l o , g h o s t l i g h t s . In the l a t t e r t w o i n s t a n c e s , E d w a r d s c l a i m s that p u r s u i t o f t h e l i g h t s r e s u l t s i n e l u s i v e a c t i o n and s o m e t i m e s d i s a p p e a r a n c e and r e a p p e a r a n c e n e a r b y . Other ghost l i g h t s m e n t i o n e d e v e n m o r e b r i e f l y a r e t h o s e o f G o n z a l e s , L a . , Suffolk C o u n t y , V a . , and t h e o n e b e t w e e n A l p i n e and M a r f a , T e x a s . The latter is c a l l e d t h e C h i n a t i L i g h t and h a s b e e n s e e n f o r 8 0 y e a r s . T h e Indians attribute it to the spirit of a dead chief. A t t i m e s i t i s a d o u b l e b a l l , w h i c h o f t e n b l i n k s out but s o m e t i m e s just fades a w a y .

Gl-173

GLN-028
GLN-028

N O C T U R N A L LIGHTS
[FORT'S NOCTURNAL LIGHTS]

F o r t , C h a r l e s ; T h e B o o k s o f C h a r l e s F o r t , H e n r y H o l t and C o m p a n y , N e w Y o r k , 1941. Shining t h i n g s , f l y i n g l i k e b i r d s , i n the f i e l d s o f N o r t h N o r f o l k c o n t i n u e d t o b e r e p o r t e d , [ c i r c a 1908] T h e b r i l l i a n t t h i n g s l o o k e d e l e c t r i c . W h e n t h e y r e s t e d o n t r e e s , e v e r y t h i n g around t h e m w a s i l l u m i n a t e d . Purdy's descriptions are v e r y d i f f e r e n t f r o m " a p a l e , y e l l o w g l o w . " U p o n t h e night o f D e c e m b e r 1st, h e s a w s o m e t h i n g that h e thought w a s the l a m p o f a m o t o r c y c l e , m o v i n g r a p i d l y t o w a r d h i m , i n a f i e l d , s t o p p i n g , then r i s i n g s e v e r a l y a r d s , m o v i n g h i g h e r , and then r e t r e a t i n g . I t m o v e d i n v a r i o u s d i r e c t i o n s . S e e the F i e l d , Jan. 11, 1908. ( p . 626) Something e l s e w a s r e p o r t e d , i n this r e g i o n . I n the E a s t e r n D a i l y P r e s s , Jan. 28, 1908, i t i s s a i d that, a t night moon bright "a dark, globular o b j e c t , with a s t r u c t u r e of s o m e kind upon t h e s i d e of i t , t r a v e l i n g at a g r e a t p a c e , " had b e e n s e e n i n the sky, b y e m p l o y e e s o f the N o r w i c h T r a n s p o r t a t i o n C o m p a n y , a t . M o u s e head. " I t s e e m e d t o o l a r g e f o r a k i t e , and, b e s i d e s , i t s m o v e m e n t s s e e m e d u n d e r c o n t r o l , f o r i t w a s t r a v e l i n g a g a i n s t the w i n d . " ( p . 627) L o n d o n D a i l y E x p r e s s , F e b r u a r y 15, and f o l l o w i n g i s s u e s , 1923 brilliant, l u m i n o u s t h i n g s m o v i n g a c r o s s f i e l d s , s o m e t i m e s h i g h i n the a i r , a t F e n n y C o m p ton, W a r w i c k s h i r e . They w e r e "intense lights, " like automobile headlights. Sometimes these luminous things, or beings, h o v e r e d o v e r a farmhouse. It was a d e s e r t e d f a r m h o u s e , a c c o r d i n g t o the L o n d o n D a i l y N e w s , F e b r u a r y 13. A b o u t a y e a r l a t e r , one o f t h e s e o b j e c t s , o r w h a t e v e r t h e y w e r e , r e t u r n e d , and w a s r e p o r t e d as "a swiftly m o v i n g light, " by s e v e r a l p e r s o n s , one of t h e m M i s s O l i v e K n i g h t , a s c h o o l t e a c h e r , o f F e n n y C o m p t o n ( L o n d o n Sunday N e w s , Jan. 27, 1 9 2 4 ) . T h e E a r l o f E r n e t e l l s , i n t h e L o n d o n D a i l y M a i l , D e c . 24, 1912, o f b r i l l i a n t l u m i n o s i t i e s that, f r o m t i m e t o t i m e , i n a p e r i o d o f s e v e n o r e i g h t y e a r s , had b e e n a p p e a r i n g n e a r L o u g h E r n e , L o n d o n d e r r y , I r e l a n d , "in s i z e and shape v e r y m u c h l i k e a m o t o r c a r l a m p . " I n l a t e r i s s u e s o f the D a i l y M a i l , the C o u n t e s s o f E r n e t e l l s o f t h e s e t h i n g s , o r c r e a t u r e s , " l i k e m o t o r c a r l a m p s , l a r g e and r o u n d . " ( p . 627)

Gl-174

LIGHT WHEELS
GLW-001 A S T R A N G E PHENOMENON
February 26, 1880.

GLW-001

Anonymous; Nature, 21:409-410,

The following letter from R. E. Harris, Commander A. S. N. C o . ' s s.s. S h a h i h e h a n , d a t e d C a l c u t t a , J a n u a r y 19, a p p e a r s i n t h e C a l c u t t a E n g l i s h m a n o f January 21: T h e m o s t r e m a r k a b l e p h e n o m e n o n that I h a v e e v e r s e e n a t s e a w a s s e e n b y m y s e l f and o f f i c e r s o n t h e 5th i n s t a n t b e t w e e n O y s t e r R e e f and P i g e o n I s l a n d (Malabar c o a s t ) . At 10 p. m. we w e r e steaming along v e r y comfortably; there w a s a p e r f e c t c a l m , t h e w a t e r w a s w i t h o u t a r i p p l e upon i t , t h e s k y w a s c l o u d l e s s , and, t h e r e b e i n g n o m o o n , the s t a r s shone b r i g h t l y . The atmosphere w a s b e a u t i f u l l y c l e a r , and t h e night w a s o n e o f g r e a t q u i e t u d e . At the a b o v e n a m e d h o u r I w e n t o n d e c k , and a t o n c e o b s e r v e d a s t r e a k o f w h i t e m a t t e r o n the h o r i z o n b e a r i n g s o u t h - s o u t h - w e s t . I t h e n w e n t o n t h e b r i d g e and d r e w t h e third o f f i c e r ' s attention to it. I n a f e w m i n u t e s i t had a s s u m e d t h e s h a p e o f a s e g m e n t o f a c i r c l e m e a s u r i n g about 4 5 ° i n l e n g t h and s e v e r a l d e g r e e s i n a l t i t u d e about i t s c e n t r e . A t t h i s t i m e i t s h o n e w i t h a p e c u l i a r but b e a u t i f u l m i l k y w h i t e n e s s , and r e s e m b l e d ( o n l y i n a h u g e m a s s , and g r e a t e r l u m i n o u s i n t e n s i t y ) the n e b u l a e s o m e t i m e s s e e n i n the h e a v e n s . W e w e r e s t e a m i n g t o the southward, and a s t h e bank o f l i g h t e x t e n d e d , o n e o f i t s a r m s c r o s s e d o u r p a t h . The whole t h i n g a p p e a r e d s o f o r e i g n t o a n y t h i n g I h a d e v e r s e e n , and s o w o n d e r f u l , that I s t o p p e d t h e s h i p j u s t o n i t s o u t s k i r t s , s o that I m i g h t t r y t o f o r m a t r u e and just conception of what it r e a l l y w a s . B y t h i s t i m e a l l t h e o f f i c e r s and e n g i n e e r s had a s s e m b l e d o n d e c k t o w i t n e s s t h e s c e n e , and w e r e a l l e q u a l l y a s t o n i s h e d and i n t e r e s t e d . S o m e l i t t l e t i m e b e f o r e the f i r s t body o f light r e a c h e d t h e s h i p I w a s e n a b l e d , w i t h m y night g l a s s e s , t o r e s o l v e i n a m e a s u r e w h a t a p p e a r e d , to the u n a s s i s t e d e y e , a huge m a s s of nebulous m a t t e r . I distinctly s a w s p a c e s b e t w e e n what again a p p e a r e d t o b e w a v e s o f l i g h t o f g r e a t l u s t r e . T h e s e c a m e r o l l i n g on with e v e r - i n c r e a s i n g rapidity till they reached the ship, and i n a s h o r t t i m e t h e s h i p w a s c o m p l e t e l y s u r r o u n d e d w i t h o n e g r e a t b o d y o f undulating light, which soon extended to the h o r i z o n on all s i d e s . On looking into the w a t e r it w a s seen to be studded with patches of faint, l u m i n o u s , i n a n i m a t e m a t t e r , m e a s u r i n g about t w o f e e t i n d i a m e t e r . Although these emitted a c e r t a i n amount o f l i g h t , i t w a s m o s t i n s i g n i f i c a n t when c o m p a r e d with the g r e a t w a v e s o f l i g h t that w e r e f l o a t i n g o n t h e s u r f a c e o f t h e w a t e r , and w h i c h w e r e a t t h i s t i m e c o n v e r g i n g upon t h e s h i p . T h e w a v e s stood many d e g r e e s a b o v e the w a t e r , l i k e a h i g h l y l u m i n o u s m i s t , and o b s c u r e d b y t h e i r i n t e n s i t y t h e d i s t a n t h o r i z o n ; and a s w a v e s u c c e e d e d w a v e i n r a p i d s u c c e s s i o n , o n e o f t h e m o s t g r a n d and b r i l l i a n t , y e t s o l e m n , s p e c t a c l e s that o n e c o u l d e v e r think o f w a s here witnessed. I n s p e a k i n g o f w a v e s o f l i g h t I d o not w i s h t o c o n v e y t h e i d e a that t h e y w e r e m e r e r i p p l i n g s , w h i c h a r e s o m e t i m e s c a u s e d b y f i s h p a s s i n g t h r o u g h a p h o s p h o r e s c e n t s e a , but w a v e s o f g r e a t l e n g t h and b r e a d t h , o r i n other w o r d s , great bodies of light. If the-eea could be c o n v e r t e d into a huge m i r r o r and t h o u s a n d s o f p o w e r f u l e l e c t r i c l i g h t s w e r e m a d e t o t h r o w t h e i r r a y s a c r o s s it, it would c o n v e y no adequate i d e a of this strange y e t grand phenomenon. " A s the w a v e s o f light c o n v e r g e d upon the ship f r o m all s i d e s they a p p e a r e d h i g h e r than h e r h u l l , and l o o k e d a s i f t h e y w e r e about t o e n v e l o p e h e r , and a s t h e y i m p i n g e d upon h e r , h e r s i d e s s e e m e d t o c o l l a p s e and e x p a n d . " W h i l s t t h i s w a s g o i n g o n t h e s h i p w a s p e r f e c t l y a t r e s t , and the w a t e r w a s like a millpond. " A f t e r about h a l f a n h o u r had e l a p s e d t h e b r i l l i a n c e o f t h e l i g h t s o m e w h a t a b a t e d , and t h e r e w a s a g r e a t p a u c i t y o f t h e faint l u s t r o u s p a t c h e s w h i c h I h a v e b e f o r e r e f e r r e d t o , but s t i l l t h e b o d y o f l i g h t w a s g r e a t , and, i f e m a n a t i n g f r o m

Gl-175

GLW-002

LIGHT WHEELS

t h e s e p a t c h e s , w a s out o f a l l p r o p o r t i o n t o t h e i r n u m b e r . " T h i s l i g h t I d o not think c o u l d h a v e b e e n p r o d u c e d without t h e a g e n c y o f e l e c t r o - m a g n e t i c c u r r e n t s e x e r c i s i n g t h e i r e x c i t i n g i n f l u e n c e upon s o m e o r g a n i c a n i m a l o r v e g e t a b l e s u b s t a n c e ; and o n e t h i n g I w i s h t o p o i n t out i s , that w h i l s t the s h i p w a s s t o p p e d and the l i g h t y e t s o m e d i s t a n c e a w a y , nothing w a s d i s c e r n i b l e i n t h e w a t e r , but s o s o o n a s the l i g h t r e a c h e d the ship a n u m b e r o f l u m i n o u s p a t c h e s p r e s e n t e d t h e m s e l v e s , and a s t h e s e w e r e e q u a l l y a s m o t i o n l e s s a s the s h i p a t t h e t i m e , i t i s o n l y n a t u r a l t o a s s u m e that they e x i s t e d and w e r e a c t u a l l y i n o u r v i c i n i t y b e f o r e the l i g h t r e a c h e d u s , o n l y they w e r e not m a d e v i s i b l e t i l l t h e y b e c a m e t h e t r a n s m i t t i n g m e d i a f o r the e l e c t r o - m a g n e t i c currents. T h i s h y p o t h e s i s i s b o r n e out b y t h e fact that e a c h w a v e o f l i g h t i n i t s p a s s a g e w a s d i s t i n c t l y s e e n t o p a s s o v e r t h e m i n s u c c e s s i o n , and a s the l i g h t g r a d u a l l y b e c a m e l e s s b r i l l i a n t , t h e y a l s o b e c a m e l e s s d i s t i n c t , and h a d a c t u a l l y d i s a p p e a r e d s o s o o n a s the w a v e s o f l i g h t c e a s e d t o e x i s t . " M o s t r e p o r t s o f l i g h t w h e e l s c o m e f r o m the I n d i a n O c e a n . O n e o p i n i o n i s that s o m e a c o u s t i c o r e l e c t r o m a g n e t i c s o u r c e a c t i v a t e s the b i o l u m i n e s c e n t a g e n t s i n t h e s e a . T h e r e a r e a l s o , h o w e v e r , i n s t a n c e s o f l u m i n o u s m i s t s h u g g i n g the g r o u n d o r s e a surface. T h e s e m i s t s m a y b e a s s o c i a t e d with a u r o r a l o r e l e c t r i c a l d i s c h a r g e phenomenon. S e v e r a l c a s e s of a "white, " " m i l k y , " or "phosphorescent" sea a r e r e c o r d e d e l s e w h e r e in the v o l u m e s in S e r i e s G. (See a l s o G L D - 0 2 7 . )

GLW-002

LUMINOUS FOG

A n o n y m o u s ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 3 6 : 3 7 1 , N o v e m b e r 1908. G e o r g e A . T u r n e r , s e c o n d o f f i c e r o f the s t e a m e r C o u n s e l l o r , r e p o r t s that o n F r i d a y , July 24, 1908, w h e n i n the G u l f o f S i a m , l a t i t u d e 3 0 ° N . , l o n g i t u d e 1 0 3 ° E . , "the s t e a m e r past thru a s m a l l f i e l d o f r e m a r k a b l e p h o s p h o r e s c e n t p a t c h e s i n the f o r m o f a kind o f v a p o r l y i n g a b o v e the s u r f a c e o f the w a t e r i n l e n g t h s of 500 to 1, 000 f e e t and b r e a d t h s of 100 f e e t a p p r o x i m a t e l y , and about 1 5 t o 2 0 f e e t i n depth t o the s u r f a c e o f the w a t e r . At distances of 1 to 2 m i l e s t h e s e ' s t r e a k s ' a p p e a r e d l i k e s h i n i n g s i l v e r (no m o o n s h i n i n g ) , and a t f i r s t w e r e t a k e n t o b e s h o a l s o f f i s h , but o n p a s s i n g d i r e c t l y thru one i t had a l l the effect of a slight luminous fog. N o d i s t u r b a n c e o r p r e s e n c e o f any f i s h a p p e a r ed in the w a t e r , w h i c h is o n l y about 25 to 30 f a t h o m s in depth, and no unusual c o l o r a p p e a r e d i n t h e c o n t e n t s o f a d r a w - b u c k e t t a k e n a t the t i m e . T h e a b o v e r e p o r t r e f e r s t o a s t a t i o n a r y p h e n o m e n o n s i m i l a r t o the r o t a t i n g l i g h t wheels. T h e luminous patches appear in s e v e r a l r e p o r t s of light w h e e l s , being a p p a r e n t l y a p r e c u r s o r o f the f o r m a t i o n o f a w h e e l .

GLW-003

BRILLIANT GULF WATERS

A n o n y m o u s ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 3 6 : 3 7 1 , N o v e m b e r 1908. The f o l l o w i n g e x t r a c t was taken f r o m the T a m p a , F l a . , T i m e s , N o v e m b e r , 1908: A r e m a r k a b l e m a r i n e p h e n o m e n o n w a s o b s e r v e d b y the s t e a m s h i p D o v e r , C a p t . Y o n A . C a r l s o n , a s that v e s s e l s t e a m e d t o T a m p a f r o m M o b i l e . W h e n a t

Gl-176

LIGHT WHEELS

GLW-004

a p o i n t 3 5 m i l e s f r o m M o b i l e l i g h t , a t 7 o ' c l o c k i n t h e e v e n i n g o f t h e 24th, t h e ship r a n suddenly in a s t r e a k of l i g h t c o m i n g f r o m the w a t e r w h i c h a l t e r n a t e d b l u e and g r e e n , t h e c o l o r s b e i n g s o b r i l l i a n t that t h e v e s s e l w a s l i g h t e d u p a s i f she w e r e c o v e r e d with arc l i g h t s with c o l o r e d g l o b e s . A h a l f m i l e s t r e a k o f d a r k w a t e r , and a b l a c k n e s s that s e t t l e d l i k e a p a l l o v e r t h e s h i p f o l l o w e d , and a s e c o n d s t r e a k o f t h e s a m e b r i l l i a n t - h u e d w a t e r s w a s e n c o u n t e r e d . T h e s e c o n d s t r e a k w a s about a s w i d e a s t h e f i r s t o n e , and w h e n t h e s h i p r a n out o f i t t h e s a m e b l a c k w a t e r s and a n i g h t o f e x c e p t i o n a l blackness w e r e also encountered. "I have sailed the high seas for twenty y e a r s , " d e c l a r e d Captain C a r l s o n , " a n d h a v e s e e n i n t e r e s t i n g p h e n o m e n a , b o t h m e t e o r o l o g i c a l and o t h e r w i s e , i n t h e w a t e r s o f e v e r y k n o w n o c e a n , but I n e v e r s a w a n y t h i n g that a p p r o a c h e d t h i s b l u e and g r e e n l i g h t f r o m t h e w a t e r p h e n o m e n a . T h e n i g h t w a s d a r k , but c l e a r , and w e r a n i n t o t h e s t r e a k s w i t h o u t a n y s e e m i n g w a r n i n g . I w a s in the p i l o t h o u s e w h e n w e s t r u c k i t , and I r a n o n d e c k , t h i n k i n g that s o m e t h i n g w a s o n f i r e . " T h e c r e w t u m b l e d out t o w i t n e s s i t a l s o , and i t w a s m a g n i f i c e n t . It was so l i g h t t h a t i t w a s r e m a r k e d b y t h e c h i e f e n g i n e e r that i t c o u l d b e r e a d b y , and t o m a k e s u r e I g r a b b e d a p a p e r , and the f i n e s t p r i n t that I c o u l d f i n d w a s e a s i l y discernible. W e r a n out o f t h e s t r e a k i n t o a s t r e a k o f b l a c k w a t e r , and t h e d a r k n e s s o f the night s e e m e d t o i n c r e a s e a s w e did s o . F r o m the s t r e a k of b l a c k n e s s w e r a n i n t o the s e c o n d s t r e a k o f l i g h t e d w a t e r s . Each of the streaks and t h e i n t e r m e d i a t e s t r e a k o f b l a c k w a t e r w a s a b o u t h a l f a m i l e w i d e . The wind at the t i m e w a s a light northwest. T h e s e a w a s s m o o t h and w e w e r e b e a r ing southeast by east half east, 35 m i l e s f r o m M o b i l e light. "

GLW-004

LUMINOUS WHEELS PUZZLE S E A M E N
M a r c h 9, 1967.

Anonymous; N e w Scientist, 33:447-448,

I n t h e G u l f o f T h a i l a n d and w a t e r s t o t h e s o u t h - e a s t , l a s t M a r c h , t h r e e m e r c h a n t s h i p s i n d e p e n d e n t l y o b s e r v e d t h e r a r e and a p p a r e n t l y u n e x p l a i n e d p h e n o m e non k n o w n a s t h e p h o s p h o r e s c e n t w h e e l : b a n d s o f l u m i n o s i t y s k i m m i n g a c r o s s t h e surface, apparently radiating f r o m a central bright source. One of t h e m saw it t w i c e , a w e e k a p a r t ; a n o t h e r had c o m e a c r o s s s u c h a l u m i n o u s s p i r a l i n t h e s a m e r e g i o n i n O c t o b e r , b r i n g i n g the t o t a l t o f i v e s i g h t i n g s i n a f e w m o n t h s a l l a l o n g a l i n e running roughly f r o m Bangkok to the n o r t h - w e s t e r n tip of B o r n e o . T h e M a r i n e O b s e r v e r , which p r o v i d e s a platform for m a r i n e r s with tales to t e l l ( " R e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r e a c h o b s e r v a t i o n r e s t s w i t h the c o n t r i b u t o r " ) has publ i s h e d the f i v e accounts, with c o m m e n t s f r o m P r o f e s s o r Kurt K a l l e o f H a m b u r g , f o r m e r l y o f t h e G e r m a n H y d r o g r a p h i c a l I n s t i t u t e and n o w a r e c o g n i z e d a u t h o r i t y on phosphorescent wheels. T h e t y p i c a l w h e e l s e e m s t o b e a m i l e o r m o r e i n r a d i u s , and t o c o n s i s t o f a number of radial or spiral a r m s , rotating at a surprising rate. T h e captain of t h e m . v . C h e n g t u d e s c r i b e s w a v e s o f m i l k y - w h i t e m i s t , 3 0 f t . w i d e and 3 0 f t . a p a r t , p e r h a p s 8 ft. d e e p , p a s s i n g a c r o s s the ship at the r a t e of t w o a s e c o n d i m p l y i n g that t h e a r m s w e r e m o v i n g a t about 100 f t . a s e c o n d o r m o r e . A week l a t e r t h e s a m e o b s e r v e r e n c o u n t e r e d t w o such w h e e l s y s t e m s , r e i n f o r c i n g t o p r o d u c e f i v e o r s i x b r i g h t f l a s h e s e v e r y s e c o n d i n t h e r e g i o n o f t h e s h i p , and i l l u m i n a t i n g about 8 0 p e r c e n t o f t h e s e a s u r f a c e not, h o w e v e r , b r i g h t l y enough to read by. Another o b s e r v e r ( m . v . Glenfalloch) reports something looking like l o w b a n k s o f l u m i n o u s m i s t b e i n g t h r o w n out f r o m a c e n t r a l p a t c h , 5 0 o r 100 f t . a c r o s s , w h i c h i t s e l f p u l s e d about t w i c e a s e c o n d .

Gl-177

GLW-005

LIGHT WHEELS

P r o f e s s o r K a l l e , c o m m e n t i n g that such w h e e l s a r e r e l a t i v e l y c o m m o n i n the B o r n e o Sea and the Gulf of Thailand (the l a s t r e p o r t s f r o m t h e r e w e r e in 1957 and 1961), w o n d e r s w h e t h e r the m i s t is an i l l u s i o n due to the d a r k n e s s . Luminous w h e e l s i n the w a t e r a r e m o r e r e a s o n a b l e , i t s e e m s . And i n d e e d , the o f f i c e r s o f the m . v . B e a v e r b a n k s a y that, although the a r m s l o o k e d t o b e about 2 ft. a b o v e the s u r f a c e , this w a s p r o b a b l y an i l l u s i o n . T h e y d e s c r i b e the w a v e s as h a v i n g b r i l l i a n t g r e e n l e a d i n g e d g e s , and as p a s s i n g the ship at b e t w e e n 12 and 15 a m i n u t e . T h e y s e e m e d to be e m i t t e d f r o m the c e n t r a l s o u r c e at about 75 a m i n u t e . T h e w h e e l s can apparently r o t a t e i n e i t h e r d i r e c t i o n , o r indeed both a t o n c e : f r o m the m . v . G l e n f a l l o c h c o m e s a s e c o n d r e p o r t , this t i m e o f t w o w h e e l s one a b o v e the o t h e r r o t a t i n g i n o p p o s i t e d i r e c t i o n s . T h e s e w h e e l s a r e put down t o b i o l u m i n e s c e n c e ; but, w h i l e p a t c h e s o f p h o s p h o r e s c e n t s e a w a t e r due t o m a r i n e l i f e a r e quite c r e d i b l e , s t r u c t u r e s a f e w m i l e s a c r o s s b e h a v i n g i n a n o r g a n i z e d fashion and with p a r t s m o v i n g f a s t e r than w i n d , w a t e r o r w a v e s a r e s o m e t h i n g e l s e a g a i n .

Structure of a light wheel, as described in subsection GLW.

GLW-005

REPORT OF AN UNUSUAL PHENOMENON OBSERVED AT SEA
20:291, July 24, 1889.

P r i n g l e , J. E l i o t ; N a t u r e ,

T h e f o l l o w i n g r e p o r t t o the A d m i r a l i t y has b e e n c o m m u n i c a t e d t o u s f o r publication b y Capt. E v a n s , C . B . , F . R . S . , the H y d r o g r a p h e r t o the N a v y : -

Gl-178

LIGHT W H E E L S

GLW-006

H . M . S . V u l t u r e , B a h r e i n , M a y 17, 1879. S i r , 1 have the honour to i n f o r m y o u that, a t about 9 . 4 0 p . m . o n M a y 15, w h e n i n l a t . 2 6 ° 26' N . and l o n g . 5 3 ° 1 1 ' E . [the P e r s i a n G u l f ] , a c l e a r , u n c l o u d e d , s t a r l i g h t night, A r c t u r u s b e i n g w i t h i n s o m e 7 ° o f z e n i t h , and V e n u s about t o s e t ; w i n d n o r t h - w e s t , f o r c e 3 , s e a s m o o t h , w i t h s l i g h t s w e l l f r o m the s a m e d i r e c t i o n ; ship o n s t a r b o a r d t a c k , h e a d i n g w e s t - s o u t h - w e s t and g o i n g t h r e e k n o t s , a n unusual p h e n o m e n o n w a s s e e n f r o m the v e s s e l . I noticed luminous w a v e s or pulsations in the w a t e r , m o v i n g at g r e a t speed and p a s s i n g u n d e r t h e ship f r o m t h e s o u t h - s o u t h - w e s t . O n l o o k i n g t o w a r d s the e a s t , t h e a p p e a r a n c e w a s that o f a r e v o l v i n g w h e e l w i t h c e n t r e o n that b e a r i n g , and w h o s e s p o k e s w e r e i l l u m i n a t e d , and l o o k i n g t o w a r d s the w e s t a s i m i l a r w h e e l a p p e a r e d t o b e r e v o l v i n g , but i n t h e o p p o s i t e d i r e c t i o n . I then w e n t t o t h e m i z e n t o p (fifty f e e t a b o v e w a t e r ) w i t h t h e f i r s t l i e u t e n a n t , and s a w that the luminous w a v e s o r pulsations w e r e r e a l l y t r a v e l l i n g p a r a l l e l t o each other, and that t h e i r a p p a r e n t l y r o t a t o r y m o t i o n , a s s e e n f r o m t h e d e c k , w a s c a u s e d b y t h e i r h i g h s p e e d and the g r e a t e r a n g u l a r m o t i o n o f t h e n e a r e r than t h e m o r e r e m o t e p a r t o f t h e w a v e s . T h e l i g h t o f t h e s e w a v e s l o o k e d h o m o g e n e o u s , and l i g h t e r , but not s o s p a r k l i n g , a s p h o s p h o r e s c e n t a p p e a r a n c e s a t s e a u s u a l l y a r e , and e x t e n d e d f r o m the s u r f a c e w e l l u n d e r w a t e r ; t h e y l i t u p t h e w h i t e b o t t o m s o f the q u a r t e r - b o a t s i n p a s s i n g . I j u d g e d t h e m t o b e t w e n t y - f i v e f e e t b r o a d , w i t h d a r k i n t e r v a l s o f about s e v e n t y - f i v e b e t w e e n e a c h , o r 100 f r o m c r e s t t o c r e s t , and t h e i r p e r i o d w a s s e v e n t y - f o u r t o s e v e n t y - f i v e p e r m i n u t e , g i v i n g a s p e e d roughly of eighty-four English m i l e s an hour. F r o m this height of fifty feet, l o o k i n g with or against t h e i r d i r e c t i o n , I c o u l d o n l y d i s t i n g u i s h s i x o r s e v e n w a v e s ; but, l o o k i n g a l o n g t h e m a s t h e y p a s s e d u n d e r t h e s h i p , the l u m i n o s i t y s h o w e d m u c h f u r t h e r . T h e p h e n o m e n o n w a s beautiful and s t r i k i n g , c o m m e n c i n g a t about 6h. 3 m . G r e e n w i c h m e a n t i m e , and l a s t i n g s o m e t h i r t y - f i v e m i n u t e s . T h e d i r e c t i o n f r o m which the luminous w a v e s t r a v e l l e d changed f r o m south-south-west by d e g r e e s t o s o u t h - e a s t and t o e a s t . D u r i n g the l a s t f i v e m i n u t e s c o n c e n t r i c w a v e s a p p e a r e d t o e m a n a t e f r o m a spot about 200 y a r d s e a s t , and t h e s e m e e t i n g t h e p a r a l l e l w a v e s f r o m s o u t h - e a s t d i d not c r o s s , but a p p e a r e d t o o b l i t e r a t e e a c h o t h e r a t t h e m o v i n g point o f c o n t a c t , and a p p r o a c h e d the s h i p , i n c l o s i n g a n a n g l e about 9 0 ° . Soundings w e r e t a k e n i n t w e n t y - n i n e f a t h o m s ; S t i f f e ' s B a n k , w i t h f i f t e e n t o t w e n t y f a t h o m s , b e i n g w e s t about o n e m i l e . T h e b a r o m e t e r w a s a l r e a d y a t 29. 2 5 f r o m 8 t o 1 2 p . m . At 8 p. m. 10.15 p. m. Midnight T e m p e r a t u r e of a i r 84 83 83 T e m p e r a t u r e of s e a - w a t e r 84 82 82 I o b s e r v e d no kind of c h a n g e in the w i n d , t h e s w e l l , or in any p a r t of t h e h e a v e n s , n o r w e r e the c o m p a s s e s d i s t u r b e d . A b u c k e t o f w a t e r w a s d r a w n , but w a s unfortunately c a p s i z e d b e f o r e daylight. T h e ship p a s s e d t h r o u g h o i l y l o o k i n g fish s p a w n on the e v e n i n g of t h e 15th and m o r n i n g of the 16th i n s t .

GLW-006

ILLUMINATION OF THE SEA
2:165, June 30, 1870.

