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Earthquakes

It’s more than just whimsy

Our hurricane-naming system evolved much the same way our baby-naming system did. Just as it’s easier to say “Jane Q. Read more >>

How to get a drink or a meal or a night’s sleep before April 18, 1906

On the 100th anniversary of the 1906 calamity, a student of earthquakes seeks its traces in the city he loves most.

An all-but-forgotten San Francisco photographer has left us a grand and terrible record of the destruction and rebirth of an American city

When The Great Earthquake struck New England, learned men blamed everything from God’s wrath to an overabundance of lightning rods in Boston. Two hundred and twenty-five years later, geologists are at last discovering the true causes.

Shortly before dawn the five-inch pine spindle of the Faneuil Hall wind vane snapped, dislodging the thirty-pound gilded cricket that spun ten feet above Boston’s marketplace roof. Early risers first heard the baying of dogs, then the roar. Read more >>

THUS SPAKE THE GREAT INDIAN CHIEF TECUMSEH, PREDICTING— SOME BELIEVED—THE SERIES OF VIOLENT EARTHQUAKES THAT STRUCK THE MIDWEST IN THE WINTER OF 1811–12

The town of New Madrid in southeastern Missouri looks out over a treacherous stretch of the Mississippi River, studded with bars and laced with stumpy shores—a graveyard of rivercraft, and haunted. Some of the ghosts are dead dreams. Read more >>