Historic Earthquakes

Central Alaska
1937 07 22 17:09:28.0 UTC
Magnitude 7.3

Only slight damage was caused by this major earthquake because the epicentral area was sparsely populated. Fairbanks sustained considerable minor damage, consisting mostly of broken windows and loss of merchandise in stores. Slight damage also was reported at Anchorage, about 580 kilometers south of Fairbanks. At Salcha Bluff, southeast of Fairbanks, the highway was blocked for several meters by a landslide. Near there, mud boils appeared and cracks as wide as 38 centimeters formed. Water in the nearby slough rose considerably above its normal level and did not subside for several days.

At mile 33 station of the Alaska Road Commission, a two-story log structure was knocked askew and several windows were broken. About 22 kilometers from Fairbanks, small cracks formed in the road, and near the mile 18 roadhouse, silt and sand from many cracks covered the highway. The main earthquake was felt over most of central Alaska. Aftershocks occurred for several months.

Abridged from Seismicity of the United States, 1568-1989 (Revised), by Carl W. Stover and Jerry L. Coffman, U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1527, United States Government Printing Office, Washington: 1993.