Anonymous; Nature,

T h e f o l l o w i n g i s d e r i v e d f r o m t h e K o l n i s c h e Z e i t u n g o f June 19: " G u l f o f S i a m , A p r i l 1 1 . L a s t n i g h t , b e t w e e n t w o and t h r e e o ' c l o c k , I had the opportunity of w i t n e s s i n g an i l l u m i n a t i o n of the s e a of the m o s t p e c u l i a r kind. I t had b e c o m e q u i t e c a l m , a f t e r a s h a r p b r e e z e w h i c h had s p r u n g u p f r o m

Gl-179

GLW-006

LIGHT W H E E L S

the N . N . W . , caused b y a passing s t o r m i n the distance. Heat-lightning was s t i l l v e r y f r e q u e n t i n t h e w e s t h o r i z o n , and the s k y w a s c o v e r e d w i t h l i g h t c l o u d s , t h r o u g h w h i c h t h e m o o n shone r a t h e r b r i g h t l y . W e t o o k i n s a i l and s e t the e n g i n e s g o i n g . I t h e n n o t i c e d i n the w a t e r l a r g e w h i t e f l a k e s w h i c h I had a t f i r s t t a k e n t o b e r e f l e c t i o n s o f the m o o n ; t h e y w e r e about a f a t h o m i n d i a m e t e r , a p p a r e n t l y l u s t r e l e s s , and o f n o p a r t i c u l a r s h a p e , l i k e o b j e c t s s e e n l y i n g d e e p i n the w a t e r . B y t h e r i s i n g and f a l l i n g o f t h e s e a ' s s u r f a c e t h e s e f l a k e s f l o a t e d o f f t o a s h o r t d i s t a n c e f r o m the ship w i t h o u t i m p a r t i n g any n o t i c e a b l e i n c r e a s e of brightness to the w a t e r illuminated by the m o o n ' s r a y s . After steaming further f o r w a r d f o r s i x or s e v e n knots, a m o s t wonderful spectacle presented itself. On both s i d e s obliquely in front of us, l o n g w h i t e w a v e s of light w e r e s e e n f l o a t i n g t o w a r d s the ship, i n c r e a s i n g i n b r i g h t n e s s and r a p i d i t y t i l l a t l a s t t h e y a l m o s t d i s a p p e a r e d , and nothing w a s o b s e r v e d but a w h i t e l u s t r e l e s s , w h i r l i n g ( s c h w i r r e n d e s ) l i g h t upon the w a t e r . A f t e r g a z i n g f o r s o m e t i m e i t w a s i m p o s s i b l e t o d i s t i n g u i s h b e t w e e n w a t e r , s k y , and a t m o s p h e r e , a l l w h i c h w e r e but j u s t n o w c l e a r l y d i s t i n g u i s h a b l e , and a t h i c k f o g i n l o n g s t r e a k s a p p e a r e d t o b e d r i v i n g upon the s h i p w i t h f u r i o u s s w i f t n e s s . The phenomenon of light was s o m e w h a t s i m i l a r t o that w h i c h w o u l d b e p r o d u c e d b y the w h i r l i n g round o f a b a l l s t r i p e d b l a c k and w h i t e s o r a p i d l y that the w h i t e s t r i p e s s e e m t o b e l o s t and b l e n d e d w i t h t h e d a r k o n e s . T h e light w a s just as if we w e r e e n v e l o p e d in a thick white f o g . T h e d i r e c t i o n o f the w a v e s o f l i g h t upon the s h i p w a s a l w a y s o n both s i d e s o b l i q u e l y f r o m the f r o n t . T h e p h e n o m e n o n l a s t e d about f i v e m i n u t e s , and r e p e a t e d i t s e l f o n c e m o r e a f t e r w a r d s f o r about t w o m i n u t e s . Without doubt, t h e r e f o r e , s h o a l s o f s m a l l c r e a t u r e s i n the w a t e r w e r e the c a u s e o f t h i s l u m i n o s i t y , and the w a v e s o f l i g h t find t h e i r c a u s e , a c c o r d i n g t o m y c o n v i c t i o n , i n the w h i t e f l a k e s a b o v e d e s c r i b e d . Y e t t h e i r m o d e r a t e v e l o c i t y o f 1 - 1 / 2 g e o g . m i l e p e r h o u r , and the w e a k l i g h t a t f i r s t e m i t t e d b y e a c h f l a k e , s o w e a k a s not t o i n f l u e n c e the tint o f the s u r f a c e - w a t e r , d o e s not s e e m c a l c u l a t e d t o c a l l f o r t h a p h e n o m e n o n o f such m a g i c a l e f f e c t a s the o n e d e s c r i b e d . The luminous a p p e a r a n c e c o m m o n l y s e e n i n t h e w a k e o f a ship, o r i n w a t e r d i s t u r b e d b y o a r s o r r u d d e r , i s not t o b e c o m p a r e d w i t h such a p h e n o m e n o n a s the a b o v e . I n the f o r m e r the l i g h t i s l u s t r o u s , g l a r i n g g r e e n and b l u e , l i k e p h o s p h o r u s , often v e r y splendid in deep c l e a r w a t e r , m i n g l e d with a reddish white foam. We saw a beautiful i n s t a n c e o f t h i s kind o n e night, i n p e r f e c t l y s t i l l and s m o o t h w a t e r , i n a a l o n e l y b a y o f N i p o n . I t w a s p i t c h d a r k and p e r f e c t l y q u i e t , w h e n a h e a v y s h o w e r o f r a i n c a m e o n , i n l a r g e but not d e n s e d r o p s . E v e r y d r o p as it struck the w a t e r b e c a m e i l l u m i n a t e d , l i t t l e d r o p s o f f i r e s p r a n g u p i n the a i r , and a l i t t l e l u m i n o u s c i r c l e f o r m e d i t s e l f . I t s e e m e d a s i f the b a y w a s s u d d e n l y f i l l e d w i t h l i t t l e f l o w e r s of f i r e . T h i s p h e n o m e n o n w a s a l m o s t i m m e d i a t e l y d i s s i p a t e d b y a puff of wind."

Gl-180

SECTION GQ: CRUSTAL MOVEMENTS
Earthquakes are far f r o m being completely understood. Fairly convincing c o r r e l a t i o n s e x i s t b e t w e e n e a r t h q u a k e s and s o l a r a c t i v i t y and e v e n the p o s i t i o n o f the m o o n . F u r t h e r m o r e , e a r t h q u a k e s a r e often a c c o m p a n i e d b y b i z a r r e sounds, l i g h t s , and magnetic effects. S o m e s e e m i n g l y sound r e p o r t s c o n n e c t e a r t h q u a k e s t o m e t e o r s and unusual w e a t h e r . Such i s the stuff o f s e c t i o n G Q . GQE Earthquake phenomena. E a r t h q u a k e l i g h t s , sounds, o d o r s , and p h y s i o logical effects. C o r r e l a t i o n s o f e a r t h q u a k e s w i t h m e t e o r s and such g e o p h y s i c a l p h e n o m e n a a s f o g , d a r k n e s s , and p r e c i p i t a t i o n . Fault phenomena. E l e c t r i c a l , m a g n e t i c , and t h e r m a l a n o m a l i e s a l o n g fault l i n e s . C o n n e c t i o n s b e t w e e n f a u l t s and o t h e r g e o p h y s i c a l p h e n o m e n a . Geographical correlations. motions for certain patterns, P r e d i l e c t i o n o f e a r t h q u a k e s and o t h e r c r u s t a l such a s the R o u s e B e l t s and g r e a t c i r c l e s .

*GQF

*GQG

*GQS

S o l a r and lunar e f f e c t s . P o s s i b l e c o n n e c t i o n s b e t w e e n s o l a r a c t i v i t y and earthquake activity. Effects of lunar position.

* T h i s s u b s e c t i o n not r e p r e s e n t e d i n V o l u m e G l .

Gl-181

CRUSTAL MOVEMENTS

T h i s p a g e r e s e r v e d f o r the e x p a n s i o n o f the p r e c e d i n g c a t e g o r i e s i n future v o l u m e s .

Gl-182

EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA
GQE-001 THE MESSINA EARTHQUAKE AND THE EVENTS PRECEDING IT

GQE-002

S o l e y , John C . ; S c i e n t i f i c A m e r i c a n S u p p l e m e n t , 6 8 : 9 0 - 9 1 , A u g u s t 7 , 1909. W h i l e t h e r e i s a n a p p a r e n t c o r r e s p o n d e n c e t h r o u g h the w h o l e r a n g e o f s u b t e r r a n e a n p h e n o m e n a and a n i n t e r d e p e n d e n c e b e t w e e n v u l c a n i s m and s o l a r d i s t u r b a n c e s , t h e m a n i f e s t a t i o n s o f t h e g i a n t f o r c e s w h i c h b r i n g such r u i n and d e v a s t a t i o n i n t h e i r t r a i n a r e s o m e t i m e s s o c o m p l i c a t e d that i t i s d i f f i c u l t t o p r o v e that a l l the s e i s m i c p h e n o m e n a o f a p e r i o d a r e c o n c u r r e n t . The decade 1900-1910 h a s b e e n a p e r i o d o f g r e a t s e i s m i c a c t i v i t y , and a m o r e c a r e f u l study o f t h e e v e n t s h a s b e e n m a d e than w a s e v e r p o s s i b l e b e f o r e . W i t h the o p p o r t u n i t i e s thus a f f o r d e d t o g r o u p t h e o c c u r r e n c e s o f the g r e a t e r u p t i o n s and s u n s p o t s , o f s o l a r f l a m e s and e a r t h q u a k e s , t h e i r c o r r e l a t i o n b e c o m e s p l a i n e r , and w e b e g i n t o r e a l i z e that none o f t h o s e w o n d e r f u l p h e n o m e n a w a s an instance of individual action. D u r i n g t h i s p e r i o d the e x p l o s i o n s o f v o l c a n o e s and the g r i n d i n g r o a r o f e a r t h q u a k e s h a v e b e e n h e a r d a l l o v e r t h e g l o b e , r e a c h i n g a c l i m a x i n 1907, w h e n the w h o l e w o r l d w a s i n a s t a t e o f u n r e s t . F r o m that t i m e t h e e r u p t i o n s h a v e b e e n f e w e r and f e w e r , though the i m p u l s e s w h i c h c a u s e the l a n d s t o t r e m b l e a r e s t i l l s e n d i n g t h e i r w a v e s v i b r a t i n g t h r o u g h t h e c r u s t o f the e a r t h . C o m p a r i n g the r e c o r d s o f t h i s d e c a d e w i t h t h o s e o f t h e t w o p r e v i o u s o n e s , t h e s a m e p e r i o d i c v a r i a t i o n a p p e a r s , the s i x t h and s e v e n t h y e a r s b e i n g m o s t fruitful i n s e i s m i c d i s t u r b a n c e s , w h i l e t h e s e c o n d y e a r c o m e s next i n p o i n t o f n u m b e r s ; i n e a c h d e c a d e the s a m e p e r i o d i c v a r i a t i o n s o c c u r , and t h e y a l w a y s c o r r e s p o n d w i t h the sunspot c y c l e s . N o t h i n g i n a l l the r e a l m s o f n a t u r e i s m o r e p e r p l e x i n g than t h e s e v a r i a t i o n s , but the p e r i o d i c i t y i s i n c o n t e s t a b l e ; the g r o u p i n g of these e v e n t s into a c e r t a i n p e r i o d or fixed part of a p e r i o d s e e m s t o p r o v e that t h e r e a r e l a w s w h i c h g o v e r n the m o v e m e n t s i n t h e c o m p l e x s y s t e m s o f t h e e a r t h and o f the sun, and that h o w e v e r d i s c o r d a n t m a y b e t h e i r a c t i o n , t h e t o n e i s e v e n t u a l l y r e s t o r e d and t h e y b e c o m e o n c e m o r e parts of a harmonious w h o l e . H e r e , S o l e y r e c a p i t u l a t e s m a n y e a r t h q u a k e s and v o l c a n i c e r u p t i o n s o c c u r r i n g n e a r the 1907 p e a k o f a c t i v i t y . T h i s r e c a p i t u l a t i o n m a y s e e m t e d i o u s , but i t i s n e c e s s a r y t o s h o w that n e i t h e r t h i s e a r t h q u a k e n o r any o t h e r o f t h i s p e r i o d w a s a n i s o l a t e d p h e n o m e non, and that the M e s s i n a e a r t h q u a k e w a s o n l y a m o r e s e r i o u s m a n i f e s t a t i o n o f the m o v e m e n t o f the e a r t h w a v e s w h i c h h a v e b e e n p u l s i n g t h r o u g h the e a r t h ' s c r u s t s i n c e t h e sunspot o f l a s t S e p t e m b e r , [ 1 9 0 8 ] and w h i c h r e a c h e d t h e S t r a i t s o f M e s s i n a w h e n the s u r f a c e o n both s i d e s w a s i n a w e a k e n e d c o n d i t i o n o w i n g t o f r e q u e n t s h o c k s o f the l a s t t h r e e y e a r s . In this earthquake there w e r e no f o c i , n o e p i c e n t e r s ; o n the c o n t r a r y , a s t h e e a r t h w a v e s m e t w i t h i n t e r f e r e n c e i n the f a u l t s o f t h e r o c k s t r a t a and i n t h e a l l u v i u m o f the c o a s t a l p l a i n s , t h e i r m o v e m e n t b e c a m e e x c e s s i v e l y c o m p l i c a t e d , and i t w a s t h e c o m p l e x d i s t u r b a n c e r a t h e r than any u p l i f t i n g o f the s u r f a c e that p r o d u c e d t h e d e s t r u c t i v e effects.

GQE-002

THE NEW MADRID EARTHQUAKE

F u l l e r , M y r o n L. ; U . S . G. S. B u l l e t i n 494, 1912. O n e o f the g r e a t e s t s e r i e s o f e a r t h q u a k e s t o hit N o r t h A m e r i c a c e n t e r e d i n t h e M i s s i s -

Gl-183

GQE-002

EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA

s i p p i V a l l e y i n t h e w i n t e r o f 1811-1812. T h o u s a n d s o f s q u a r e m i l e s o f t h i s r e l a t i v e l y unpopulated l a n d w a s r a v a g e d d u r i n g the t h r e e p r i n c i p a l s h o c k s o n D e c e m b e r I6r 1811; J a n u a r y 2 3 , 1812; and F e b r u a r y 7 , 1812. N e w M a d r i d , M o . , w a s n e a r t h e c e n t e r o f t h e disturbance. F r o m F u l l e r ' s c l a s s i c p a p e r , s o m e o f the m o r e b i z a r r e a s p e c t s o f the quake a r e r e p r o d u c e d . Darkness. A s i n m o s t o f the g r e a t e a r t h q u a k e s the a t m o s p h e r e s e e m s t o h a v e b e c o m e d a r k e n e d d u r i n g t h e m o r e s e v e r e s h o c k s i n the M i s s i s s i p p i V a l l e y . E l i z a B y r a n n o t e s that t o t a l d a r k n e s s a c c o m p a n i e d t h e f i r s t s h o c k , w h i l e a s i m i l a r "awful d a r k n e s s of the a t m o s p h e r e " m a r k e d the s e v e r e shock of 4 p. m. on F e b r u a r y 7. G o d f r e y Le Sieur also says a "dense black cloud of v a p o r o v e r s h a d o w e d the l a n d " a f t e r t h e s e v e r e s h o c k s . A t H e r c u l a n e u m the a t m o s p h e r e a c c o r d i n g t o C o l . S a m u e l H a m m o n d , w a s f i l l e d w i t h s m o k e o r f o g s o that a b o a t c o u l d not b e s e e n 2 0 p a c e s , and h o u s e s w e r e s o s h r o u d e d a s not b e b e v i s i b l e 50 feet. T h e a i r d i d not c l e a r until the m i d d l e o f t h e d a y . A w r i t e r f r o m N e w M a d r i d s t a t e s that a t t h e t i m e o f the s h o c k t h e a i r w a s c l e a r , but i n f i v e m i n u t e s i t b e c a m e v e r y d a r k , and the d a r k n e s s c o n t i n u e d until n e a r l y m o r n i n g , during which p e r i o d there w e r e six shocks. A t 6 . 3 0 the a i r c l e a r e d , but a t t h e s e v e r e s h o c k l a t e r i n the m o r n i n g the d a r k n e s s r e t u r n e d . T h e d a r k n e s s w a s p r o b a b l y due t o a n u m b e r o f c o o p e r a t i n g c a u s e s . In all p r o b a b i l i t y the dust p r o j e c t e d i n t o the a i r b y the a g i t a t i o n o f the s u r f a c e , t h e o p e n i n g and c l o s i n g o f f i s s u r e s i n d r y e a r t h , l a n d s l i d e s o n d r y h i l l s i d e s , and p o s s i b l y t h e f a l l i n g o f c h i m n e y s and b u i l d i n g s c o n t r i b u t e d t o supply t o t h e a t m o s p h e r e t h e s u s p e n d e d p a r t i c l e s w h i c h p r e s u m a b l y p r o d u c e d the o b s c u r i t y d e s c r i b e d . I t i s l i k e l y a l s o that aqueous v a p o r s , r i s i n g f r o m f i s s u r e s c o n n e c t i n g w i t h t h e w a r m g r o u n d w a t e r s ( t e m p e r a t u r e 5 0 ° t o 5 5 ° ) , o r f r o m the w a t e r s e x t r u d e d f r o m c r a c k s and c r a t e r l e t s and c o n d e n s e d b y the c o l d D e c e m b e r a i r played a part. T h e e x t r u s i o n o f such v a p o r s , u s u a l l y m o r e o r l e s s s u l p h u r o u s , i s d e s c r i b e d b y m a n y w i t n e s s e s . I t i s not e n t i r e l y i m p o s s i b l e that c o n d i t i o n s favoring condensation of atmospheric moisture either accompanied or resulted f r o m the e a r t h q u a k e d i s t u r b a n c e . B e s i d e s the d a r k n e s s o b s e r v e d i n t h e a r e a o f p r i n c i p a l d i s t u r b a n c e s i m i l a r manifestations w e r e r e c o r d e d in other l o c a l i t i e s . F o r instance, at Columbia, T e n n . , a v e r y l a r g e volume of something like smoke was d e c l a r e d to have r i s e n i n t h e s o u t h w e s t , f r o m w h i c h d i r e c t i o n t h e sound a p p e a r e d t o h a v e c o m e , and, p r o c e e d i n g n o r t h e a s t w a r d , s e t t l e d as a b l a c k c l o u d in t h e c o u r s e of the 10 or 15 minutes the shock l a s t e d . A n unusual d a r k n e s s d u r i n g t h e e a r t h q u a k e w a s r e p o r t e d a t a n u m b e r o f o t h e r p o i n t s , but i f i t had any r e l a t i o n t o the e a r t h d i s t u r b a n c e s i t s n a t u r e i s not k n o w n . I t s e e m s l i k e l y that i n the o u t l y i n g d i s t r i c t s the d a r k n e s s w a s due t o o r d i n a r y c l o u d s a s s o c i a t e d w i t h s t o r m s then i n p r o g r e s s a c r o s s the c o u n t r y . O d o r s and v a p o r s . Sulphurous o r o t h e r w i s e o b n o x i o u s o d o r s and v a p o r s w e r e a n attendant f e a t u r e o f t h e e a r t h q u a k e a t m a n y p o i n t s , a s stated b y n e a r l y every writer. B r y a n s p e a k s o f the c o m p l e t e s a t u r a t i o n o f the a t m o s p h e r e w i t h s u l p h u r o u s v a p o r a f e w m i n u t e s a f t e r t h e f i r s t s h o c k , and o f s i m i l a r v a p o r s a f t e r the s h o c k o f F e b r u a r y 7 . H i l d r e t h s p e a k s o f the e s c a p e o f sulphur g a s t h r o u g h t h e c r a c k s t a i n t i n g t h e a i r and i m p r e g n a t i n g t h e w a t e r f o r a d i s t a n c e o f 150 m i l e s s o i t w a s unfit t o u s e . A n o t h e r o b s e r v e r , w r i t i n g t o M i t c h i l l f r o m N e w M a d r i d , s t a t e s that although the a i r w a s c l e a r a t the t i m e o f the s h o c k , w i t h i n f i v e m i n u t e s a v a p o r w i t h a d i s a g r e e a b l e s m e l l and p r o d u c i n g a d i f f i c u l t y o f b r e a t h i n g i m p r e g n a t e d the a t m o s p h e r e . At Jeffersonville, Ind., w a r m t h and s m o k i n e s s w e r e noted f o r s e v e r a l d a y s a f t e r the s h o c k , w h i l e a t C o l u m b i a , S . C . , t h e a i r d u r i n g the s h o c k f e l t i m p r e g n a t e d w i t h v a p o r w h i c h lasted for some time.

Gl-184

EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA

GQE-002

T h e s o u r c e o f t h e o d o r s i n the N e w M a d r i d r e g i o n s e e m s t o h a v e b e e n t h e b u r i e d o r g a n i c m a t t e r w h i c h h e r e , a s e l s e w h e r e i n the M i s s i s s i p p i e m b a y m e n t , o c c u r s i n the a l l u v i u m and u n d e r l y i n g T e r t i a r y d e p o s i t s , the e m a n a t i o n s c o m i n g m a i n l y f r o m the c a r b o n a c e o u s m a t e r i a l e x t r u d e d f r o m b e l o w through the f i s s u r e s and c r a t e r l e t s , w h i c h w e r e n u m e r o u s i n the r e g i o n . I n the m o r e r e m o t e l o c a l i t i e s the v a p o r s probably r e p r e s e n t e d normal atmospheric condens a t i o n s w h i c h h a p p e n e d t o b e c o i n c i d e n t w i t h the e a r t h q u a k e d i s t u r b a n c e . " L i g h t f l a s h e s " and " g l o w s . T h e p h e n o m e n a o f what m a n y b e t e r m e d " l i g h t f l a s h e s " and " g l o w s " s e e m s o i m p r o b a b l e that t h e y w o u l d b e d i s m i s s e d f r o m c o n s i d e r a t i o n but f o r the c o n s i d e r a b l e n u m b e r o f l o c a l i t i e s f r o m w h i c h they w e r e r e p o r t e d . D i l l a r d , i n s p e a k i n g o f the s h o c k s (not e s p e c i a l l y the f i r s t o n e ) , s a y s : " T h e r e i s s u e d n o b u r n i n g f l a m e s , but f l a s h e s such a s w o u l d result f r o m an explosion of gas, or f r o m passing of e l e c t r i c i t y f r o m cloud to c l o u d . " L e w i s F . L i n n , U n i t e d States S e n a t o r , i n a l e t t e r t o the c h a i r m a n o f the C o m m i t t e e o n C o m m e r c e , s a y s the s h o c k w a s a c c o m p a n i e d " e v e r and anon [ b y ] f l a s h e s o f e l e c t r i c i t y , r e n d e r e d the d a r k n e s s d o u b l y t e r r i b l e . " A n o t h e r e v i d e n t l y s o m e w h a t e x c i t e d o b s e r v e r n e a r N e w M a d r i d thought h e s a w " m a n y s p a r k s o f f i r e e m i t t e d f r o m the e a r t h . " A t St. L o u i s g l e a m s and f l a s h e s o f l i g h t w e r e f r e q u e n t l y v i s i b l e around the h o r i z o n i n d i f f e r e n t d i r e c t i o n s , g e n e r a l l y a s c e n d i n g f r o m the e a r t h . I n L i v i n g s t o n C o u n t y , a c c o r d i n g t o M r . R i d d i c k , the a t m o s p h e r e p r e v i o u s t o the s h o c k o f F e b r u a r y 8 w a s r e m a r k a b l y l u m i n o u s , o b j e c t s b e i n g v i s i b l e f o r c o n s i d e r a b l e d i s t a n c e s , although t h e r e w a s n o m o o n . " O n t h i s o c c a s i o n the b r i g h t n e s s w a s g e n e r a l , and d i d not p r o c e e d f r o m any p o i n t o r spot i n the h e a v e n s . I t w a s b r o a d and e x p a n d e d , r e a c h i n g f r o m the z e n i t h o n e v e r y s i d e t o w a r d the h o r i z o n . I t e x h i b i t e d n o f l a s h e s n o r c o r u s c a t i o n s , but, a s l o n g a s i t l a s t e d , w a s a d i f f u s e d i l l u m i n a t i o n o f t h e a t m o s p h e r e on all sides. " At Bardstown there are reported to have been "frequent lights d u r i n g the c o m m o t i o n s . " A t K n o x v i l l e , T e n n . , a t the end o f the f i r s t s h o c k , " t w o f l a s h e s o f l i g h t , a t i n t e r v a l s o f about a m i n u t e , v e r y m u c h l i k e d i s t a n t lightning," were observed. Farther east, in North Carolina, there w e r e r e p o r t e d " t h r e e l a r g e e x t r a o r d i n a r y f i r e s i n the a i r ; o n e a p p e a r e d i n a n e a s t e r l y d i r e c t i o n , one i n the north, and one i n the south. T h e i r continuance w a s s e v e r a l h o u r s ; t h e i r s i z e a s l a r g e a s a h o u s e o n f i r e ; the m o t i o n o f the b l a z e w a s q u i t e v i s i b l e , but n o s p a r k s a p p e a r e d . " A t Savannah, G a . , the f i r s t s h o c k i s said t o h a v e b e e n p r e c e d e d b y a flash o f l i g h t .
v

T h a t the f l a s h e s w e r e e n t i r e l y i m a g i n a r y i s i m p r o b a b l e , but i t i s v e r y doubtful i f anything out o f the o r d i n a r y a c t u a l l y t o o k p l a c e . A s o u r c e of many o f the f l a s h e s a p p e a r s t o h a v e b e e n the thunder s t o r m s w h i c h o c c u r r e d a t the time. Such s t o r m s , w h i c h w e r e v e r y unusual a t the s e a s o n a t w h i c h the s h o c k s t o o k p l a c e and w h i c h w e r e u n s u s p e c t e d b y t h e p e o p l e o u t s i d e o f t h e i r i m m e d i ate path, h a v e b e e n r e c o r d e d a t a n u m b e r o f p o i n t s , e s p e c i a l l y i n South C a r o l i n a . B e a r i n g o n the o r i g i n o f the f l a s h e s o r g l o w s the o b s e r v a t i o n s o f s e v e r a l o f the c a p t a i n s o f o c e a n l i n e r s i n the T r o p i c s a t the t i m e o f the r e c e n t s e v e r e d i s t u r b a n c e i n M e x i c o (1907) a r e o f s i g n i f i c a n c e . T h e y r e p o r t e d that o n the night o n w h i c h t h e y a f t e r w a r d s l e a r n e d that the e a r t h q u a k e had o c c u r r e d s t r o n g g l o w s i n the s k y , r e s e m b l i n g the a u r o r a s o f n o r t h e r n l a t i t u d e s , w e r e s e e n . As these w e r e not r e p o r t e d f a r t h e r north the v i e w s u g g e s t s i t s e l f that t h e y w e r e due t o m a g n e t i c d i s t u r b a n c e s d e p e n d i n g upon o r r e l a t e d t o the s e v e r e e a r t h d i s t u r b a n c e s g o i n g o n a t the t i m e . I t i s not i m p r o b a b l e that s i m i l a r m a g n e t i c m a n i f e s t a t i o n s w e r e a s s o c i a t e d w i t h the N e w M a d r i d s h o c k . I t i s p r o b a b l e that i n the N e w M a d r i d r e g i o n b r u s h o r w o o d f i r e s , m a d e b y the I n d i a n s o r s e t t l e r s , m a y h a v e b e e n a n a d d i t i o n a l c a u s e . I t should b e noted i n t h i s c o n n e c t i o n that i n the N e w M a d r i d a r e a i t s e l f , w h e r e the w e a t h e r w a s c l e a r a t the t i m e , n o m e n t i o n o f any such p h e n o m e n a w a s m a d e i n the m o r e c o n s e r v a t i v e d e s c r i p t i o n s , (pp. 44-47)

Gl-185

GQE-003
GQE-003

EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA

NOTICES OF EARTHQUAKE SHOCKS FELT IN GREAT BRITAIN

M i l n e , D a v i d ; E d i n b u r g h N e w P h i l o s o p h i c a l J o u r n a l , 31:92-122, 1841, F e b r u a r y 20, 1818; I n v e r n e s s a t I h 2 0 ' . A l s o a t C o n i n g b y ( L i n c o l n s h i r e ) a t 3 P . M . ( w h e r e " a c c o m p a n i e d b y a n o i s e l i k e f i r i n g o f c a n n o n " ) , and e a s t end o f Holderness. F e l t a l s o a t K i r t o n i n L i n d s e y , w h e r e [ a ] m e t e o r a p p a r e n t l y about s i z e of cannon b a l l with a s t r e a m e r behind it; seen at s a m e t i m e m o v i n g in a i r w i t h g r e a t v e l o c i t y . — ( G . M a g , v . I x x x v i . p . 3 6 4 . ) ( p . 118) A p r i l 13, 1822. A s h o c k w a s f e l t a t C o m r i e [ S c o t l a n d ] about 9 1/2 A : M . V e r y awful s h o c k . M o r e s o than f o r t w e n t y y e a r s p a s t . The weather v e r y cold that day and p r e v i o u s l y , but b e c a m e w a r m the day a f t e r . A c c o m p a n i e d by two loud r e p o r t s , o n e a p p a r e n t l y a b o v e o u r h e a r d , the o t h e r w h i c h f o l l o w e d i m m e d i a t e l y u n d e r o u r f e e t . T h e n o i s e l a s t e d 3 0 " , and w a s m u c h l o u d e r than any t h u n d e r , ( p . 119) A u g u s t 13, 1816. A t M o n t r o s e , a v i v i d f l a s h o f l i g h t n i n g w a s o b s e r v e d t o f o l l o w a f t e r the s h o c k . A t Dunkeld, a s m a l l m e t e o r w a s s e e n t o p a s s f r o m E . t o W . j u s t about t h e t i m e o f the e a r t h q u a k e . T h e r e h o u s e s w e r e m u c h shaken. I m m e d i a t e l y a f t e r t h e s h o c k c o m m e n c e d , I f e l t a kind o f f a i n t i s h n e s s , w h i c h d i d not l e a v e m e f o r t w o h o u r s . The s a m e felt by others. I know persons who h a v e the s a m e f e e l i n g d u r i n g a t h u n d e r s t o r m . T h e faintish f e e l i n g w a s in s o m e p e r s o n s attended by a v e r y slight d e g r e e of s i c k n e s s , ( p . 117) S e p t e m b e r 24, 1816. M r G i l f i l l a n o f C o m r i e s t a t e s that t h e r e w a s a n u n c o m m o n p h e n o m e n o n i n the a i r , — a l a r g e l u m i n o u s b o d y , bent l i k e a c r e s c e n t , w h i c h s t r e t c h e d i t s e l f o v e r the h e a v e n s , ( p . 117) N o v e m b e r 13, 1833. [ a f t e r a n e a r t h q u a k e i n E n g l a n d ] T h i s t h i c k f o g s a i d , b y a n o b s e r v e r i n D o r s e t s h i r e , t o b e p r e c i s e l y s i m i l a r t o the f o g w h i c h a c c o m p a n i e d the L i s b o n e a r t h q u a k e s in 1807 and 1816. T h i s f o g c o m m e n c e d on the 12th, s u c c e e d i n g h e a v y r a i n on the 11th N o v e m b e r , ( p . 120)

GQE 004

NOTICES OF EARTHQUAKE SHOCKS FELT IN GREAT BRITAIN

M i l n e , D a v i d ; E d i n b u r g h N e w P h i l o s o p h i c a l J o u r n a l , 3 2 : p a g e s a s noted, 1842. T h e long s e r i e s of earthquakes at C o m r i e , Scotland, w e r e c h a r a c t e r i z e d by many m e t e o r o l o g i c a l and p h y s i o l o g i c a l p h e n o m e n a . T o g i v e the r e a d e r a s a m p l i n g o f t h e s e unusual a s p e c t s , the f o l l o w i n g a c c o u n t s a r e t a k e n f r o m M i l n e . [ O c t o b e r 12, 1839] T h e R e v . M r . W a l k e r o f C o m r i e w r i t e s , that "the s h o c k s o f 12th a t 1 and 4 P . M . ( w h i c h w e r e v e r y s i m i l a r and w h i c h w e r e attended w i t h a c o n s i d e r a b l e t r e m o r of the earth), w e r e accompanied with a noise r e s e m b l i n g a m i x t u r e p r o d u c e d b y the r u s h o f a s t r o n g w i n d and the p e a l o f distant t h u n d e r . I t w a s d i f f e r e n t f r o m any n o i s e w h i c h I e v e r h e a r d b e f o r e . The shock at 3 P. M. ( w h i c h w a s f a r m o r e s e v e r e than any that had p r e c e d e d i t , and w h i c h w a s a t t e n d e d w i t h g r e a t e r t r e m o r o r h e a v i n g o f the e a r t h ) , w a s a c c o m p a n i e d w i t h a n o i s e w h i c h a t f i r s t r e s e m b l e d the m u r m u r i n g s o f distant w a t e r s . T h i s continued i n c r e a s i n g i n i n t e n s i t y f o r about 2 " , and then f o l l o w e d a v e r y l o u d and v e r y t e r r i f i c sound r e s e m b l i n g that o f a d o u b l e shot f o r b l a s t i n g r o c k i m m e n s e l y c h a r g e d .

