"The commissary and the San Francisco Earthquake and Fire," Presidio file. [Nash, Jay R. Darkest Hours, p. 492] The interim fire chief sent an urgent request to the Presidio, a United States Army post on the edge of the stricken city, for dynamite.  In his first public statement, California governor George Pardee emphasized the need to rebuild quickly: "This is not the first time that San Francisco has been destroyed by fire, I have not the slightest doubt that the City by the Golden Gate will be speedily rebuilt, and will, almost before we know it, resume her former great activity". The lowering of sea level over about 16 minutes was followed by a series of oscillations with an approximate period of 40-45 minutes. On the morning of April 18, 1906, a massive earthquake shook San Francisco, California.Though the quake lasted less than a minute, its immediate impact was disastrous.  The U.S. government quickly voted for one million dollars in relief supplies which were immediately rushed to the area, including supplies for food kitchens and many thousands of tents that city dwellers would occupy the next several years. Violent shocks punctuated the strong shaking, which lasted some 45 to 60 seconds. These effects of the fire still remain today, and thus large shocks can be sufficient catalysts for permanently reshaping urban settings. April 18, 1906 San Francisco was wrecked by a Great Earthquake at 5:13 a.m., and then destroyed by the seventh Great Fire that burned for four days. He also made it clear that the majority of soldiers served the community well. , The 1908 Lawson Report, a study of the 1906 quake led and edited by Professor Andrew Lawson of the University of California, showed that the same San Andreas Fault which had caused the disaster in San Francisco ran close to Los Angeles as well. In the 1960s, a seismologist at UC Berkeley proposed that the epicenter was more likely offshore of San Francisco, to the northwest of the Golden Gate. Areas situated in sediment-filled valleys sustained stronger shaking than nearby bedrock sites, and the strongest shaking occurred in areas of former bay where soil liquefaction had occurred. More than 3,000 people died. Collection of the UC Berkeley Earthquake Engineering Other earthquake-endangered countries followed the California example. (From "The 1906 California Earthquake", David Starr Jordan, Editor, 1907, A.M. Robertson, San Francisco.) Until 1910, a few countries, especially in Europe, followed the call for an exclusion of the earthquake hazard from all fire insurance contracts.  The strike-slip fault is characterized by mainly lateral motion in a dextral sense, where the western (Pacific) plate moves northward relative to the eastern (North American) plate. Constructing new mansions without reclaiming and clearing old rubble simply sped attaining new homes in the tent city during the reconstruction. with sufficient force to be felt widely throughout the San  According to findings published in the Journal of Geophysical Research, severe deformations in the earth's crust took place both before and after the earthquake's impact. They aided the fire department in dynamiting to demolish buildings in the path of the fires. The 1906 San Francisco earthquake struck the coast of Northern California at 5:12 a.m. on Wednesday, April 18 with an estimated moment magnitude of 7.9 and a maximum Mercalli intensity of XI (Extreme). Before the quake, San Francisco was known as the "Queen of the West." Print. It was constructed in 1875 primarily financed by Bank of California co-founder William Ralston, the "man who built San Francisco". The earthquake also ignited several fires around the city that burned for three days and destroyed nearly 500 city blocks.  However, hundreds of fatalities in Chinatown went ignored and unrecorded. Another event of this type occurred at 12:31 PST on April 19, 1906, with an estimated magnitude of about 5.0 MI , and an epicenter beneath Santa Monica Bay..  City fathers likewise attempted at the time to eliminate the Chinese population and export Chinatown (and other poor populations) to the edge of the county where the Chinese could still contribute to the local taxbase. The largest aftershock happened at 01:10 PST on April 23, west of Eureka, California, with an estimated magnitude of about 6.7 MI , with another of the same size more than three years later at 22:45 PST on October 28 near Cape Mendocino. This created the need to train nursing students, and, in 1907, the UC Training School for Nurses was established, adding a fourth professional school to the Affiliated Colleges. Montréal: Canadian Centre for Architecture, 1993. His bold plan called for, among other proposals, Haussmann-style avenues, boulevards, arterial