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This Day in MendoHistory: June 16, 1896- A Tidal Wave Strikes the Coast

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In collaboration with Mendocino’s Kelley House Museum, MendoFever will be publishing their “This Day in Mendocino History” Facebook posts. The Kelley House Museum works hard to document and curate Mendocino County’s rich history and can be visited in the seaside town of Mendocino.

Photo: Old Boom with steam scow, Big River, Mendocino County, California, c. 1900. The Old Boom operated between 1858 and 1926, stopping logs that were sent downriver by freshets. The logs would then be stored until they were made into rafts to move to the mill. (Kelley House Collection, Kelley House Photographs)

This day in history…

June 16, 1896 – A tidal wave struck the Mendocino Coast between 2PM and 4PM. The sea rose and fell in mighty waves, 7 feet beyond its normal level. The principal wave extended itself upriver to the Boom on Big River, raising the river by 10 inches, 3.5 miles distant.

The log boom at the mill was in danger, but withstood the onslaught. No damage was done, even though there was a vessel loading under the chute at the Point at the time.

The tidal wave was caused by a severe earthquake in Japan, where 60,000 lives were lost in the earthquake and resulting tsunami.

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Matt LaFever
Matt LaFeverhttps://mendofever.com/
I have been an Emerald Triangle resident since 2006 and this is year ten in Mendocino County. Please, email me at matthewplafever@gmail.com if you know a story that needs to be told.

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