The 1906 San Francisco Earthquake: music and pictures

On April 18th 1906 an earthquake measuring 8.0 on the Richter Scale hit the city of San Francisco. It effectively destroyed the whole city and 3000 people lost their lives. Miraculously, many thousands more did not die whilst buildings collapsed and there was a huge fire.

I found the video above with a very moving song by Natalie Merchant and some brilliant original photographs taken of the destruction. It seemed to me a very good way for students to start to look at the events of 105 years ago. It will allow them to feel the emotion and then witness the documentary evidence of the photographs.To get  a close-up feel for the actual events they can see yesterday’s report from the San Francisco Chronicle “06 Quake through the eyes of woman ahead of her time.”

I would hope that this would serve as a useful basis for a further exploration into’06 quake. There is much to be seen on YouTube showing documentaries that have been made about the events. This is also a useful starting point to get students to explore the recent earthquakes of Haiti and Japan and compare and contrast the events and their effects.

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