thoroughfares that radiated across the city, a massive civic center complex with classical structures, and what would have been the largest urban park in the world, stretching from Twin Peaks to Lake Merced with a large atheneum at its peak. Lawson (1908) originally ascribed these later oscillations to reverberation of the tsunami within San Francisco Bay. Their aim: a uniform solution to insurance payouts resulting from fires caused by earthquakes. The San Andreas Fault is a continental transform fault that forms part of the tectonic boundary between the Pacific Plate and the North American Plate. The destruction of City Hall and the Hall of Records enabled thousands of Chinese immigrants to claim residency and citizenship, creating a backdoor to the Chinese Exclusion Act, and bring in their relatives from China. Between 227,000 and 300,000 people were left homeless out of a population of about 410,000; half of those who evacuated fled across the bay to Oakland and Berkeley. Some property owners deliberately set fire to damaged properties, to claim them on their insurance. The USGS Earthquake Hazards Program issued a series of Internet documents, and the tourism industry promoted the 100th anniversary as well. One of the more famous and ambitious plans came from famed urban planner Daniel Burnham. On April 18, 1906, At almost precisely 5:12 a.m., local time, a foreshock occurred with sufficient force to be felt widely throughout the San Francisco Bay area. The magnitude was estimated to be 7.8. Under the command of Funston's superior, Major General Adolphus Greely, Commanding Officer of the Pacific Division, over 4,000 federal troops saw service during the emergency. Though the quake lasted less than a minute, its immediate impact was disastrous. At 5:12 a.m. on April 18, 1906, the people of San Francisco were awakened by an earthquake that would devastate the city. border. Screenshot from SF Municipal code. Police officers, firefighters, and soldiers would regularly commandeer passing civilians for work details to remove rubble and assist in rescues. Some were started when San Francisco Fire Department firefighters, untrained in the use of dynamite, attempted to demolish buildings to create firebreaks. 'Sure.' , One landmark building lost in the fire was the Palace Hotel, subsequently rebuilt, which had many famous visitors, including royalty and celebrated performers. Saul, Eric, and Don DeNevi. On August 1, 1909, the California Senate enacted the California Standard Form of Fire Insurance Policy, which did not contain any earthquake clause.  Most of the deaths occurred in San Francisco itself, but 189 were reported elsewhere in the Bay Area; nearby cities, such as Santa Rosa and San Jose, also suffered severe damage. 1906 San Francisco earthquake: About 430 kilometers (270 mi) were ruptured in Northern California. Fradkin, Philip L. The Great Earthquake and Firestorms of 1906: How San Francisco Nearly Destroyed Itself. Action intended to save the city may have added to the chaos, injuries, deaths and damage. The most widely accepted estimate for the magnitude of the quake on the modern moment magnitude scale is 7.9; values from 7.7 to as high as 8.3 have been proposed.  London raised hundreds of thousands of dollars. Shortly after the Great San Francisco earthquake of April 18, 1906, a sea level disturbance (tsunami) was recorded at the Presidio tide gauge station in San Francisco (the station is now located nearby at Ft. Point). 1906 Earthquake: How long was the 1906 Crack? Earthquake Days: The 1906 San Francisco Earthquake & Fire in 3-D. San Bruno, CA: Faultline Books, 2005. , The earthquake and fire left long-standing and significant pressures on the development of California. The most important characteristic of the shaking intensity noted in Andrew Lawson's (1908) report was the clear correlation of intensity with underlying geologic conditions. Seismic tremors in this area are common, but the activity in 1906 … Caruso died in 1921, having remained true to his word. , Recently, using old photographs and eyewitness accounts, researchers were able to estimate the location of the hypocenter of the earthquake as offshore from San Francisco or near the city of San Juan Bautista, confirming previous estimates.. The Bank of Italy had evacuated its funds and was able to provide liquidity in the immediate aftermath. how long did the san francisco earthquake of 1906 last ... ... 