Earthquakes in Christchurch

The PapersPast website is widely consulted by researchers of local and family history, and deserves its status as an essential research tool. Recent searches on ‘Christchurch earthquake’ produced some interesting results – especially surprising if you thought that the destruction experienced in September 2010 and February 2011 was unprecedented in the Garden City.

It is evident that there were “slight” or “sharp” shocks on numerous occasions in the 19th century.  On 10 June 1869, the Grey River Argus advised of  “Another Earthquake in Christchurch: A smart shock was felt at five to two this morning.” A quick survey of other reports indicate there was a slight shock in August 1871;  an earthquake was “felt in Lyttelton and Christchurch” in November 1880; and other reports appear in July 1881, January 1884, and January 1888.

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