“There was practically nothing left…”
It was a warm morning on April 18th, 1906. many people were just waking up when it happened. At 5:12am, the earthquake began to rock san francisco furiously. The earthquake had a magnitude of about 7.8, and an amplitude of 3 Inches. The earthquake itself only lasted about 45 - 60 seconds long, but the chaos was ongoing. The earthquake started many fires, which were spreading at an alarming rate.
Due to the annihilation of the piping that connected the fire hydrants, and other reliable sources of water. The firefighters decided the best choice would be to demolish the buildings in the path of theblazing inferno. In the end, the plan had backfired and the inexperienced explosives team ignited even more fires.
One of the fires was surprisingly started when a woman’s chimney, recently half destroyed by the quake, restricted smoke from rising out when she tried to cook ham and eggs. The same fire ended up being the biggest blaze out of them all, and caused the devastating end to 30 blocks worth of buildings.
People were trapped in the city by rubble, and the only way out was by a ferry boat. It was a mad rush to board a single one of them. The fires were still raging on, and it did not look like they would stop soon. The mayor ended up saying it was ok to kill anyone who tried to commit any act of thievery, and to shut down every single bar in the city, so no drunk men and women could run rampant on the streets. This helped, making sure every single fireman could focus on fires, and not uncontrollable citizens.
700,000 people were now homeless. 3000 were dead. And it was not yet the end of the hardships. To help, the army made relief houses - small cramped cottages to house citizens left without homes - and placed them all over the state. The cottages were very small, and ontop of that, the chinese population of san francisco was being discriminated, and were being passed around camps across the country.
Although it took awhile san francisco was up and running again by 1915, and was much improved from the disorganized mining town it once was.