Gl-186

EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA

GQE-005

" T h e w e a t h e r h a s b e e n r e m a r k a b l y w e t d u r i n g t h e month o f O c t o b e r , and i n d e e d f o r s o m e m o n t h s p r e v i o u s , and s t i l l c o n t i n u e s s o . N o d a y has b r o u g h t a l o n g w i t h i t any o t h e r than a m o i s t , and often a v e r y m o i s t a t m o s p h e r e . T h i s w a s e s p e c i a l l y the c a s e o n the 10th w h e n t h e f i r s t s e v e r e s h o c k w a s f e l t . I n t h e m o r n i n g o f that d a y t h e c l o u d s w e r e e v i d e n t l y s u r c h a r g e d , w h i l e i n t h e e v e n i n g f o r s o m e h o u r s the r a i n f e l l i n t o r r e n t s , a c c o m p a n i e d w i t h a v e r y v i o l e n t w i n d f r o m t h e S W . b y W . A g a i n , o f t h e 12th, w h e n t h r e e s e v e r e s h o c k s , and s o m a n y l i g h t e r ones, w e r e felt, the atmosphere was v e r y m o i s t . T h e air w a s much darkened d u r i n g t h e s h o c k s , and o c c a s i o n a l l y t h e r e f e l l a f e w d r o p s o f r a i n . A f t e r the second s e v e r e shock this day. I r e t i r e d to the g a r d e n to note the appearance of the sky. I found that i t had a s s u m e d a n a p p e a r a n c e p e c u l i a r l y s t r a n g e and a l a r m i n g . T h e h e a v e n s , m o r e e s p e c i a l l y t o w a r d s t h e N . and N W . , a p p e a r e d a s i f hung with sackcloth. A d e n s e d a r k i n d e s c r i b a b l e s p e c i e s o f m i s t e n v e l o p e d t h e mounts ains i n that d i r e c t i o n . In many parts they w e r e c o m p l e t e l y concealed; w h i l e in o t h e r s , the b r o k e n c r a g s could b e seen a s i f g r o w i n g through i n t e r r i b l e m a j e s t y , g i v i n g t o t h e s c e n e a n a s p e c t i n e f f a b l y g r a n d , and i n s o m e r e s p e c t s h o r r i f i c . I f I r e m e m b e r r i g h t , t h e r e w a s n o h e a v y r a i n s that e v e n i n g n o r t h e night f o l l o w i n g ; n o r w a s t h e r e , a s o n t h e 10th, any b o i s t e r o u s w i n d . B e f o r e t h e s h o c k s o n t h e 12th t h e r e w a s a s l i g h t b r e e z e . T h i s c o n t i n u e d d u r i n g the m o r n i n g . S h o r t l y b e f o r e the f i r s t and t h i r d s h o c k s t h e r e w a s a m o m e n t a r y c a l m . A f t e r t h e s e s h o c k s , the w i n d a g a i n r o s e and b l e w g e n t l y , but f r o m what d i r e c t i o n I h a v e not n o t e d . " M r W a l k e r a d d s , that " d u r i n g the s e c o n d s e v e r e s h o c k o n the 12th, s o m e s l a t e s f e l l f r o m h o u s e s and s o m e l o o s e s t o n e s f r o m w a l l s . O n that o c c a s i o n a l s o f u r n i t u r e w a s m o v e d , and b e l l s rung i n s o m e h o u s e s . Many p e r s o n s felt as if under the i n f l u e n c e o f e l e c t r i c i t y . T h i s w a s e s p e c i a l l y t h e c a s e o n the 12th. S o m e c o m p l a i n e d o f p a i n s i n the s o l e s o f t h e i r f e e t ; o t h e r s i n t h e i r ankle and k n e e j o i n t s , and o t h e r s i n the w r i s t s . A s f o r m y s e l f , t h e e f f e c t s o n m y f r a m e and s p i r i t s w e r e a s l i g h t pain i n the b a c k , and s u b s e q u e n t l y a v i o l e n t h e a d a c h . My l i m b s f e l t e x c e e d i n g l y w e a k . A g e n e r a l t r e m o r s e i z e d m e . " ( p p . 111-112) [ O c t o b e r 2 3 , 1841] " T o w a r d s the t e r m i n a t i o n o f the p r i n c i p a l s h o c k o n t h e 2 3 r d , t h e r e w a s a s t r o n g s m e l l o f a c o m b i n a t i o n o f s u l p h u r e o u s and m e t a l l i c a i r e m i t t e d t h r o u g h the f l o o r ; and though I f e l t p e r f e c t l y c o n v i n c e d t h i s w a s not t h e p r o d u c t i o n o f f a n c y , y e t i t h a s b e e n s a t i s f a c t o r y t o m e h a v i n g h e a r d f r o m o t h e r s s i n c e that they e x p e r i e n c e d t h e s a m e . I n c o n n e c t i o n w i t h t h i s , i t m a y b e n o t i c e d , that s o m e l i n e n p l a c e d on t h e g r o u n d 1 1/2 m i l e s e a s t f r o m h e n c e , to b l a n c h on t h e m o r n i n g o f t h e 2 3 r d , w a s o n the f o l l o w i n g day d i s c o v e r e d e n t i r e l y c o v e r e d w i t h s m a l l particles of black. T h e c l o t h e s w e r e o n the usual s p o t f o r d r e s s i n g the l i n e n , and r e m o v e d fifty y a r d s a t l e a s t f r o m a s o l i t a r y h o u s e , and w i t h h i g h t r e e s i n t e r vening. I c o u l d not l e a r n that t h e u n d e r s u r f a c e next t o t h e g r o u n d w a s d i s c o l o u r e d , ( p . 120) a l m o s t d i r e c t north f r o m the e a s t end o f L o c h e r n e , l i e s a s m a l l l a k e o f the n a m e o f L o c h b o u l t a c h a n , i n the c e n t e r o f a s m a l l c i r c u l a r g l e n o f t h e s a m e name. A m o n g t h e s e h i l l s , and n e a r t h i s l a k e , g e n e r a l o p i n i o n h a s p l a c e d t h e s e a t of the e a r t h q u a k e s , ( p . 122) N o t e that t h e M o o d u s sounds, i n C o n n e c t i c u t , Lough N e a g h a r e connected with l a k e s . a s w e l l a s t h e " g u n s " o f L a k e S e n e c a and

GQE-005

ON THE FACTS OF EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA

M a l l e t , R o b e r t ; R e p o r t o f the B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , p a g e s a s noted, 1854.

Gl-187

GQE-005

EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA

July 2 8 , 1804; S p o l e t o and a s f a r a s N o c e r a . V i o l e n t s h o c k s , e s p e c i a l l y t h e first ones T h e a i r w a s full o f t h i c k f o g , s o that t h e m o o n a p p e a r e d a b l o o d - r e d c o l o u r , ( p . 57) A p r i l 24, 1836; D i s t r i c t o f R o s s a n o , I t a l y . A t e r r i b l y d e s t r u c t i v e e a r t h q u a k e . I n R o s s a n o , a n instant a f t e r the s h o c k , a l l the h o u s e s w e r e s e e n e i t h e r t h r o w n d o w n o r c r u m b l i n g i n t o r u i n s ; and i n C r o s c i a not a s i n g l e h o u s e w a s l e f t standing. L o n g and d e e p f i s s u r e s o p e n e d i n t h e e a r t h . An igneous m e t e o r was s e e n , h a v i n g the a p p e a r a n c e o f g r e a t b e a m s o f f i r e . (p. 259) A p r i l 13, 1750; L a n c a s t e r t o W r e x h a m , E n g l a n d The heavens w e r e obscured by a thick m i s t , in which r e d r a y s w e r e o b s e r v e d c o n v e r g i n g towards a point near the zenith. T h e appearance lasted fifteen or twenty minutes (aurora b o r e a l i s ? ) . ( p . 147) A p r i l 15, 1752; S t a v a n g e r i n N o r w a y . S e v e r a l v i o l e n t s h o c k s l a s t i n g s e v e r a l minutes. T h e w e a t h e r w a s r e m a r k a b l y f i n e until 2 o ' c l o c k , w h e n a s m a l l c l o u d r i s i n g e x t e n d e d i t s e l f o v e r t h e h e a v e n s , and t h e w h o l e e v e n i n g t h e r e w a s a v i o l e n t s t o r m o f w i n d , h a i l , and t h u n d e r and l i g h t n i n g ; f o l l o w e d d u r i n g the night b y the appearance of a strange star of an octagonal shape, which s e e m e d to throw f o r t h b a l l s o f f i r e f r o m i t s a n g l e s ( ! ) . ( p . 153) O c t o b e r 4 , 1755; M o r a , D i s t r i c t o f T o l e d o . A g r e a t n u m b e r o f s t r a n g e m e t e o r o l o g i c a l phaenomena are r e c o r d e d as having been o b s e r v e d during this m o n t h i n S p a i n . I n d e e d , f o r s o m e t i m e b e f o r e the g r e a t e a r t h q u a k e o f L i s b o n , t h e a c c o u n t s o f h a l o s round the sun and m o o n , i g n e o u s m e t e o r s , a l t e r a t i o n s i n w e l l and r i v e r w a t e r , w h i c h g e n e r a l l y a c q u i r e d a n o f f e n s i v e o d o u r , b e s i d e s thunder, l i g h t n i n g , and r a i n , a r e t o b e found f r o m a l m o s t a l l p a r t s o f E u r o p e . T h e s e p h a e n o m e n a w e r e m o s t r e m a r k a b l e i n Spain, w h e r e t h e w a t e r i n m a n y o f t h e w e l l s w a s q u i t e t r o u b l e d , and r a t s and s o m e s p e c i e s o f r e p t i l e s c a m e f o r t h a s i f much t e r r i f i e d . D o m e s t i c a n i m a l s a l s o a p p e a r e d f r i g h t e n e d and u n e a s y , ( p . 162) N o v e m b e r 1 , 1755. T H E G R E A T E A R T H Q U A K E O F L I S B O N . T h i s e a r t h q u a k e , o n e o f t h e m o s t v i o l e n t and w i d e l y e x t e n d e d o n r e c o r d , p r o d u c e d s e n s i b l e e f f e c t s o v e r a s p a c e o f the earth* s s u r f a c e i n c l u d e d b e t w e e n I c e l a n d o n t h e n o r t h , M o g a d o r i n M o r o c c o o n t h e South, T o p l i t z i n B o h e m i a o n the e a s t , and t h e W e s t I n d i a i s l a n d s o n t h e w e s t . A c t u a l s h o c k s h o w e v e r w e r e not f e l t o v e r t h e w h o l e o f this s u r f a c e ; i n s o m e p l a c e s agitation o f the w a t e r i n l a k e s , c a n a l s , & c being the only sensible effect p r o d u c e d . T h e c e n t r e o f disturbance s e e m s t o h a v e b e e n s i t uated b e n e a t h the A t l a n t i c O c e a n a l i t t l e w e s t o f t h e c o a s t o f P o r t u g a l At M a d r i d the w a t e T i n the w e l l s r o s e s e v e r a l f a t h o m s a l i t t l e a f t e r t h e s h o c k s . The h o u s e s t h e r e w e r e m u c h shaken, but nothing f e l l but t w o c r o s s e s f r o m the s u m m i t s o f the c h u r c h e s . A c l e f t opened in one p l a c e in a mountain, f r o m which an exhalation destructive to cattle issued. Rota, M a l a g a , Chiclana, Medina, & c . & c . w e r e m o r e or l e s s injured. B i r d s and q u a d r u p e d s e x h i b i t e d d e c i d e d s y m p t o m s o f fear. N u m e r o u s m e t e o r s and o t h e r unusual a t m o s p h e r i c p h a e n o m e n a a r e s t a t e d t o h a v e b e e n o b s e r v e d about t h i s t i m e i n Spain and P o r t u g a l At Augsburg [ G e r m a n y ] m a g n e t s l e t w e i g h t s s u s p e n d e d t o t h e m f a l l , and t h e r e , a s a t m a n y o t h e r p l a c e s , the m a g n e t i c n e e d l e w a s d i s t u r b e d , ( p p . 163-166) F e b r u a r y 2 , 1816; L i s b o n . A s e v e r e s h o c k . A t L i s b o n the p e o p l e q u i t t e d their houses. T h e r e had b e e n a s t o r m t h e d a y b e f o r e , a f t e r w h i c h t h e w e a t h e r w a s r e m a r k a b l y c a l m and s u l t r y until the s h o c k , w h i c h w a s s u c c e e d e d b y h e a v y

Gl-188

EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA
r a i n . A m e t e o r a p p e a r e d i m m e d i a t e l y a f t e r the f i r s t shook. f i l l e d the a i r , u t t e r i n g the m o s t d i s c o r d a n t c r i e s , ( p . 106)

GQE-008
Flocks of birds

GGE-006

THE NOTES OF CHARLES FORT

F o r t , C h a r l e s ; T h e F o r t e a n S o c i e t y M a g a z i n e , 1:14, June 1943. The f o l l o w i n g note w a s taken f r o m the L o n d o n T i m e s , O c t o b e r 21,1823, p . 2 . 1823, A u g . 20. At R a g u s a . Quake, phenomena d a r k . On the 20th the a i r b e c a m e ( r e v e r s e ) suddenly d a r k . A f i e r y m e t e o r a p p e a r e d o v e r the c i t y , and f e l l into the s e a , f o l l o w e d by an earthquake that o v e r t h r e w many h o u s e s . T h e s e a r e t i r e d n e a r l y a m i l e f r o m the s h o r e ( r e v e r s e ) 3 f e l t sharply i n T u r k i s h B o s n i a . T h e r e it w a s r e p o r t e d that a v o l c a n o had b r o k e n l o o s e . F o r t ' s o r i g i n a l notes a r e n e a r l y i l l e g i b l e . T h i s one w a s t r a n s l a t e d b y T i f f a n y T h a y e r , the s e c r e t a r y o f the F o r t e a n S o c i e t y .

GQE-007

THE NOTES OF CHARLES FORT

F o r t , C h a r l e s ; T h e F o r t e a n S o c i e t y M a g a z i n e , 1:15, O c t o b e r 1941. 1819, June 16. Cutch, I n d i a / q u a k e p r e c e d e d by a v i o l e n t wind and a n o i s e l i k e that o f a l a r g e flight o f b i r d s ( r e v e r s e ) B . A s s o c 1854/122 1819, June 16. quake of Cutch 1150 p e r o n s b u r i e d in the ruins of B h o o j . Said that f r o m a h i l l w a s thrown ( r e v e r s e ) a b a l l of f i r e that then f e l l to the ground scorching vegetation. Rain fell in t o r r e n t s . T r a n s . L i t . Soc. Bombay, 3/90. T h e a b o v e a r e v e r b a t i m t r a n s c r i p t i o n s o f t w o o f F o r t ' s n o t e s , which w e r e o r i g i n a l l y w r i t t e n o n s c r a p s o f butcher p a p e r .

GQE-008

EARTHQUAKES AND METEORS

P a c k e r , D a v i d E. ; E n g l i s h M e c h a n i c , 74:155, S e p t e m b e r 27, 1901. On the night of the r e c e n t earthquake in Scotland (Sept. 17) s e v e r a l r e m a r k a b l e m e t e o r i c a p p e a r a n c e s w e r e seen h e r e a n hour b e f o r e the shock. T h e night w a s g e n e r a l l y c l o u d y , but during i n t e r v a l s o f c l e a r n e s s s e v e r a l m e t e o r s w e r e v i s i b l e . The most remarkable of these r e s e m b l e d ribbon-like flashes of lightning s e e n through a dense m i s t , although no o r d i n a r y lightning w a s v i s i b l e at the t i m e . T w o of t h e s e , r a d i a t i n g f r o m C a s s i o p e i a e at 12. 20 to P e g a s i and the southern h o r i z o n r e s p e c t i v e l y , a p p e a r e d a l m o s t s i m u l t a n e o u s l y , w h i l e a t h i r d at 12. 25 r o s e up f r o m the south t o w a r d s P e r s e u s . T h e i r a p p e a r a n c e w a s quite unique, nothing l i k e t h e m h a v i n g b e e n s e e n during 1 9 y e a r s o f o b s e r v a t i o n . T h e s c i n t i l l a t i o n of the s t a r s on this night p r e s e n t e d a p e c u l i a r l y s p a s m o d i c character.

Gl-189

GQE-009

EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA

D u r i n g t h e c e l e b r a t e d e a r t h q u a k e that v i s i t e d t h e M i d l a n d s o n D e c e m b e r 16, 1896, a s t r a n g e m e t e o r i c l i g h t w a s v i s i b l e a t the t i m e o f the s h o c k , and i n many p l a c e s quite distant f r o m the a r e a o f the d i s t u r b a n c e . D r . M a l l e t , many y e a r s a g o , c i t e d m a n y i n s t a n c e s o f c o n n e c t i o n b e t w e e n e a r t h q u a k e s and m e t e o r s ( B r i t , A s s o c . R e p o r t s , 1850, p . 74) and r e m a r k s that t h e m e t e o r i c p h e n o m ena h a v e a l w a y s o n t h e s e o c c a s i o n s exhibited p e c u l i a r c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s . H u m b o l d t h a s r e m a r k e d that d u r i n g the c e l e b r a t e d e a r t h q u a k e a t R i o b a m b a i n 1790, F e b . 4 , a n e x t r a o r d i n a r y s h o w e r w a s s e e n o v e r t h e w i d e a r e a o f t h e d i s t u r b a n c e , p a r t i c u l a r l y a t Q u i t o , that j u s t b e f o r e the d i s a s t r o u s e a r t h q u a k e a t C u m a n o , 1766, O c t . 1 3 , a s i m i l a r d i s p l a y w a s s e e n , w h i l e a n o t h e r s e r i e s o f s e i s m i c d i s t u r b a n c e s that a l s o a f f l i c t e d C u m a n a s o d i s a s t r o u s l y i n 1799, N o v . 13, w a s i m m e d i a t e l y f o l l o w e d b y t h e h i s t o r i c " L e o n i d " d i s p l a y o f that y e a r , 1799, N o v . 13, o f w h i c h both h e and B o n p l a n d w e r e e y e - w i t n e s s e s . T h e r e s e e m s s o m e t h i n g v e r y r e m a r k a b l e i n the fact that t h e s e South A m e r i c a n e a r t h q u a k e s should b e a c c o m p a n i e d b y c o n s p i c u o u s c e l e s t i a l p h e n o m e n a . That a r e l a t i o n b e t w e e n e a r t h q u a k e s e x i s t s , t h e r e c a n b e n o doubt, although t h e l a w g o v e r n i n g the r e l a t i o n r e m a i n s t o b e d i s c o v e r e d .

GQE-009

[EARTHQUAKE AND LIGHTNING]

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 23:564, A p r i l 14, 1881. T h e d e s t r u c t i o n c a u s e d b y t h e C h i o s e a r t h q u a k e h a s b e e n e v e n g r e a t e r than we stated last w e e k . T h e C o n s t a n t i n o p l e C o r r e s p o n d e n t o f the D a i l y N e w s s e n d s s o m e i n t e r e s t i n g p a r t i c u l a r s : T h e t e m p e r a t u r e o n the 3 r d w a s h e a v y and o p p r e s s i v e and the h o r i z o n w a s b r o k e n b y b r o a d f l a s h e s o f l i g h t that s e e m ed to denote a c o m i n g s t o r m . I n a l l t h i s a t m o s p h e r i c d i s t u r b a n c e h o w e v e r the i n h a b i t a n t s s a w n o t h i n g e x t r a o r d i n a r y , and w e r e f a r f r o m b e i n g a l a r m e d b y what t h e y f a n c i e d w o u l d r e s u l t i n a t h u n d e r s t o r m . A t ten m i n u t e s t o t w o i n the a f t e r n o o n a t e r r i f i c s h o c k w a s f e l t , b r i n g i n g t h r e e - f o u r t h s o f the h o u s e s i n the t o w n t o the g r o u n d l i k e s o m a n y p a c k s o f c a r d s , and b u r y i n g a thousand p e r s o n s under the f a l l i n g r u i n s . A recapitulation of d a m a g e suffered c o m p l e t e d the note.

GQE-010

FIRST REPORT ON THE FACTS OF EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA

M a l l e t , R o b e r t ; R e p o r t o f t h e B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , p a g e s a s n o t e d , 1850. I n v a r i o u s v o l u m e s o f t h e R e p o r t o f the B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , R o b e r t M a l l e t p u b l i s h e d the a c c o u n t s o f m a n y t h o u s a n d s o f e a r t h q u a k e s . He s u m m a r i z e d his i m m e n s e catal o g o f o b s e r v a t i o n s a s f o l l o w s : (Of c o u r s e , o n l y t h e d e s c r i p t i o n s o f t h e m o r e unusual aspects are reproduced b e l o w . ) 1st. T h e W e a t h e r g e n e r a l l y . A l t h o u g h i n n u m b e r l e s s a c c o u n t s w e r e a d o f p e c u l i a r a p p e a r a n c e s b e f o r e the e a r t h q u a k e , a s r e d l u r i d s k i e s , r e d and b l u e s u n s , & c . , and d u r i n g the c o n t i n u a n c e o f e a r t h q u a k e s , o f s t r a n g e a p p e a r a n c e s and t h r e a t e n i n g p o r t e n t s i n t h e s k y , y e t , j u d g i n g f r o m a l l t h e n a r r a t i v e s o f the b e s t o b s e r v e r s , t h e r e s e e m s t o b e n o g r o u n d f o r s u p p o s i n g that t h e r e i s any c o n n e x i o n b e t w e e n t h e s t a t e o f w e a t h e r o r a p p e a r a n c e o f a i r and sky i m m e d i -

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ately b e f o r e earthquakes. I n t h e south o f E u r o p e a g e n e r a l b e l i e f p r e v a i l e d that c a l m s , o p p r e s s i v e h e a t s and a m i s t y a t m o s p h e r e , w e r e t h e usual p r e l u d e s o f e a r t h q u a k e . Hamilton s a y s h e found i t a g e n e r a l o b s e r v a t i o n i n C a l a b r i a , "that b e f o r e a s h o c k t h e c l o u d s s e e m e d t o b e f i x e d and m o t i o n l e s s , and that i m m e d i a t e l y a f t e r a h e a v y s h o w e r o f r a i n ( d u r i n g the e a r t h q u a k e ) , a s h o c k q u i c k l y f o l l o w e d . " A n d i n t h e P h i l i p p i n e I s l a n d s , D e G u i g n e s i n f o r m s u s that " a c a l m , t h e sky g r a y and c l o u d y , the a t m o s p h e r e h e a t e d and h e a v y , o c c a s i o n a l g u s t s o f w i n d , and a t i n t e r v a l s g e n t l e s h o w e r s o f r a i n , a r e the p r o g n o s t i c s b y which earthquakes a r e a n t i c i p a t e d t h e r e . " A f t e r r e c o r d i n g a n u m b e r o f v a g u e o p i n i o n s h e l d b y the South A m e r i c a n s , a s t o the w e a t h e r p r o g n o s t i c s o f e a r t h q u a k e s , H u m b o l d t s a y s , " T h e s e a r e h o w e v e r v e r y u n c e r t a i n , and w h e n t h e w h o l e o f t h e m e t e o r o l o g i c a l v a r i a t i o n s a t t h e t i m e s when t h e g l o b e h a s b e e n m o s t a g i t a t e d a r e c a l l e d t o m i n d , i t i s found that v i o l e n t s h o c k s t a k e p l a c e e q u a l l y i n d r y and i n w e t w e a t h e r , w h e n t h e c o o l e s t w i n d s b l o w , o r d u r i n g a d e a d and s u f f o c a t i n g c a l m . " ( H u m b o l d t , P e r . N a r . v o l . i i . p . 2 2 3 . ) A g a i n , t h e v e t e r a n p h i l o s o p h e r s a y s that " e v e n i n I t a l y t h i s b e l i e f i s d y i n g a w a y , " and e x p r e s s e s h i s o w n c o n v i c t i o n , s t r e n g t h e n e d b y that o f t h o s e w h o h a v e l i v e d l o n g i n t h e g r e a t s h a k e n c o u n t r i e s o f South A m e r i c a , that e a r t h q u a k e s a r e i n d e p e n d e n t o f t h e w e a t h e r o r a p p e a r a n c e o f t h e h e a v e n s i m m e d i a t e l y b e f o r e the s h o c k . He s a y s he has felt earthquakes when the a i r w a s c l e a r and f r e s h e a s t w i n d b l o w i n g , and a l s o w h e n t h e r e w a s r a i n and thund e r - s t o r m s ; and t h i s has b e e n v e r y r e c e n t l y c o n f i r m e d b y the continuous o b s e r v a t i o n s m a d e a t N e w Z e a l a n d d u r i n g t h e e a r t h q u a k e o f 1848, w h i c h b e g a n in a g a l e of w i n d . O n t h e r e l a t i o n o f e a r t h q u a k e s and v o l c a n i c e r u p t i o n s g e n e r a l l y t o t h e c o n d i t i o n and p h e n o m e n a o f t h e a t m o s p h e r e , V o n H o f f r e m a r k s ; " T h e q u e s t i o n , w h e t h e r any r e l a t i o n o r c a s u a l c o n n e x i o n e x i s t s b e t w e e n the v a r i o u s m o v e m e n t s o f the e a r t h and t h o s e o c c u r r i n g i n t h e a t m o s p h e r e , h a s f o r a l o n g t i m e r e m a i n ed unanswered. T h e i n t i m a t e c o n n e x i o n w h i c h s u b s i s t s b e t w e e n the e a r t h and i t s a t m o s p h e r e , and w h i c h m a n i f e s t s i t s e l f i n s o m a n y p h e n o m e n a , h a s a l w a y s i n d u c e d p e o p l e t o p r e s u p p o s e a s i m i l a r c o n n e x i o n b e t w e e n e a r t h q u a k e s and v o l c a n i c e r u p t i o n s , and the c o n d i t i o n o f t h e a t m o s p h e r e . T h e y b e l i e v e d that the i n f l u e n c e o f t h e l a t t e r m i g h t b e e n g a g e d i n the v o l c a n i c p r o c e s s , and that, o n the o t h e r hand, e a r t h q u a k e s and v o l c a n i c e r u p t i o n s m i g h t p r o d u c e s o m e e f f e c t o n t h e c o n d i t i o n o f the a t m o s p h e r e . T h e p r o o f of the f i r s t of these opinions, it h a s b e e n thought, w a s t o b e found i n g r e a t f a l l s o f t h e b a r o m e t e r , i n r e m a r k a b l e c a l m s , i n d r y m i s t s , ana unusual g r a y o r r e d c o l o r i n g o f t h e s k y , and e s p e c i a l l y in great heat.
1

" A m o n g s t t h e e f f e c t s supposed t o b e p r o d u c e d b y the e a r t h q u a k e o n t h e atmosphere, w e r e reckoned tempestuous winds, thunder-storms, m e t e o r s , c o l d n e s s o f the a i r , s e v e r e w i n t e r s , h e a v y rain, m i a s m a t a , p r o d u c i n g d i s e a s e s and a f f e c t i n g v e g e t a t i o n . A v e r y r e m a r k a b l e i n s t a n c e o f t h e l a t t e r i s q u o t e d , n a m e l y , that i n P e r u ; a f t e r t h e e a r t h q u a k e o f 1687, w h e a t and b a r l e y w o u l d not t h r i v e a t a l l , though f o r m e r l y t h e c o u n t r y w a s r e m a r k a b l y f a v o u r a b l e f o r t h e m . " T h e r e c a n b e n o doubt that a n a n s w e r t o t h e q u e s t i o n , w h e t h e r a c o n n e x i o n e x i s t s b e t w e e n t h e s e p h e n o m e n a o f f i x e d t e r r e s t r i a l b o d i e s and the c o n d i t i o n o f t h e a t m o s p h e r e , i s o f the g r e a t e s t i m p o r t a n c e t o a t h o r o u g h k n o w l e d g e o f both. But f r o m t h e m u l t i f a r i o u s c o n d i t i o n s w h i c h h a v e h e r e t o b e t a k e n i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n , f r o m t h e i r c o m p l i c a t i o n , and f r o m t h e d i f f i c u l t y o f d i s t i n g u i s h i n g , a m o n g s t m a n y r e c u r r i n g a t t h e s a m e t i m e , b e t w e e n the i n d i f f e r e n t and those which a r e r e a l l y important, an extended s e r i e s of successive o b s e r v a t i o n s , m a d e w i t h t h e u t m o s t c a r e and c i r c u m s p e c t i o n , w i l l b e r e q u i r e d , i n o r d e r e v e n to approach the object which is a i m e d at in r e s e a r c h e s of this s o r t . " (pp. 66-68)

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O n t h e I n f l u e n c e o f t h e S e a s o n o f the Y e a r and T i m e o f D a y upon E a r t h quakes. Von Hoff r e m a r k s , " A s we have already noticed, a dependence of the e a r t h q u a k e upon the t i m e o f y e a r h a s o c c a s i o n a l l y b e e n s u p p o s e d t o h a v e been remarked. I n t h e e q u i n o c t i a l r e g i o n s e a r t h q u a k e s h a v e b e e n thought t o o c c u r m o r e f r e q u e n t l y d u r i n g t h e r a i n y s e a s o n than a t any o t h e r t i m e o f y e a r . S o m e t i m e s t h e y h a v e b e e n s u p p o s e d t o b e p e c u l i a r r a t h e r t o the p e r i o d o f the e q u i n o x e s , s o m e t i m e s t o the w i n t e r m o n t h s ; w i t h m a n y o t h e r s i m i l a r o p i n i o n s . I n d e e d e x a m p l e s a r e not w a n t i n g w h i c h a p p e a r t o f a v o u r such v i e w s ; a s f o r i n s t a n c e , t h e o b s e r v a t i o n , that o f a l l t h e e a r t h q u a k e s w h i c h o c c u r r e d i n S i c i l y f r o m 1792 t o 1831 ( H o f f m a n i n P o g g e n d o r f f ' s A n n a l e n , b . x x i v . s . 5 2 ) , d o u b l e a s m a n y t o o k p l a c e i n M a r c h a s i n any o f t h e o t h e r m o n t h s . Still h o w e v e r an a l m o s t m o r e p r o f o u n d o b s c u r i t y h a n g s o v e r the q u e s t i o n , w h e t h e r e a r t h q u a k e s and v o l c a n i c e r u p t i o n s a r e m o r e p e c u l i a r t o o n e t i m e o f the y e a r o r day than t o a n o t h e r , than o v e r the c o n s i d e r a t i o n o f t h e o t h e r c o n n e c t i o n s o f t h e s e p h e n o m e n a w i t h t h o s e o f the a t m o s p h e r e . T h i s subject has a l s o been t r e a t e d o f i n a n e l a b o r a t e m a n n e r i n a n o t h e r p a p e r o n the c a u s e s o f e a r t h q u a k e s ( M e m o i r e c o u r o n n e e , U t r e c h t , 1 8 2 0 - 2 8 , and e n l a r g e d , L e i p z i g , 1 8 2 7 - 2 8 ) b y H e r r K r i e s , who has brought f o r w a r d instances in no small number, which p r o v e that e a r t h q u a k e s , e v e n o f t h e m o s t v i o l e n t k i n d , h a v e o c c u r r e d a t e v e r y t i m e o f d a y and i n e v e r y s e a s o n o f the y e a r . " "I m y s e l f (says Von Hoff) have in another place ( P o g g e n d o r f f ' s Annalen, b , x x x i v . ( 1 1 0 ) s . 9 9 f . ) m a d e t h e e x p e r i m e n t o f c o l l e c t i n g and a r r a n g i n g a l l the i n s t a n c e s o f e a r t h q u a k e s w h i c h o c c u r r e d d u r i n g t e n y e a r s , i n o r d e r t o find w h e t h e r any o n e t i m e o f the day o r y e a r p r e s e n t e d a g r e a t e r n u m b e r o f t h e s e p h e n o m e n a than t h e o t h e r s . T h e result of these r e s e a r c h e s h o w e v e r seems to b e , that w i t h r e s p e c t t o t h i s r e l a t i o n o f e a r t h q u a k e s a l s o , n o l a w c a n b e l a i d down. W e m u s t c o n s i d e r i t a s a n e s t a b l i s h e d f a c t , that both e a r t h q u a k e s and v o l c a n i c e r u p t i o n s m a y o c c u r a t any t i m e o f the day o r y e a r , s i n c e e x p e r i e n c e has shown this with r e s p e c t to a l m o s t e v e r y t i m e . T h e only question which r e m a i n s o n t h e s u b j e c t i s , w h e t h e r w e c a n a s c r i b e t o any one o r o t h e r s e a s o n o r t i m e , a g r e a t e r t e n d e n c y t o p r o d u c e o r f a v o u r the p r o d u c t i o n o f such p h e n o m e n a . A m e r e c o l l e c t i o n o f f a c t s , e v e n though e m b r a c i n g a l o n g p e r i o d o f t i m e , w o u l d o f i t s e l f h a r d l y supply a n a n s w e r t o t h i s q u e s t i o n ; s i n c e , i n o r d e r t o d r a w t o l e r a b l y a c c u r a t e c o n c l u s i o n s f r o m such a c o l l e c t i o n , m a n y o t h e r c i r c u m s t a n c e s would have to be taken into c o n s i d e r a t i o n . W e ought not t o c o n t e n t o u r s e l v e s w i t h c o l l e c t i n g and a r r a n g i n g a m e r e s u c c e s s i v e l i s t o f t h e s e p h e n o m e n a , but o n t h e c o n t r a r y , w e should c p m p a r e w i t h o n e a n o t h e r o n l y the m o s t c o n s i d e r a b l e , and t h o s e w h i c h o c c u r r e d i n the s a m e c l i m a t e , w i t h o t h e r p r e c a u t i o n s of a s i m i l a r nature. T h i s b r a n c h o f the s u b j e c t h o w e v e r cannot b e d e e m e d c o m p l e t e until f r o m the l a r g e s t p o s s i b l e c a t a l o g u e o f e a r t h q u a k e s , e x t e n d i n g o v e r the w h o l e h i s t o r i c a l p e r i o d , a s i m i l a r d e d u c t i o n w i t h s u i t a b l e p r e c a u t i o n s shall h a v e b e e n m a d e . A s i n g u l a r w o r k , n o w v e r y s c a r c e , w a s p u b l i s h e d i n 1729, b y a p r o f e s s o r at L i m a , entitled ' L ' H o r l o g e Astronomique des T r e m b l e m e n s de T e r r e , ' in w h i c h h e u n d e r t a k e s , f r o m a d i s c u s s i o n o f 108 e a r t h q u a k e s o c c u r r i n g i n h i s o w n t i m e , t o p r e d i c t that o f t h e i r r e c u r r e n c e ; t h e p e r i o d o f t i d e and s t a t e o f the m o o n a r e the i m m e d i a t e l y i n f l u e n c i n g c a u s e s , a c c o r d i n g t o h i m , a s w e l l a s the m o o n ' s p l a c e i n t h e z o d i a c ; the c r i t i c a l t i m e i s c o n f i n e d t o s i x h o u r s and s o m e m i n u t e s o f the h o r a r y c i r c l e , w i t h i n w h i c h t h e m o o n i s o n the m e r i d i a n o f the p l a c e ; and h e s a y s h e h a s c o n f i r m e d h i s r e s u l t s b y 143 o b s e r v a t i o n s i n 1729, and 7 0 i n the subsequent y e a r , w h i c h p r o v e d c o r r e c t . M r . E d m o n d s , i n the C o r n w a l l P o l y t e c h n i c J o u r n a l , h a s a l s o e n d e a v o u r e d t o c o n n e c t the o c c u r r e n c e o f e a r t h q u a k e s w i t h t h e p e r i o d o f the m o o n ; h e s h o w s

