But did you know about the Year Without a Summer?
“The Year Without a Summer,” also called “Poverty Year” or “Eighteen Hundred and Froze to Death,” began in Indonesia on April of 1815 when Mount Tambora experienced the largest volcanic eruption in 1,300 years. The eruption and tsunamis that accompanied it killed approximately 10,000 people. The aftereffects killed approximately 80,000 more from disease, starvation, and hypothermia.
In Switzerland, the resulting eerie fog and miserable weather inspired a group of friends to have an artistic contest at a house party that resulted in one Mary Shelley penning a little book called Frankenstein. The landscape artists of the period across Europe and the United States featured the yellow skies from the volcanic winter in paintings for years to come.
|Lake Petworth Sunset Fighting Bucks JMW Turner|
But people are survivors. A hardy stock decided to move to parts of the country that had not been hit quite as hard. Many moved to the Midwest but many more continued to the West. The Year Without a Summer just might be why your ancestors became pioneers. Today, many scholars believe that this very event is the one of the biggest reasons for the westward expansion in the United States.
|Albert Bierstadt Oregon Trail|