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HISTORY OF CULTUREMYSTERY OF KRAKATAU (PART II) | On August 27, 1883, coinciding with the Sunday, pounding at 10:02 o'clock heard throughout the archipelago, even to Singapore, Australia, Philippines, and Japan. The disaster is one of the world's greatest eruption that had claimed around 36,500 human souls. Activities began with an eruption on 20 May 1883, when the crater of volcanic ash spewed Actions and water vapor to a height of 11 km into the air. The eruption was heard even though more than 350 km (up to Palembang), not to cause casualties. 

In August 27 eruption that ejected rocks as high as 55,000 m and the tidal wave (tsunami) that caused 163 villages wiped out. Ashes to reach a distance of 5330 km ten days later. Krakatoa explosion strength is estimated 26 times greater than the most powerful hydrogen bomb explosion in the experiment. 

An observer at his home in Bogor, on August 26, at one o'clock to hear a roar that was mistaken for distant thunder in places. Through half past three in the afternoon began to hear short bursts, so he began to believe that the noise was coming from Krakatau, the more so because the sound coming from the west-northwest direction. In Batavia rumble it also can be heard, and likewise at Anyer. In the attack and Bandung voices began to be heard at three o'clock. 

A Dutch non-commissioned officer stationed in Batavia recounts his personal experiences. Like many others he thought that the world will end then. 

"On 26 August it coincides with Sunday. As a sergeant in the battalion to-IX in Weltevreden (Central Jakarta), the day I was ordered on duty at the main guard at Lion Field. The weather was very oppressive. Thick cloudy sky was overcast. When rain began to burst, I was surprised that in addition to water is also falling grains of ice. "Around two o'clock the sound of thunder from the west. It seems like there is a rainstorm, but interspersed with pop-pop, so nobody paid to know that it's not unusual lightning storm. " 

"In Java Bode newspaper editorial desk people immediately thought of Krakatoa volcano that has been since a few months shows the activities after resting for two centuries. They sent a wire to the correspondent in Anyer, a small port on the edge of the Sunda Strait, where people can stare at the figure clearly Krakatau sunny weather. The answer came quickly: "Here is so dark, I could not see his own hand. 'This is the latest news delivered from Anyer ..." 

At five in the afternoon thunder was getting escalated, but no visible lightning. One after another eruption is more frequent, such as heavy shellfire. From the Field King (Independence, Ed.) And Lions Field (Bull) looks like flashes of lightning on the western horizon, not from the top down but from bottom to top. Time of day gradually darkened, at the foot of the western sky was still visible spark of light. " 

"It's become a habit that every day at eight o'clock precisely at the castle (Frederik Hendrik, now Masjid Istiqlal) were fired the cannon as a signal ceremony, followed by the blare of trumpets that requires all soldiers into barracks. The drummer and trumpeter battalion was ready at a quarter to eight o'clock. They are still smoking relaxed before they lined up to give the hint. Suddenly gunfire sounded jarring, much earlier than usual. They immediately assembled to form the line and after the horn sounded, they were lined up while sounding the drums and blew trumpets. Recently they achieve an actual dorm when the cannon boomed from the fort. Mount Krakatau was to outwit them! " 

Batavia So Cold 

"Meanwhile, 'shooting' continue. Sometimes it sounded like a salvo firing successive flashes of darting into the sky. Everyone was seized with fear. No one believes that there is a storm raging deep in there. Almost no one dared to sleep that night. Many were gathered at their home page while directing their gaze to the west and thrash out the possibilities that cause the strange natural phenomena. Just a country boy who did not hesitate: 'There is a mountain broken,' they said. " 

"Toward the middle of the night came picket officer, Lieutenant Koehler. He told me that the whole city was in a state of panic. The natives gathered at the mosque to pray-masijid. Dutch residents to stay awake in their homes or go to the house or Harmonie Concordia ball to each other to seek support from others. " 

"By two o'clock in the morning barrage of rapid fire artillery explosion vessel reaches its climax. Stone houses trembled and windows jingle. Roadway lighting glass fell and scattered on the ground, glass shop windows broken, gas lighting in many houses goes out. After the explosions subsided, but from the west still terdegar roar. " 