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that s e v e r a l o f the m o s t d i s a s t r o u s h a v e o c c u r r e d the day a f t e r the f i r s t q u a r t e r . I m e n t i o n t h e s e l a t t e r a u t h o r s , not a s a t t a c h i n g any i m p o r t a n c e t o t h e i r c o n c l u s i o n s , but a s s h o w i n g t o t h o s e w h o w i l l c o n s u l t the o r i g i n a l s , t h e w r o n g d i r e c t i o n i n w h i c h such r e s e a r c h e s h a v e b e e n m a d e . (pp. 64-66) 5th. A t the m o m e n t the f i s s u r e s o p e n i n t h e e a r t h , f i r e and s m o k e ( a p p a r ently) have been observed to issue. O n t h i s m a t t e r m u c h n e w and e x a c t o b s e r v a t i o n w o u l d b e m o s t d e s i r a b l e . T h e n a r r a t i v e s g e n e r a l l y a f f i r m that f l a m e m a d e i t s a p p e a r a n c e m o m e n t a r i l y a t the m o u t h o f t h e f i s s u r e , and that a v o l u m e o f s m o k e , o r s o m e s a y dust, w a s v o m i t e d f o r t h and hung f o r s o m e t i m e a b o v e the m o u t h . T h a t s o m e e a r t h q u a k e s h a v e b e e n o b s e r v e d f r o m p o i n t s situated s o d i r e c t l y a b o v e and s o c l o s e t o the f o c u s o f v o l c a n i c a c t i o n b e n e a t h , a s t o m a k e a l l t h i s q u i t e p o s s i b l e i n i t s m o s t l i t e r a l s e n s e , cannot b e doubted, w h e n w e c a l l t o m i n d t h e V o l a g e ' s c h a i n c a b l e h a v i n g b e e n m a d e i n c a n d e s c e n t , and e v e n p a r t l y m e l t e d , a s s h e s w u n g b y i t a t a n c h o r o n the c o a s t o f South A m e r i c a ; o r C a p t a i n T i l l a n d ' s n a r r a t i v e i n the P h i l o s o p h i c a l T r a n s a c t i o n s f o r 1811, o f the s u b m a r i n e v o l c a n o , w h i c h h e a c t u a l l y s a w r i s e , upon the s u r f a c e o f the s e a , n e a r the i s l a n d o f St. M i c h a e l ' s w h e n l a y i n g t o , w i t h i n a f e w c a b l e s ' l e n g t h o f t h e spot. W i t h i n f o u r h o u r s a f t e r the f i r s t v i s i b l e c o m m o t i o n , the s u m m i t o f t h e c r a t e r w a s 2 0 f e e t h i g h a b o v e w a t e r , and 400 o r 500 d i a m e t e r ; and b e f o r e h e l e f t , i t had r a i s e d i t s e l f t o 8 0 y a r d s i n h e i g h t . Volumes of steam w e r e d i s c h a r g e d , t h e s e a w a s v i o l e n t l y a g i t a t e d a s though b o i l i n g , l i g h t n i n g - f l a s h e s w e r e e m i t t e d f r o m the c l o u d s a b o v e , and w a t e r - s p o u t s f o r m e d i n v a r i o u s p l a c e s around s h o w e d the v i o l e n t d i s t u r b a n c e o f e l e c t r i c e q u i l i b r i u m . A continuous n o i s e l i k e m u s k e t r y m i n g l e d w i t h d i s c h a r g e s o f cannon stunned t h e e a r , and the s h o c k s o f e a r t h q u a k e f e l t w e r e s u f f i c i e n t t o shake d o w n p a r t o f a c l i f f upon w h i c h s o m e o b s e r v e r s s t o o d . M a n y such r e c o r d s s h o w h o w c l o s e l y m e n m a y s o m e t i m e s a p p r o a c h the " A t r i Janua D i t i s , " and l i v e i n the m i d s t , a s it w e r e , o f t h e s m o k e and f e r v e n t heat o f the unknown r e g i o n s w i t h i n ; but w h e n the o c c u r r e n c e o f f l a m e and s m o k e i s r e c o r d e d o f f i s s u r e s i n n o n - v o l c a n i c l a n d s , and i n t e r r i t o r i e s s u f f e r i n g f r o m e a r t h q u a k e s w h o s e o r i g i n i s m a n i f e s t l y f a r a w a y , a s i n the L i s b o n o n e f o r e x a m p l e , s o m e d i f f e r e n t s o l u t i o n m u s t b e sought f o r . T h e f o l l o w i n g s u g g e s t s i t s e l f a s a t l e a s t w o r t h y o f future i n v e s t i g a t i o n . T h e e x p e r i m e n t s o f B e c q u e r e l and o t h e r e l e c t r i c i a n s h a v e s h o w n , that w h e n f r a c t u r e i n a s o l i d t a k e s p l a c e , a p o w e r f u l e l e c t r i c a l d i s t u r b a n c e i s the consequence. T h i s w i l l b e g r e a t i n p r o p o r t i o n a s the s u r f a c e and m a s s f r a c tured a r e t h e m s e l v e s l a r g e . W h e n t h e r e f o r e a f r a c t u r e o f a m i l e l o n g and o f m a n y f e e t i n depth i s f o r m e d , w h e t h e r b y s u b s i d a t i o n and s l i p p i n g , o r i n any o t h e r w a y i n soft m a t e r i a l , and y e t f a r m o r e w h e n o n e o f t h o s e g r e a t e r f r a c t u r e s i n h a r d r o c k t a k e s p l a c e , such a s h a v e b e e n d e s c r i b e d w h e n a w h o l e m o u n t a i n m a s s h a s b e e n r e n t i n t w o a t a b l o w , the d i s t u r b a n c e o f e l e c t r i c e q u i l i b r i u m m a y b e e x p e c t e d t o e x c e e d that o f a h e a v y t h u n d e r - s t o r m , and m a y , quoad t h i s p a r t i c u l a r p a r t o f e a r t h q u a k e p h e n o m e n a , r e a l i z e the d r e a m s o f the o l d e r p h i l o s o p h e r s , w h o thought a n e a r t h q u a k e w a s a t h u n d e r - s t o r m u n d e r g r o u n d . I n t h i s then I b e l i e v e i s t o b e found the usual s o u r c e o f the f l a m e o r f l a s h , s e e n suddenly to a p p e a r and v a n i s h at the m o u t h of the r e n t , and the i d e n t i f i c a t i o n o f the s u p p o s e d f l a m e o r f l a s h w i t h e l e c t r i c i t y i n a n a n a l o g o u s c a s e , w a s made by Sir W. Hamilton, who alludes to its violent disturbance a l w a y s in the c l o u d a b o v e t h e c r a t e r o f a v o l c a n o i n e r u p t i o n , though h e s u g g e s t s n o o r i g i n f o r such d i s t u r b a n c e i n the c a s e o f f i s s u r e s o p e n i n g , f r o m w h i c h h e h a d s a t i s f i e d h i m s e l f b y subsequent e x a m i n a t i o n , that t h e r e w a s n o e v i d e n c e o f f l a m e o r v o l c a n i c e x h a l a t i o n s o f any s o r t h a v i n g i s s u e d f r o m t h e i r m o u t h s . And as to t h e s m o k e w h i c h h a s e v e n b e e n d e s c r i b e d b y s o m e a u t h o r s a s dust, I f a n c y i t h a s b e e n n o n e o t h e r i n a l m o s t a l l c a s e s , i f not i n a l l . (pp. 55-56)

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2nd. E f f e c t s o n A n i m a l s . H a m i l t o n s a y s that d u r i n g s h o c k s , h o r s e s and o x e n e x t e n d e d t h e i r l e g s w i d e l y t o a v o i d b e i n g t h r o w n d o w n (an e v i d e n c e o f the v e l o c i t y o f the s h o c k ) , and that h o g s , o x e n , h o r s e s and m u l e s , a s a l s o g e e s e , a p p e a r e d t o b e p a i n f u l l y a w a r e o f the a p p r o a c h o f the e a r t h q u a k e o f C a l a b r i a ; and t h e n e i g h i n g o f a h o r s e , the b r a y i n g o f a n a s s , o r the c a c k l i n g o f a g o o s e , e v e n when h e w a s m a k i n g h i s s u r v e y , d r o v e the p e o p l e out o f t h e i r t e m p o r a r y s h e d s in e x p e c t a t i o n of a s h o c k . A l l b i r d s a p p e a r s e n s i b l e o f i t s a p p r o a c h , but g e e s e , s w i n e , and d o g s m o r e r e m a r k a b l y than any o t h e r a n i m a l s ; t h e g e e s e q u i t the w a t e r s b e f o r e the e a r t h q u a k e and w i l l not r e t u r n t o i t . C a n i t b e that w i t h t h e i r h e a d s i m m e r s e d t h e y a r e a b l e t o h e a r the f i r s t d i s t a n t m u t t e r i n g s , w h i l e t h e s e a r e y e t i n a u d i b l e t o t h o s e w h o h e a r t h r o u g h the a i r , and not a s i n t h e i r c a s e through a liquid ? V o n H o f f n o t i c e s a p r e s e n t i m e n t ( v o r g e f u h l ) w h i c h i t w a s thought had b e e n r e m a r k e d in particular species of animals shortly b e f o r e an earthquake. Even m e n h a v e s o m e t i m e s , a s h o r t t i m e b e f o r e such o c c u r r e n c e s , f e l t a t e n d e n c y t o h e a d a c h e , g i d d i n e s s ( v e r t i g o ) , and a n i n c l i n a t i o n t o v o m i t . " I t h a s b e e n r e m a r k e d , that a t such t i m e s d o m e s t i c a n i m a l s s h o w e d a d e c i d e d u n e a s i n e s s , d o g s h o w l e d m o u r n f u l l y , h o r s e s n e i g h e d i n a n unusual m a n n e r , and p o u l t r y f l e w r e s t l e s s l y about. T h e s e latter phenomena might e a s i l y b e p r o d u c e d b y m e p h i t i c v a p o u r s , w h i c h o f t e n a s c e n t t o the s u r f a c e o f the e a r t h b e f o r e the b r e a k i n g f o r t h o f the e a r t h q u a k e . " T h e C i r r i c e l l i , ( p o s s i b l y our S a n d - e e l s , ) a l i t t l e d e e p - w a t e r fish, l i k e our w h i t e b a i t , w h i c h u s u a l l y l i e s b u r i e d i n the s a n d , H a m i l t o n s a y s , " c a m e u p t o the s u r f a c e w i t h m a n y o t h e r s , and w e r e caught i n m u l t i t u d e s ; " t h i s m i g h t a r i s e e i t h e r f r o m a c t u a l heat o f the s e a - b o t t o m and w a t e r c l o s e t o i t , o r f r o m i t s b e i n g f o u l e d b y the c o m m o t i o n o r b y e x h a l a t i o n s i n t o i t ; o r they m a y h a v e b e e n s t a r t l e d b y the v i b r a t i o n s , a s t r o u t a r e w h e n o n e s t a m p s v i o l e n t l y o n a r i v e r bank. T h e r e i s u n q u e s t i o n a b l e e v i d e n c e o f e a r t h q u a k e s h o c k s (and not o f g r e a t i n t e n s i t y ) p r o d u c i n g n a u s e a and v o m i t i n g i n m e n and w o m e n ; s o m e t i m e s , a s i n a s c h o o l a t P h i l a d e l p h i a , n u m b e r s w e r e s o a f f e c t e d , a t the s a m e instant a w a k e n e d f r o m s l e e p b y the s h o c k ; w h e t h e r t h i s a r i s e f r o m sudden d r e a d p r o d u c e d b y the unusual and f e a r f u l v i s i t a t i o n , o r b e a n a l o g o u s t o s e a s i c k n e s s , h a s not yet been determined. T h e s e f e w p a r t i c u l a r s c o n s t i t u t e n e a r l y a l l that h a s b e e n o b s e r v e d o f t h i s point o f o u r s u b j e c t , ( p . 68)
t1

5th. T h e R a i n - g a u g e . T o r r e n t s o f r a i n h a v e o f t e n b e e n n o t i c e d a s f a l l i n g d u r i n g e a r t h q u a k e s , and t h e y h a v e a l s o o f t e n b e g u n i n h e a v y r a i n , and s o m e t i m e , h a v e b e e n c o n c l u d e d w i t h r a i n , and t h i s h a s i n e a c h c a s e o f t e n b e e n a c c o m p a n i e d w i t h t h u n d e r , l i g h t n i n g and w i n d ; but, o n the o t h e r hand, s o m a n y e a r t h q u a k e s h a v e o c c u r r e d w i t h s e r e n e s k i e s , b e f o r e , d u r i n g , and a f t e r the s h o c k s , that w e m u s t c o n c l u d e t h e r e i s n o n e c e s s a r y c o n n e x i o n e s t a b l i s h e d between them. I can find no numerical o b s e r v a t i o n as to rain, in relation to our subject, r e c o r d e d . A s s e c o n d a r y e f f e c t s a f t e r e a r t h q u a k e s , d i s t u r b a n c e s i n the usual f a l l o f rain may be almost certainly anticipated in a d e g r e e g r e a t e r as we approach the v o l c a n i c c e n t r e ; but t h i s b r a n c h o f s e i s m o - m e t e o r o l o g y i s a s y e t untouched, ( p . 72)

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7th. T h e M a g n e t o m e t e r . H u m b o l d t found, i n t h e g r e a t e a r t h q u a k e o f C u m a n a (4th N o v . 1 7 9 9 ) , the d e c l i n a t i o n and m a g n e t i c i n t e n s i t y u n a f f e c t e d , but t o h i s s u r p r i s e the d i p w a s d i m i n i s h e d b y 4 8 m i n u t e s . H e had n o g r o u n d t o s u p p o s e a n error. With this s o l i t a r y exception, in all the other earthquakes he e x p e r i e n c e d on the h i g h l a n d s o f Q u i t o and L i m a , a l l t h e m a g n e t i c e l e m e n t s r e m a i n e d u n a f f e c t e d . ( R e l a t . H i s t . , t . i . p p . 515, 5 1 7 . ) T h e s e m o v e m e n t s are of course totally different to those which have been o b s e r v e d b y A r a g o , B i o t , and r e p e a t e d l y a t D u b l i n b y D r . L l o y d , i n t h e i r m a g n e t i c o b s e r v a t o r i e s , v i z . o s c i l l a t i o n s suddenly a f f e c t i n g the m a g n e t o m e t e r s , and m o s t p r o b a b l y due t o the t r a n s m i s s i o n o f v e r y s m a l l i m p u l s e s f r o m a d i s t a n c e t h r o u g h the e a r t h , and h a v i n g t h e i r o r i g i n i n v e r y distant e a r t h q u a k e s . Such m u s t h a v e b e e n the c a u s e o f the s i m u l t a n e o u s m o v e m e n t s o f the m a g n e t o m e t e r s o f A r a g o a t t h e O b s e r v a t o i r e , and o f B i o t a t the C o l l e g e d e F r a n c e some years since. I n d e e d i t w a s found that a t t h e m o m e n t a s l i g h t s h o c k had b e e n f e l t i n S w i t z e r l a n d and s o u t h e r n F r a n c e . C a p o c c i , D i r e c t o r o f the O b s e r v a t o r y a t N a p l e s , r e l a t e s that a t the e r u p t i o n o f V e s u v i u s o f Jan. 1st, 1839, t h e d e c l i n a t i o n - n e e d l e w a s m o v e d . ( P o g g e n d . A n n a l . , b . l . p . 192; C o m p t e s R e n d u s , t . i x . p . 7 3 5 . ) I t i s q u e s t i o n a b l e , h o w e v e r , i n a l l such c a s e s , w h e t h e r the m o t i o n b e d u e t o m a g n e t i s m o r t o p u l s e s c o m m u n i c a t e d t o t h e n e e d l e t h r o u g h the s h a k e n g r o u n d ; and h e n c e s p e c i a l i n s t r u m e n t s w o u l d b e d e s i r a b l e , f o r m e d t o m a k e the d i s t i n c t i o n . " I n m a n y i n s t a n c e s , " s a y s V o n Hoff, " i n w h i c h a n o p p o r t u n i t y o f o b s e r v i n g the m a g n e t i c n e e d l e during an earthquake has p r e s e n t e d itself, an a l t e r a t i o n in i t s d i r e c t i o n f o r the t i m e h a s b e e n o b s e r v e d . T h e usual p e r i o d i c a l o s c i l l a t i o n s (Abweichungs-Schwingungen) are quicker, or take place in a different direction, or a r e altogether interrupted. I t i s o n l y i n v e r y m o d e r n t i m e s that g r e a t and r e g u l a r a t t e n t i o n h a s b e e n d e v o t e d t o the o b s e r v a t i o n o f the m a g n e t i c n e e d l e ; c o n s e q u e n t l y g o o d o b s e r v a t i o n s o f i t m a d e d u r i n g e a r t h q u a k e s a r e a s y e t but few in number. T h e s u d d e n n e s s and u n e x p e c t e d n e s s o f e a r t h q u a k e p h e n o m e n a c e r t a i n l y r e n d e r it difficult to obtain accurate o b s e r v a t i o n s m a d e at the p l a c e w h e r e the e a r t h q u a k e o c c u r s , i f e v e n the n e c e s s a r y p r e p a r a t i o n s f o r such o b s e r v a t i o n s should b e r e a d y , w h i c h i s t o b e e x p e c t e d f r o m v e r y f e w p l a c e s . T h e g r e a t e s t c a r e and the m o s t p e r f e c t and a c c u r a t e i n s t r u m e n t s a l s o a r e r e q u i r e d f o r m a g n e t i c a l o b s e r v a t i o n s m a d e a t the p l a c e o f the e a r t h q u a k e ; the m o r e e s p e c i a l l y s i n c e the s h o c k i t s e l f , i n p r o p o r t i o n t o i t s v i o l e n c e , m a y m e c h a n i c a l l y put the n e e d l e i n m o t i o n , w h i c h m o t i o n i s q u i t e i n d e p e n d e n t o f that p r o d u c e d b y m a g n e t i s m . " M o r e r e m a r k a b l e h o w e v e r a r e t h e c h a n g e s i n the d i r e c t i o n o f the d i p - and v a r i a t i o n - n e e d l e s , w h i c h t a k e p l a c e a t a d i s t a n c e f r o m the p l a c e w h e r e the e a r t h q u a k e w a s o b s e r v e d , and a t a p l a c e w h e r e the s h o c k i t s e l f i s not p e r c e p t i b l e ; a s , f o r i n s t a n c e , i n P a r i s , o n the 19th o f F e b r u a r y and 31st o f M a y 1822, s i m u l t a n e o u s l y w i t h a n e a r t h q u a k e w h i c h o c c u r r e d i n S a v o y and s o m e o f the s o u t h e r n p a r t s o f F r a n c e . I f t h i s o b s e r v a t i o n should b e e s t a b l i s h e d b y o t h e r s c a r e f u l l y m a d e , the e x i s t e n c e c o u l d not b e d e n i e d o f a c o n n e x i o n b e t w e e n t e r r e s t r i a l v u l c a n i s m ( E r d - v u l c a n i s m u s ) and t e r r e s t r i a l m a g n e t i s m . " ( G e s c h . V e r a n . E r d o b e r , T h . i v . ) I t m a y b e h e r e r e m a r k e d , that without s e l f r e g i s t e r i n g s e i s m o m e t e r s and m a g n e t o m e t e r s , any c o r r e c t o r s u s t a i n e d observation of a connexion between these f o r c e s is impracticable, (pp. 72-73)

9th. M e t e o r s . " A s o m e w h a t n e a r e r c o n n e x i o n m a y b e s u p p o s e d t o e x i s t b e t w e e n e a r t n q u a k e s and p h e n o m e n a o f t h i s k i n d . T h e s e m e t e o r s belong to a c l a s s o f p h e n o m e n a p r o p o r t i o n a l l y s e l d o m d i s p l a y e d b y the a t m o s p h e r e ; y e t t h e y h a v e b e e n t o l e r a b l y f r e q u e n t l y o b s e r v e d t o o c c u r a t the s a m e t i m e w i t h

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earthquakes. T o t h i s c l a s s b e l o n g the s o - c a l l e d g l o b e s o f f i r e , and o t h e r e x t r a o r d i n a r y l i g h t s and i l l u m i n a t i o n s ( E n t z u n d u n g e n ) i n t h e r e g i o n s o f t h e a i r , w h i c h cannot b e c o n s i d e r e d a s b e l o n g i n g t o t h e o r d i n a r y m e t h o d s o f e l e c t r i c a l discharge." Such m e t e o r s h a v e b e e n o b s e r v e d t o o c c u r c o n t e m p o r a n e o u s l y w i t h e a r t h q u a k e s i n t h e y e a r s 9 5 B . C . , and A . D . 893, 1 0 0 1 , 1325, 1640, 1674, 1683, 1703, 1737, 1752, 1756, 1810, 1820, 1 8 2 1 , 1822, 1824, 1828, 1829, 1831, 1833 and 1835. H u m b o l d t s t a t e s , that j u s t b e f o r e the g r e a t e a r t h q u a k e o f R i o b a m b a , a g r e a t s h o w e r o f m e t e o r s w a s s e e n a t Q u i t o (4th o f F e b . 1 7 9 7 ) ; that h e w a s i n f o r m e d a t C u m a n a , that just b e f o r e the e a r t h q u a k e o f 1766 a s i m i l a r d i s p l a y h a d b e e n s e e n ; and o n t h e 11th o f N o v e m b e r 1799; h e and B o n p l a n d w i t n e s s e d such a p h e n o m e n o n i n c l o s e c o n n e x i o n a s t o t i m e w i t h the e a r t h q u a k e w h i c h then a f f l i c t e d C u m a n a . ( P e r . N a r . , v o l . i i i . p . 3 3 1 ; C o s m o s , n o t e s 4 4 , 4 5 . ) 10th. The Aurora. T h i s phenomenon, now so w e l l ascertained to be in d i r e c t sympathy w i t h t e r r e s t r i a l m a g n e t i s m , has b e e n often o b s e r v e d b e f o r e and a f t e r e a r t h q u a k e s . I h a v e found n o i n s t a n c e i n w h i c h i t w a s r e m a r k e d d u r i n g a n e a r t h q u a k e - s h o c k , but i t m i g h t then e a s i l y e s c a p e o b s e r v a t i o n . O n the 19th and 20th o f O c t o b e r 1848, d u r i n g t h e N e w Z e a l a n d e a r t h q u a k e , the a u r o r a w a s v e r y b r i g h t i n t h e s o u t h - e a s t (the d i r e c t i o n n e a r l y t o w a r d s w h i c h t h e s h o c k t r a v e l l e d ) ; but t h e r e w a s n o t h i n g t o s h o w any c o n n e x i o n , i n t h i s o r i n any o t h e r c a s e , w i t h t h e f o r c e s c o n c e r n e d d i r e c t l y i n the s h o c k . I f t h e r e b e any r e a l r e a c t i o n upon the m a g n e t o m e t e r f o r d e c l i n a t i o n h e r e a f t e r d i s c o v e r e d , a s d u e t o v o l c a n i c a c t i o n , and not t r a c e a b l e t o s e c o n d a r y , e l e c t r i c a l o r o t h e r d i s t u r b a n c e c l o s e t o a c t i v e v e n t s (and nothing c a n b e m o r e p o s s i b l e than that t h e sudden m o v e m e n t b e n e a t h o f g r e a t m a s s e s o f f l u i d i g n e o u s r o c k , u s u a l l y r i c h i n i r o n , s h a l l b e found t o h a v e such r e a c t i o n ) , .then i t m a y a l s o b e found that t h e aurora,- that m o s t a i r y and e v a n e s c e n t o f a l l v i s i b l e m e t e o r s , m a y h a v e s o m e d i r e c t , though p r o b a b l y s l i g h t r e l a t i o n t o the m o s t t r e m e n d o u s a g e n c y that t h e m e c h a n i s m o f o u r p l a n e t p o s s e s s e s . 11th. O t h e r A t m o s p h e r i c P h e n o m e n a . U n d e r t h i s h e a d V o n H o f f h a s p l a c e d together s o m e curious facts. " I h a v e a l r e a d y m e n t i o n e d , " s a y s h e , "that i t s e e m s t o m e m o r e p r o b a b l e , that the c h a n g e s g o i n g o n i n the i n t e r i o r o f the e a r t h e x e r c i s e s o m e i n f l u e n c e o n the a t m o s p h e r e , than that the l a t t e r should i n any w a y i n f l u e n c e that p r o c e s s w h i c h s e e m s t o h a v e i t s s e a t d e e p i n the i n n e r p o r t i o n s o f the e a r t h . A s the g l o b e s o f f i r e b e f o r e s p o k e n o f m a y h a v e t h e i r o r i g i n - i n p e c u l i a r g a s e o u s e x h a l a t i o n s , s o i t s e e m s p r o b a b l e that o t h e r c h a n g e s i n t h e c o n d i t i o n o f the a t m o s p h e r e m a y b e p r o d u c e d b y t h e s e t e r r e s trial f o r c e s . I n d e e d , a l t e r a t i o n s i n t h e o r d i n a r y s t a t e o f the a t m o s p h e r e h a v e not u n f r e q u e n t l y b e e n r e m a r k e d , w h i c h ought not t o o b o l d l y t o b e a s c r i b e d t o t h e i n f l u e n c e o f the e a r t h q u a k e . W e h a v e a l r e a d y n o t i c e d the o b s e r v a t i o n , that the e a r t h q u a k e i n P e r u , i n the y e a r 1687, f o r a l o n g t i m e p r e v e n t e d the s u c c e s s of certain c r o p s . T h e r e h a v e a l s o b e e n s t r a n g e c o l o u r i n g s o f the h e a v e n s and unusual f o g s n o t i c e d a s o c c u r r i n g a t the s a m e t i m e w i t h e a r t h q u a k e s ; such a s the unusual c o l o u r o f t h e sky a t L i s b o n o n t h e 1st o f N o v e m b e r 1755, and the d r y f o g ( N e b e l ) , w h i c h w a s s o t h i c k a s t o p r o d u c e d a r k n e s s , d u r i n g the e a r t h q u a k e i n C a l a b r i a i n 1783. S i n c e o b s e r v a t i o n s upon p h e n o m e n a o f t h i s kind, m a d e i n m o d e r n t i m e s , d e s e r v e m o r e c o n f i d e n c e than t h o s e w h i c h a r e p r e s e r v e d i n the o l d e r a c c o u n t s , I d o not c o n s i d e r i t a l t o g e t h e r s u p e r f l u o u s t o q u o t e s o m e i n s t a n c e s i n m o d e r n t i m e s o f r e m a r k a b l e c o n d i t i o n s o f the a t m o s phere existing during earthquakes:

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GQE-010

" 1 8 2 4 , 12th A u g u s t . In Tuscany. T h e sun a p p e a r e d a s i t w e r e v e i l e d , and w a s m o r e l i k e the m o o n . " 1 8 2 4 , 30th N o v e m b e r . In Martinique. A f t e r the e a r t h q u a k e , t h e t e m p e r a t u r e o f the a i r ( w h i c h b e f o r e had b e e n v e r y h i g h ) f e l l v e r y c o n s i d e r a b l y . " 1 8 2 5 , 19th J a n u a r y . A t St. M a u r a . E x t r e m e l y h e a v y s h o w e r s s u c c e e d e d t h e e a r t h q u a k e , and l a s t e d f o r s e v e r a l d a y s . "1826, 23rd N o v e m b e r . I n t h e R y r o l . T h e v i o l e n t w i n d w h i c h had e x i s t e d b e f o r e the e a r t h q u a k e , c e a s e d d u r i n g i t s c o n t i n u a n c e , and r o s e a g a i n a f t e r i t s termination. " 1 8 2 7 , 1st F e b r u a r y . In N a p l e s . O n t h e day o f the e a r t h q u a k e , the a i r , w h i c h b e f o r e had b e e n v e r y c o l d , s u d d e n l y b e c a m e p l e a s a n t l y w a r m . "1827, 3rd June. In Martinique. R a i n i m m e d i a t e l y s u c c e e d e d the e a r t h q u a k e , although none had f a l l e n f o r s i x t y - s i x d a y s b e f o r e . "1828. In P e r u . T h e m o s t unusual and e x t r e m e l y v i o l e n t r a i n , l a s t i n g f o u r d a y s , s u c c e e d e d the e a r t h q u a k e i n the d i s t r i c t w h i c h had b e e n m o s t s e v e r e l y v i s i t e d b y i t , n a m e l y a t T r u x i l l o , L a m b e y e q u e , C h i c l a y a , P u i r a , and i n the d e s e r t of Sechua. " 1 8 3 0 , 8th F e b r u a r y . A t A g r a m . A f o g , h a v i n g a v e r y bad s m e l l , s p r e a d i t s e l f a b r o a d , and l a s t e d f o r t h r e e h o u r s . "1831, 3rd D e c e m b e r . At Martinique. Heavy showers of rain fell after the e a r t h q u a k e . " 1 8 3 2 , 18th O c t o b e r . In Saxony. A f t e r t h e e a r t h q u a k e , the t h i c k y e l l o w f o g , w h i c h had e x i s t e d t h e r e f o r s e v e r a l d a y s , suddenly d i s s i p a t e d i t s e l f , and the a i r , w h i c h b e f o r e had b e e n h a r s h , b e c a m e m i l d . " 1 8 3 4 , 4th O c t o b e r . At Bologna. A f t e r t h e e a r t h q u a k e , the a i r b e c a m e suddenly c o l d . " 1 8 3 5 , 27th O c t o b e r . I n the P y r e n e e s . D u r i n g the e a r t h q u a k e t h e r e r o s e c l o u d s o f hot a i r , w h i c h g a v e out a d i s t i n c t s m e l l o f sulphur. " ( V o n Hoff, Gesch, V e r a n . Erdober, T h . i v . ) (pp. 74-75)

23rd. E a r t h q u a k e s o c c u r w h i c h a r e a c c o m p a n i e d b y v a r i o u s sounds, h a v i n g a s u b t e r r a n e o u s o r i g i n , and w h i c h m a y e i t h e r p r e c e d e , o r a c c o m p a n y , o r s u c c e e d , the o c c u r r e n c e o f s h o c k s , o r p r e c e d e , a c c o m p a n y , and s u c c e e d , the s h o c k s o f s o m e o f t h e m ; and a g a i n , e a r t h q u a k e s o c c u r , e v e n o f the g r e a t e s t v i o l e n c e , u n a c c o m p a n i e d b y any sound w h a t e v e r . T h e i n t e n s i t y o f the sound i s b y n o m e a n s i n p r o p o r t i o n t o t h e v i o l e n c e o f the earthquake. One o f the m o s t t r e m e n d o u s e a r t h q u a k e s o n r e c o r d , that o f R i o b a m b a , o c c u r r e d , a c c o r d i n g t o H u m b o l d t , u n a c c o m p a n i e d w i t h any n o i s e whatever. T h e kind o f sound h a s b e e n v e r y v a r i o u s l y d e s c r i b e d , s o v a r i o u s l y a s t o i n d u c e the b e l i e f that t h e r e a r e d i f f e r e n t sounds o n d i f f e r e n t o c c a s i o n s . Humboldt s a y s ( ' C o s m o s ' ) , "It i s e i t h e r r o l l i n g , o r rustling, o r clanking, l i k e c h a i n s b e i n g m o v e d , o r l i k e n e a r t h u n d e r , o r c l e a r and r i n g i n g a s i f o b s i d i a n o r s o m e o t h e r v i t r i f i e d m a s s e s w e r e s t r u c k i n s u b t e r r a n e o u s c a v i t i e s . " One cannot but i m a g i n e that i n the l a t t e r s i m i l i t u d e the e a r h a s b o r r o w e d i t s i m p r e s s i o n f r o m the p r e c o n c e i v e d v i e w o f the a u t h o r ' s m i n d . P r o f e s s o r K r a s h e n i k o f f , o f St. P e t e r s b u r g , i n h i s d e s c r i p t i o n o f Kamschatka, as translated by Dumaresque (1760), says, "Earthquakes h a p p e n h e r e s e v e r a l t i m e s i n the y e a r . T h e m o s t v i o l e n t that w a s o b s e r v e d , w a s i n the b e g i n n i n g o f F e b r u a r y 1759, w h i c h , d u r i n g a w e s t e r l y w i n d , l a s t e d e x a c t l y s i x m i n u t e s ; and b e f o r e i t a n o i s e w a s h e a r d and a s t r o n g w i n d u n d e r g r o u n d , w i t h a h i s s i n g w h i c h w e n t f r o m n o r t h t o south. " B y s o m e the sound h a s b e e n d i r e c t l y c o m p a r e d t o that o f q u e n c h i n g a m a s s o f r e d - h o t i r o n i n water. T h e r e w a s a shock of earthquake at Coningsby in L i n c o l n s h i r e , in

Gl-197

GQE-011

EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA

E n g l a n d , o n t h e 6th o f F e b r u a r y 1817, and a l s o a t H o l d e r n e s s n e a r i t , w h e n i t w a s h e a r d " l i k e w a g g o n s r u n n i n g a w a y upon a r o a d ; and s o f o r c i b l e w a s t h e i l l u s i o n , that w a g g o n e r s o n the r o a d s a c t u a l l y d r e w u p t h e i r t e a m s t o l e t t h e supposed runaway w a g g o n pass them s a f e l y . W h i l e this was heard at C o n i n g s b y , t h e y h e a r d a l s o a t i n t e r v a l s o f about a s e c o n d o f t i m e , s h a r p and l o u d n o i s e s l i k e t h e d i s c h a r g e s o f g u n s h o t s ; and a l l g r a d u a l l y d i e d a w a y t o a g r u m b l i n g n o i s e , w h i c h s h i f t e d f r o m the e a s t t o t h e south. " ( Q u a r t . J o u r n a l , v o l . xviii.) Hollow b e l l o w i n g s is a c o m m o n e x p r e s s i o n with n a r r a t o r s . T h e d e s c r i b e r o f the N e w Z e a l a n d e a r t h q u a k e o f 1848 ( W e s t . R e v . , p . 397, f o r July 1849) s a y s , " T h e e a r t h i s i n a c o n t i n u a l s t a t e o f t r e m u l o u s n e s s , and t h e d u l l sound of the earthquake is continually h e a r d . T h i s sound h a s b e e n m u c h e x a g g e r a t e d ; i t i s s o m e t h i n g l i k e t h e sound o f a r a i l w a y t r a i n r u m b l i n g t h r o u g h a tunnel, I m e a n a s h e a r d b y a p e r s o n o u t s i d e and n e a r t h e m o u t h . I have also heard n e a r l y a s i m i l a r sound m a d e b y a v e r y l a r g e s t e a m s h i p c h i m n e y , e x c e p t that t h e e a r t h q u a k e sound i s l e s s s o n o r o u s . It has b e e n c o m p a r e d with distant thunder and w i t h d i s t a n t guns, but i t i s m o r e r u m b l i n g i n i t s n a t u r e ; i n s h o r t , it admits of no exact c o m p a r i s o n . I h a v e n o t e d that w h e n the s h o c k s o c c u r d u r i n g a h e a v y g a l e , t h i s dull r u m b l i n g sound i s not p e r c e p t i b l e : i t i s o v e r c o m e by the n e a r e r n o i s e of the w i n d . " (pp. 4 1 - 4 2 )