1906 earthquake The city of San Francisco, along with a significant part of California, lies in an earthquake-prone zone caused by the active San Andreas Fault system which runs from Cape Mendocino all the way to the Mexico/U.S. More than two years later, many of these refugee camps were still in operation. As one indirect result, the wealthy looked westward where the land was cheap and relatively undeveloped, and where there were better views. Accumulated strain on the faults in the system was relieved during the earthquake… Nancy Stoner Sage (February 19, 1905 – April 15, 2010) died, aged 105, in Colorado just three days short of the 104th anniversary of the earthquake on April 18, 2010. The famed 1906 San Francisco earthquake ranks as the most lethal earthquake in California history, with over 700 official deaths and likely many more. , The earthquake was also responsible for the development of the Pacific Heights neighborhood. The earthquake also ignited several fires around the city that burned for three days and destroyed nearly 500 city blocks. On July 1, 1906, non-military authorities assumed responsibility for relief efforts, and the Army withdrew from the city. 2. Modern seismic-zonation practice accounts for the differences in seismic hazard posed by varying geologic conditions. The greatest damage of the 1906 earthquake occurred when many of San Francisco's water and gas mains were ruptured. , William James, the pioneering American psychologist, was teaching at Stanford at the time of the earthquake and traveled into San Francisco to observe first-hand its aftermath. (Thanks to ABAG - Association of Bay Area Governments - for this table.) Capt. 2. Research Center), "At almost precisely 5:12 a.m. local time, a foreshock occurred The city's fire chief, Dennis T. Sullivan, who would have been responsible for coordinating firefighting efforts, had died from injuries sustained in the initial quake. Where previously the river emptied into Monterey Bay between Moss Landing and Watsonville, it was diverted 6 miles (9.7 km) south to a new channel just north of Marina. , Property losses from the disaster have been estimated to be more than $400 million in 1906 dollars. The massive earthquake that shook San Francisco to its core in the early hours of April 18, 1906, ignited a howling blaze that threatened total destruction of the city. The main temblor, having a 7.7–7.9 magnitude, lasted about one minute and was the result of the rupturing of the northernmost 296 miles of the 800-mile San Andreas fault. Blazes … , The 1906 Centennial Alliance was set up as a clearing-house for various centennial events commemorating the earthquake. (From "The 1906 California Earthquake", David Starr Jordan, Editor, 1907, A.M. Robertson, San Francisco.) The Metropolitan Opera Company lost all of its traveling sets and costumes in the earthquake and ensuing fires. Devastating fires soon broke out in the city and lasted for several days. These include San Jose and Santa Rosa, the entire downtown of which was essentially destroyed.. Finally, in April 1907, one of the buildings was renovated for outpatient care with 75 beds. The Call-Chronicle-Examiner. The 1906 San Francisco earthquake, despite its immediate horrors and long-term miseries, was not among the worst quakes of all time in terms of either casualties or property damage. Eadweard Muybridge and the Photographic Panorama of San Francisco, 1850-1880.  William Del Monte (January 22, 1906 – January 11, 2016), who died 11 days shy of his 110th birthday, was thought to be the last survivor. Accumulated strain on the faults in the system was relieved during the earthquake, which is the supposed cause of the damage along the 450-kilometer-long (280 mi) segment of the San Andreas plate boundary. The 1906 earthquake preceded the development of the Richter magnitude scale by three decades. In 1906 San Francisco was the ninth largest U.S. city with a population of 400,000, and over 225,000 were left homeless by the disaster. It’s estimated to have been a magnitude 7.8 quake. p.225. By July 1906, San Francisco issued an ordinance (see image below) to landowners to remove all debris. Research Center, What was Learned Scientifically from 1906, Other Major Earthquakes in the SF Bay Area. About 10 or 12 seconds after the shaking subsided, the city was rocked by a far more powerful temblor that lasted some 45 to 60 seconds. , The grandeur of citywide reconstruction schemes required investment from Eastern monetary sources, hence the spin and de-emphasis of the earthquake, the promulgation of the tough new building codes, and subsequent reputation sensitive actions such as the official low death toll. (Credit: Underwood Archives/Getty Images) The quake, estimated at a 7.9 magnitude, caused a fire that burned for three days. En Español. The dynamited buildings themselves often caught fire. On April 20, the U.S.S. , After the 1906 earthquake, global discussion arose concerning a legally flawless exclusion of the earthquake hazard from fire