"Then I felt that getting into cold air. Within a few hours the temperature has dropped in such a way, until I was shivering with cold in the guardhouse. Never before in Batavia that cold air. When I looked out the entire city was covered by thick fog. Street lighting across the Lion Square can not I see it again, although I heard from other colleagues that the lights still on. Soon the fog was not fog was unusual, but a rain of ash, which fell shortly after midnight - initially sparse, but more and more rain, so everything covered by a thick gray fog. " 

"At six o'clock in the morning, according to regulations, all lights should be extinguished, but the sun does not rise! Just about seven o'clock seems like dawn will break, but that day will not be light. Eve getting a cold, so I ordered my men to wear their raincoats. Meanwhile ash down with endless. Ash was everywhere, sheds also keep a fine powder which is coated by a whitish gray. Sentries that I see from the window was pacing, looks like a gray snowman that moves mechanically. " 

"Around nine in the morning explosions and thunder grew older. At ten o'clock it was dark as night. Gas lights were switched on again. 15 mm thick layer of ash covered everything. Quiet streets, no one dared to manifest themselves. I felt alone in the world, the world's soon going to collapse! " 

"In the telegram finally arrived at 10:40 from Serang, whose content contains little information about the cause of the symptoms of the horrible nature. The wire read: "Yesterday evening Krakatau work. Can be heard here. Light is clearly visible all night long. Since eleven o'clock explosions more powerful and unbroken. After heavy ash rain this morning the sun was visible, dark as night at half past seven. Peacock tidal wave destroyed. Now here is the rain of gravel. Without a strong umbrella no one dared to come out. '" 

"By twelve o'clock, when in Batavia still dark and very cold, came the news wire from the port of Tanjung Priok and Fish Market. A tidal wave had flooded the city below. Surface water two meters above the normal line. Steamship Princess Wilhelmina cast into the base, as well as ship Tjiliwoeng the chimney roof damage customs office. A number of motor boats and boats stranded in Port disheveled Fish Market, covered in thick mud and ash. Refugees began to flow along the highway with a property that can carry Weltevreden toward a higher location. At two and four in the afternoon came another surge, but this time less than the first. " 

"In the west is now a quiet and dark dwindle, so the sun began to appear as red spots on the dirty gray sky." 

"At five o'clock in the evening I was replaced and received orders to immediately prepare an army that will diberangkatkana into the affected area in South Sumatra. At that time in Batavia, nobody knows exactly what really happened in the west. All telegrams relationship with the affected area cut off catastrophe. "

Eerie Quiet Of Serang

If in Jakarta, the tide would not take the victim is too large, but on the west coast of West Java which is closer to being angry that mountain, the result was terrible. In Tangerang, flooded northern coast as far as one to one and a half miles with a substantial human toll. Nine coastal villages destroyed. The victim in this area was recorded 1794 people and 546 native Chinese and other foreign East. 

In Attack of the clamor began to be heard at 3 pm, on Sunday. At night constant smell of brimstone and thunder and lightning seen from the direction of Krakatoa. Seninnya day sky to the west of gray and ash rain down without stopping. At half-past eleven days from dark, and getting dark, so that nearly invisible nothing. Lewatpukul eleven came a wire from the attack that there has been rain of pumice gravel; was soon cut off relations with Jakarta telegram. After the gravel after rain rain mud, wet ash that is attached to the leaves and branches of the trees that are sometimes collapsed because of the weight. Around 12 o'clock it stopped raining mud, but remain dry ash falls. 

Strangely, during which at Serang unheard eruptions, even eerie atmosphere is very quiet, which makes many people more nervous and depressed. Pets are also increasingly restless, they want as close to the man in the house, near the lamp. With the violence even if the animals were not successfully expelled. After two o'clock the sky starts to look a bit brighter in the east, the chicken-rooster started crowing. Rumbling sound began to sound again, raining ash down constantly and the smell of sulfur ash nose piercing. At four o'clock the lights are still lit. 

Newspapers published in Batavia, dated 28, August 31, and 4 September filled with news about the catastrophe that befell the area of Banten. But rarely is the story of an eyewitness, because the places which were located on the beach like a peacock, Anyer, and Caringin, moulder and only a few Dutch people who fled and were helped at the right time. 