GQE-011

[EARTHQUAKE LIGHTS AND ELECTRIC EFFECTS]

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 6 : 8 9 - 9 0 , M a y 30, 1872. W i t h r e f e r e n c e t o t h e c o n n e c t i o n b e t w e e n e l e c t r i c i t y and e a r t h q u a k e s , the P a l l M a l l G a z e t t e q u o t e s f r o m a C a l i f o r n i a n p a p e r , t h e I n y o I n d e p e n d e n t , the f o l l o w i n g c u r i o u s s t a t e m e n t s r e s p e c t i n g the p r e v a l e n c e o f e l e c t r i c a l phenomena a t t h e t i m e o f t h e r e c e n t e a r t h q u a k e i n that State: " A f e w d a y s a f t e r the b i g s h o c k , s o c a l l e d , a t C e r r o G a r d o , v e r y loud t h u n d e r w a s h e a r d d u r i n g a v i o lent s n o w s t o r m . W i t h t h e e x c e p t i o n o f t h e s n o w , the s a m e thing o c c u r r e d h e r e , and p e r h a p s a t o t h e r p l a c e s i n the v a l l e y . This is remarkable, because almost u n p r e c e d e n t e d . I m m e d i a t e l y f o l l o w i n g the g r e a t shock, m e n w h o s e judgment and v e r a c i t y a r e b e y o n d q u e s t i o n , w h i l e s i t t i n g o n t h e g r o u n d n e a r the E c l i p s e M i n e s , s a w s h e e t s o f f l a m e o n the r o c k y s i d e s o f the I n y o M o u n t a i n s , but h a l f a m i l e distant. T h e s e f l a m e s , o b s e r v e d i n s e v e r a l p l a c e s , w a v e d t o and f r o , apparently c l e a r of the ground, l i k e vast t o r c h e s . T h e y c o n t i n u e d f o r only a f e w m i n u t e s . I n t h i s o f f i c e , o n e d a y l a s t w e e k , w h i l e o n e o f the p r o p r i e t o r s w a s running a l a r g e n u m b e r o f s h e e t s o f f l a t - c a p p a p e r t h r o u g h a j o b p r e s s , t h e s e s h e e t s , a f t e r l e a v i n g the p r e s s , w e r e a f f e c t e d b y t h e m o v e m e n t s o f the o p e r a t o r ' s hand, a s a s t r o n g m a g n e t w o u l d a f f e c t i r o n f i l i n g s . W h e n h i s hand w a s n e a r t h e m , t h e w h o l e p i l e , o r a t l e a s t a h u n d r e d o f t h e m f r o m the t o p , s e e m e d to float in the air, like tissue paper in a slight b r e e z e . T h e top sheet w o u l d r i s e a t e a c h end u p t o the hand w h e n h e l d f o u r i n c h e s a b o v e i t , and thus b y a t t r a c t i o n b e m o v e d e n t i r e l y a w a y f r o m the o t h e r s . A t t i m e s during the night s p a r k s o f f i r e w e r e r e p e a t e d l y e m i t t e d f r o m a w o o l l e n shawl o n b e i n g t o u c h e d b y t h e hand. A t the K e a r s a r g e M i l l , l o c a t e d a t a n altitude o f n e a r l y 8 0 , 0 0 0 f e e t a b o v e t h e s e a , the f o l l o w i n g o c c u r r e n c e w a s noted b y H a r r y C l a w s o n and P . J . J o s l y n : T h e f o r m e r , w h i l e sitting with his knees within t h r e e i n c h e s o f a c a s t i r o n s t o v e , f e l t a p e c u l i a r n u m b i n g s e n s a t i o n , and s u p p o s i n g h i s l i m b s w e r e ' a s l e e p , ' e s s a y e d t o rub t h e m w i t h h i s hand. As soon as his hand t o u c h e d h i s k n e e he f e l t a s h o c k , and i m m e d i a t e l y a f t e r , and f o r a c o u p l e o f s e c o n d s , a s t r e a m o f f i r e r a n b e t w e e n both k n e e s and the s t o v e . O b v i o u s l y , i t c a n n o t b e 80, 000 f e e t , p r o b a b l y 8 , 000 i s m e a n t .

Gl-198

EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA
GQE-012 EARTHQUAKES AND THEIR CAUSES
1875.

GEQ-012

L a k e , John J . ; E n g l i s h M e c h a n i c , 2 1 : 5 1 - 5 2 , A p r i l 2 ,

O n l y the s u m m a r i e s o f the m o r e unusual e a r t h q u a k e p h e n o m e n a a r e p r e s e n t e d below. 4 . I t h a s b e e n o b s e r v e d that c l o u d s h a v e b e c o m e f i x e d o r s u s p e n d e d o v e r p a r t i c u l a r s p o t s a f f e c t e d , o r about t o b e a f f e c t e d , b y e a r t h q u a k e , a s i n L o n d o n , i n 1749, i n C a l a b r i a , i n 1783; and i t i s m o r e than p r o b a b l e that the f o g that e n v e l o p e d E u p h e m i a , i n S i c i l y , i n 1638, M i l l i t e l l o i n 1693, and o t h e r p l a c e s w h e n they w e r e d e s t r o y e d a r o s e f r o m t h e o p e r a t i o n o f o n e c a u s e . 5 . E x p l o s i o n s o f g r e a t v i o l e n c e f r e q u e n t l y attend t h e s e c o n v u l s i o n s , o f t e n with disastrous r e s u l t s . When M i l l i t e l l o w a s d e s t r o y e d , there was a g r e a t e x p l o s i o n h e a r d i n the f o g that e n v e l o p e d i t ; t r a c e s w e r e n o t i c e d a f t e r w a r d s a s o f the p r e s e n c e o f f i r e o n the r o c k s i n the n e i g h b o u r h o o d , and the v i n e s i n the c o u n t r y s u r r o u n d i n g i t a p p e a r e d a s though t h e y had b e e n s e a r e d b y f i r e . A s i m i l a r e x p l o s i o n w a s h e a r d i n 1783 a t C a s t e l N u o v o , i n C a l a b r i a , w h e n that place was overwhelmed. 7 . E a r t h q u a k e s a r e v e r y f r e q u e n t l y attended b y thunder and l i g h t n i n g . At M u n s t e r , i n 1612, thunder and l i g h t n i n g w e r e h e a v y d u r i n g a n e a r t h q u a k e ; and i n S i c i l y , i n 1693, i t c a u s e d v e r y g r e a t m i s c h i e f . T h i s conjunction of lightning w i t h e a r t h q u a k e w a s n o t i c e d b y L u k e H o w a r d , and c o n s t i t u t e s what h e d e s i g n a t e s " s p u r i o u s e a r t h q u a k e . " O n e o f the c a s e s h e m e n t i o n s o c c u r r e d i n R a d n o r s h i r e : " A t K n i l l C o u r t the o s c i l l a t i o n o f t h e h o u s e w a s p l a i n l y p e r c e p t i b l e , and f e l t b y a l l the f a m i l y , and that, t o o , i n s e v e r a l a p a r t m e n t s , and w a s a c c o m p a n i e d b y a p e c u l i a r r u m b l i n g n o i s e . A t H a r p t o n , a s e v e r e s t o r m o f thunder and l i g h t n i n g w a s e x p e r i e n c e d the s a m e night and a t the s a m e t i m e . " 8. P e c u l i a r rushing noises have also at t i m e s been p e r c e i v e d , as in S t a f f o r d s h i r e , in 1692, and L o n d o n in 1749. 9 . T h e s e c o n v u l s i o n s a r e a t t e n d e d b y the d i s t u r b a n c e o f the m a g n e t i c n e e d l e , and c o m p a s s e s o n b o a r d s h i p a r e f r e q u e n t l y f o r a t i m e u s e l e s s . On the 19th J a n u a r y , 1845, o n the T h a m e s s t e a m e r , d u r i n g a n e a r t h q u a k e i n the W e s t I n d i e s , t h e y r e v o l v e d o n t h e i r p i v o t s w i t h g r e a t r a p i d i t y ; and o n the 29th O c t o b e r , 1867, d u r i n g a h u r r i c a n e , t h e r e w e r e s h o c k s o f e a r t h q u a k e a t St. T h o m a s ' s , and the e l e c t r i c a l d i s t u r b a n c e w a s s o g r e a t a s t e m p o r a r i l y t o r e n d e r the c o m p a s s e s u n a v a i l a b l e . But b y f a r the m o s t p r o m i n e n t a g e n t [ i n c a u s i n g e a r t h q u a k e s ] s e e m s t o b e e l e c t r i c i t y , and the I t a l i a n s , w h o s u f f e r s o m u c h f r o m t h e s e c a l a m i t i e s , c o n s i d e r i t t o b e the o n l y c a u s e . T h e e v i d e n c e s o f t h e a c t i v i t y o f the e l e c t r i c fluid i n t h i s r e s p e c t a r e s o p a l p a b l e that t h e y c a n n o t b e c o n t r o v e r t e d . As s o m e m a y b e s c e p t i c a l o n t h i s p o i n t , i t w i l l not b e a m i s s t o e x a m i n e a f e w c a s e s i n w h i c h the o p e r a t i o n o f t h i s a g e n t i s q u i t e a p p a r e n t . W h e n c o n s i d e r i n g t h i s p a r t o f the s u b j e c t , w e m u s t not o m i t t o n o t i c e the f r e q u e n c y w i t h w h i c h the g r e a t e s t w e i g h t o f t h e s e c a l a m i t i e s f a l l s upon t o w n s and the n e i g h b o u r h o o d s o f m o u n t a i n s . T h i s i s t o b e a c c o u n t e d f o r o n the e l e c t r i c t h e o r y , f r o m t h e s e p l a c e s o f f e r i n g p o i n t s f o r the e s c a p e o f the f l u i d which naturally flies there to seek a thoroughfare, so to speak. F r o m this c a u s e w e h a v e St. E l m o ' s f i r e o n the m a s t s and y a r d s o f s h i p s a t s e a , and D e S a u s s u r e ' s e x p e r i e n c e s o f the e s c a p e o f the f l u i d f r o m a n A l p i n e p e a k . H e n c e w e m a y i n f e r that t o w n s and m o u n t a i n s c r e a t e c e n t r e s o f f o r c e i n t h e s e convulsions.

Gl-199

GQE-013

EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA

T h e e a r t h q u a k e s o f 1692, i n J a m a i c a , and 1693, i n S i c i l y , p r e s e n t v e r y strong e v i d e n c e s of g e n e r a l e l e c t r i c disturbance in the globe at those t i m e s . O n e e v e n i n g i n F e b r u a r y , 1692, a t A l a r i , i n S i c i l y , t h e v i l l a g e s e e m e d t o t h e country people to be in f l a m e s . T h e f i r e , as they i m a g i n e d , began by little and i n c r e a s e d f o r about a q u a r t e r o f a n h o u r , w h e n a l l t h e h o u s e s i n the p l a c e a p p e a r e d t o b e e n v e l o p e d i n o n e f l a m e w h i c h l a s t e d about s i x m i n u t e s and t h e n b e g a n t o d e c a y , a s f r o m want o f m o r e f u e l . Many who ran to render a s s i s t a n c e , o b s e r v e d t h i s i n c r e a s e a s t h e y p a s s e d a l o n g t h e r o a d , but o n e n t e r i n g t h e v i l l a g e found a l l t o b e a d e l u s i o n . Such a p p e a r a n c e s o f f i r e and l i g h t o c c u r in other l o c a l i t i e s subject to earthquake, e . g . , at C o w r i e , P e r t h s h i r e , one m o r n i n g b e f o r e d a y b r e a k , i n 1842, t h e l i g h t i s s t a t e d t o h a v e b e e n s o b r i l l i a n t that b i r d s w e r e d i s t i n g u i s h e d o n t h e t r e e s . A g a i n i n S i c i l y , about the 15th o f M a y , f o l l o w i n g t h e i n c i d e n t a t A l a r i , t w o h o u r s b e f o r e s u n s e t , the a t m o s p h e r e b e i n g v e r y c l e a r , t h e h e a v e n s a p p e a r e d o n a sudden a l l o n f i r e , without any flashes of lightning or the least noise of thunder. This lasted at Syracuse about a q u a r t e r o f a n h o u r , w h e n t h e r e a p p e a r e d i n t h e a i r o v e r the c i t y t w o b o w s , t h e c o l o u r s e x t r e m e l y b r i g h t , a f t e r the usual m a n n e r , and a t h i r d w i t h t h e e x t r e m i t i e s i n v e r t e d , and, a s not a s i n g l e c l o u d w a s v i s i b l e i n any p a r t o f the s k y , t h e a b n o r m a l s t a t e o f the a t m o s p h e r e i s c l e a r .

T h e e a r t h q u a k e o f L o n d o n , 1749, a l s o e x h i b i t e d s t r o n g s y m p t o m s o f electric action. T h e y e a r abounded w i t h t h u n d e r and l i g h t n i n g , c o r u s c a t i o n s f r e q u e n t l y a p p e a r e d i n the a i r , and the a u r o r a r e m o v e d t o the south, s h o w i n g upon t w o o c c a s i o n s unusual c o l o r s . D r . Stephen H a l e s h e a r d a r u s h i n g i n h i s h o u s e w h i c h e n d e d i n a n e x p l o s i o n i n the a i r a s f r o m a s m a l l cannon, and a t t r i b u t e d i t t o t h e e s c a p e o f the f l u i d b y the s t e e p l e o f t h e c h u r c h o f St. M a r t i n ' s - i n - t h e - F i e l d s , a d j o i n i n g . T h e R e v . J . H . M u r r a y r e f e r s t o the e l e c t r i c a l d i s t u r b a n c e s o n the e a s t c o a s t o f South A m e r i c a , c o n t e m p o r a n e o u s w i t h t h e g r e a t e a r t h q u a k e s o n t h e w e s t c o a s t i n 1868, and c o n s i d e r s t h e m related. H e d e s c r i b e s o n e s t o r m , just a t t h e t i m e o f the e a r t h q u a k e , a s g i v i n g "an i d e a o f w h a t the b o m b a r d m e n t o f S e b a s t o p o l m u s t h a v e b e e n l i k e . " The phenomena of seaquake a r e of a s i m i l a r character. We have ours e l v e s s e e n e l e c t r i c clouds thrown into a u r o r a l f o r m s contemporaneously w i t h the d i s t u r b a n c e o f the s e a a t a n o t h e r l o c a l i t y . E x a m p l e s m i g h t b e e x t e n s i v e l y m u l t i p l i e d , but the a b o v e w o u l d s e e m s u f f i c i e n t t o s h o w that a l e a d i n g c a u s e o f e a r t h q u a k e i s e l e c t r i c a c t i o n , and that v o l c a n o e s s o m e t i m e s p r o d u c e the s a m e b y d i r e c t c o n v u l s i o n , and a t others by disturbing the e l e c t r i c equilibrium of a l o c a l i t y .

GQE-013

ACOUSTIC EMISSION PRIOR TO ROCKBURSTS AND EARTHQUAKES

A r m s t r o n g , B a x t e r H . ; S e i s m o l o g i c a l S o c i e t y o f A m e r i c a , B u l l e t i n , 59:1259-1280, 1969. A r m s t r o n g b e g i n s b y n o t i n g that p r i o r t o m a n y m a j o r e a r t h q u a k e s , appeared highly disturbed. F o r e x a m p l e , t h e r e a r e s t o r i e s that d o g s i n T a l c a h u a n o , C h i l e , r a n h o w l i n g out o f that c i t y b e f o r e t h e b i g C o n c e p c i o n s h o c k o f 1835, that d o g s i n San F r a n c i s c o w h i n e d d u r i n g the night p r e c e d i n g the 1906 q u a k e , and that the c r i e s o f d o g s , c a t s , and c o w s a w a k e n e d r e s i d e n t s o f T a a l , P h i l l i p i n e s , s h o r t l y b e f o r e a n e a r t h quake o c c u r r e d t h e r e . animals have

Gl-200

EARTHQUAKE PEN0MENA

GEQ-015

A l t h o u g h such s t o r i e s a r e g e n e r a l l y d i s m i s s e d a s f o l k l o r e , A r m s t r o n g ' s p a p e r i n v e s t i g a t e s t h e p o s s i b i l i t y that v i b r a t i o n s p r i o r t o t h e q u a k e m a y g e n e r a t e sound a t f r e q u e n c i e s that a n i m a l s c a n h e a r but m e n c a n n o t . His conclusion follows: W e h a v e e x p l o r e d the h y p o t h e s i s that p o p u l a r r e p o r t s o f a n i m a l a g i t a t i o n p r i o r t o e a r t h q u a k e s m i g h t r e s u l t f r o m t h e i r d e t e c t i n g h i g h - f r e q u e n c y sound emission f r o m preliminary fracturing. S i n c e such p r e l i m i n a r y e m i s s i o n h a s b e e n o b s e r v e d i n t h e l a b o r a t o r y u p t o a m e g a c y c l e o r m o r e and i n n a t u r e u p t o a f e w k i l o c y c l e s , i t i s v e r y l i k e l y that h i g h f r e q u e n c y sound m a y b e e m i t t e d f r o m highly strained regions p r i o r to earthquakes. H o w e v e r , estimates of its range u s i n g l a b o r a t o r y Q - v a l u e s s h o w t h i s t o b e s o s h o r t that i t i s not l i k e l y t o b e d e t e c t e d b y a n i m a l s o r i n s t r u m e n t s , but i t cannot b e r u l e d out f o r e a r t h q u a k e s i n v o l v i n g surface rupture, or earthquakes with rupture o c c u r r i n g into a body of water stress. In particular, sound c h a n n e l s m i g h t b e f o r m e d a l o n g f o c i o f h i g h

GQE-014
Shepard,

THE NEW MADRID EARTHQUAKE
E . M . ; J o u r n a l o f G e o l o g y , 13:45-62, F e b r u a r y 1905.

T h e N e w M a d r i d e a r t h q u a k e o f D e c e m b e r 16, 1811, s e v e r e l y r a v a g e d a n a r e a o f t h e M i d w e s t s o m e 200 m i l e s l o n g b y 3 0 m i l e s w i d e . E v i d e n t l y p o w e r f u l c o m p r e s s i v e forces were created. T h e r e s e e m e d t o b e a b l o w i n g out o f the e a r t h , b r i n g i n g u p c o a l , w o o d , sand, e t c . , a c c o m p a n i e d with a r o a r i n g and w h i s t l i n g p r o d u c e d by the i m p e t u o s i t y of the a i r e s c a p i n g f r o m i t s c o n f i n e m e n t .

GQE-015

REPORT ON THE FACTS OF EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA

M a l l e t , R o b e r t ; R e p o r t o f the B r i t i s h A s s o c i a t i o n , p a g e s a s noted, 1852. N o v e m b e r 4 , 1704; a t Z u r i c h and the c o u n t r y r o u n d . T w o v i o l e n t s h o c k s . P r e c e e d e d b y a b r i l l i a n t m e t e o r i n the a i r . A t the s a m e t i m e t h e r e w a s a v i o l e n t s t o r m o f thunder, l i g h t n i n g and wind a t B a l e , w h e r e h o w e v e r n o shock w a s f e l t , ( p . 110) D e c e m b e r 21, 1731; a t N a p l e s and i n L a D u g l i a . S h o r t e r and l e s s v i o l e n t than the l a s t [ e a r t h q u a k e ] . T h e h e a v e n s w e r e c l e a r , but the sun a p p e a r e d p a l e a s i f o b s c u r e d b y a thin v a p o r . B e f o r e t h i s e a r t h q u a k e the inhabitants o f the T e r r a - d i B a r i p e r c e i v e d around M o n t e G a r g a n o a s o r t o f f l a m e l i k e sudden l i g h t n i n g , w h i c h v a n i s h e d in s m o k e ( p . 128) O c t o b e r 21, 1731; [ v a r i o u s t o w n s i n E n g l a n d ] . A n o t h e r s h o c k The windo w s w e r e shaken v i o l e n t l y . F o l l o w e d , one m i n u t e a f t e r , b y b r i l l i a n t l i g h t n i n g a t Aynho. T h e d a y a f t e r , the sky a p p e a r e d the c o l o u r o f e a r t h , ( p . 129) D e c e m b e r 9, 1731; F l o r e n c e . A s l i g h t s h o c k . T h e s a m e day a l u m i n o u s cloud w a s seen, d r i v e n with s o m e v i o l e n c e f r o m E . t o W . , w h e r e i t disappeared b e l o w the h o r i z o n . T h i s p h e n o m e n o n i s said t o h a v e b e e n q u i t e d i f f e r e n t f r o m

Gl-201

GQE-016

EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA
( p . 129)

an a u r o r a b o r e a l i s .

M a r c h 19, 1750; L o n d o n [and e n v i r o n s ] . T h r e e o r f o u r c o n s e c u t i v e s h o c k s i n the s p a c e o f 1 0 o r 1 2 s e e s P r e c e d e d b y a loud n o i s e c o m p a r e d b y s o m e t o thunder, b y o t h e r s t o the r o a r i n g o f the w i n d , and m o v i n g i n the d i r e c t i o n , a c c o r d ing t o s o m e , o f S . E . t o N . W . o r W . ; according t o others, o f W . t o E . , N . W . t o S . E . o r v i c e v e r s a . T h i s n o i s e ( c o m p a r e d t o that o f a c a r r i a g e i n m o t i o n ) w a s heard at one or t w o p l a c e s w h e r e no shock w a s f e l t . A b l a c k c l o u d w i t h continual and c o n f u s e d f l a s h e s o f l i g h t n i n g had b e e n v i s i b l e , t h e l a t t e r c e a s i n g a m i n u t e o r t w o b e f o r e the e a r t h q u a k e Dogs howled dismally, fishes threw themselves out o f the w a t e r , and a h o r s e that w a s b r o u g h t t o the w a t e r i n g - p l a c e r e f u s e d t o d r i n k . One p e r s o n f e l t h i m s e l f t u r n e d o n h i s f e e t b y the shock, ( p . 146) M a l l e t ' s c a t a l o g , w h i c h i s p u b l i s h e d i n s e v e r a l v o l u m e s o f the R e p o r t o f the B r i t i s h Association, l i s t s many other concurrent a t m o s p h e r i c phenomena. T h e earthquake sounds a r e , o f c o u r s e , e a s y t o u n d e r s t a n d , but the m e c h a n i s m s behind e a r t h q u a k e l i g h t s and the a p p a r e n t p h y s i o l o g i c a l e f f e c t s a r e unknown i f they t r u l y e x i s t a t a l l .

GQE-016

EARTHQUAKE-ASSOCIATED SKY LUMINESCENCE

G i l l m o r , D a n i e l S . , e d . ; S c i e n t i f i c Study o f U n i d e n t i f i e d F l y i n g O b j e c t s , B a n t a m B o o k s , I n c . , N e w Y o r k , 1969. I n t e n s e e l e c t r i c a l a c t i v i t y h a s o f t e n b e e n r e p o r t e d p r i o r t o , d u r i n g , and a f t e r earthquakes. Unusual l u m i n e s c e n t p h e n o m e n a s e e n i n the sky h a v e b e e n c l a s s i f i e d i n t o c a t e g o r i e s : (1) i n d e f i n i t e i n s t a n t a n e o u s i l l u m i n a t i o n : (a) l i g h t n i n g (and b r i g h t n i n g s ) , (b) s p a r k s o r s p r i n k l e s o f l i g h t , ( c ) thin l u m i n o u s s t r i p e s o r s t r e a m e r s ; (2) w e l l - d e f i n e d and m o b i l e l u m i n o u s m a s s e s : ( a ) f i r e b a l l s ( b a l l l i g h t n i n g ) , (b) c o l u m n s o f f i r e ( v e r t i c a l ) , ( c ) b e a m s o f f i r e ( p r e s u m a b l y h o r i z o n t a l o r o b l i q u e ) , (d) l u m i n o u s f u n n e l s ; ( 3 ) b r i g h t f l a m e s and e m a n a t i o n s : ( a ) f l a m e s , (b) l i t t l e f l a m e s , ( c ) m a n y s p a r k s , ( d ) l u m i n o u s v a p o r ; (4) p h o s p h o r e s c e n c e o f sky and c l o u d s . The c l a s s i f i c a t i o n i s s o m e w h a t a m b i g u o u s , but i s r a t h e r d e s c r i p t i v e o f l u m i n o u s e v e n t s associated with earthquakes. T h e e a r l i e s t d e s c r i p t i o n o f such p h e n o m e n a w a s g i v e n b y T a c i t u s , w h o d e s c r i b e s the e a r t h q u a k e o f the A c h a i a n c i t i e s i n 373 B . C . E . Japanese r e c o r d s d e s c r i b e luminous effects during many s e v e r e earthquakes. I n the K a m a k u r a E a r t h quake o f 1257, b l u i s h f l a m e s w e r e s e e n t o e m e r g e f r o m f i s s u r e s o p e n e d i n the ground. F l y i n g l u m i n o u s o b j e c t s a r e m e n t i o n e d i n c o n n e c t i o n w i t h the e a r t h q u a k e a t Y e d o ( T o k y o ) d u r i n g t h e w i n t e r o f 1672. A f i r e b a l l r e s e m b l i n g a p a p e r - l a n t e r n w a s s e e n f l y i n g t h r o u g h the sky t o w a r d the e a s t . D u r i n g the T o s a e a r t h q u a k e o f 1698, a n u m b e r o f f i r e b a l l s shaped l i k e w h e e l s w e r e s e e n f l y i n g i n d i f f e r e n t d i r e c t i o n s . I n the c a s e o f the G r e a t G e n r o k u E a r t h q u a k e o f 3 1 D e c e m b e r 1730 i n T o k a i d o , l u m i n o u s " b o d i e s " and l u m i n o u s " a i r " w e r e r e p o r t e d d u r i n g the n i g h t s p r e c e d i n g the day o f the s e v e r e s t s h o c k . A f t e r w a r d s a kind o f l u m i n o s i t y r e s e m b l i n g sheet l i g h t n i n g w a s o b s e r v e d f o r about 2 0 d a y s , e v e n w h e n t h e r e w e r e c l o u d s i n the s k y . One r e c o r d o f the Shinano E a r t h q u a k e o f 1847 s t a t e s : " U n d e r the d a r k sky, a f i e r y c l o u d a p p e a r e d i n the d i r e c t i o n o f M t . I z u n a . I t w a s s e e n t o m a k e a w h i r l i n g m o t i o n and then d i s a p p e a r e d . I m m e d i a t e l y a f t e r w a r d , a r o a r i n g sound w a s h e a r d , f o l l o w e d b y s e v e r e e a r t h q u a k e s . " I n K y o t o i n A u g u s t , 1830, i t i s r e p o r t e d that d u r i n g the night p r e c e d i n g the e a r t h q u a k e l u m i n o u s p h e n o m e n a w e r e s e e n i n the w h o l e s k y ; a t t i m e s , i l l u m i n a t i o n e m i t t e d f r o m the g r o u n d w a s c o m -

Gl-202

EARTHQUAKE PHENOMENA

GQE-018

p a r a b l e i n b r i g h t n e s s t o d a y l i g h t . I n the K w a n t o E a r t h q u a k e o f 1 S e p t e m b e r 1923, a s t a f f m e m b e r o f t h e C e n t r a l M e t e o r o l o g i c a l O b s e r v a t o r y s a w a kind o f s t a t i o n a r y f i r e b a l l i n the sky o f T o k y o . T h e e a r t h q u a k e a t I z u , 2 6 N o v e m b e r 1930, w a s studied i n d e t a i l f o r a s s o c i a t e d atmospheric luminescence. Many r e p o r t s of sightings w e r e obtained. T h e day p r i o r t o the q u a k e , a t 4 p . m . , a n u m b e r o f f i s h e r m e n o b s e r v e d a s p h e r i c a l l u m i nous b o d y t o t h e w e s t o f M t . A m a g i , w h i c h m o v e d n o r t h w e s t a t c o n s i d e r a b l e speed. F i r e b a l l s ( b a l l l i g h t n i n g ) and l u m i n o u s c l o u d s w e r e r e p e a t e d l y o b s e r v e d . A funnel-shaped light r e s e m b l i n g a searchlight w a s also seen. Most witnesses r e p o r t e d p a l e b l u e o r w h i t e i l l u m i n a t i o n , but o t h e r s r e p o r t e d r e d d i s h o r o r a n g e colors. T h a t l a r g e e l e c t r i c a l p o t e n t i a l s c a n b e c r e a t e d b y the s l i p p a g e o r s h e a r i n g o f r o c k s i s not s u r p r i s i n g . N e v e r t h e l e s s , a s s o c i a t e d b a l l l i g h t n i n g and l u m i n o u s c l o u d s a r e o f s i g n i f i c a n c e t o t h i s study. O f p o s s i b l e i m p o r t a n c e i s the u s e o f e l e c t r i c a l measurements to provide s o m e advance warning of an impending earthq u a k e , ( p p . 740-741) ( M a r t i n D . A l t s c h u l e r )

GQE-017

NOTE ON EARTHQUAKES IN CHINA

M a c g o w a n , D. J. ; N a t u r e , 34:17-19, M a y 6, 1886. T h e t r e m o r s that a r e e x p e r i e n c e d i n C h e h k i a n g , K i a n g s u , and c o t e r m i n u s r e g i o n s t o the w e s t , a r e s o m e t i m e s f o l l o w e d b y the a p p e a r a n c e o n the g r o u n d o f s u b s t a n c e s that i n C h i n e s e b o o k s a r e s t y l e d " w h i t e h a i r s . " W h e n I f i r s t c a l l e d a t t e n t i o n t o r e c o r d s o f that kind that a r e found i n l o c a l g a z e t t e e r s , I s u g g e s t e d that t h e y m i g h t b e c r y s t a l s p r e c i p i t a t e d b y g a s e o u s e m i s s i o n s , such a s w e r e o n c e r e p o r t e d a s o c c u r r i n g a f t e r a n e a r t h q u a k e i n the s o u t h - w e s t o f the U n i t e d S t a t e s ; f r o m l a t e r d e s c r i p t i o n s o f t h e s e " h o r s e t a i l - l i k e " s u b s t a n c e s I i n c l i n e t o the o p i n i o n that t h e y a r e o r g a n i c , p e r h a p s m y c i l l i u m . I n t h e s u m m e r o f 1878 the v e r n a c u l a r p r e s s g a v e a n a c c o u n t o f the o c c u r r e n c e o f the p h e n o m e n o n a t W u s o h , a c i t y o n t h e g r a n d c a n a l , t h i r t y m i l e s n o r t h o f Suchau. " A t noon, June 12th o f that y e a r , s h o c k s o f a n e a r t h q u a k e w e r e e x p e r i e n c e d , w h i c h l a s t e d s e v e r a l m i n u t e s (Sin, 'the s p a c e o f t i m e t a k e n i n s w a l l o w i n g h a l f a b o w l o f r i c e ' ) ; the m o t i o n w a s s o g r e a t that s i t t i n g o r s t a n d i n g w a s d i f f i c u l t but n o h a r m w a s d o n e . T w o d a y s l a t e r a t night t h e r e w a s a s e v e r e r s h o c k , a f t e r w h i c h , w i t h i n and without the w a l l s o f the c i t y , w h i t e h a i r s r e s e m b l i n g a s i l v e r y b e a r d , about t h r e e i n c h e s i n l e n g t h , w e r e found, w h i c h b o y s p u l l e d out o f t h e g r o u n d , g a t h e r i n g handfulls i n a s h o r t s p a c e o f t i m e " M y l i s t o f C h i n e s e e a r t h q u a k e s f o r the p a s t t w o thousand y e a r s h a v i n g b e e n d e s t r o y e d b y f i r e I a m u n a b l e t o i n d i c a t e the r e g i o n s i n w h i c h e a r t h q u a k e s w e r e f o l l o w e d b y the e m i s s i o n o f " h a i r s , " but m y i m p r e s s i o n i s that a l l , o r n e a r l y a l l , a r e a l l u v i a l v a l l e y s .

