Although many communities in Central America have been living with persistent volcanic emissions for a long time (many centuries in the case of Masaya), the vumo leaves little geophysical record

Due to the almost invisible nature of the hazard historical sources are a crucial means to establish how frequently the hazard occurs and changes in intensity, and how communities have perceived and responded to it over time

It is also vitally important to unearth pre-existing resilience practices to enable us to build upon them and improve communication of this hazard for instance by utilising established historical narrative, popular understanding of the nature of volcanism and risk, and lore about the volcano

UNRESP has been working on providing an overview of the relevant sources for the period 1850-present, along with select examples which demonstrate the potential for further research

Archival research is taking place at US National Archive at College Park, MD; and in Nicaragua – Instituto de Historia de Nicaragua y Centroamérica, Archivo Nacional de Nicaragua and the Archivo de la Prefectura de Granada

Historical work is led by 

Hilary Francis, Institute of Latin American Studies, University of London

Denis NavasUniversidad Centroamericana

Caroline Williams, University of Bristol

The featured image shows archival material from 1950’s when discussions were held on the feasibility of bombing Masaya volcano’s active crater ‘Santiago’ to stop its persistent emissions.