On May 8, 1902, Ascension Day, all inhabitants of Saint-Pierre, the major city in Martinique, have died. Only two survived. What happened?

native attack
volcano eruption
mass suicide
ergot poisoning
The city was covered with py­ro­clas­tic flow, con­sist­ing of su­per­heat­ed steam and volcanic gases, with tem­per­a­tures ex­ceed­ing 1,075 °C (1,967 °F). One of the sur­vivors was held in an un­der­ground cell in the town's jail.

Answers distribution

native attack
volcano eruption
mass suicide
ergot poisoning
answers
flagDenmark
0%
94%
2%
2%
34
flagSwitzerland
4%
90%
0%
4%
21
flagGermany
2%
88%
2%
5%
276
flagAustria
2%
87%
2%
2%
40
flagFrance
3%
85%
3%
4%
64
flagRepublic of Ireland
1%
85%
8%
4%
61
flagSpain
4%
84%
0%
6%
46
flagthe United Kingdom
3%
82%
4%
7%
647
flagItaly
1%
82%
4%
4%
94
flagAustralia
0%
80%
3%
16%
30
flagBelgium
3%
80%
11%
0%
26
flagCanada
3%
79%
2%
11%
81
flagPoland
4%
78%
5%
10%
18479
flagNorway
2%
78%
8%
10%
37
flagLithuania
7%
78%
3%
10%
28
flagthe United States
5%
75%
7%
7%
685
flagSweden
7%
71%
2%
13%
38
flagthe Netherlands
6%
69%
12%
9%
62
flagUnknown
4%
68%
6%
18%
688
flagIndia
10%
58%
8%
17%
58

Gender

men73%
women72%
native attack
4%
5%
volcano eruption
73%
72%
mass suicide
5%
6%
ergot poisoning
16%
15%

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On May 8, 1902, Ascension Day, all inhabitants of Saint-Pierre, the major city in Martinique, have died. Only two survived. What happened?
1118
72%

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