GQE-018

COLLECTION OF HAIRS AFTER EARTHQUAKES IN CHINA

D y e r , W . T . T h i s e l t o n ; N a t u r e , 3 4 : 5 6 - 5 7 , M a y 20, 1886. D y e r begins by quoting most of M a c g o w a n ' s discussion on "earthquake h a i r s " as p r e sented in G Q E - 0 1 7 . Then, he g i v e s his v i e w s : I think t h e r e c a n b e l i t t l e doubt that D r . M a c g o w a n ' s c o n c l u s i o n i s w e l l founded,

Gl-203

GQE-019

E A R T H Q U A K E PHENOMENA

and that t h e " w h i t e h a i r s " h a v e n o r e a l c o n n e c t i o n w i t h the e a r t h q u a k e . I n 1852, d u r i n g o n e o f the l a t e M r . F o r t u n e ' s v i s i t s t o China, h e e x p e r i e n c e d t h e s h o c k o f a n e a r t h q u a k e a t Shanghai. H e g i v e s the f o l l o w i n g c u r i o u s account i n " A R e s i d e n c e a m o n g t h e C h i n e s e " ( p p . 4 , 5 ) , o f t h e subsequent s e a r c h f o r the hairs:— " G r o u p s o f C h i n e s e w e r e s e e n i n the g a r d e n s , r o a d s i d e s , and f i e l d s e n g a g e d i n g a t h e r i n g h a i r s w h i c h a r e s a i d t o m a k e t h e i r a p p e a r a n c e o n the s u r f a c e o f t h e ground after an earthquake takes p l a c e . T h e p r o c e e d i n g s attracted a great deal o f attention f r o m s o m e o f t h e f o r e i g n r e s i d e n t s i n Shanghai, and the C h i n e s e w e r e c l o s e l y e x a m i n e d upon the s u b j e c t . M o s t o f t h e m f u l l y b e l i e v e d that t h e s e h a i r s m a d e t h e i r a p p e a r a n c e o n l y a f t e r a n e a r t h q u a k e had o c c u r r e d , but c o u l d g i v e n o s a t i s f a c t o r y e x p l a n a t i o n o f the p h e n o m e n o n , w h i l e s o m e , m o r e w i s e than t h e i r n e i g h b o r s , d i d not h e s i t a t e t o a f f i r m that they b e l o n g e d t o s o m e h u g e s u b t e r r a n e o u s a n i m a l w h o s e s l i g h t e s t shake w a s s u f f i c i e n t t o m o v e the w o r l d . " I m u s t c o n f e s s , a t t h e r i s k o f b e i n g l a u g h e d at, that I w a s o n e o f t h o s e w h o t o o k a n i n t e r e s t i n t h i s c u r i o u s s u b j e c t , and that I j o i n e d s e v e r a l g r o u p s w h o w e r e s e a r c h i n g f o r t h e s e h a i r s . I n the c o u r s e o f m y t r a v e l s I h a v e e v e r found i t unw i s e t o l a u g h a t what I c o n c e i v e d t o b e t h e p r e j u d i c e s o f a p e o p l e s i m p l y b e c a u s e I c o u l d not u n d e r s t a n d t h e m . I n t h i s i n s t a n c e , h o w e v e r , I must c o n f e s s the r e sults w e r e not w o r t h t h e t r o u b l e I t o o k . T h e h a i r s , such as I p i c k e d up, and such a s w e r e s h o w n t o m e b y t h e C h i n e s e , had c e r t a i n l y b e e n p r o d u c e d a b o v e t h e e a r t h and not b e l o w i t . In s o m e instances they might r e a d i l y be traced to h o r s e s , d o g s , and c a t s , w h i l e i n o t h e r s t h e y w e r e e v i d e n t l y o f v e g e t a b l e o r i g i n . T h e n o r t h e a s t e r n p a r t o f C h i n a p r o d u c e s a v e r y v a l u a b l e t r e e known b y t h e n a m e o f t h e h e m p - p a l m [ C h a m a e r o p s F o r t u n e i , s e e K e w R e p o r t , 1880, p . 31], f r o m the quantity o f f i b r o u s b r a c t s i t p r o d u c e s just u n d e r i t s b l o s s o m s . Many of these f i b r e s w e r e s h o w n t o m e b y the C h i n e s e a s a p o r t i o n o f the h a i r s i n q u e s t i o n ; and w h e n I p o i n t e d out t h e s o u r c e f r o m w h i c h t h e y had c o m e , and w h i c h i t w a s i m p o s s i b l e t o d i s p u t e , m y f r i e n d s l a u g h e d , and, w i t h t r u e C h i n e s e p o l i t e n e s s , a c k n o w l e d g e d I w a s r i g h t , and y e t I h a v e n o doubt t h e y s t i l l h e l d t h e i r f o r m e r o p i n i o n s c o n c e r n i n g t h e o r i g i n o f such h a i r s . The whole matter simply r e s o l v e s i t s e l f into t h i s : i f the h a i r s p o i n t e d out t o m e w e r e the t r u e o n e s , t h e n such t h i n g s m a y b e g a t h e r e d not o n l y a f t e r e a r t h q u a k e s , but a t any o t h e r t i m e . But if, a f t e r a l l , t h e s e w e r e not the r e a l t h i n g s , and i f s o m e v e g e t a b l e ( I s h a l l not s a y a n i m a l ) p r o d u c t i o n w a s f o r m e d , o w i n g t o t h e p e c u l i a r c o n d i t i o n o f the a t m o s p h e r e and f r o m o t h e r c a u s e s , I c a n o n l y s a y that such p r o d u c t i o n did not c o m e u n d e r m y observation."

GQE-019

[QUAKE AND THUNDERSTORM]

A n o n y m o u s ; N a t u r e , 33:18, N o v e m b e r 5 , 1885. On O c t o b e r 9, b e t w e e n 9 and 10 a. m . , t w o s e v e r e s h o c k s of e a r t h q u a k e w e r e f e l t o n the L i s I s l a n d , i n the p a r i s h o f Sorunda, i n S w e d e n . I n the s c h o o l - h o u s e , w h i l e t e a c h i n g w a s g o i n g on, t w o s e v e r e s h o c k s w e r e f e l t l i k e t w o b l o w s f r o m a n e n o r m o u s h a m m e r in the n o r t h w e s t e r n c o r n e r of the building. In this c o r n e r the w i n d o w s r a t t l e d , the f l o o r s w a y e d , and r u m b l i n g l i k e that o f distant thunder w a s heard. Simultaneously a g r e a t t h u n d e r s t o r m p a s s e d o v e r the d i s t r i c t , a c c o m p a n i e d b y h e a v y r a i n . I t h a s , h o w e v e r , b e e n a s c e r t a i n e d b e y o n d doubt that the s h o c k s w e r e not due t o t h e f o r m e r , a s the s h o c k s w e r e f e l t b y m a n y p e r s o n s out of doors. T h e earthquake went f r o m w e s t to east.

Gl-204

SECTION GS: SOUND PHENOMENA
W i t h s o m a n y j e t s a l o f t and the o t h e r sounds o f m o d e r n t e c h n o l o g y , m a n c a n c o n v e n i e n t l y a s c r i b e a n y t h i n g h e h e a r s t o one m a c h i n e o r a n o t h e r . Nevertheless, c o n c e a l e d i n t h e n o i s y b a c k g r o u n d t h e r e a r e m a n y d e t o n a t i o n s , h u m s , s w i s h e s , and e v e n m u s i c a l sounds that a r e not m a n - m a d e . T h e s e a r e d i v i d e d into the f o l l o w i n g categories. GSD Strange detonations. E x p l o s i v e sounds, apparently f r o m n o w h e r e , often l o c a l i z e d with long h i s t o r i e s . E x a m p l e s : the B a r i s a l Guns, the Seneca G u n s , w a t e r guns o f L o u g h N e a g h , e t c . C o r r e l a t i o n of s o m e with earthq u a k e s , m e t e o r s , and w h i r l w i n d s . I n f r a s o n i c sound. effects. A s s o c i a t i o n w i t h s t o r m s and a u r o r a s . Physiological

GSG

GSH

Hums, hisses, etc. Unexplained hums heard in many l o c a l i t i e s . Y e l l o w stone L a k e " w h i s p e r s , " brontophonic sounds. C o r r e l a t i o n with m e t e o r s and a u r o r a s . P o s s i b l e e f f e c t s o f e l e c t r o m a g n e t i c w a v e s o n human p e r ception. Music, bells, etc. Odd o c e a n i c s o u n d s . Bell of Nakous. Cry of Memnon.

GSM

Gl-205

SOUND PHENOMENA

T h i s p a g e r e s e r v e d f o r the expansion o f the p r e c e d i n g c a t e g o r i e s i n future v o l u m e s .

Gl-206

STRANGE DETONATIONS
GSD-001 "BARISAL GUNS" AND "MIST POUFFERS"

GSD-002

D a r w i n , G . H . ; N a t u r e ; 52:650, O c t o b e r 31, 1895. M u c h o f the i n f o r m a t i o n o n m y s t e r i o u s d e t o n a t i o n s w a s p u b l i s h e d i n N a t u r e i n r e s p o n s e t o the f o l l o w i n g l e t t e r f r o m G e o r g e H . D a r w i n , the son o f C h a r l e s . A l t h o u g h D a r w i n a s s o c i a t e s t h e B a r i s a l Guns and m i s t p o u f f e r s , t h e y m a y , o f c o u r s e , h a v e e n t i r e l y different o r i g i n s . I n the d e l t a o f the G a n g e s , dull sounds, m o r e o r l e s s r e s e m b l i n g distant a r t i l l e r y , a r e often h e a r d . T h e s e a r e c a l l e d " B a r i s a l g u n s " ; but I d o not k n o w the m e a n i n g of the t e r m . T h e o b j e c t o f t h i s n o t e i s t o d r a w the attention o f t h e r e a d e r s o f N a t u r e t o t h i s m y s t e r i o u s p h e n o m e n o n , and t o t h e s i m i l a r " m i s t p o u f f e r s " of the B e l g i a n coast. M y attention w a s f o r the f i r s t t i m e d r a w n t o the subject s o m e d a y s a g o b y a l e t t e r f r o m M . v a n d e r B r o e c k , C o n s e r v a t o r o f the M u s e u m o f Natural History of Belgium. He w r i t e s of certain "curious aerial or subterranean d e t o n a t i o n s , w h i c h a r e p r e t t y c o m m o n l y h e a r d , a t l e a s t , i n B e l g i u m and i n t h e n o r t h o f F r a n c e , and w h i c h a r e d o u b t l e s s a g e n e r a l p h e n o m e n o n , although l i t t l e k n o w n , b e c a u s e m o s t p e o p l e w r o n g l y i m a g i n e i t t o b e t h e sound o f d i s tant a r t i l l e r y . " I h a v e c o n s t a n t l y n o t i c e d t h e s e sounds i n t h e p l a i n o f L i m b u r g s i n c e 1880, and m y c o l l e a g u e o f the G e o l o g i c a l S u r v e y , M . R u t o t , has h e a r d t h e m v e r y frequently along the B e l g i a n c o a s t , w h e r e our s a i l o r s c a l l t h e m ' m i s t p o u f f e r s ' or fog dissipators. " T h e k e e p e r of the lighthouse at Ostend has h e a r d these n o i s e s f o r s e v e r a l y e a r s p a s t ; t h e y a r e known n e a r B o u l o g n e , and t h e l a t e M . H o u z e a u s p o k e o f them to my friend M. Lancaster. M o r e than t e n o f m y p e r s o n a l a c q u a i n t a n c e s have o b s e r v e d the fact. " T h e d e t o n a t i o n s a r e dull and d i s t a n t , and a r e r e p e a t e d a d o z e n t i m e s o r m o r e at i r r e g u l a r intervals. T h e y a r e u s u a l l y h e a r d i n the d a y - t i m e w h e n t h e s k y i s c l e a r , and e s p e c i a l l y t o w a r d s e v e n i n g a f t e r a v e r y hot d a y . The noise d o e s not a t a l l r e s e m b l e a r t i l l e r y , b l a s t i n g i n m i n e s , o r the g r o w l i n g o f d i s tant t h u n d e r . " M . v a n d e r B r o e c k , a f t e r r e f e r r i n g t o the " B a r i s a l guns, " s a y s that h e w a s d i s p o s e d t o r e g a r d the n o i s e s a s due t o s o m e p e c u l i a r kind o f d i s c h a r g e o f a t m o s p h e r i c e l e c t r i c i t y . "But m y c o l l e a g u e M . R u t o t b e l i e v e s t h e o r i g i n t o b e internal to the e a r t h . H e c o m p a r e s t h e n o i s e t o t h e s h o c k w h i c h the i n t e r n a l fluid m a s s m i g h t g i v e t o t h e e a r t h ' s c r u s t . " M r . C l e m e n t R e e d h a s i n f o r m e d M . v a n d e r B r o e c k that h e b e l i e v e s s i m i l a r n o i s e s a r e h e a r d o n D a r t m o o r , and i n s o m e p a r t s o f S c o t l a n d . I w a s not p r e v i o u s l y a w a r e o f a n y t h i n g o f t h e kind i n t h e s e i s l a n d s . B e f o r e any s y s t e m a t i c o b s e r v a t i o n s a r e u n d e r t a k e n , i t w i l l b e useful t o f o r m s o m e g e n e r a l i d e a o f t h e f r e q u e n c y o f t h e s e sounds and o f t h e i r g e o g r a p h i c a l distribution. W i l l any o f t h e n u m e r o u s r e a d e r s o f N a t u r e i n v a r i o u s p a r t s o f the w o r l d g i v e us an account of t h e i r e x p e r i e n c e s in this m a t t e r ?

GSD-002
C l e l a n d , J.

"BARISAL GUNS" IN WESTERN AUSTRALIA
Burton; Nature, 78:101-102, June 4, 1908.

Gl-207

GSD-003

STRANGE DETONATIONS

R e s p o n d i n g t o S i r G e o r g e D a r w i n ' s r e q u e s t f o r f u r t h e r r e p o r t s o f B a r i s a l Guns and m i s t p o u f f e r s , C l e l a n d r e l a t e d i n t h i s l e t t e r t o N a t u r e h o w h e and h i s c o m p a n i o n s w e r e d i s p a t c h e d b y the g o v e r n m e n t o f W e s t e r n A u s t r a l i a o n a n e x p e d i t i o n t o the a r e a o f the S t r e l l e y R i v e r . T h e t i m e w a s A u g u s t 9 , 1907, 8:35 P . M . I w a s l y i n g i n the tent w h e n , i n the w o r d s o f m y d i a r y , w e suddenly h e a r d a dull r o a r l a s t i n g s e v e r a l s e c o n d s , i n c r e a s i n g i n l o u d n e s s and then d e c r e a s i n g . E v e r y o n e h e a r d i t and l o o k e d a r o u n d . T h e sky w a s q u i t e c l e a r , and t h e r e w e r e n o s i g n s o f thunder c l o u d s . T h e r e w a s n o a p p a r e n t t r e m o r . I thought the n o i s e c a m e f r o m the S . E . , o t h e r s f r o m the N . E . S o m e s u g g e s t e d i t w a s the r u m b l e o f a herd o f c a t t l e g a l l o p i n g o v e r a c l a y pan w i t h h o l l o w g r o u n d beneath, a s t h e y h e a r s i m i l a r n o i s e s i n the K i m b e r l e y D i s t r i c t ( W . A u s t r a l i a ) N e x t day " s o m e m e n c a m p e d t w e n t y m i l e s w e s t f r o m h e r e i n q u i r e d i f w e had h e a r d the r u m b l e l a s t night; i t a p p e a r s t h e i r A f g h a n s j u m p e d u p and s a i d "buggy c o m i n g . " T h e sound r e s e m b l e d a distant, p r o l o n g e d p e a l o f thunder o r the d i s c h a r g e of a f a r - a w a y p i e c e of ordnance or mine explosion. The nearest working mines w o u l d b e about s i x t y m i l e s a w a y , the s e a about f i f t y m i l e s , and i t i s n e e d l e s s t o say t h e r e i s n o a r t i l l e r y w i t h i n h u n d r e d s o f m i l e s . No noticable m e t e o r was s e e n b y a n y o n e , and had the n o i s e b e e n due t o t h i s , w o u l d i t h a v e b e e n h e a r d a t p l a c e s t w e n t y m i l e s a p a r t ? I t m i g h t h a v e b e e n due t o a n e a r t h q u a k e . b u t n o t r e m o r was noticed. I h a v e h e a r d f r o m e y e - w i t n e s s e s o f dull sounds r e s e m b l i n g t h i s b e i n g h e a r d i n the K i m b e r l e y d i s t r i c t o f t h i s State. A t the t i m e , a b l a c k f e l l o w s a i d , " H i l l t u m b l e d o w n , " and next day they found that g r e a t m a s s e s of r o c k had f a l l e n . A s subsequent e n t r i e s i n t h i s s e c t i o n w i l l s h o w , the p r o l o n g e d r u m b l i n g d e s c r i b e d i n t h i s r e p o r t i s m o r e akin t o s e i s m i c o r m e t e o r i c sounds than B a r i s a l Guns o r mistpouffers. T h e r i s i n g and f a l l i n g o f the sound and i t s s e e m i n g e l u s i v e n e s s r e m i n d s o n e o f the Y e l l o w s t o n e L a k e sounds and the H a i t i a n g o u f f r e .

GSD-003

BARISAL GUNS
N a t u r e , 61:127-128, D e c e m b e r 7, 1899.

S c h u r r , H e n r y S. ;

D u r i n g m o s t of 1890 and 1891, S c h u r r w a s a D i s t r i c t S u p e r i n t e n d e n t of P o l i c e in the B e n g a l a r e a o f what i s now B a n g l a d e s h . I n h i s o f f i c i a l c a p a c i t y h e t r a v e l l e d w i d e l y throughout the G a n g e s D e l t a . E x c e r p t s f r o m h i s r e p o r t t o the G e o l o g i c a l S u r v e y o r General follow. B a r i s a l Guns a r e h e a r d o v e r a w i d e r a n g e e x t e n d i n g f r o m T w e n t y - f o u r P e r g u n n a h s t h r o u g h Khulna, B a c k e r g u n g e and N o a k h a l i , and a l o n g the banks o f the M e g n a t o N a r a i n g u n g e and D a c c a . T h e y a r e h e a r d m o s t c l e a r l y and f r e q u e n t l y i n the B a c k e r g u n g e d i s t r i c t , f r o m w h o s e h e a d q u a r t e r s t h e y t a k e t h e i r name. T h e s e Guns a r e h e a r d m o s t f r e q u e n t l y f r o m F e b r u a r y t o O c t o b e r , and s e l d o m in N o v e m b e r , D e c e m b e r or January. One v e r y n o t i c a b l e f e a t u r e i s t h e i r a b s e n c e d u r i n g fine w e a t h e r , and they a r e o n l y h e a r d just b e f o r e , d u r i n g , o r i m m e d i a t e l y after heavy rain. T h e d i r e c t i o n f r o m w h i c h they a r e h e a r d i s c o n s t a n t , and that i s the south o r south e a s t . I h a v e h e a r d t h e m w e s t o f m e w h e n d o w n i n the e x t r e m e south o f the d i s t r i c t , but n e v e r n o r t h o f m e . I h a v e b e e n t o l d b y c a p t a i n s o f r i v e r - g o i n g

Gl-208

STRANGE DETONATIONS

GSD-004

s t e a m e r s that t h e y h a v e h e a r d t h e s e r e p o r t s t o t h e i r north. These gentlemen, h o w e v e r , p l y a l o n g w a t e r s outside the r a n g e o f m y o b s e r v a t i o n s , w h i c h l i e o n the mainland and i t s adjacent w a t e r s . T h e s e Guns a r e a l w a y s h e a r d i n t r i p l e t s , i . e . t h r e e guns a r e a l w a y s h e a r d , one a f t e r the o t h e r , at r e g u l a r i n t e r v a l s , and though s e v e r a l guns m a y be h e a r d the n u m b e r i s a l w a y s t h r e e o r a m u l t i p l e o f t h r e e . T h e n the i n t e r v a l b e t w e e n the t h r e e i s a l w a y s constant, i . e . the i n t e r v a l b e t w e e n the f i r s t and the second i s the s a m e as the i n t e r v a l b e t w e e n the s e c o n d and the t h i r d , and this i n t e r v a l is u s u a l l y t h r e e s e c o n d s , though I h a v e t i m e d i t u p t o t e n s e c o n d s . T h e i n t e r v a l , h o w e v e r , b e t w e e n the t r i p l e t s v a r i e s l a r g e l y , f r o m a f e w s e c o n d s u p t o h o u r s and days. S o m e t i m e s only one s e r i e s o f t r i p l e t s i s h e a r d i n a d a y ; a t o t h e r s , the t r i p l e t s f o l l o w with g r e a t r e g u l a r i t y , and I h a v e counted as many as f o r t y - f i v e of t h e m , one a f t e r the o t h e r , without p a u s e . T h e r e p o r t i s e x a c t l y l i k e the f i r i n g o f b i g guns h e a r d f r o m a d i s t a n c e w i t h this p e c u l i a r d i f f e r e n c e , the r e p o r t i s a l w a y s d o u b l e , i . e . the r e p o r t h a s (as i t w e r e ) a n echo T h e r e p o r t v a r i e s l i t t l e in i n t e n s i t y , and I cannot r e c o l l e c t that t h e r e w a s much d i f f e r e n c e in the sound, w h e t h e r h e a r d at B a r i s a l i t s e l f or s o m e 70 or 80 m i l e s to the south at the e x t r e m e end of the d i s t r i c t . T h e state of the a t m o s p h e r e m a y affect i t , but to no a p p r e c i a b l e e x t e n t . The following two paragraphs are from Schurr's letter of transmittal to Nature. I t i s w e l l known t o all n a v i g a t o r s o f t h e s e w a t e r s t h e r e i s a p e c u l i a r l y d e e p d e p r e s s i o n t o the south o f the delta, w h i c h e i t h e r has n e v e r b e e n sounded, o r , i f sounded, h a s shown a m o s t unaccountable depth, and it is a s s u m e d that t h e s e r e p o r t s e m a n a t e f r o m this d e p r e s s i o n . But I am not i n c l i n e d to a c c e p t this as a sufficient e x p l a n a t i o n , a s the sounds a r e s o v e r y i r r e g u l a r i n t h e i r f r e q u e n c y T h e r e a r e t w o s p e c i a l o c c a s i o n s t o w h i c h I would d r a w attention: the f i r s t i n F e b r u a r y , 1891, when f r o m the southernmost outpost, Chaltabuni, I f o l l o w e d the r e p o r t s f o r s o m e f o r t y m i l e s out t o s e a ; the s e c o n d , mentioned i n m y l e t t e r t o the S u r v e y o r - G e n e r a l of B e n g a l , when, in August, 1894, f o r m o r e than s i x hours, I f o l l o w e d the r e p o r t s without g e t t i n g any a p p r e c i a b l y n e a r e r , and a l s o n e v e r h e a r i n g t h e m t o the north o f m e . T h e t r i p l e t f e a t u r e o f the B a r i s a l Guns r e p o r t e d b y S c h u r r i s m o s t i n t r i g u i n g , but i t i s not c o n f i r m e d i n S c o t t ' s account ( G S D - O U ) . N e v e r t h e l e s s , t r i p l e t s o f s t r a n g e d e t o n a t i o n s s e e m r a t h e r c o m m o n all o v e r the g l o b e , a s r e p o r t s i n t h i s s e c t i o n w i l l confirm. T h i s r e g u l a r i t y and the e c h o s t r u c t u r e noted b y Schurr s e e m t o p r e c l u d e a seismic origin. T h e apparent s e a s o n a l nature and c o r r e l a t i o n o f the B a r i s a l Guns with s t o r m s a r e also curious. T h e l a t t e r o b s e r v a t i o n would s e e m t o s e p a r a t e the Guns f r o m the m i s t p o u f f e r s , w h i c h a r e p r i m a r i l y f a i r - w e a t h e r phenomena. W a v e a c t i o n s e e m s r u l e d out as a s o u r c e , t o o , b e c a u s e Schurr f o l l o w e d the Guns f o r t y m i l e s out into the B a y o f B e n g a l .

GSD-004

THE BARISAL GUNS AND SIMILAR SOUNDS

G o d w i n - A u s t e n , H. H. ; N a t u r e , 53:247-248, January 16, 1896. T h e q u e s t i o n , I think, a r i s e s , A r e w e not d e a l i n g , i n I n d i a a t l e a s t , w i t h

Gl-209

GSD-004

STRANGE DETONATIONS

t w o v e r y d i f f e r e n t p h e n o m e n a ? A r e t h e s e sounds l i k e that o f h e a v y o r d n a n c e , w h i c h a r e h e a r d o c c a s i o n a l l y a t the b a s e o f the E a s t e r n H i m a l a y a s and the G a r o and K h a s i H i l l R a n g e , the s a m e a s t h o s e l o n g e r k n o w n and m o r e f a m i l i a r a s the " B a r i s a l G u n s ? " M r . S c o t t ' s d e s c r i p t i o n o f the sounds h e h e a r d w h e n o n b o a r d t h e s t e a m e r m o o r e d i n the n a r r o w c h a n n e l s n e a r the s e a , a r e r e m a r k a bly like w a v e action. He says: "Sometimes a single report, at others two, t h r e e o r m o r e i n s u c c e s s i o n , n e v e r n e a r , a l w a y s d i s t a n t , but not e q u a l l y d i s tant. S o m e t i m e s t h e r e p o r t s w o u l d r e s e m b l e cannon f r o m t w o r a t h e r w i d e l y s e p a r a t e d o p p o s i n g f o r c e s , a t o t h e r s f r o m d i f f e r e n t d i r e c t i o n s but a p p a r e n t l y a l w a y s f r o m t h e s o u t h w a r d , that i s , s e a w a r d . " T h i s i s p r e c i s e l y what o n e w o u l d h e a r o n a s t i l l night, w h e n a n o c e a n s w e l l w a s c o m i n g u p t h e B a y o f B e n g a l and b r e a k i n g a l l a l o n g a l o w s h o r e w i t h a n undulating o u t l i n e s t r e t c h i n g m a n y m i l e s e a s t and w e s t . R e g a r d i n g the d i s t a n t b o o m i n g r e p o r t s , that a r e h e a r d f u r t h e r i n l a n d , I w a s , I think, o n e o f the f i r s t t o n o t i c e and put t h e m o n r e c o r d . I n the P r o c e e d i n g s o f o f the A s i a t i c S o c i e t y o f B e n g a l , M a r c h 1869, v i d e " N o t e s f r o m A s a l o o , N o r t h C a c h a r , o n t h e G r e a t E a r t h q u a k e o f J a n u a r y 10, 1869, " a f t e r g i v i n g s o m e d e t a i l s of t h e d a i l y s h o c k s that w e r e r e c o r d e d up to t h e 17th of that m o n t h , I find the f o l l o w i n g o n p . 98. " V e r y n o t e w o r t h y i s t h e d i s t a n t r e p o r t o f a h e a v y gun o n J a n u a r y 19, h e a r d t o w a r d s t h e w e s t a t l h , 4 9 m . 1 9 s . p . m . ( I w a s s i t t i n g a t w o r k a t a t a b l e o u t s i d e the o f f i c e t e n t ) ; the t i m e I t o o k i m m e d i a t e l y b y c h r o n o m e t e r , as I fully e x p e c t e d a shock to f o l l o w . A n o t h e r v e r y loud e x p l o s i o n w a s h e a r d f r o m M a h a d e o P e a k a t m i d n i g h t o f the 29th, and a g a i n f r o m the s a m e p e a k at 7 a . m . t h e next m o r n i n g , the 30th; but no s h o c k c a m e a f t e r , on e i t h e r occasion. " T h e s e s u b t e r r a n e a n e x p l o s i o n s m u s t b e h e a r d o v e r l a r g e a r e a s , and i t would be i n t e r e s t i n g if they could be noticed, or r a t h e r if those hearing them w o u l d m a k e t h e m a t t e r p u b l i c ; I h a v e n o doubt t h e r e a r e m a n y i n d i v i d u a l s w h o w i l l r e m e m b e r h a v i n g h e a r d such sounds. " T h e r e p o r t s l i k e b i g g u n s , " t o p c h a l t a , " a s t h e n a t i v e s e x p r e s s e d the sound, h e a r d a t A s a l o o i n J a n u a r y , during a p e r i o d of g r e a t s e i s m i c activity, w e r e , I consider, intimately conn e c t e d w i t h i t ; and that the s i m i l a r r e p o r t s , s o l i t a r y i n s t a n c e s not c o n t i n u o u s , h e a r d i n t h e p r e v i o u s y e a r a t d i f f e r e n t p l a c e s i n the s a m e r a n g e , w e r e a l s o o f a subterranean nature. S e i s m i c sounds a r e not a l w a y s a c c o m p a n i e d b y a d i s t u r b a n c e o f t h e e a r t h c o n v e y e d t o t h e s e n s e s . I find i n m y j o u r n a l the f o l l o w ing: " N o n g t u n g , i n J a i n t i a H i l l s , D e c e m b e r 2 1 , 1887. " " W h i l e s e a t e d a t d i n n e r , a c u r i o u s r u m b l i n g sound w a s h e a r d i n t h e w e s t . M r . O g l e i m m e d i a t e l y s a i d , 'that i s the r u m b l e o f a n e a r t h q u a k e , ' and w e w a i t e d with intense expectation f o r s e v e r a l seconds f o r the shock, I with my w a t c h out r e a d y t o t a k e i t s d u r a t i o n ; but i t n e v e r c a m e . W e then thought i t m i g h t h a v e b e e n a h e r d o f e l e p h a n t s c o m i n g u p t h e r i d g e , and, d i s t u r b e d b y o u r c a m p f i r e s , had r u s h e d off t h r o u g h the j u n g l e ; but o n g o i n g into J a w a i o n C h r i s t m a s D a y , w e l e a r n t that a s h o c k had b e e n f e l t t h e r e o n the s a m e d a t e and t i m e , and that i t a p p a r e n t l y c a m e f r o m the w e s t . " T h e b e s t - d e f i n e d u n a c c o u n t a b l e sound o c c u r r e d w h e n I w a s s u r v e y i n g the Bhutan D o o a r s i n t h e s p r i n g o f 1865. I h a v e s o m e r e m e m b r a n c e o f putting i t o n r e c o r d a t the t i m e , p e r h a p s i n m y annual r e p o r t . I w a s standing a t the p l a n e - t a b l e i n the f o r e s t t w e l v e m i l e s s o u t h - w e s t o f B u x a , when the r e p o r t o f a h e a v y gun w a s h e a r d i n t h e d i r e c t i o n o f t h e m o u n t a i n s , c l e a r and d i s t i n c t , y e t a l o n g w a y off, f o l l o w e d c l o s e l y and a t i r r e g u l a r i n t e r v a l s b y t w o o t h e r discharges.

Gl-210

STRANGE DETONATIONS
GSD-005
Fort, 1941.

GSD-007

[UNEXPLAINED DETONATIONS IN ENGLAND]

C h a r l e s ; T h e B o o k s o f C h a r l e s F o r t , H e n r y H o l t and C o m p a n y , N e w Y o r k ,

I n the L o n d o n T i m e s , N o v . 9 , 1858, a c o r r e s p o n d e n t w r i t e s that, i n C a r d i g a n s h i r e , W a l e s , h e h a d , i n t h e autumn o f 1855, o f t e n h e a r d sounds l i k e the d i s c h a r g e s o f h e a v y a r t i l l e r y , t w o o r t h r e e r e p o r t s r a p i d l y , and then a n i n t e r v a l o f p e r h a p s 2 0 m i n u t e s , a l s o w i t h l o n g i n t e r v a l s , s o m e t i m e s o f d a y s and s o m e t i m e s o f w e e k s , c o n t i n u i n g t h r o u g h o u t the w i n t e r o f 1855-56. U p o n the 3 r d o f N o v e m b e r , 1858, h e h a d h e a r d the sounds a g a i n , r e p e a t e d l y , and l o u d e r than t h e y had b e e n t h r e e y e a r s b e f o r e . I n t h e T i m e s , N o v e m b e r 12, s o m e o n e e l s e s a y s that, a t D o l g e l l y , h e , t o o , had h e a r d the " m y s t e r i o u s p h e n o m e n o n , " o n the 3 r d o f N o v e m ber. S o m e o n e e l s e — t h a t , upon O c t o b e r 13, h e had h e a r d the sounds a t S w a n s e a . " T h e r e p o r t s , a s i f o f h e a v y a r t i l l e r y , c a m e f r o m the w e s t , s u c c e e d i n g e a c h o t h e r a t a p p a r e n t l y r e g u l a r i n t e r v a l s , d u r i n g t h e g r e a t e r p a r t o f the a f t e r n o o n o f that d a y . M y i m p r e s s i o n w a s that the sounds m i g h t h a v e p r o c e e d e d f r o m p r a c t i c i n g a t M i l f o r d , but I a s c e r t a i n e d , the f o l l o w i n g d a y , that t h e r e had b e e n n o f i r i n g o f any kind t h e r e ( p . 507)

GSD-006

COMMENTS ON ROCK BURSTS, OUTBURSTS, AND EARTHQUAKE PREDICTION

O s t e r w a l d , Frank W. ; S e i s m o l o g i c a l Society of A m e r i c a n , Bulletin, 60:2083-2085, D e c e m b e r 1970. C o m p i l e r ' s S u m m a r y : Undoubtedly many m y s t e r i o u s detonations h a v e s e i s m i c o r i g i n s , p a r t i c u l a r l y t h e M o o d u s Sounds and the e x p l o s i o n s h e a r d s o f r e q u e n t l y a t C o m r i e , Scotland. This paper gives a physical basis for seismic origins; namely " r o c k b u r s t s . " A r o c k b u r s t i s d e f i n e d a s " a sudden and o f t e n v i o l e n t f a i l u r e o f m a s s e s o f r o c k i n q u a r r i e s , t u n n e l s , and m i n e s . " Powerful internal s t r e s s e s cause the e x p l o s i v e f a i l u r e o f the r o c k , w h i c h m a y b e a c c o m p a n i e d b y " s h o c k s , r o c k f a l l s , and a i r c o n c u s s i o n s . " T h e l i k e l i h o o d o f e x p l o s i v e f a i l u r e i s , o f c o u r s e , i n c r e a s e d w h e n m i n i n g o p e r a t i o n s r e m o v e r o c k that w a s p r e v i o u s l y h e l p i n g t o c o n t a i n the stresses. In mining a r e a s , r o c k bursts a r e also c a l l e d outbursts, bumps, p i l l a r b u r s t s , p o u n c e s , and o t h e r such d e s c r i p t i v e n a m e s .

