Seychelles Remembers 160 Years since the 1862 Avalanche.
There was deluge, destruction and death. It was an unprecedented natural catastrophe for the archipelago of the Seychelles which was governed by the British as a dependent of Mauritius. The devastation that it caused and the suffering that it inflicted on the population of around, 7,000 inhabitants have no doubt made the lavalas the most dreadful event in the history of Seychelles. At that time, coconut oil was the most lucrative agricultural activity in the islands, so coconut estates were established on many hundreds of acres of land.
The government buildings which had resisted the impact of the raging flood were buried several feet in mud, three bridges were completely destroyed and the few timber dwellings that had escaped destruction had been tossed into various positions far from their original sites. The streams of the town were so clogged with mud and rocks that the network of bridles paths was obliterated by the sludgy overflow. Royal Street itself had changed into a sinuous river.
By late Sunday afternoon, scores of families who had lost their homes were snuggled together inside the Anglican church of St.Paul.