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1755 Cape Ann Earthquake

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3.6 earthquake reported off the coast of Massachusetts

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Great Earthquake of 1755

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The 1755 Cape Ann earthquake took place off the coast of the British Province of Massachusetts Bay on November 18. At between 6.0 and 6.3 on the Richter scale, it remains the largest earthquake in the history of Massachusetts. No one was killed, but it damaged hundreds of buildings in Boston and was felt as far north as Nova Scotia and as far south as South Carolina. Sailors on a ship more than 200 miles (320 km) offshore felt the quake, and mistook it at first for their ship running aground. Many residents of Boston and the surrounding areas attributed the quake to God, and it occasioned a brief increase in religious fervor in the city. Modern studies estimate that if a similar quake shook Boston today, it would result in as much as $5 billion in damage and hundreds of deaths. Some discussion has revolved around the idea that this may have been a remotely triggered event.
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