GSD-007

ON EARTHQUAKE-SOUNDS
5:49:31-70, 1900.

Davison, Charles; Philosophical Magazine,

I n t h i s c l a s s i c p a p e r , D a v i s o n , a noted E n g l i s h s e i s m o l o g i s t , d e s c r i b e d the d e t o n a t i o n s and r u m b l i n g s h e a r d b y H u m b o l d t i n M e x i c o . See also GSD-032. L a s t l y , a v e r y r e m a r k a b l e s e r i o u s o f e a r t h - s o u n d s i s that d e s c r i b e d b y H u m b o l d t a s the s u b t e r r a n e a n thunder o f G u a n e x u a t o , a c i t y o n t h e M e x i c a n p l a t e a u f a r r e m o v e d f r o m any a c t i v e v o l c a n o . " T h e n o i s e , " h e s a y s , " b e g a n about m i d night on the 9th of J a n u a r y , 1784, and c o n t i n u e d f o r a month F r o m the 13th to the 16th o f J a n u a r y , i t s e e m e d t o the i n h a b i t a n t s a s i f h e a v y c l o u d s l a y b e n e a t h t h e i r f e e t , f r o m w h i c h i s s u e d a l t e r n a t e s l o w r o l l i n g sounds and s h o r t q u i c k c l a p s

Gl-211

GSD-008

STRANGE DETONATIONS

of thunder. The noise a b a t e d a s g r a d u a l l y a s i t had b e g u n . I t w a s l i m i t e d t o a s m a l l s p a c e and w a s n o t h e a r d i n a b a s a l t i c d i s t r i c t a t a d i s t a n c e o f a f e w m i l e s . " N e i t h e r t h e s u r f a c e o f t h e e a r t h , n o r i n m i n e s 1600 f e e t i n d e p t h w a s t h e s l i g h t e s t s h o c k t o b e e x p e r i e n c e d . N o s i m i l a r n o i s e had e v e r b e f o r e b e e n h e a r d o n t h e e l e v a t e d table-land of M e x i c o , nor has this t e r r i f i c phenomenon since o c c u r r e d there. T h e quotations above w e r e probably extracted f r o m H u m b o l d t ' s t r e a t i s e C o s m o s .

1 1

GSD-008

NOTES ON R E M A R K A B L E EARTHQUAKE SOUNDS IN HAITI

S c h e r e r , J . ; S e i s m o l o g i c a l S o c i e t y o f A m e r i c a , B u l l e t i n , 2 : 2 3 0 - 2 3 2 , 1912. T h e sounds a r e d e s c r i b e d v a r i o u s l y as r e s e m b l i n g the n o i s e of a " h e a v y w a g o n p a s s i n g o v e r p a v e m e n t , o f thunder r o l l i n g i n the d i s t a n c e , o f d y n a m i t e e x p l o d i n g o r o f c a n n o n b e i n g f i r e d off, o f w a t e r f a l l i n g o n d r y l e a v e s , o f t h e w i n d b l o w i n g through high forest, t r e e s in a t e m p e s t . Y e t all t h e s e d i f f e r e n t sounds m a y b e h e a r d w i t h o u t any a p p e a r a n c e o f s t o r m . " T h e r e g i o n w h e r e the g o u f f r e a p p e a r s t o b e m o s t c o m m o n l y h e a r d i s the range of La S e l l e , which is of T e r t i a r y l i m e s t o n e , l i e s in an east to west direction, and h a s a m e a n a l t i t u d e o f 2200 m e t e r s . T h e r e g i o n i s v e r y u n s t a b l e , and t h e mountains g i v e much e v i d e n c e of past volcanic activity On the north the r a n g e is b o r d e r e d by a s t e e p c l i f f along the l i n e of d i s l o c a t i o n c a u s e d by the s u b s i d e n c e o f the n o r t h e r n p l a i n . T h i s d i s p l a c e m e n t i s b e l i e v e d t o b e constant though s l o w and i m p e r c e p t i b l e , and t h e n o i s e s m a y b e c a u s e d b y t h e s e a d j u s t m e n t s o r b r a d y seisms. T h e sounds a r e apparently the s a m e a s t h o s e a c c o m p a n y i n g n o t i c a b l e e a r t h q u a k e s , and t h e p e o p l e o f H a i t i a p p l y t h e n a m e g o u f f r e t o b o t h T h e v i c a r a t C r o i x - d e s - B o u q u e t s , ten t o fifteen m i l e s north o f the r a n g e o f L a S e l l e , g i v e s a v e r y i n t e r e s t i n g a c c o u n t : " F r o m N o v e m b e r 7 t o 13, 1911, t h e s o u n d o f the g o u f f r e w a s h e a r d e v e r y d a y , but i t w a s v e r y d i f f e r e n t a t night f r o m w h a t i t w a s i n the d a y t i m e . D u r i n g t h e d a y t h e sound w a s h e a r d f r o m t h e s o u t h e a s t , and s e e m e d to c o m e f r o m a g r e a t depth. I t w a s l i k e a d e e p r o a r i n g , and t h e n a t t i m e s l i k e the h o w l i n g o f a d o g . F r o m t i m e to t i m e it stopped with a h o l l o w b o o m , which might be taken f o r a distant cannon-shot. A c c o r d i n g to the inhabitants the n o i s e s w e r e s i m p l y w a r n i n g s o f earthquakes o r o f s o m e other d i s a s t e r ; s o m e t i m e s they w e r e thought t o b e c o n n e c t e d w i t h the w e a t h e r . I t w a s f r e q u e n t l y said that t h e g o u f f r e h a d not b e e n h e a r d s o d i s t i n c t l y f o r a l o n g t i m e , n o r i n a m a n n e r s o p r o l o n g e d and p e r s i s t e n t , a s d u r i n g t h e t h r e e w e e k s t h a t h a d j u s t p a s s e d . During the n i g h t i t w a s d i f f e r e n t , a l t h o u g h the sound c a m e f r o m t h e s a m e d i r e c t i o n : t h e r e w a s a p e r f e c t t u m u l t ; r u m b l i n g o f t h u n d e r , h o w l i n g , and a sound l i k e t h e r u s h i n g of a strong wind. T h e r e was no wind, h o w e v e r . S o m e t i m e s one h e a r d all the noises at once. G e n e r a l l y , and a b o v e a l l f r o m s e v e n t o t e n o ' c l o c k a t n i g h t , t h e s o u n d e n d e d w i t h a l o u d d e t o n a t i o n m u c h s t r o n g e r than i n the d a y , f o l l o w e d b y a long echo. T h e n a g a i n w o u l d b e h e a r d a n o u t b u r s t t h a t c a n not b e i m a g i n e d . It w a s a s i f a m o u n t a i n o f g l a s s w e r e s h a t t e r e d , and t h e n o i s e s e e m e d e c h o e d i n all d i r e c t i o n s . At t i m e s it s e e m e d as if one could h e a r the r o a r of surf or e v e n t h e d e a d thud o f o b j e c t s f a l l i n g , s u c h a s b l o c k s o f s t o n e s r o l l i n g d o w n p r e c i p i c e s . D u r i n g the night t h e r e w a s s o m e t h i n g v e r y s i n i s t e r i n t h e s e p h e n o m e n a . T h e s a m e t h i n g s w e r e o b s e r v e d a t G r a n d - B o i s and P o s t - G o b e r t i n t h e d i s t r i c t o f M i r e b a l a i s " I t a l s o a p p e a r s f r o m t h i s c o r r e s p o n d e n c e that t h e g o u f f r e i s h e a r d i n t h e n o r t h w e s t e r n p a r t o f t h e i s l a n d a t P o r t - d e - P a i x and a t L i m o n a d e , f o r i n s t a n c e . At

Gl-212

STRANGE DETONATIONS

GSD-010

P o r t - d e - P a i x t h e sounds s e e m t o c o m e f r o m s o m e p l a c e i n the St. N i c o l a s m o u n t ains, and a t L i m o n a d e t h e y c o m e f r o m M o n t e C h r i s t i , t o t h e e a s t . At the l a t t e r p l a c e s , h o w e v e r , t h e p h e n o m e n a o f t h e g o u f f r e s e e m m u c h l e s s c o n s i d e r a b l e than i n the r a n g e o f L a S e l l e .

GSD-009

[THE MELIDA DETONATIONS]

F o r t , C h a r l e s ; T h e B o o k s o f C h a r l e s F o r t , H e n r y H o l t and C o m p a n y , N e w Y o r k , 1941, p . 3 9 4 . M e l i d a ( s o m e t i m e s s p e l l e d M e l e d a ) , l i k e C o m r i e , Scotland, has b e e n a focal point for l o n g outbreaks of cannonading, all s e e m i n g l y of a s e i s m i c o r i g i n . Fort picked u p the f o l l o w i n g d e s c r i p t i o n f r o m the Q u a r t e r l y J o u r n a l o f the R o y a l I n s t i t u t e , 20:417. T h a t , e a r l y i n the m o r n i n g o f M a r c h 20, 1822, d e t o n a t i o n s w e r e h e a r d a t M e l i d a , a n i s l a n d i n the A d r i a t i c . A l l d a y , a t i n t e r v a l s , the sounds w e r e h e a r d T h e y w e r e l i k e c a n n o n a d i n g , and i t w a s s u p p o s e d that they c a m e f r o m a vessel, or from Turkish artillery, practicing in some frontier v i l l a g e . For t h i r t y d a y s the d e t o n a t i o n s c o n t i n u e d , s o m e t i m e s t h i r t y o r f o r t y , s o m e t i m e s s e v e r a l hundred, a day.

GSD-010

SUBTERRANEAN SOUNDS HEARD IN THE WEST INDIES

T e m p l e t o n , E . C . ; S e i s m o l o g i c a l S o c i e t y o f A m e r i c a , B u l l e t i n , 5:171-173, 1915. I n the B u l l e t i n S e m e s t r i e l d e L ' O b s e r v a t o i r e M e t e o r o l o g i q u e S e m i n a i r e c o l l e g e St. M a r t i a l , P o r t - a u - P r i n c e , H a i t i , J a n u a r y - J u n e 1914, a r e s o m e i n t e r e s t i n g n o t e s c o n c e r n i n g the r u m b l i n g sound, p o p u l a r l y k n o w n a s the " g o u f f r e , " w h i c h i s h e a r d f r e q u e n t l y i n the W e s t I n d i e s . T h e r e appears to be a d i f f e r e n c e o f o p i n i o n a s t o i t s c a u s e , s o m e c l a i m i n g that the sound i s r e l a t e d to seismic disturbances. M r . M a x w e l l Hall, British g o v e r n m e n t m e t e o r o l o g i s t at Jamaica is authori t y f o r the f o l l o w i n g : I n 1835, a t the t i m e o f the e r u p t i o n o f C o s e g u i n a ( a v o l c a n o o n the w e s t coast of N i c a r a g u a ) , n o i s e s l i k e those of a cannonade w e r e heard at J a m a i c a , 700 E n g l i s h m i l e s a w a y . A t the b e g i n n i n g o f J a n u a r y 1907, b e f o r e the g r e a t e a r t h q u a k e o f J a n u a r y 14th o f that y e a r , s i m i l a r n o i s e s w e r e h e a r d a t M a n d e v i l l e and i n o t h e r p a r t s o f the p a r i s h o f M a n c h e s t e r , and a t c e r t a i n p l a c e s i n the p a r i s h o f St. E l i z a b e t h . They w e r e h e a r d s e v e r a l t i m e s a t the s a m e p l a c e s , and w e r e m i s t a k e n f o r n o i s e s o f distant t h u n d e r i n g o r o f the f i r i n g o f l a r g e c a l i b e r cannon. A t 8:30 a . m . , D e c e m b e r 3 , 1907, d i s t i n c t r u m b l i n g s w e r e h e a r d a t K i n g s Valley, Westmoreland. T h e y s e e m e d to c o m e f r o m a chain of high mountains t o the n o r t h . N o shock w a s f e l t . N o i s e s l i k e the sound o f e n o r m o u s w a v e s o n t h e s h o r e w e r e h e a r d a t K i n g s V a l l e y , W e s t m o r e l a n d , a t 1 0 p . m . , J a n u a r y 15, 1908. T h e y c a m e f r o m the n o r t h , and l a s t e d t h i r t y o r f o r t y m i n u t e s .

Gl-213

GSD-011

STRANGE DETONATIONS

F a t h e r J . B . J u l i o , c u r a t e a t P i l a t e , s t a t e s that: A h o l l o w sound a s o f d i s t a n t t h u n d e r w a s h e a r d f r o m t i m e t o t i m e o n t h e h e i g h t s o f P i l a t e b e t w e e n 4:00 and 9:00 a . m . o n J u l y 15th. T h e w e a t h e r was c a l m and f a v o r a b l e t o t h e d i s t i n c t p e r c e p t i o n o f t h i s n o i s e . T o the o b s e r v a n t this i s m e r e l y the sound o f w a v e s w h i c h , rushing into the c a v e r n s o f the s e a o f B o r g n e , p r o d u c e the " g o u f f r e " a noise which is echoed f r o m mountain to mountain. But t h e p e o p l e o f B o r g n e m a i n t a i n that i t i s p r o d u c e d i n the s e a b y m i l l i o n s of little fishes. N o t e s f r o m Canon L . M . C a z e a t Ganthier, Fonds- V e r r e t t e , d e s c r i b e : C e r t a i n gaping pits o f g r e a t depth near F o n d s - V e r r e t t e , B o i s T o m b e and R a v i n e C o n t r e e f r o m which s t r a n g e sounds, a s though p r o d u c e d b y e x p l o s i o n s , e s c a p e p e r i o d i c a l l y a t t h e a p p r o a c h o f t h e r a i n y s e a s o n o f t h e y e a r , and s o m e t i m e s a l s o during the d r y season when s t r o n g winds a r e b l o w i n g . The explosions a r e said t o b e f o l l o w e d b y the e s c a p e o f g r e a t j e t s o f w h i t e v a p o r f r o m the pits and t o b e a c c o m p a n i e d b y a v i o l e n t t r e m b l i n g o f t h e g r o u n d w i t h i n a r a d i u s o f 500 o r 600 m e t e r s . T h e r e is evidently s o m e superstition connected with these p i t s , s i n c e i t i s c l a i m e d that o b j e c t s c a s t i n t o t h e p i t o n e d a y h a v e b e e n found on the f o l l o w i n g day l y i n g on the ground n e a r the p i t ' s mouth.

GSD-011

B A R I S A L GUNS
53:197, J a n u a r y 2 , 1896.

Scott, G . B . ; N a t u r e ,

I f i r s t h e a r d t h e B a r i s a l G u n s i n D e c e m b e r 1871, o n m y w a y t o A s s a m f r o m C a l c u t t a t h r o u g h the S u n d e r b a n s . T h e w e a t h e r w a s c l e a r and c a l m , n o s i g n o f any s t o r m s . A l l day the n o i s e s o n b o a r d the s t e a m e r p r e v e n t e d o t h e r sounds f r o m b e i n g h e a r d ; but w h e n a l l w a s s i l e n t a t n i g h t , and w e w e r e m o o r e d i n o n e o r t h e o t h e r o f the n a r r o w c h a n n e l s i n t h e n e i g h b o r h o o d o f B a r i s a l , M o r e l g u n g e and u p w a r d s , f a r f r o m any v i l l a g e s o r o t h e r h a b i t a t i o n s , w i t h m i l e s and m i l e s o f l o n g g r a s s j u n g l e o n e v e r y s i d e , the only sounds the l a p o f w a t e r o r the splash o f e a r t h , f a l l i n g into the w a t e r a l o n g the banks, then at i n t e r v a l s , i r r e g u l a r l y , w o u l d be h e a r d the dull muffled b o o m as of distant cannon. S o m e t i m e s a single r e p o r t , at o t h e r s t w o , t h r e e , o r m o r e i n s u c c e s s i o n ; n e v e r n e a r , a l w a y s d i s t a n t , but not always equally distant. S o m e t i m e s the r e p o r t s would r e s e m b l e cannon f r o m t w o r a t h e r w i d e l y s e p a r a t e d o p p o s i n g f o r c e s , a t o t h e r s f r o m d i f f e r e n t d i r e c t i o n s but a p p a r e n t l y a l w a y s f r o m t h e s o u t h w a r d , that i s s e a w a r d . W e w e r e not v e r y f a r f r o m t h e s e a w h e n I f i r s t h e a r d t h e m , and o n m e n t i o n i n g t o a n o l d l a d y o n b o a r d that I h e a r d d i s t a n t c a n n o n , s h e f i r s t t o l d m e o f t h e m y s t e r i o u s s o u n d s k n o w n a s the " B a r i s a l Guns. " I s p e c i a l l y r e m e m b e r spending a quiet Sunday, in the month of M a y , with a f r i e n d a t C h i l m a r i , n e a r the r i v e r - b a n k . W e had b o t h r e m a r k e d t h e r e p o r t s t h e n i g h t b e f o r e and w h e n n e a r t h e h i l l s p r e v i o u s l y . About 10 a. m. in the day, w e a t h e r c l e a r and c a l m , w e w e r e w a l k i n g q u i e t l y u p and d o w n n e a r t h e r i v e r b a n k , d i s c u s s i n g t h e s o u n d s , w h e n w e h e a r d t h e b o o m i n g d i s t i n c t l y , about a s l o u d a s h e a v y c a n n o n w o u l d sound o n a q u i e t d a y a b o u t t e n m i l e s off, d o w n the r i v e r . Shortly a f t e r w e h e a r d a h e a v y b o o m v e r y much n e a r e r , still south. Suddenly we h e a r d t w o q u i c k s u c c e s s i v e r e p o r t s , m o r e l i k e h o r s e - p i s t o l o r m u s k e t (not r i f l e ) shots c l o s e b y . I t h o u g h t t h e y s o u n d e d i n t h e a i r a b o u t 150 y a r d s d u e w e s t o f u s o v e r the w a t e r . M y f r i e n d thought t h e y s o u n d e d n o r t h o f u s . W e r a n t o the bank, and a s k e d o u r b o a t m e n , m o o r e d b e l o w , i f t h e y h e a r d t h e m , and i f s o i n w h a t direction. T h e y p o i n t e d south!

Gl-214

STRANGE DETONATIONS

GSD-013

T h e y e a r p r e v i o u s I had d i s c u s s e d t h e sounds w i t h C a p t a i n S t e w a r t , o f t h e S u r v e y o f I n d i a D e p a r t m e n t , w h o had s o m e y e a r s p r e v i o u s l y b e e n e m p l o y e d o n t h e S u r v e y o f t h e Sunderbans t r a c t s . H e said the r e p o r t s w e r e h e a r d all o v e r the S u n d e r b a n s ; that s e v e r a l e x p e r t s had f a i l e d t o a c c o u n t f o r t h e m . H e o n c e had a t h e o r y that t h e y w e r e c a u s e d b y s u b m a r i n e e r u p t i o n s i n the B a y o f B e n g a l ; but t h i s w o u l d h a r d l y a c c o u n t f o r t h e m 300 m i l e s d i s t a n t , and I b e l i e v e they a r e n e v e r h e a r d out a t s e a i n the b a y . Scott m a d e the a b o v e o b s e r v a t i o n s w h i l e s e r v i n g on the Indian S u r v e y . He c o n t r a d i c t s S c h u r r ( G S D - 0 0 3 ) o n t h r e e a c c o u n t s : (1) h e c l a i m s t h e Guns a r e h e a r d i n c l e a r , c a l m w e a t h e r ( l i k e t h e m i s t p o u f f e r s ) ; (2) h e s t a t e s that t h e Guns a r e not a l w a y s t r i p l e t s ; and (3) h e h a d n e v e r h e a r d o f t h e m b e i n g h e a r d out o n t h e B a y o f B e n g a l .

GSD-012

CURIOUS AERIAL OR SUBTERRANEAN SOUNDS

V a n d e n B r o e c k , E r n e s t ; N a t u r e , 53:30, N o v e m b e r 14, 1895. V a n d e n B r o e c k n o t e s b e l o w that t h e m i s t p o u f f e r s m u s t not b e c o n s i d e r e d m e r e l y a local phenomenon. S t r a n g e d e t o n a t i o n s a r e h e a r d w o r l d w i d e , and many o f t h e m appear to be associated with w a t e r . T h i s y e a r t h e m y s t e r i o u s d e t o n a t i o n s w e r e h e a r d u p t o the end o f S e p t e m b e r , and e v e n u p t o t h e b e g i n n i n g o f O c t o b e r , not o n l y b y m e but b y s e v e r a l o f m y f r i e n d s and c o r r e s p o n d e n t s ; t h i s i s m u c h l a t e r i n the y e a r than usual. Now g r e a t and unusual h e a t p r e v a i l e d t h i s y e a r d u r i n g the w h o l e autumn, and t h i s c o i n c i d e n c e a f f o r d s a s t r o n g support t o the t h e o r y o f a n o r i g i n a r i s i n g f r o m c e r tain conditions of r i s e of t e m p e r a t u r e . S a i l o r s o f t h e p o r t o f O s t e n d a s s e r t that " M i s t p o u f f e r s " p r e v a i l o v e r t h e w h o l e o f t h e N o r t h Sea a s f a r a s I c e l a n d , and t h e y c o n s i d e r t h e m t o b e a s i g n o f f i n e w e a t h e r , w i t h c a l m s and h e a t .

GSD-013

[RETURN OF THE MOODUS SOUNDS]

A n o n y m o u s ; T h e F o r t e a n S o c i e t y M a g a z i n e , 1:7, O c t o b e r 1941. T h e f o l l o w i n g w a s a s c r i b e d t o the B u f f a l o E v e n i n g N e w s o f M a r c h 2 , 1940. The mysterious "Moodus noises" have returned. At irregular intervals s i n c e c o l o n i a l d a y s , t h i s r e g i o n [ C o n n e c t i c u t ] h a s b e e n shaken b y s h a r p e a r t h s h o c k s and dull b o o m i n g sounds h a v e e c h o e d t h r o u g h o u t the c o u n t r y s i d e . No one h a s b e e n a b l e t o e x p l a i n t h e m and e v e n t h e I n d i a n s w e r e m y s t i f i e d . T h e y thought the p l a c e s o p e c u l i a r , t h e y g a v e i t i t s n a m e m e a n i n g "the p l a c e of s t r a n g e n o i s e s . " Shortly b e f o r e midnight the n o i s e s c a m e back. Loud r u m b l i n g s w e r e h e a r d and h o u s e s t r e m b l e d . T o w n s p e o p l e w e r e a w a k e n e d . T h e r e was no damage. S c i e n t i s t s f o r y e a r s h a v e b e e n e n d e a v o r i n g t o e x p l a i n the c a u s e o f the n o i s e s which last w e r e h e a r d eight y e a r s a g o

Gl-215

GSD-014
GSD-014

STRANGE DETONATIONS

E A R T H Q U A K E IN CONNECTICUT
1:39:335-342, 1840.

Anonymous; A m e r i c a n Journal Of Science,

T h e famous M o o d u s Sounds s e e m t o h a v e o c c u r r e d a s l o n g a s w h i t e m e n h a v e l i v e d i n Connecticut—perhaps much l o n g e r . T h e i r n a t u r e p o i n t s t o a s e i s m i c o r i g i n ; but t h e historical trappings are curious. What we h a v e at our d i s p o s i t i o n shall be d e v o t e d to a s c e n e of l o c a l d i s t u r b a n c e i n C o n n e c t i c u t which has b e e n o b s e r v e d e v e r s i n c e the s e t t l e m e n t o f the country. T h e r e g i o n is around E a s t H a d d a m , on the Connecticut r i v e r , a f e w miles below Middletown. The following memorandum was by request c o m m u nicated t o the s e n i o r e d i t o r o f this Journal twenty f i v e y e a r s a g o , b y the l a t e R e v . H e n r y C h a p m a n , and i t h a s b e e n k e p t o n f i l e w i t h t h e e x p e c t a t i o n o f m a k i n g a n i n v e s t i g a t i o n o n t h e s p o t ; but, a s that w h i c h h a s b e e n s o l o n g d e l a y e d m a y n e v e r b e d o n e , w e a r e i n d u c e d t o g i v e t h e f r a g m e n t o n the p r e s e n t o c c a sion. "In a t t e m p t i n g to g i v e an account of the c i r c u m s t a n c e s attendant on s u b terranean noises, so frequently heard at East Haddam, perhaps it may be p r o p e r to mention the c o m m o n opinion r e s p e c t i n g t h e m . " E a s t H a d d a m w a s c a l l e d b y the n a t i v e s M o r e h e m o o d u s , o r p l a c e o f n o i s e s , and a n u m e r o u s t r i b e o f c a n n i b a l s r e s i d e d t h e r e . T h e y w e r e famous for w o r shipping the e v i l s p i r i t , to appease his w r a t h . T h e i r account of the o c c a s i o n o f t h e n o i s e s i s , 'that t h e I n d i a n g o d w a s a n g r y b e c a u s e t h e E n g l i s h g o d i n t r u d e d upon h i m , and t h o s e w e r e the e x p r e s s i o n s o f h i s d i s p l e a s u r e , ' Hence it has b e e n i m a g i n e d that t h e y o r i g i n a t e d a f t e r t h e a r r i v a l o f t h e E n g l i s h i n t h i s c o u n try. " A b o u t fifty y e a r s a g o , a E u r o p e a n by the n a m e of S t e e l e c a m e into the p l a c e and b o a r d e d i n t h e f a m i l y o f a M r . K n o w l t o n f o r a s h o r t p e r i o d . He w a s a m a n o f i n t e l l i g e n c e , and s u p p o s e d t o b e i n d i s g u i s e . He told M r . Knowlton i n c o n f i d e n c e , that h e had d i s c o v e r e d t h e p l a c e o f a f o s s i l w h i c h h e c a l l e d a c a r b u n c l e , and that h e s h o u l d b e a b l e t o p r o c u r e i t i n a f e w d a y s . Accordingly, he soon after brought h o m e a w h i t e round substance r e s e m b l i n g a stone in the l i g h t , but b e c a m e r e m a r k a b l y l u m i n o u s i n t h e d a r k . It w a s his p r a c t i c e to l a b o r a f t e r h i s m i n e r a l in the night s e a s o n . T h e night on which he p r o c u r e d it h e s e c r e t e d i t i n M r . K . ' s c e l l a r , which w a s without w i n d o w s , y e t its i l l u m i n a t i n g p o w e r w a s s o g r e a t that the h o u s e a p p e a r e d t o b e o n f i r e , and w a s s e e n at a g r e a t distance. T h e n e x t m o r n i n g h e e n c l o s e d i t i n s h e e t l e a d , and d e p a r t e d f o r E u r o p e , and h a s n e v e r s i n c e b e e n h e a r d o f . I t i s r u m o r e d that h e w a s m u r d e r e d on his w a y by the ship's c r e w . H e said that this substance w a s the cause of the n o i s e s that a c h a n g e o f t e m p e r a t u r e c o l l e c t s t h e m o i s t n e s s o f the a t m o s p h e r e , w h i c h c a u s e s an e x p l o s i o n . " T h e s e s h o c k s a r e g e n e r a l l y p e r c e i v e d i n t h e n e i g h b o r i n g t o w n s , and s o m e t i m e s at a g r e a t d i s t a n c e . T h e y b e g i n w i t h a t r e m b l i n g o f t h e e a r t h , and a r u m b l i n g n o i s e n e a r l y r e s e m b l i n g the d i s c h a r g e o f v e r y h e a v y cannon a t a d i s tance. S o m e t i m e s t h r e e o r f o u r f o l l o w e a c h o t h e r i n q u i c k s u c c e s s i o n , and i n this c a s e the f i r s t i s g e n e r a l l y the m o s t p o w e r f u l . " T h e p a r t i c u l a r p l a c e w h e r e t h e s e e x p l o s i o n s o r i g i n a t e , h a s not b e e n a s c e r tained. I t a p p e a r s t o b e n e a r the n o r t h w e s t c o r n e r o f the t o w n . It was near t h i s p l a c e that S t e e l e found h i s f o s s i l . T h e p l a c e w h e r e the ground w a s b r o k e n w h e n t h e f i r s t o n e o c c u r r e d w h i c h I m e n t i o n e d a b o v e , w a s about t h r e e and a half m i l e s f r o m this p l a c e . T h e r e was no appearance of a deposit near w h e r e t h e g r o u n d w a s b r o k e n , but i t h a s b e e n o b s e r v e d that t h i s p l a c e h a s b e e n r e p e a t e d l y struck with lightning.

Gl-216

STRANGE DETONATIONS

GSD-017

" T h e awful n o i s e s , o f w h i c h M r . H o s m e r g a v e a n a c c o u n t , i n h i s h i s t o r i c a l m i n u t e s , and c o n c e r n i n g w h i c h y o u d e s i r e f u r t h e r i n f o r m a t i o n , c o n t i n u e t o the present t i m e [1729]. T h e e f f e c t s t h e y p r o d u c e , a r e v a r i o u s a s the i n t e r m e d i a t e d e g r e e s b e t w e e n the r o a r o f a cannon and the n o i s e o f a p i s t o l . The concussions o f the e a r t h , m a d e a t the s a m e t i m e , a r e a s m u c h d i v e r s i f i e d a s the sounds i n the a i r . T h e s h o c k t h e y g i v e t o a d w e l l i n g h o u s e , i s the s a m e a s the f a l l i n g o f l o g s o n the f l o o r . T h e s m a l l e r shocks produced no emotions of t e r r o r or f e a r i n the m i n d s o f the i n h a b i t a n t s . T h e y a r e s p o k e n o f a s usual o c c u r r e n c e s , and are called Moodus noises. But when t h e y a r e s o v i o l e n t a s t o b e h e a r d i n the adjacent t o w n s , they a r e c a l l e d earthquakes. F o r other l e g e n d s i n v o l v i n g strange sounds, see GSD-019

GSD-015

[MORE MYSTERIOUS DETONATIONS]

F o r t , C h a r l e s ; T h e B o o k s o f C h a r l e s F o r t , H e n r y H o l t and C o m p a n y , N e w Y o r k , 1941. I n the T i m e s , M r s . L a n e , o f P e t e r s f i e l d , 2 0 m i l e s f r o m P o r t s m o u t h , w r i t e s that, a t 11:30 a . m . , and a t 3:30 p . m . , s e v e r a l d a y s b e f o r e the 17th, s h e had h e a r d the d e t o n a t i o n s , then h e a r i n g t h e m a g a i n , upon the 17th. ( p . 500) F o r t included this o b s e r v a t i o n because it c o n c u r r e d with those r e p o r t e d in GSD-016 and G S D - 0 3 5 ; both f r o m N o v e m b e r 1905.

GSD-016

[TRIPLET OF DETONATIONS]

F o r t , C h a r l e s ; T h e B o o k s o f C h a r l e s F o r t , H e n r y H o l t and C o m p a n y , N e w Y o r k , 1941. I n the E n g l i s h M e c h a n i c , . 82:433, J o s e p h C l a r k w r i t e s that a f e w m i n u t e s past 3 P . M . , upon the 18th a t r i p l e t o f d e t o n a t i o n s w a s h e a r d a t S o m e r s e t " a s loud as t h u n d e r , but not e x a c t l y l i k e t h u n d e r . " ( p . 500) C o m p a r e t h i s r e p o r t t o t h o s e o f G S D - 0 1 5 and G S D - 0 3 5 .

GSD-017

THE " G U N S " OF LAKE SENECA, N. Y.

