The Intermountain Seismic Belt Historical Earthquake Project, U.S. Geological Survey NEHRP award no. 1434-95-G-2566, 1995-1997 is a compilation of newspaper articles, photographs, personal accounts, and scientific details of 48 historic earthquakes along the Intermountain Seismic Belt (ISB) within Montana, Wyoming, Idaho (magnitude 5.5 and larger), and Utah (magnitude 5.0 and larger). Since the original project was completed in 1997 some of the magnitudes for these earthquakes have been updated with further work and modern techniques, the modern magnitudes may not match all of the magnitudes listed on this project. The effort is intended to personalize earthquake risk to current residents in the ISB by presenting evidence of the real impact to people and places from past ISB earthquakes. The purpose is to promote better understanding of the earthquake threat of this region and to motivate individuals to prepare for future earthquakes.
Earthquakes Researched for this Project
Each earthquake highlighted above is linked to a blog post (published periodically) containing further details. Blog posts feature a map of the earthquake location, a brief overview of the earthquake, and links to:
Earthquake Summary – scientific details (name, date, time, location, epicenter coordinates, magnitude, intensity, and felt area) of the earthquake and of any significant aftershocks.
Newspaper Articles – transcriptions of relevant news articles gathered from a minimum of two statewide newspapers and one local newspaper.
Photographs – obtained from newspaper archives, historical societies, and individuals responding to a request printed in local newspapers.
Personal Accounts – transcriptions of accounts collected from library files, earthquake survey responses, written responses to requests printed in local newspapers, and in-person interviews.
Additional Resources – a list of reports, scientific journal articles, USGS professional papers, PhD dissertations or Masters theses, and excerpts from books published for a general public audience.
Originally titled Personalizing the Earthquake Threat, U.S. Geological Survey NEHRP award no. 1434-95-G-2566, 1995-1997. This project was conducted under the direction of Edith O’Brien and Susan J. Nava, principal investigators. The original webpage was designed by Cynthia Meier. Text revisions, web layout and format changes, and blog posts were produced by Sheryl Peterson. Modernized maps were created by Paul Roberson.