The great San Francisco Earthquake of 1906 was a record-shattering earthquake. Scientists pondered and studied about the earthquake for multiple years. The land of California was destroyed, and left in ruins.
On August 18th, 1906, every living being in the San Francisco area thought their day would be like any other. However, early in the morning at 5:12 am local time, foreshocks, or minor tremors of shaking, occurred. The actual earthquake struck approximately twenty to twenty-five seconds later. With a rating of VII to IX on the Mercalli Scale. The epicenter of the monster earthquake was located near San Francisco. Violent shakings occurred also, punctuating the strong shaking which lasted forty-five to sixty seconds. This giant earthquake was felt from southern Oregon to south Los Angeles and inland as far as Central Nevada. It ruptured the northernmost 296 miles of the San Andreas Fault. Geologists were confounded by the earthquake’s large horizontal displacements and great rupture length.
After analyzing the displacements and strain in the areas surrounding San Francisco, a young geologist named Reid, formulated his theory on elastic-rebound. This theory has been the foundation of our knowledge of earthquakes, and the principal model of the earthquake cycle, ever since he discovered it. Since his discovery, earthquakes are easier to predict. They are still very unpredictable, but not as much as they were in the early 1900’s.
Ever since the earthquake known all over the world as the great San Francisco earthquake, geologists have found new ways to protect houses and other buildings from as much damage that occurred in 1906. This damage included buildings in ruins on the cracked, uneven surface, power lines down and causing fires all over surrounding areas. The earthquake was indeed very tragic, but it changed all geologists’ theories of earthquakes today, and has even saved multiple people’s lives.