When All Dark Sober 

In Merak a bookkeeper at the port company named E. Pechler is the only Dutch person who escaped. He was in charge of carrying a telegram sent to his superiors to Batavia via Serang. This news may be the last one sent from the Peacock. It contained a report to the Head of Ports Division in Batavia, which states that on Sunday 26 August and the next day, some more low-lying Peacock, Chinatown, railways, tergenangi; bridge and bay berthing place of extraction of stone for the port is damaged, bridges and cranes-cranes still in place at the time, but cars have entered the sea. 

Around nine o'clock in the morning Pechler located at the foot of a hill outside the Peacock. Suddenly he struck the mud and rain storms. He saw the wave approaching the water, so he ran helter-skelter to the top of a hill, but before it reached its peak, he had overtaken the tide. What happens after that she did not know anymore ... 

The next day she had regained consciousness. Place around it is dry, but he could not recognize the surroundings because it is very dark. 

On Tuesday he could walk back to the Peacock. In the middle of the road he saw a locomotive which was badly damaged, about 500 m from the place of cessation. In Merak he did not find anything else. Even the corpse was not met? everything has been washed away into the sea. Among government officials at the Peacock only Pechler and an engineer named Nieuwenhuis who survived, because he was traveling to Batavia. When engineers went back to Peacock, who built his house on the hill as high as 14 m only a floor only. 

Pumice Stone Rain in Teluk Betung 

Anyer hit by tidal waves on Monday morning, the 27th, about ten o'clock in the morning. These waves swept seaside settlement, so that is left is the fort, prison, and Wedana Patih residence. Terrain around Anyer, which was behind where approximately 1 km wide as if shaved bald; near shore coral blocks thrown onto land. 

Also densely populated Caringin moulder; located on a wide plateau about 1,500 m, followed by the hills of 50m, where a small number of inhabitants to save themselves. 

Not only on land, but on the high seas Krakatau also terrorizing ships sailing nearby coincidence. Passenger ships that sail the Strait of Sunda on the fateful day not to forget their experiences and fears for his life. 

Gouverneur Generaal Loudon steamboat, with skipper Lindeman, a ship Nederland Indische Stoomvaartsmaatschappij (predecessor KPM) sailed from Batavia to Padang and Aceh to stop in the Gulf of Betung, Krui, and Bengkulu. The ship departed on 26 August morning from Jakarta. A passenger ship that recounts his experience as follows: 

"The weather was very sunny morning. In the afternoon we anchored in Anyer, a small port on the coast of Banten. Some blue-collar workers rose from this port. The ship then continued his voyage to the Bay of Lampung, past Sangiang Island and Cape Tua. To the left of the ship we saw the island of Rakata in the distance, which we singgahi two months ago. " 

"When Mount Krakatoa began work last May, after two centuries of rest, the company owner Loudon conduct a tour of tourism for the people of Batavia. By paying twenty-five guilders we can sail to the island of Krakatoa. At the time it is still possible to land on the island, even climbing white steaming crater. " 

"Now that the volcano was likely far more serious. Thick black smoke rising from the crater into the blue sky and ash raining down on the deck of a ship fine ... " 

"At 7 o'clock the evening we anchored in the Gulf Betung. Day very quickly became dark, was lautpun seems more choppy and more heavy rain of ash. Loudon motioned to send a boat ashore for passengers to be landed, but no answer nothing. Then the captain ordered the ship lifeboat lowered, but did not allow large waves to reach the ground, so that the lifeboat had to come back again. " 

"Harbor lights lit as usual, but it seems there are extraordinary events in the Gulf Betung. Occasionally visible sign of danger from other boats and the sound of pounding gong. Lighting extinguished city. Meanwhile ash raining now turned into a heavy rain of pumice ... " 

Broken Like Flare Tower Matchstick 

"With our discomfort spent the night. Sea water is getting wilder and large waves pounded the hull without stopping. When dawn broke we saw that the Bay Betung suffered considerable damage by tidal waves. Ship fire Barouw government, regardless of the anchor, and struck down into the ground. Warehouses and other buildings damaged port. But no visible sign of your life in the small town ... " 

"At seven o'clock in the morning all of a sudden we saw a wall of water headed our ships. Loudon had time to do manouvre to avoid, so that the wave is about parallel to the side of the ship. The ship was a great dive, but at the same time the wave has passed and Loudon survived. We could see how the tide was approaching, then hit the town of Teluk Betung with unstoppable force ... " 

