From The New York Times

June 20, 1880

From the Tallahassee (Fla.) Patriot, June 12
  On Sunday night, a week ago, a large bright
light was seen in a south-easterly direction from
this city, which attracted the attention of many of
our citizens at first, but concluding that it was a
house on fire, they thought but little more of the
matter until the light reappeared several succeed-
ing nights in the same place, and put them to think-
ing again. It is much brigher some nights than
others---sometimes having the appearance of the
moon rising, but generally much brighter, and
looking more like a large fire shooting its flaming
tongue high up into the upper realms, frequently
reflected back by passing clouds. During the past
week we have conversed with several parties liv-
ing in that direction, all of whom had noticed the
light, and located it in the great swamp south-east
of here, on the Gulf coast, and about the
same spot from whence the much-talked-of column
of black smoke has been seen to issue for years,
supposed to be a volcano, which no living man has
ever been able to reach, from the fact of its being
surrounded by an impenetrable swamp. We were
told last Tuesday by a gentleman living in Wakula
County, near this noted swamp, that the light had
created much excitement in his neighborhood, as a
loud, rumbling noise was frequently heard in the
direction of it during the week. The noise was
said to be so loud Thursday, about midnight, as to
arouse the sleeping family of Mr. Frank Duggle,
and cause them to get up and run out doors, think-
ing another earthquake was on hand.

The Wakulla Volcano Archive