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1937 earthquake shook Ohio

Icon founder Fred Steiner blogs about 1937 earthquakes that shook Ohio. You'll find the Ada Herald story from 1937 HERE, in the digital archives of the Ada Public Library.

By Fred Steiner,

Eighty-three years ago this spring–the year was 1937–Bluffton and Ada residents felt the tremors of Ohio’s most severe earthquake. The following story is from the March 11, 1937, Bluffton News. Below the story is a summary of the earthquake, centered in Anna, where its school building was condemned and torn down.

From March 11, 1937, Bluffton News


Bluffton is shaken by quake tremor

Shock Tuesday 

Is more severe

For the second time within a week, an earthquake of moderate intensity shook Bluffton at 12:34 a.m. Tuesday. The quake was the most severe ever experienced here, according to old residents.

Many Bluffton area residents were awakened by the quake, the principal tremor of which lasted a minute, followed by less severe movements. The lesser tremors were for the most part of a few seconds duration only.

No discernable damage was reported Tuesday, but the quake was the principal topic of conversation thru-out the day as residents described how they were awakened by the rocking of the earth, how beds shook, windows and dishes rattled and buildings trembled.

Rumbling accompanies quake

A deep rumbling accompanied the tremor, and those living on traffic arteries were inclined at first to believe the noise was caused by passing trucks.

Because of the quietness of the hour, the quake was noticed by many more persons than the one which shook Ohio last Tuesday. Also, this week’s tremor was more severe and of longer duration.

Felt in seven states, the shock has been ascribed by seismologists to disturbance of glacial formations in the Northwestern part of Ohio. This week’s series of tremors was noticed in Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Kentucky, Illinois, West Virginia, Wisconsin and the province of Ontario in Canada.