insurance contracts. Violent shocks punctuated the strong shaking, which lasted , The Army built 5,610 redwood and fir "relief houses" to accommodate 20,000 displaced people. Newman, who survived San Francisco's 1906 earthquake, died in July 2015 at the age of 113. The most widely accepted estimate for the magnitude of the quake on the modern moment magnitude scale is 7.9; values from 7.7 to as high as 8.3 have been proposed. Karin Breuer and Victoria Binder / Apr 7, 2020 Arnold Genthe (1869–1942) photographed images of San Francisco on April 18, 1906 and for at least two weeks after much of the city was reduced to rubble by an earthquake and a subsequent fire that devastated its downtown. The earthquake in San Francisco on the morning of April 18th, 1906, started more than fifty fires. . Due to a widespread practice by insurers to indemnify San Francisco properties from fire, but not earthquake damage, most of the destruction in the city was blamed on the fires. Print. .  In 1929, Bank of Italy was renamed and is now known as Bank of America. Hotel St. Francis northwest corner of Powell and Geary streets. (Slip on offshore segments of the San Andreas fault north and south of Shelter Cove is inferred from comparisons of geodetic observations made before and after 1906). CBS SF Bay Area. Since 1915, the city has officially commemorated the disaster each year by gathering the remaining survivors at Lotta's Fountain, a fountain in the city's financial district that served as a meeting point during the disaster for people to look for loved ones and exchange information. , Shortly after Hamrol's death, two additional survivors were discovered. California's rock-and-roll reputation was set more than a century ago, when a devastating earthquake flattened San Francisco in 1906. City officials estimated the casualties at 700 but more modern calculations say about 3,000 lost their lives. The 1906 San Francisco Earthquake. "Soldiers in the Streets, 1906," The Pacific Historian, Spring 1978 (vol. Following the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, more than 40,000 people were relocated to a makeshift tent city in Golden Gate Park and were treated by the faculty of the Affiliated Colleges. It was the strongest earthquake to hit the area since the San Francisco earthquake of 1906. ", The earthquake was crucial in the development of the University of California, San Francisco and its medical facilities. High-intensity shaking was felt from Eureka on the North Coast to the Salinas Valley, an agricultural region to the south of the San Francisco Bay Area. The $2 monthly rents went towards the full purchase price of $50. Leaking gas was the catalyst for fires that quickly spread throughout the city and the lack of water made fire fighting a challenge. Thus the state decided that insurers would have to pay again if another earthquake was followed by fires. , The 1906 earthquake preceded the development of the Richter magnitude scale by three decades. We conducted a study to locate and to estimate magnitudes for the largest aftershocks and triggered events of this earthquake. , The fire following the earthquake in San Francisco cost an estimated $350 million at the time (equivalent to $7.67 billion in 2019). For the 1851 fire, see, Ruins in the vicinity of Post and Grant Avenue. But the traumatized public reacted with fierce opposition. Though the quake lasted less than a minute, its immediate impact was disastrous. 100th Anniversary 1906 San Francisco Earthquake Conference, 2006, "The Great 1906 Earthquake & Fires of San Francisco", NY Times Obituary for Heinrich Conrad, April 27, 1909, The Journal of Industrial and Engineering Chemistry, The Bear Flag, The Virtual Museum of the City of San Francisco, "Mayor Eugene Schmitz's Famed "Shoot-to-Kill" Order", "Looting Claims Against the U.S. Army Following the 1906 Earthquake", Baseball in the Garden of Eden: The Secret History of the Early Game, "The Myth of the Panicking Disaster Victim", "1868–1898 – Introduction – A History of UCSF", "Relocation of Chinatown Following the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake", Great Earthquake and Fire of 1906: Its Effects on Chinatown, The Great 1906 San Francisco Earthquake and Fire, "Dealing with Disaster: The San Francisco Earthquake of 1906", The role of Lloyd's in the reconstruction, "How the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake Shaped Economic Activity in the American West", "1906 earthquake survivor Irma Mae Weule dies", "Libera Era Armstrong (1902–2007) – Hayward, California", "SF remembers great quake on 103rd anniversary", "Rose Cliver Obituary: View Rose Cliver's Obituary by San Francisco Chronicle". This fault runs the length of California from the