Deblois, ME Landslide, Aug 1886


From the Portland (Me.) Argus, Aug. 2.
A curious natural phenomenon that puzzles everybody of more of less pretensions to scientific attainments has occurred in the town of Deblois, in Washington County -- just when nobody knows. A large body of earth, chiefly sand, by same action of nature was removed from the side of a dry sandy hill called the Pineo Field, leaving an open channel or hole extending into the hill about 200 feet, being 30 feet deep at the head and perhaps 70 or 80 feet wide, as hear as it could be judged without measuring. After the sand in its course left the base of the hill (and here the channel was contracted and quite narrow) it extended a long distance into a piece of woods, spreading over a wide space, burying the underbrush and leaving the trees standing intact. The slide, if it could be so called, was evidently caused by a flow of water bursting from the bowels of the hill, though at the time there had been no freshet, and the hill and its surroundings were dry and barren. Now, in a time of drought, under the sand which has been so recently and mysteriously sluiced through this channel, there issue small streams of water some feet apart. The water in two or three of them, which looks clear and pure, has an unpleasant taste, something like oil. In one little stream the color of the water is red, and it colors the sand through which it runs, leaving a red sediment at the bottom. In others there seems to be a slimy substance of a brownish red color.

The New York Times New York 1886-08-05

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