San Francisco Burns

A hilltop view of a smouldering city, following the devastating earthquake of April 18th, 1906.

The earthquake struck San Francisco at 5.12 am, a tremor lasting 42 seconds and registering 8.3 on the Richter Scale, its epicentre close by, two miles offshore. Here, on this section of Sacramento Street, the damage is not overwhelming, with just the fronts of two small houses spilled into the roadway, across the tramlines of one of the city’s cable car routes.  Now, later on the same day, April 18th, 1906, people have come outside to look at what is happening at the bottom of the hill. Fires have been started by ruptured gas mains, but there is no sense of panic yet. A group of men on the right have brought chairs out so they can sit to watch the spectacle. 

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