Salton Sea in the south to Cape Mendocino in the north, a distance of about 810 miles (1,300 km). The earthquake was felt from southern Oregon to south of Los Angeles and inland as far as central Nevada." Many of the city's leading poets and writers retreated to Carmel-by-the-Sea where, as "The Barness", they established the arts colony reputation that continues today. Violent shocks punctuated the strong shaking which lasted some 45 to 60 seconds. Reconstruction was swift, and largely completed by 1915, in time for the 1915 Panama–Pacific International Exposition which celebrated the reconstruction of the city and its "rise from the ashes". Previously interpreted as precursory activity to the 1906 earthquake, they have been found to have a strong seasonal pattern and are now believed to be due to large seasonal sediment loads in coastal bays that overlie faults as a result of the erosion caused by hydraulic mining in the later years of the California Gold Rush. The available seismological data support a significantly shorter rupture length, but these observations can be reconciled by allowing propagation at speeds above the S-wave velocity (supershear). Brady, Matt. The 1906 San Francisco Earthquake is one of the most significant earthquakes at all time. There were decades of minor earthquakes – more than at any other time in the historical record for northern California – before the 1906 quake. Its president also immediately chartered and financed the sending of two ships to return with shiploads of lumber from Washington and Oregon mills which provided the initial reconstruction materials and surge. He then leaped to the east and borrowing a kodak he took the picture of the train here presented." , In 2005 the National Film Registry added San Francisco Earthquake and Fire, April 18, 1906, a newsreel documentary made soon after the earthquake, to its list of American films worthy of preservation. Most of the shacks have been destroyed, but a small number survived. The Virtual Museum of San Francisco. During the first few days, soldiers provided valuable services like patrolling streets to discourage looting and guarding buildings such as the U.S. Mint, post office, and county jail. The immense power of the earthquake had destroyed almost all of the mansions on Nob Hill except for the James C. Flood Mansion. Fatality and monetary damage estimates were manipulated. Strobridge,William. The houses were designed by John McLaren, and were grouped in eleven camps, packed close to each other and rented to people for two dollars per month until rebuilding was completed. " The author attribute this to migrants opting not to go to severely affected cities while migrating to the American West. "Supply Situation In Hand Despite Destruction of Depot; Provisions on Way From East," Presidial Weekly Clarion, (Presidio of San Francisco), 27 April 1906.  Del Monte and another survivor, Rose Cliver, then 106, attended the earthquake reunion celebration on April 18, 2009, the 103rd anniversary of the earthquake. 1906 San Francisco Earthquake on April 18, 1906. , Early on April 18, 1906, recently retired Captain Edward Ord of the 22nd Infantry Regiment was appointed a Special Police Officer by Mayor Eugene Schmitz and liaised with Major General Adolphus Greely for relief work with the 22nd Infantry and other military units involved in the emergency.  The original California flag used in the 1846 Bear Flag Revolt at Sonoma, which at the time was being stored in a state building in San Francisco, was also destroyed in the fire. Clutching an autographed photo of President Theodore Roosevelt, Caruso made an effort to get out of the city, first by boat and then by train, and vowed never to return to San Francisco. , H. G. Wells had just arrived in New York on his first visit to America when he learned, at lunch, of the San Francisco earthquake. The 1906 San Francisco earthquake, despite its immediate horrors and long-term miseries, was not among the worst quakes of all time in terms of either casualties or property damage. , Insurance companies, faced with staggering claims of $250 million, paid out between $235 million and $265 million on policyholders' claims, often for fire damage only, since shake damage from earthquakes was excluded from coverage under most policies. In the U.S., the question was discussed differently. Just as there would be none at all if all this New York that has so obsessed me with its limitless bigness was itself a blazing ruin. Chicago rescued 20,000 victims, one of the largest sea evacuations in history, rivaling Dunkirk in World … Carl Nolte, Hundreds gather to honor victims of '06 quake, "Ruth Newman, a Survivor of the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake, Dies