1783 New Jersey earthquake

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1783 New Jersey earthquake
UTC time 1783-08-30 03:50
Local date November 29, 1783
Magnitude 5.3 Mfa[1]
Areas affected Province of New Jersey
Max. intensity VII (Very strong)

The 1783 New Jersey earthquake occurred on November 29 in the Province of New Jersey. It measured 5.3 on a seismic scale that is based on an isoseismal map or the event's felt area.[1] It stands as the most powerful earthquake to occur in the state.[2]


Shaking was felt from New Hampshire to Pennsylvania.[3] A brief foreshock occurred at 9:00 PM on November 29 (02:00 UTC on November 30) and an aftershock five hours later were reported only in New York City and in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.[4] The earthquake caused intensity VII damage on the Mercalli intensity scale.[5] George Washington was sleeping at Fraunces Tavern when the earthquake struck, but he was not woken by the tremors.[6]


  1. ^ a b Stover, C. W.; Coffman, J. L. (1993), Seismicity of the United States, 1568–1989 (Revised) (PDF), U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1527, p. 306 
  2. ^ "New Jersey Earthquake Information". USGS. 2008-07-16. Archived from the original on 16 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-19. 
  3. ^ "Damaging Earthquakes Felt in New Jersey". New Jersey Geological Survey. Retrieved 2008-11-19. 
  4. ^ "Historic Earthquakes: New Jersey 1783". USGS. 2008-07-16. Retrieved 2008-11-15. 
  5. ^ Dombroski Jr. R. David. "Earthquake Risk in New Jersey". New Jersey Geological Survey. Retrieved 2008-11-19. 
  6. ^ Chernow, Ron (2010). Washington: A Life. New York: Penguin Press. ISBN 978-1-59420-266-7.