June marks 130 years since big Carson Valley earthquake
A 3.7 magnitude temblor just south of Leviathan Mine Road on June 6 was a reminder that Western Nevada is earthquake country.
The quake occurred at 3:45 p.m., and was reportedly felt as far away as Reno and San Andreas, Calif. It set off nearly 50 aftershocks, with the most recent a 1.8 magnitude quake 10:04 a.m. Sunday. A 3.46 magnitude earthquake struck a mile southeast of Double Springs Flat at 9:30 p.m. Friday, in nearly the same place as the June 6 earthquake.
This month marks 130 years since the Carson Valley Earthquake of June 3, 1887.
Estimated at magnitude 6.3, damaging effects of the quake were felt from Genoa to Reno.
“Several buildings were likely torn down or parts rebuilt because of earthquake damage,” according to the book, “Reevaluation of pre-1900 earthquakes in Western Nevada,” published in 2003.
“The earthquake began at about 2:40 to 2:47 a.m. on Friday, June 3, 1887. It was reported to have lasted from 3 to 10 seconds (in one account 30 seconds) and was preceded by a heavy rumbling sound (which is described as resembling a dead-axe freight wagon driven rapidly over frozen ground),” according to the book.
Like Tuesday’s earthquake, no foreshocks were reported heralding the earthquake. There were a dozen aftershocks over the 20 days following the incident.
The Genoa Weekly Courier reported that the earthquake was the heaviest in the area.
“The earth shook violently for a number of seconds, and much damage was done in stone and brick buildings,” the newspaper reported. “The Boyd residence, about a mile east of town is badly wrecked, and will probably have to be taken down.”
The Cradlebaugh Bridge tollhouse was moved 2 inches from its foundation. The Genoa courthouse was badly damaged, as was the Harris store.
Brick chimneys were thrown down across the area.
The Courier reported that both the flow and temperature of water at Walley’s Hot Springs increased as a result of the quake.
According to clippings from the Appeal in Carson City, all the clocks with east-west pendulums stopped at 2:45 a.m.
The Appeal reported that James Raycraft was rushing for a doctor in Carson City when the shock threw him face forward to the ground.
Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology Cartographer Jack Hursh said residents of Western Nevada should be prepared for earthquakes.
The Genoa fault runs along the base of the Carson Range in Carson Valley and last ruptured about three centuries ago, according to the Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology.