Historic Earthquakes

Monterey Bay, California
1926 October 22 12:35 and 13:35 UTC
Magnitude 6.1 and 6.1

Two large earthquakes caused considerable damage in the Monterey Bay region. The first shock was severe at Santa Cruz, where many chimneys were knocked down, and old brick buildings sustained damage. A few chimneys also were knocked down at Carmel and Monterey. A lamp was thrown from its base, and a lens was broken at the lighthouse on Ano Nuevo Island, northwest of Santa Cruz. Light effects were reported as far away as San Francisco (120 km from the epicenter), where the tile surfaces of a few buildings were damaged, windows were broken, and plaster was cracked extensively.

The second shock, an hour later was almost as widely felt as the first, and appears to have been stronger than the first earthquake at towns north of Monterey Bay. The shaking again was heavy on Ano Nuevo Island. The shocks were felt over about the same area-north to Middletown (Lake County), south along the coast to Lompoc (Santa Barbara County), and east to Turlock (Stanislaus County). Many small aftershocks occurred.

Abridged from Seismicity of the United States, 1568-1989 (Revised), by Carl W. Stover and Jerry L. Coffman, U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1527, United States Government Printing Office, Washington: 1993.