At ten o’clock in the morning of May 19, 1780, people in the Eastern Seaboard noticed a strange haze spreading across the sky. Then a thick darkness settled over the eastern part of the US.
By noon, schools were dismissed, candles lit, and torches set in the streets. Birds went to roost. By one o’clock in the afternoon, fear had turned into panic as the “premature nightfall” continued. Thousands crowded into churches to hear ministers expound on the Day of Judgment.
In Hartford, Connecticut, both houses of the legislature were meeting, but one of them quickly dismissed since its members thought the world would end at any moment.
The other body continued, although greatly distressed. One man finally made a motion to disband, since the day of reckoning was thought to have come. Immediately, Mr. Davenport, a Christian, objected, saying, “Mr. Speaker, this is either the Day of Judgment or it is not. If it is not, there is no need for adjourning. If it is, I desire to be found doing my work. I move that candles be brought in and that we proceed to business.” The meeting went on.
Then the fourth angel sounded: And a third of the sun was struck, a third of the moon, and a third of the stars, so that a third of them were darkened. A third of the day did not shine, and likewise the night. – Revelation 8:12