at 113", "Last survivor of 1906 San Francisco earthquake and fire dies at 109", "Librarian of Congress Adds 25 Films to National Film Registry", Library of Congress P&P Online Catalog — Panoramic Photographs, https://www.sparknotes.com/drama/angels/symbols/, "Source study of the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake", Before and After the Great Earthquake and Fire: Early Films of San Francisco, 1897–1916, A geologic tour of the San Francisco earthquake, 100 years later, Virtual Museum of the City of San Francisco, Mark Twain and the San Francisco Earthquake, Seismographs of the earthquake taken from the Lick Observatory from the Lick Observatory Records Digital Archive, UC Santa Cruz Library's Digital Collections, Timeline of the San Francisco Earthquake April 18 – 23, 1906, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=1906_San_Francisco_earthquake&oldid=999574075, 1906 natural disasters in the United States, Articles with dead external links from March 2018, Articles with permanently dead external links, Wikipedia indefinitely move-protected pages, Pages using multiple image with auto scaled images, Articles with unsourced statements from April 2019, Articles with unsourced statements from September 2020, Articles with unsourced statements from March 2016, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 10 January 2021, at 21:53. The 1906 San Francisco Earthquake is one of the most significant earthquakes at all time. But there is no doubt anywhere that San Francisco can be rebuilt, larger, better, and soon. The night after Caruso's performance in Carmen, the tenor was awakened in the early morning in his Palace Hotel suite by a strong jolt.  The shaking intensity as described on the Modified Mercalli intensity scale reached XI (Extreme) in San Francisco and areas to the north like Santa Rosa where destruction was devastating.  An offshore epicenter is supported by the occurrence of a local tsunami recorded by a tide gauge at the San Francisco Presidio; the wave had an amplitude of approximately 3 in (8 cm) and an approximate period of 40–45 minutes. The tremor itself, which struck in the early morning of April 18, lasted for about a minute and caused immense destruction, especially in the areas of reclaimed land around the bay where land effectively became fluid during the event – a process known as liquefaction. The total length of the rupture was 477 km, and the main epicentre was located about 3 km off the shore of San Francisco. "1906 Quake Shook Up Insurance Industry Worldwide." The Army also became responsible for feeding, sheltering, and clothing the tens of thousands of displaced residents of the city. The death toll remains the greatest loss of life from a natural disaster in California's history and high on the lists of American disasters. Over 80% of the city was destroyed by the earthquake and fire. , While the original street grid was restored, many of Burnham's proposals inadvertently saw the light of day, such as a neoclassical civic center complex, wider streets, a preference of arterial thoroughfares, a subway under Market Street, a more people-friendly Fisherman's Wharf, and a monument to the city on Telegraph Hill, Coit Tower. San Francisco Earthquake, 1906. The total length is 296 miles (477 kilometers). 22, no. 18 On April 1906, the earthquake struck at 5:12 am local time without warning (Zoback, 2006). The 1906 San Francisco earthquake struck the coast of Northern California at 5:12 a.m. on Wednesday, April 18 with an estimated moment magnitude of 7.9 and a maximum Mercalli intensity of XI (Extreme).High-intensity shaking was felt from Eureka on the North Coast to the Salinas Valley, an agricultural region to the south of the San Francisco Bay Area. The most recent analyses support an offshore location for the epicenter, although significant uncertainty remains. And by April 1908, San Francisco had already been rebuilt. , For years, the epicenter of the quake was assumed to be near the town of Olema, in the Point Reyes area of Marin County, due to local earth displacement measurements.  107-year-old George Quilici (April 26, 1905 – May 31, 2012) died in May 2012, and 113-year-old Ruth Newman (September 23, 1901 – July 29, 2015) in July 2015. William Del Monte, then 103, and Jeanette Scola Trapani (April 21, 1902 – December 28, 2009), 106, stated that they stopped attending events commemorating the earthquake when it became too much trouble for them. 1907 most people had moved out long-standing and significant pressures on the development of the magnitude! Refugee camp was closed on June 30, 1908 recorded the earthquake was felt from southern Oregon to Los and... 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