AVO Logo
Site Map | FAQ |
Alaska Volcano Observatory
About Alaska's Volcanoes | Hazards from Alaska's Volcanoes | Map & Alphabetical List | Interactive Map | Eruption Search | Volcano Search 
You are here: Home > Volcano Information

Augustine reported activity





Event Name : Augustine 1935/3

Start:March 13, 1935 Observed
Stop:August 18, 1935 Observed

Lava flow: BibCard
Lahar, debris-flow, or mudflow: BibCard
Pyroclastic flow, surge, or nuee ardente: BibCard BibCard
Lava dome: BibCard BibCard
Tephra plume: BibCard BibCard BibCard
Central eruption: BibCard BibCard BibCard
"Fire", "Glowing", or incandescence: BibCard
Eruption Type:Explosive
MaxVEI: 3 BibCard

Description: The Anchorage Daily Times published at least two articles in 1935 concerning an eruption at Augustine. The first, published April 3, states: "Augustine Island * * * is a roaring volcano, hurling a mighty volume of smoke into the heavens, pounding thousands of tons of lava down the sides into the sea and hurling dust over the areas for a radius of seventy miles.

"News to this effect was brough yesterday by Pilot Roy Dickson of the Star Air Service, returning here from that vicinity, after flying over and around the roaring inferno, accompanied by George L. Johnson of this city. Mr. Johnson took a moving picture of the volcano in action.

"Dickson and Johnson describe Augustine as one of the most awe-inspiring and magnificent sights they ever witnessed. Huge clouds of vapor are rising from the high cone, oozing from a main rupture in the center of the peak, and from cracks at various places about the top. The cone has an altitude of 3900 feet above the sea.

"The Augustine rises cone shaped sheer from the waters of the sea * * * having only a narrow border of land about the bottom, where for a long time wild strawberries have thrived. Now they are buried under the flood of lava and deposit of ash, and the material pouring down the steep sides pours into the sea at many places. Huge pieces of black material, lava or other light substance from the cone float on the waters.

"The smoke seems to be blowing chiefly toward Bristol Bay. Dickson and Johnson visited the voclano several days ago, flew over and around it several times, and attempted to return, but cloudy weather prevented the return. They flew there from Iliamna."

On July 13, The Anchorage Daily Times reported: "Contours of the famous Augustine volcano near Kamishak Bay have changed since it started erupting this summer, William Berry, fishing warden, said last night.

"Mr. Berry said the eruptions have blown off sections of the cone so that it no longer is of perfect symmetry. He told of lying off the island several days in his boat and watching the volcano. The lava spurts into the air continually and rolls down the side of the mountain. At night it looms up red from the molten rock. Steam and smoke blows out of the cone, he said. Mr. Berry brought some excellent snapshots of the volcano in action."

From Kienle and Swanson (1985): "Detterman (1963) reports that the eruption started on March 13 and ended August 18. In mid-August a tall black eruption cloud, 10 to 30,000 feet (3 to 9 km) high, rather thin and not billowing out at the top was seen by Mr. Wahleen (personal communication) from aboard the S.S. Dellwood just after leaving False Pass on a great circle route to Seattle. Since no other eastern Aleutian volcano was active that year, it seems that Mr. Wahleen saw the final major eruption of Augustine Volcano on August 19, from a distance of about 800 km. Between March and August, minor and major eruptions were also observed from the west side of Cook Inlet. Considerable amounts of tephra were erupted, and pyroclastic flows and mudflows were concentrated on the northeastern and southwestern flanks of the volcano (Detterman, 1963). The 1883 dome described by Becker (1895) was presumably destroyed during the initial vent clearing eruption * * * Finally, two new lava domes were emplaced in the summit crater."

Waitt and Beget (2009) additionally confirm the existence of the 1935 lava dome: "Remnant of a 1935 dome of gray porphyritic andesite forms a prominent point on the north-northwest of the summit dome complex [unit 35d, plate 1; fig. 16 in original text] and a broad dome lobe that descends the west-southwest summit cone. The 1935 dome is identified by several sources: (1) contemporaneous shipboard photographs taken by Kenai Peninsula resident Steve Zawistowski in July 1935 showing the steaming west-southwest lobe [fig. 46 in original text]; (2) USGS oblique aerial photographs taken in 1944 by John Reed, in 1959 by Bruce L. Reed, and in 1960 by Austin Post -- all before large changes to the summit area during the 1963-64 and 1976 eruptions; and (3) Detterman (1968, 1973), who in 1967 in the field distinguished the then-new 1963-64 dome from remnants of older domes. The 1944, 1959, and 1960 photographs actually show two domes: one (1883) inside the 1883 crater, the other (1935) on and outside the west rim [see fig. 45 in original text]."

Waitt and Beget (2009) also confirm the flank deposits: "High on the southwest flank downslope of the 1935 dome heads a fan of rubble whose angular andesite dome-rock boulders are as large as 6 m [see unit 35b, plate 1 in original text]. This material is similar to coarse lithic pyroclastic-flow deposits on the south flank of the 1963-64 eruption. Because the southwest fan lies directly downslope from the 1935 dome, we interpret it to have been emplaced then.

"Zawistowski’s July 1935 photographs from a boat off the southwest coast show light-colored fresh deposits in west-southwest swale, clearly recently shed downslope from a steaming, active dome [see fig. 46 in original text]. Some of the pyroclastic-flow deposits in this broad swale that we map with the 1964 eruption may include indistinguishable similar coarse debris from 1935."

Contact AVO Privacy Accessibility Information Quality FOIA
URL: www.avo.alaska.edu/volcanoes/activity.php
Page modified: March 30, 2017 14:36
Contact Information: AVO Web Team

twitter @alaska_avo
facebook alaska.avo
email Receive volcano updates by email: USGS VNS

This website is supported by the U.S. Geological Survey under Cooperative Agreement Grant G19AC00060 and G19AC00171.

Mention of trade names or commercial products does not constitute their endorsement by the U.S. Geological Survey.