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Paricutin also known as the wonder of the cornfield is the most recent volcano to form in the Western Hemisphere Paricutin is a part of the Mexican volcanic belt which extends 1200 km from west to east from the Pacific Ocean to the Caribbean Sea The volcanic activity here is related to the Middle American Trench a subduction zone near Mexicos Pacific coast Paricutin stands near the city of Uruapan in southwestern Mexico about two hundred miles west of Mexico City It received its name from the village of Paricutin This volcano is rare because scientists were able to watch the birth growth and the death of it Geologists from many parts of the world came to study this vast volcanic event and from then on it was under constant observation Also along with scientists many people from all around the world came to observe it The knowledge gained by these scientists greatly expanded our understanding of volcanism and of cone formation Three weeks before the eruption the people near Paricutin village heard the rumbling noises that resembled thunder but they were confused because the skies were clear and there were no clouds These noises were associated with earthquakes at depth near Paricutin The Paricutin volcano is a type of volcano called a cinder cone The common order of events for a cinder cone volcano is eruption formation of the cone and crater and then a lava flow The eruption that created Paricutin began in a cornfield on February 20 1943 and continued through 1952 from a crack in the earth A farmer Dionisio Pulido and his wife witnessed this happen They said they saw the earth crack before-them and smoke rise that smelled like a rotten egg Most of the explosive activity was during the first year of the eruption when the cone grew to 1100 feet and lava rose to about fifty feet above the craters rim The cone continued
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