A n o n y m o u s ; M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 31:336, July 1903. A r o u n d L a k e S e n e c a , o n e o f the F i n g e r L a k e s o f N e w Y o r k State, o n e o f t e n h e a r s the dull b o o m o f the S e n e c a g u n s . T h e s e l a k e guns o r w a t e r guns a r e l i k e t h o s e o f Lough Neagh, Ireland. T h e e d i t o r of Monthly W e a t h e r R e v i e w perhaps e m b r a c e d t o o q u i c k l y the g a s - b u b b l e t h e o r y b e c a u s e the L o u g h N e a g h w a t e r guns a r e h e a r d when the l a k e i s f r o z e n o v e r . (GSD-029)

Gl-217

GSD-018

STRANGE DETONATIONS

I n the M o n t h l y W e a t h e r R e v i e w f o r S e p t e m b e r , 1897, p a g e 3 9 3 , w e h a v e g i v e n s o m e a c c o u n t o f the " b a r i s a l g u n s , " t h e " m i s t p o u f f e r s , " and s i m i l a r p h e n o m e n a w h o s e o r i g i n i s a s y e t not c e r t a i n l y u n d e r s t o o d . The following l e t t e r d e s c r i b e s a n a n a l o g o u s p h e n o m e n o n i n S e n e c a L a k e , N . Y . , and i t m a y w e l l b e that the b a r i s a l guns h a v e t h e i r o r i g i n i n the e s c a p e o f b u b b l e s o f g a s just a s d o the " g u n s " o f S e n e c a L a k e . M r . W m . M . P r o s s e r , o f Dresden, Y a t e s County, N . Y . , w r i t e s a s f o l l o w s , u n d e r d a t e o f A u g u s t 18, 1903. So f a r as I am p e r s o n a l l y c o n c e r n e d I know of no explosions of i n f l a m m a b l e g a s , and the n e w s p a p e r s t o r i e s a r e f a b r i c a t i o n s i n t h i s r e s p e c t . T h e " l a k e g u n s " a r e e v i d e n t l y c a u s e d b y g a s e s c a p i n g f r o m the sand a t the bottom. L o n g P o i n t i s s i t u a t e d about 1 5 m i l e s south o f G e n e v a , N . Y . , and about 2 5 m i l e s n o r t h o f W a t k i n s , N . Y . , o n the w e s t s i d e o f S e n e c a L a k e . D i r e c t l y o f f the P o i n t the w a t e r i s v e r y d e e p . H e a v y c u r r e n t s p a s s e i t h e r n o r t h o r south a t regular intervals. A h e a v y w i n d f o r a f e w h o u r s w i l l c h a n g e the p o s i t i o n o f the e x t r e m e end o f land (which extends 1-1/2 m i l e s e a s t w a r d ) s e v e r a l r o d s . When the s w e l l i s not t o o h e a v y y o u c a n a l w a y s s e e the g a s r i s i n g i n b u b b l e f o r m , w h i c h , a s a r u l e , m a k e s v e r y l i t t l e n o i s e , but l a r g e r e r u c t a t i o n s e v i d e n t l y p r o duce t h e s e " l a k e g u n s . " T h e sand w o u l d not stay i n p l a c e w e r e i t not f o r the w a t e r h o l d i n g i t t h e r e a t the e x t r e m e p o i n t . L a r g e s t e a m e r s c a n land t h e r e w i t h but the a i d o f a n o r d i n a r y g a n g p l a n k . I d o not k n o w that the g a s i s i n f l a m m a b l e , but I c o u l d e a s i l y a s c e r t a i n i f i t i s o f any s p e c i a l i n t e r e s t t o y o u . N a t u r a l g a s i s found i n c o n s i d e r a b l e quantity w i t h i n 3 o r 4 m i l e s o f the p o i n t , o n the o u t l e t o f K e u k a L a k e , but h a r d l y i n p a y ing quantities. H o w e v e r , I a m t o l d that a c o m p a n y h a s b e e n f o r m e d that w i l l e x p l o i t the g a s a l o n g t h e o u t l e t , but not a t t h e P o i n t .

GSD-018

[THE SENECA GUN]

C l i s e , E l e a n o r e R . ; L e t t e r t o W i l l i a m R . C o r l i s s , M a r c h 27, 1973. The following excerpt from C l i s e ' s letter provides a relatively recent observation o f the S e n e c a Gun. T h e c o m m e n t about m o d e r n d r i l l i n g about the l a k e s u p p o r t s the g a s - b u b b l e t h e o r y o f the G u n ' s o r i g i n . C l i s e i s the C i t y H i s t o r i a n o f G e n e v a , N . Y . One night in A u g u s t 1940 w h e n I w a s at a c o t t a g e n e a r D r e s d e n ( t w e l v e m i l e s south o f G e n e v a ) , I h e a r d the sounds about m i d n i g h t . T h e a i r w a s c l e a r and s t i l l . I t w a s j u s t a s I had a l w a y s h e a r d the n o i s e d e s c r i b e d dull, f a r - a w a y , muffled, repeated booming for a few seconds. T h e p r e s e n t i n f r e q u e n c y o f r e p o r t s o f h e a r i n g the l a k e guns i s s a i d t o b e due t o the d r i l l i n g s i n the a r e a around the s o u t h e r n p a r t o f S e n e c a L a k e . Perhaps such w o r k p e r m i t s the a c c u m u l a t e d g a s t o e s c a p e i n o t h e r w a y s .

GSD-019

THE ECHO OF THE SENECA

Johnston, M. S. ; G e n e v a G a z e t t e , c i r c a 1940. T h e f o l l o w i n g e x c e r p t s f r o m the a b o v e a r t i c l e w e r e c o n t r i b u t e d b y E l e a n o r e R . C l i s e , City Historian, Geneva, N . Y .

Gl-218

STRANGE DETONATIONS
T h e " L a k e Gun" [ i s a n ] uncanny, m y s t e r i o u s s o u n d , f a r - a w a y cannon, softened b y c o m i n g o v e r the w a t e r

GSD-020
l i k e the r e p o r t of a

T h e r e has been a tendency to t r e a t the w h o l e subject in a skeptical mannerBut s c i e n t i s t s d o not t r e a t i t s o . T h e y h a v e r e g a r d e d the l a k e gun o f S e n e c a L a k e as a p e r f e c t l y r e s p e c t a b l e fact , that i t w a s not a p r o d u c t o f i m a g i n a t i o n D r . Hamilton L. Smith, for many y e a r s p r o f e s s o r of science in Hobart C o l l e g e at Geneva, i s r e m e m b e r e d t o h a v e s t a t e d h i s o p i n i o n that t h e sound c a m e f r o m the e x p l o s i o n o f g a s c o l l e c t e d i n the b o t t o m o f the l a k e o r i n f i s s u r e s o f the u n d e r lying rock. T h i s t h e o r y w a s p r a c t i c a l l y d e m o n s t r a t e d b y the e x p e r i e n c e o f a r e l i a b l e n e i g h b o r w h o w a s s t a r t l e d and h i s c a n o e n e a r l y o v e r t u r n e d b y a g r e a t b u b b l e w h i c h c a m e t o the s u r f a c e i n t h e m i d d l e o f t h e l a k e and b u r s t w i t h a l o u d noise. D r . John M . C l a r k e , the p r e s e n t State G e o l o g i s t may be quoted as f o l l o w s : " I h a v e a l w a y s t h o u g h t that t h e c o m m o n e x p l a n a t i o n o f t h e ' l a k e g u n s ' o f Seneca Lake was a fairly competent one. I have no personal k n o w l e d g e of the p h e n o m e n a , but i t i s r e a s o n a b l e t o t h i n k that t h e e m a n a t i o n o f g a s b u b b l e s f r o m the l a k e m i g h t p r o d u c e such r e v e r b e r a t i n g e x p l o s i o n s , e s p e c i a l l y d u r i n g t h e w i n t e r w h e n t h e r e m a y b e i c e o v e r t h e p o i n t o f e m i s s i o n and w h i c h c o u l d c r a c k u n d e r the added p r e s s u r e . T h e g a s s t o r a g e i n the s h a l e s i s c o m m o n throughout the F i n g e r L a k e s r e g i o n , though s e l d o m p r o d u c t i v e c o m m e r c i a l l y . It is stored in l i t t l e c a v i t i e s w h i c h a p p e a r t o b e r e p l e n i s h e d and w h i c h m a y f o r m e i t h e r a c o n stant or a s p a s m o d i c supply I a m r a t h e r i n c l i n e d t o think that s p a s m o d i c d i s c h a r g e s f r o m these gas accumulations might account for these s o - c a l l e d guns. . .. " T h e sound i s u s u a l l y h e a r d o n hot, s u l t r y d a y s , though one has h e a r d the i c e crack as Dr. C l a r k e suggests. M o r e o f t e n than not t h e y a r e h e a r d o n a f t e r n o o n s b y t h e l a k e o r o n i t , w h e n t h e south w i n d w a s d y i n g d o w n o r h a d c e a s e d t o b l o w , and t h e s u r f a c e o f t h e w a t e r had b e c o m e g l a s s y , o r ' o i l y ' and t h e s k y h a s g r a d u a l l y b e c o m e o v e r c a s t w i t h the h a z e o f a g a t h e r i n g t h u n d e r s t o r m . A g a i n out o f t h e s t i l l n e s s o n e c a n h e a r c o m i n g f r o m t h e south o r s o u t h e a s t the s o l e m n , l a z y , deep-toned, muffled, unexpected, " B o o m ! " M u c h has b e e n s a i d , m u c h has b e e n w r i t t e n about the m y s t e r i o u s " E c h o o f the S e n e c a . " W e h a v e h e a r d that i t i s t h e v o i c e o f A g a y e n t e h w h o w a s s l a i n b y t h e G r e a t S p i r i t f o r an attempted w r o n g on the part of the young Indian. History says that a t t h e t i m e h e w a s s w a l l o w e d u p b y t h e a n g r y w a t e r s , a noise as of the r o a r i n g o f a t h o u s a n d p i e c e s o f a r t i l l e r y s u d d e n l y b u r s t u p o n the e a r s o f t h e a f r i g h t e d w i t n e s s e s , w h i c h e c h o e d and r e - e c h o e d a l o n g the s h o r e s o f t h e K a n a d a s a g a f o r several minutes. A m i d s t t h i s , w i t h t h e r e d l i g h t n i n g p l a y i n g about h i s h e a d , t h e f o r w a r d e n d o f A g a y e n t e h ' s T i g h t c a n o e w a s l i f t e d f a r out o f t h e w a t e r ; h i m s e l f s t a n d i n g e r e c t , w i t h a r m s o u t s t r e t c h e d and h a i r s t r e a m i n g i n t h e b l a s t — a n o t h e r c r a s h o f h e a v e n ' s a r t i l l e r y , a n o t h e r v i v i d s t r e a k o f l i g h t n i n g , and t h e b o a t and f o r m of Agayenteh disappeared altogether. A f e w m o m e n t s a f t e r the m o o n shone out c l e a r and b r i g h t — t h e b o s o m o f t h e l a k e w a s w i t h o u t a r i p p l e .

GSD-020

CURIOUS A E R I A L OR S U B T E R R A N E A N SOUNDS

D a v i s o n , C. ; N a t u r e , 53:4, N o v e m b e r 7, 1895. I t i s not p o s s i b l e that t h e " B a r i s a l G u n s " and " m i s t p o u f f e r s , " r e f e r r e d t o b y P r o f . D a r w i n a r e m e r e l y e a r t h q u a k e sounds, the attendant shock b e i n g t o o slight to be o t h e r w i s e p e r c e p t i b l e ? N e a r l y all earthquakes a r e accompanied b y a r u m b l i n g s o u n d , d u e , I b e l i e v e , t o t h e s m a l l and r a p i d v i b r a t i o n s p r o c e e d -

Gl-219

GSD-021

STRANGE DETONATIONS

i n g c h i e f l y f r o m the m a r g i n s o f the a r e a o v e r w h i c h t h e f a u l t - s l i p p r o d u c i n g the e a r t h q u a k e t a k e s p l a c e ( G e o l . M a g . , v o l . i x . , 1892. p p . 2 0 8 - 2 1 8 ) . I n s o m e d i s t r i c t s ( C o m r i e i n P e r t h s h i r e , E a s t Haddan, i n C o n n e c t i c u t , P i g n e r o l i n P i e d m o n t , M e l e d a i n t h e A d r i a t i c , & c ) , sounds w i t h o u t s h o c k s a r e c o m m o n d u r i n g i n t e r v a l s w h i c h m a y l a s t f o r s e v e r a l y e a r s , but s l i g h t s h o c k s w i t h sound o c c a s i o n a l l y i n t e r v e n e , a s i f the sounds and s h o c k s w e r e m a n i f e s t a t i o n s , d i f f e r i n g o n l y i n d e g r e e and the m e t h o d i n w h i c h w e p e r c e i v e t h e m , o f o n e and the same phenomenon. D a v i s o n ' s s u g g e s t i o n that B a r i s a l Guns a r e s e i s m i c w o u l d s e e m t o b e c o n t r a d i c t e d b y t h e i r d o u b l e t and t r i p l e t n a t u r e . ( D a v i s o n m e a n s " E a s t Haddam, " the s i t e o f the M o o d u s Sounds in C o n n e c t i c u t )

GSD-021

BARISAL GUNS AND SIMILAR SOUNDS
5 3 : 2 9 5 - 2 9 6 , J a n u a r y 30, 1896.

H a r r i e s , H. ; N a t u r e ,

T h e f o l l o w i n g o b s e r v a t i o n w a s p r e s e n t e d i n a l e t t e r t o N a t u r e . I n k e e p i n g w i t h the c u s t o m o f t h e t i m e s , the u n i d e n t i f i e d d e t o n a t i o n s w e r e a s c r i b e d t o " e l e c t r i c i t y . " - - R e s o l u t e , C a p t a i n W . D e u c h a r s ; 8 p . m . , July 30, 1883, i n 7 1 ° 9 ' N . , 12°28' W. " S i x r e p o r t s l i k e t h o s e o f g u n s h e a r d t o the w e s t w a r d , s u p p o s e d t o b e c a u s e d b y e l e c t r i c i t y , a s n o s h i p s a r e thought t o b e i n the v i c i n i t y . " W i n d d u r i n g the day c a l m t o v e r y l i g h t e a s t e r l y a i r s ; w e a t h e r f o g g y ; s e a s m o o t h , w i t h a v e r y slight south-easterly s w e l l .
s s

GSD-022

BARISAL GUNS IN WESTERN AUSTRALIA

C o o k e , W . E . ; N a t u r e , 78:390, A u g u s t 27, 1908. I h a v e just r e c e i v e d the f o l l o w i n g note f r o m M r . H . L . R i c h a r d s o n , H i l l s p r i n g Station, 100 m i l e s n o r t h - e a s t o f C a r n a r v o n , o n o u r w e s t c o a s t : "A p e c u l i a r i n c i d e n t h a p p e n e d h e r e l a s t e v e n i n g (June 26) about a n h o u r a f t e r sunset. In a south-easterly d i r e c t i o n f r o m h e r e t h r e e r e p o r t s took place high u p i n the a i r , and then a r u s h i n g n o i s e l i k e s t e a m e s c a p i n g , l a s t i n g f o r a f e w s e c o n d s , and g r a d u a l l y d y i n g a w a y . M r . L o e f f l e r , o n e o f the o w n e r s o f the s t a t i o n , w a s s t a n d i n g o u t s i d e w i t h m e a t the t i m e . It was a beautifully c l e a r e v e n i n g , and t h e r e w a s n o t h i n g v i s i b l e a t a l l i n that d i r e c t i o n . The reports sounded l i k e e x p l o s i o n s o f s o m e c o m b u s t i b l e t o w h i c h t h e r e w a s n o r e s i s t a n c e . A g a i n a t r i p l e t o f d e t o n a t i o n s f r o m high i n t h e a t m o s p h e r e . m e t e o r s , p o s s i b l y a s e i s m i c sound, but s e e G S D - 0 2 3 . P o s s i b l y a group of

GSD-023

ON THE OCCURRENCE OF EXPLOSIVE OR BOOMING NOISES IN CENTRAL AUSTRALIA

C l e l a n d , J . B u r t o n ; R o y a l S o c i e t y o f N e w South W a l e s , J o u r n a l and P r o c e e d i n g s , 187-203, 1911. B a s e d o n a r e v i e w b y J . C . B r a n n e r ; b e i s m o l o g i c a l S o c i e t y o f A m e r i c a ,

Gl-220

STRANGE DETONATIONS
B u l l e t i n , 2:261, 1912.

GSD-025

T h e a u t h o r o f t h i s p a p e r c a l l s a t t e n t i o n t o , and a s k s f o r e x p l a n a t i o n s f o r , the o c c a s i o n a l b o o m i n g n o i s e s h e a r d b y h i m s e l f and o t h e r s i n v a r i o u s p a r t s o f c e n t r a l and n o r t h w e s t e r n A u s t r a l i a . H e q u o t e s f r o m his o w n n o t e s and f r o m t h e o b s e r v a t i o n s o f o t h e r s , and adds m a n y r e f e r e n c e s t o s i m i l a r p h e n o m e n a r e p o r t e d f r o m other p a r t s o f the w o r l d . T h e s e sounds a r e v a r i o u s l y d e s c r i b e d a s r e s e m b l i n g the d i s t a n t f i r i n g o f cannon, r u m b l i n g l i k e the b l o w i n g o f f o f s t e a m f r o m a l a r g e b o i l e r , g a l l o p i n g o f a h e r d o f c a t t l e , r u m b l i n g o f thunder, b l a s t i n g i n m i n e s , and gunshots. T h e e x p l a n a t i o n s s u g g e s t e d and r e j e c t e d a r e e a r t h q u a k e s , c a v i n g o f r i v e r banks, e l e c t r i c d i s c h a r g e s , displacements of r o c k s by frost, breaking of surf r o l l e r s , f i r i n g o f b o m b s , subaqueous v o l c a n i c disturbances, f a l l i n g m e t e o r s . T h e e x p l a n a t i o n f o r t h e s e p h e n o m e n a i n A u s t r a l i a that a p p e a r s t o b e r e g a r d e d w i t h m o s t f a v o r b y t h e author i s that i n t h e d r y i n t e r i o r the hot d a y s and c o l d nights c a u s e e x p a n s i o n and c o n t r a c t i o n o f t h e r o c k s w h i c h r e s u l t i n t h e i r b u c k l i n g and c r a c k i n g . M o v e m e n t s a l o n g faults and the c r a c k i n g o f g r o u n d i n d r y w e a t h e r are also appealed to.

GSD-024

BARISAL GUNS

R o b i n s o n , C h a r l e s H . ; N a t u r e , 53:487, M a r c h 26, 1896. I n 1810 a p a r t y , o u t f i t t e d b y John J a c o b A s t o r , m a d e a n o v e r l a n d t r i p f r o m the M i s s o u r i t o t h e mouth o f t h e C o l u m b i a . T h e y t r i e d to go through the B l a c k H i l l s , but w e r e o b l i g e d t o w i t h d r a w and flank t h e m . I n t h e s e h i l l s they n o t e a s f o l l o w s : " I n the m o s t c a l m and s e r e n e w e a t h e r , and a t a l l t i m e s o f t h e d a y o r n i g h t , s u c c e s s i v e r e p o r t s a r e n o w and t h e n h e a r d a m o n g t h e s e m o u n t a i n s , r e s e m b l i n g the d i s c h a r g e o f s e v e r a l p i e c e s o f a r t i l l e r y . Similar reports were h e a r d b y M e s s r s . L e w i s and C l a r k i n t h e R o c k y M o u n t a i n s . Such e x p l o s i o n s a r e a l s o s a i d t o o c c u r f r e q u e n t l y i n B r a z i l . " V a s c o n c e l l i s , a J e s u i t f a t h e r , d e s c r i b e s o n e w h i c h h e h e a r d i n the S i e r r a , o r m o u n t a i n r e g i o n o f P e r a t i n i n g a , and w h i c h h e c o m p a r e s t o a p a r k o f a r t i l l e r y . " T h e k e y f e a t u r e s h e r e a r e (1) t h e r e p e t i t i o n s o f t h e " d i s c h a r g e s ; " and ( 2 ) t h e i r o c c u r r e n c e d u r i n g " c a l m and s e r e n e w e a t h e r . " T h e s e sounds c a n n o t b e o c e a n i c , n o r would one e x p e c t frequent repetition f r o m m e t e o r s .

GSD-025

BARISAL GUNS

C o o p e r , W . S . ; S c i e n t i f i c A m e r i c a n , 75:123, A u g u s t 1 , 1896. M i s t p o u f f e r s s e e m t o b e h e a r d along the F l o r i d a c o a s t t o o . weather seems a prerequisite. Once m o r e , c a l m

On t h e e v e n i n g of D e c e m b e r 2 8 , 1885, I w a s w i t h a c o m p a n i o n in a s a i l b o a t o n t h e G u l f o f M e x i c o about 2 0 m i l e s S . E . o f C e d a r K e y s , F l o r i d a . W e w e r e b e c a l m e d . T h e n e x t m o r n i n g t h e sky w a s c l o u d l e s s . T h e r e w a s a l i g h t f o g and no b r e e z e . T h e a t m o s p h e r e w a s b r a c i n g but not f r o s t y . W e w e r e about t e n m i l e s out but i n s h a l l o w w a t e r . Shortly after sunrise we heard r e p o r t s as of a gun o r d i s t a n t c a n n o n . T h e y c a m e a t i n t e r v a l s o f about f i v e m i n u t e s . We w e r e not c e r t a i n a s t o t h e d i r e c t i o n . My companion, who l i v e d s e v e r a l m i l e s further d o w n t h e c o a s t , s a i d h e had o f t e n h e a r d t h e r e p o r t s o n s t i l l m o r n i n g s .

Gl-221

GSD-026
GSD-026

STRANGE DETONATIONS
OCEANIC A N D SEISMIC NOISES

A n o n y m o u s ; Monthly W e a t h e r R e v i e w , 26:216, M a y 1898. E l u s i v e n e s s of the s o u r c e , an important feature of our m y s t e r i o u s detonations, is discussed here. T h e detonations s o m e t i m e s s e e m i n the a i r , s o m e t i m e s they a r e subterranean. T h e y s e e m near, then far a w a y . T h e s o u r c e i s n e v e r found. The m y s t e r i o u s phenomenon known as " B a r i s a l g u n s , " or " M i s t p o e f f e r s , " f o r m s the subject o f a useful p a p e r b y D r , A . C a n c a n i , i n the last B o l l e t t i n o , V o l . I l l , N o . 9 , o f the Italian S e i s m o l o g i c a l S o c i e t y . T h e o b s e r v a t i o n s o n w h i c h h i s d i s c u s s i o n i s founded a r e c o l l e c t e d f r o m p l a c e s i n o r n e a r the inland p r o v i n c e o f U m b r i a , w h e r e the n o i s e s a r e k n o w n a s " m a r i n a , " i t b e i n g t h e p o p u l a r b e l i e f that t h e y c o m e f r o m t h e s e a . T h e s o u n d i s q u i t e d i s t i n c t and e a s i l y r e c o g n i z e d ; i t i s l o n g e r than that o f a c a n n o n s h o t , and t h o u g h m o r e p r o l o n g e d and d u l l , i t i s not u n l i k e d i s t a n t t h u n d e r . It invariably s e e m s to c o m e f r o m a d i s t a n c e , and f r o m t h e n e i g h b o r h o o d o f t h e h o r i z o n , s o m e t i m e s a p p a r e n t l y f r o m t h e g r o u n d , but g e n e r a l l y t h r o u g h the a i r . T h e w e a t h e r , when the " m a r i n a " i s h e a r d , i s c a l m a s a r u l e , but t h a t i t o f t e n p r e c e d e s b a d w e a t h e r i s shown by the c o m m o n s a y i n g , "Cuando tuona la m a r i n a o acqualo v e n t o o s t r i n a " (when the o c e a n thunders, e x p e c t r a i n o r wind o r h e a t ) . The interval between s u c c e s s i v e detonations i s v e r y v a r i a b l e , s o m e t i m e s b e i n g only a f e w minutes o r even seconds. T h e y a p p e a r t o b e h e a r d a t a l l t i m e s o f t h e d a y and y e a r , t h e e x p e r i e n c e o f o b s e r v e r s d i f f e r i n g w i d e l y a s t o the e p o c h s when they a r e h e a r d most frequently. With r e g a r d to the o r i g i n of the " m a r i n a , " D r . Cancani c o n c l u d e s that t h e y c a n not b e d u e t o a s t o r m y s e a , b e c a u s e " m i s t - p o e f f e r s " a r e f r e q u e n t l y o b s e r v e d w h e n the s e a i s c a l m ; not t o g u s t s o f w i n d i n m o u n t a i n g o r g e s , f o r t h e y a r e h e a r d o n m o u n t a i n s u m m i t s and i n o p e n p l a i n s . If their o r i g i n w e r e a t m o s p h e r i c t h e y w o u l d not b e c o n f i n e d t o s p e c i a l r e g i o n s . N o r can they b e c o n n e c t e d w i t h a r t i f i c i a l n o i s e s , f o r they a r e h e a r d b y night a s w e l l a s b y d a y , and i n c o u n t r i e s w h e r e t h e u s e o f e x p l o s i v e s a r e u n k n o w n . There r e m a i n s thus the h y p o t h e s i s w h i c h D r . C a n c a n i c o n s i d e r s the m o s t p r o b a b l e , that of an endogenous o r i g i n . T o the o b v i o u s o b j e c t i o n s that t h e r e should a l w a y s b e a c e n t e r o f m a x i m u m i n t e n s i t y , w h i c h i s n e v e r t o b e f o u n d , and that t h e y a r e s o r a r e l y a c c o m p a n i e d b y any p e r c e p t i b l e t r e m o r , h e r e p l i e s t h a t , i n a s e i s m i c s e r i e s , n o i s e s a r e f r e q u e n t l y h e a r d w i t h o u t any s h o c k b e i n g f e l t , and o f w h i c h w e a r e u n a b l e t o d e t e r m i n e the c e n t e r .

GSD-027

[THE JEBEL MUSA SOUNDS]
1896.

A n o n y m o u s ; S c i e n t i f i c A m e r i c a n , 74:402, June 27,

Since the publication of P r o f . D a r w i n ' s l e t t e r in N a t u r e last O c t o b e r , there has been a c o n s i d e r a b l e amount of c o r r e s p o n d e n c e r e l a t i v e to this unexplained phenomenon, one of the l a t e r l e t t e r s d r a w i n g attention to a r e f e r e n c e by the l a t e D e a n S t a n l e y i n h i s " S i n a i and P a l e s t i n e " t o " t h e m y s t e r i o u s n o i s e s w h i c h h a v e f r o m t i m e t o t i m e b e e n h e a r d o n the s u m m i t o f J e b e l M u s a , i n the n e i g h b o r h o o d o f U m S h a u m e r , and i n t h e m o u n t a i n o f N a k u s o r t h e B e l l , s o c a l l e d f r o m t h e l e g e n d that t h e s o u n d s p r o c e e d f r o m the b e l l s o f a c o n v e n t i n c l o s e d w i t h i n t h e mountain. I n t h i s l a s t i n s t a n c e t h e sound i s s u p p o s e d t o o r i g i n a t e i n t h e r u s h o f sound d o w n t h e m o u n t a i n s i d e . . . . I n t h e c a s e o f J e b e l M u s a , w h e r e i t i s s a i d that t h e m o n k s had o r i g i n a l l y s e t t l e d o n t h e h i g h e s t p e a k , but w e r e b y t h e s e

Gl-222

STRANGE DETONATIONS

GSD-029

s t r a n g e n o i s e s d r i v e n d o w n t o t h e i r p r e s e n t s e a t i n t h e v a l l e y , and i n the c a s e o f U m S h a u m e r , w h e r e i t w a s d e s c r i b e d t o B u r c k h a r d t a s l i k e the sound o f a r t i l l e r y , the p r e c i s e c a u s e h a s n e v e r b e e n a s c e r t a i n e d . " T h e s a m e c o r r e s pondent, M r . E d w . F r y , m e n t i o n s that B u r c k h a r d t ( " T r a v e l s i n S y r i a and the H o l y L a n d , " 1822, p . 591) r e f e r s t o t h e s e n o i s e s and s a y s "the w i n d and w e a t h e r a r e not b e l i e v e d t o h a v e any e f f e c t upon t h e sound. " T h e J e b e l M u s a sounds a r e e v i d e n t l y the s a m e a s the " b e l l " o f N a k o u s m e n t i o n e d b y Ponton in G S M - 0 0 4 .

GSD-028
Rohleder,

LAKE BOSUMTWI, ASHANTI
H e r b e r t P . J . ; G e o g r a p h i c a l J o u r n a l , 87:51-65, J a n u a r y 1936.

T h i s e x t e n s i v e a r t i c l e o n L a k e B o s u m t w i c o n t a i n s the f o l l o w i n g f a s c i n a t i n g a c c o u n t o f supposed p e r i o d i c g a s detonations. T h e i n f e r e n c e i s that l a k e guns m a y h a v e a s i m ilar origin. T h e sulphurous o d o r r e p o r t e d b e l o w is a l s o a c o m m o n feature of e a r t h q u a k e s , b a l l l i g h t n i n g , and m a n y o t h e r g e o p h y s i c a l p h e n o m e n a . A n o l d s a y i n g a m o n g the i n h a b i t a n t s a r o u n d the l a k e i s " B o s u m t w i h a s f i r e d or e x p l o d e d g u n p o w d e r " (Bosumtwi oto atuduru). At irregular intervals o n c e o r t w i c e a y e a r , but a p p a r e n t l y not w i t h i n r e c e n t y e a r s , the l a k e b e c o m e s r o u g h f o r o n e o r t w o d a y s , the c o l o u r o f the w a t e r c h a n g e s t o a l m o s t b l a c k , the s u r f a c e i s c o v e r e d w i t h d e a d and d y i n g f i s h , and the a t m o s p h e r e b e c o m e s full o f a choking s m a l l of "gunpowder. " T h e phenomenon is accompanied by a loud d e tonation. No rumblings or earth t r e m o r s are noted. Although n e v e r o b s e r v e d by any E u r o p e a n and n e v e r m e n t i o n e d b y the n a t i v e s , t h i s p h e n o m e n o n i s w e l l k n o w n to e v e r y lake d w e l l e r . The recent volcanic origin of Lake Bosumtwi immediately suggests exhalations of g a s e s , in p a r t i c u l a r h y d r o g e n sulphide. According to T. R o b e r t s o n such u p h e a v a l s a r e due t o g a s e s f r o m d e c o m p o s e d o r g a n i c m a t t e r a t the b o t t o m o f a l a k e without any o u t l e t , i n p a r t i c u l a r t o m a r s h g a s . This explanation would a l s o account for another phenomenon, mentioned by Sir A l b e r t K i t s o n , i . e . " f l a s h i n g l i g h t s , m a k i n g n o i s e s l i k e the d i s c h a r g e o f a r t i l l e r y . " The Chief o f A b o n u h o w e v e r g a v e R a t t r a y the e q u a l l y m a t e r - o f - f a c t and c o n v i n c i n g e x p l a nation that t h e s e m y s t e r i o u s l i g h t s w e r e d e l i b e r a t e l y c a u s e d b y t h i e v e s r o b b i n g o t h e r p e o p l e ' s nets a t night and t a k i n g f i r e i n a b o w l t o s c a r e a w a y the h i g h l y s u p e r s t i t i o u s and e a s i l y f r i g h t e n e d l a k e d w e l l e r s . C h e m i c a l a n a l y s e s o f the w a t e r s o f L a k e B o s u m t w i s h o w e d t h e m t o b e o f the a l k a l i n e - c a r b o n a t e t y p e a c c o r d ing t o i n f o r m a t i o n r e c e i v e d f r o m D r . J u n n e r . Although these p e r i o d i c upheavals of the lake bottom might g i v e r i s e to m i n o r l o c a l e x p l o s i o n s , i t i s i m p o s s i b l e that t h e s e s m a l l d e t o n a t i o n s should b e h e a r d f a r a w a y f r o m the l a k e a s h a s b e e n r e p o r t e d f r e q u e n t l y . T h e a b o v e d e t o n a t i o n s should b e c o m p a r e d t o the L o u g h N e a g h w a t e r guns and the Seneca Guns.

GSD-029
Smith, W.

REMARKABLE SOUNDS
S.; N a t u r e , 53:197-198, January 2, 1896.

T h e b e s t d e s c r i p t i o n o f the f a m o u s L o u g h N e a g h w a t e r guns w a s r e l a y e d t o N a t u r e

Gl-223

GSD-030

STRANGE DETONATIONS

by R e v . W. S. Smith, the Congregational m i n i s t e r at A t r i m , Ireland. L o u g h N e a g h i s a s h e e t o f w a t e r c o v e r i n g a n a r e a o f u p w a r d s o f 150 s q u a r e m i l e s , with v e r y g r a d u a l l y r e c e d i n g s h o r e s , e x c e p t i n g a t one o r t w o s p o t s . For many y e a r s after my settlement as m i n i s t e r h e r e f r o m England, I heard at i n t e r v a l s , w h e n n e a r t h e l a k e , c a n n o n - l i k e s o u n d s ; but not b e i n g acquainted*with the g e o g r a p h y o f the d i s t a n t s h o r e s , o r the l o c a t i o n o f t o w n s , o r p o s s i b l e e m p l o y m e n t s c a r r i e d o n , I p a s s i v e l y c o n c l u d e d that the r e p o r t s p r o c e e d e d f r o m q u a r r y ing o p e r a t i o n s , o r , o n fine s u m m e r d a y s , f r o m f e s t i v e g a t h e r i n g s i n C o . D e r r y , or C o . T y r o n e . I n t i m e I c a m e t o undenstand that i t w a s not f r o m the o p p o s i t e s h o r e s , but f r o m t h e l a k e i t s e l f that the sounds p r o c e e d e d . A f t e r questioning m a n y o f the l o c a l r e s i d e n t s , I e x t e n d e d m y i n q u i r i e s t o the f i s h e r m e n , but t h e y could a s s i g n no cause. A s t r a n g e t h i n g about the m a t t e r i s that the p e o p l e g e n e r a l l y k n e w nothing o f the p h e n o m e n o n , and that i t i s s h r o u d e d i n m y s t e r y . I h a v e h e a r d the r e p o r t s p r o b a b l y t w e n t y t i m e s d u r i n g the p r e s e n t y e a r , the l a s t b e i n g on a Sunday a f t e r n o o n a m o n t h s i n c e , w h e n I h e a r d t w o e x p l o s i o n s ; but with t w o e x c e p t i o n s they have all s e e m e d t o c o m e f r o m many m i l e s away, f r o m different directions at different t i m e s . T h e y have c o m e apparently f r o m T o o m e B a y , f r o m the m i d d l e o f the l a k e , and f r o m L a n g f o r d L o d g e P o i n t , about nine m i