On March 29, 1848, residents by Niagara Falls on the border of the USA and Canada woke
up to an eerie silence. It took them a moment to realize that the constant thunder of
the falls had stopped.
Residents rushed to the banks of the Niagara River, the thirty-four-mile-long channel
that feeds the waterfall. A quick inspection revealed that the river had simply stopped
flowing. The water was gone. Some people stared at the empty waterway and dry cliffs.
Others climbed out onto the rocks. A few, believing the world was ending, rushed to
churches for special services.
It was soon discovered, however, at the point where Lake Erie empties into the Niagara
River, a pile of ice had formed a dam stopping the flow of water. Two days later, the
ice melted and with a roaring thunder, the Niagara flooded down once again.