1886 Charleston earthquake

The Charleston Earthquake of 1886 occurred in the U.S. city of Charleston (South Carolina) by 21 clock 51 on 31 August 1886., The magnitude of the earthquake is not clear, but a 1977 audit conducted on behalf of the U.S. government investigation came to the conclusion that it was a very strong earthquake. The effects of the quake could be felt as far as New York, Chicago and Milwaukee.

In Charleston lost from a population of 49,000 about 100 people lost their lives. Thousands were injured and only one-eighth of the houses remained intact. Charleston was suffering at the time still under the effects of the American Civil War, most of the inhabitants therefore did not build new, but repaired their homes. This has meant that Charleston is now regarded as a North American architectural gem.

The cause of the quake is not completely understood. Charleston is not sitting on the edge of a tectonic plate, as it normally is typical for earthquake-prone regions, but is geographically about the middle of the North American plate.

  • Earthquake in North America
  • History of South Carolina
  • Disaster in 1886
  • Natural disaster (19th Century )
  • History of the United States (1865-1918)