Category:1959 in Montana
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- ► 1959 establishments in Montana (3 P)
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1. 1959 Hebgen Lake earthquake – The 1959 Hebgen Lake earthquake also known as the 1959 Yellowstone earthquake occurred on August 17 at 11,37 pm in southwestern Montana, United States. The earthquake measured 7.3 –7.5 on the Richter magnitude scale, the slide blocked the flow of the Madison River resulting in the creation of Quake Lake. Effects of the earthquake were felt in Idaho and Wyoming. The 1959 quake was the strongest and deadliest earthquake to hit Montana since the 1935-36 Helena earthquakes left 4 people dead and it also caused the worst landslides in the history of the Northwestern United States since 1927. The earthquake occurred at 11,37 p. m. with a Richter magnitude estimated between 7.3 and 7.5, the U. S. Weather Bureau reported that the quake lasted 30–40 seconds. During the earthquake the surrounding landscape dropped as much as 20 feet, water pushed by the seiches poured over the dam which did not collapse. Several aftershocks ranging from 5.8 to 6.3 were reported after the quake, the earthquake struck in Madison Canyon, an area to the west of Yellowstone National Park. Several nearby campgrounds were occupied by vacationing campers and tourists at the time the quake struck.2 Good Friday earthquake in Alaska. The 1959 earthquake is also the most severe earthquake in the Rocky Mountain area of the United States along with the 7.3 magnitude earthquake which struck Idaho in 1983. The landslide caused by quake was the largest since an earthquake in Wyoming in 1925 caused a landslide amounting to 50,000,000 cubic yards of rock and debris that left 28 people dead. The death toll from the quake was also the highest since the 1925 earthquake, the 1959 earthquake was also the most damaging earthquake to occur in Montana since the 1935-36 earthquakes that left four people dead. The Hebgen Lake area also experienced earthquakes again in 1964,1974,1977 and 1985, the landslides caused by the quake carried 80 million tons of rock, mud and debris down into the valley and created hurricane-force winds strong enough to toss cars. In Madison Canyon, the landslide swept away a family of seven, two more fatalities were also reported in nearby Cliff Lake to the south. In Rock Creek, tourists camping there were caught off guard by the quake and landslide, the landslide caused a seiche which inundated trailers and tents, uprooted trees, and injured one additional person. New geysers and cracks sprouted up in nearby Yellowstone National Park, near Old Faithful, the earthquake damaged the Old Faithful Inn, forcing guests there to evacuate. Landslides caused by the quake blocked a road between Mammoth and Old Faithful, damaging a bridge inside the park, there was one reported injury when a woman broke her wrist. The earthquake also created fault scarps as high as six meters, causing damage to roads, homes. In Belgrade, the earthquake damaged measuring equipment placed in a 100-foot water well, the quake also knocked out telephone communications between Bozeman and Yellowstone, with the city of Bozeman itself suffering moderate quake damage to homes and buildings
2. Quake Lake – Quake Lake is a lake in southwestern Montana in the United States. It was created after an earthquake struck on August 17,1959, today, Quake Lake is 190 feet deep and 6 miles long. US287 follows the lake and offers glimpses of the effects of the earthquake and landslide, the lake is mostly within Gallatin National Forest. The earthquake measured 7.5 on the Richter magnitude scale and caused an 80-million ton landslide, the earthquake was the most powerful to hit the state of Montana in historic times. Upstream the faulting caused by the earthquake forced the waters of Hebgen Lake to shift violently, a seiche, a wave effect created by wind, atmospheric pressure, or seismic activity on water, crested over Hebgen Dam, causing cracks and erosion. The earthquake created fault scarps up to 20 ft high in the area near Hebgen Lake,32,000 acres of the area near Hebgen Lake subsided more than 10 ft. Several geysers in the sections in Yellowstone National Park erupted. Within the immediate vicinity of the earthquake and resultant landslide, a few dozen cabins, overall damages to buildings and roads were minor with damage costs placed at 11 million dollars in 1959. Aftershocks up to 6.5 on the Richter magnitude scale continued for several months, Hebgen Dam, built in 1917, is a concrete core and rock fill faced structure that sustained severe damage but continued to hold. Repairs were completed on the dam spillway in a few weeks, the landslide, which occurred downstream from the dam, blocked almost all the flow of the Madison River which began to fill in the void upstream from the slide. In less than a month, the waters had created what is now known as Quake Lake. The lack of a water outlet for this new lake forced one of the largest mobilizations of the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers ever commenced in the western U. S. Before the new landslide was breached by the rising waters. The novel The Miseducation of Cameron Post features Quake Lake prominently, before the novel begins, in 1959, the main characters mother was camping in the area with her family during the 1959 earthquake, she escaped but a friend of the family died. At the beginning of the novel, the characters mother and father die in a car accident that sends their vehicle into Quake Lake