"Pretty soon there was a burst of three devastating waves, which in front of our eyes ravaged all that is on the beach. We see how the flare tower was broken like a matchstick and houses run over by a wave disappeared. Ships Barouw raised, then dumped into the ground through the tops of palm trees. What was the Bay of Betung now only a mere water ... " 

"In the city of course there are thousands of people who died simultaneously and the city itself as removed from the earth. It all happened very quickly and suddenly, so pass before we had time to realize what really happened. As if with one movement of all-powerful background of a theatrical decor has been replaced ... " 

"Finally Captain Lindeman decided to leave the bay, because he thought that the situation is quite dangerous. Ships heading to Anyer in order to report the catastrophe that befell the Gulf Betung. Soon the ship was sailing on the high seas. Although it was still morning, the weather was getting dark, and by ten o'clock it was dark as night. The darkness lasted for eighteen hours and as long as it rains the mud that covered the deck until nearly half a meter. " 

"In the wheelhouse the skipper to see that the compass shows the movements of the most bizarre; at sea occur strong currents, which are always changing direction. Air polluted by sulfur gas jet which makes it difficult to breathe and some passengers suffered from ear whistled. Barometer shows a very high air pressure. Then a strong wind which develop into hurricanes. The ship swayed by the vibration of sea and high waves. There are times threatened Loudon will be reversed by the overflow of water coming from the side. Anything that is not firmly attached was thrown into the sea ... " 

Saint Elmo Of Fire

"Seven consecutive lightning struck the main mast. With a series of bursts of crackling, lightning was sometimes like hanging on the ship which was lit up horrible. Fire extinguishers put up on the deck, the skipper worried because every time Loudon could burn. " 

"Except for lightning, we also witnessed other strange natural phenomenon, namely the so-called Saint Elmo's fire. On top of the mast several times seen small flame is blue. Sailor-sailor climbing the mast to extinguish native 'fire', but before they reached the above symptoms had disappeared and then look to move to another place. Blue flames that move was truly a horrific sight and awakened chilling. " 

"Between the storms and big waves we experience moments of quiet. Suddenly everything became quiet and lautpun slick as glass. But the unnatural quiet that is more gripping than the noisy waves and hurricanes that we had experienced. No other sound, except lamentations and prayers of the Indonesian passenger in the front deck, which believes that their death will soon arrive. " 

"Finally, on the eve of the 28th we saw a bit of light burst out of heaven! A beam of pale moonlight broke through the dark clouds. When it's around four o'clock in the morning. On the boat people cheered happily with gratitude and relief. " 

"It's still there pumice and ash fell to the deck, but at least we can look around with a bit obvious. We are still sailing along the coast of Sumatra. It seems very quiet beach. What used to be overgrown with trees now left only the broken stump former trunk. Sea full of wood and pumice, which in various places to gather into a kind of a big island that covered the entrance to the Bay of Lampung. " 

"Looks Loudon really surprising. He is more like a ship that sank ten years on the seabed and new reappointed. We sail the Strait of Sunda and early morning Krakatoa look back. Now we just understand what really happened. The whole island was blown up and destroyed most of the missing. Crater wall had collapsed, we only see the giant gaps that emit smoke and steam. " 

"At sea, between the island and the island of Krakatoa Sebesi which was still a shipping line, are proliferating small volcanic islands and dozens of burnt charcoal arising from surface water. In eight places smoke visible from the sea surrounded by the white steam. " 

"Slowly we approached the coast of Java. A landscape that looks almost inexpressible. Everything has been flattened into a desert no man's land. When we docked in the Gulf of Anyer, we realized that a small port that is not there anymore. Everything has been washed away, no house, no bush, not even a stone that looks! Only a milestone still mark the former site of the founding of the lighthouse. The rest do not exist any more, emptiness and loneliness ... " 

"What was once a prosperous villages, now only a stretch of gray mud. The river filled with debris and mud. Everywhere there seems no sign of life ... " 

"The islands in the Sunda Strait was also not spared from the calamities. Sebesi island that was inhabited two thousand people, now only a heap of ash hill, until a peak of nearly five hundred feet high, and all the plants without a trace. Invisible boat or the village again. Similarly, a state other islands, and island Sangiang Sebuku"


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