21 DECEMBER 1867, Page 3

A great earthquake occurred at St. Thomas's on the afternoon

of the 18th November at about twenty minutes to three. The earthquake only lasted about two minutes, but the shock to the town was frightful, many houses being half ruined by its violence. At sea the result was no less disastrous.' The La Plata was coal- ing when the shock was first felt. The shock itself did no harm but frightening the crew and passengers, but within two minutes a great roller thirty feet high, with a snowy crest, was seen approaching the ship, which it threatened to strike broadside. Fortunately, before it reached the ship the sea in the bay receded, and so far turned the vessel that it presented its quarter instead of its broadside to the roller. Still, many negroes were washed overboard, a boat carried away, the captain's gig stove in, and the ship's copper started. No substantial damage, however, was done ; but the great wave rushed into the harbour, and filled the lower rooms of the town with water. Between the shook and the wave, the little island of Saba was seen to be sending up fire and smoke, large rocks were hurled into the air, and a sulphurous smell per- vaded the ship, giving a false alarm of fire. Many smaller shocks succeeded, but no more of those awful rollers. The sun was shining brightly throughout, and there was no wind.