Home Features The Express of April 28, 1969 – San Francisco haunted by the...

The Express of April 28, 1969 – San Francisco haunted by the earthquake


“Frisco” trembles in fear waiting for that the earth trembles. A jerk telluric, sinister replica of the great earthquake of 1906, would be “imminent” in California. Astrologers, clairvoyants, mystics multiply the warnings : “San Francisco will be swallowed up between the earth and the sea. The Golden Gate bridge, the skyscraper will collapse. The highways will increase as tombs. Water and fire ravage that the earthquake will not be wiped out. There will be 15 million deaths.”

The panic is much stronger than the predictions of psychics are the echoes of their anguish in the forecast of seismologists americans. Concerned about tensions, observed in the earth’s crust along the Pacific coast, they are considering also the hypothesis of an earthquake, but acknowledge that they are unable, in the current state of their science, to be dated with certainty, tomorrow or in a hundred years.

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both sides of the San Andreas fault system, monitored by 90 points by géodimètres and magnetometers, the coastal strip of San Francisco stretches towards the north-east, while the soil, to the east of the line of fracture runs in the opposite direction, towards the south, at the alarming rate of 5 cm per year. The rock structure underlying must end, one day, will break under this enormous pressure from opposing forces : and the earth will tremble, as she has already done seven times, to San Francisco.

special Vision

Even the most skeptical start to question if they do not live on a powder keg. Posters the remind them, in every corner of the avenue, throwing in the face to the passers-by, the Revelation of their city. The psychosis sets in. Already, Californians have gone to the south or Middlewest, as these four groups of pentecostals, who were accused by a special vision, and hippies of Los Angeles, alerted by the Hopi Indians.

Without going so far as to flee the State, one of the most affluent and which will soon house the seventh of the U.s. population, the residents take their provisions. We bought the pillows shockproof, sold 90 Francs piece. It tears out pamphlets of the civil protection in emergency care. The radio broadcasts of safety information. The municipality stores of provisions : it also provides for the conversion of buses to ambulances, the establishment of piped water supplies of relief, and even America require the organization of a funeral in a flash.

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If nothing is now left to chance is that everyone remembers the panic of the April 18, 1906, when, at 5: 13 am in the morning, a violent jolt dug in the city a track of several miles, burying 700 dead in the smoking ruins.

The great fear

In 1936, Clark Gable and Jeanette MacDonald in the film San Francisco, that we will see at the French tv on may 1, had to relive the drama.

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The Express of 30 June 1969 – Mr. Edgar Faure said in The Express The Express of 30 June, 1969 – The Express goes further with “Butterfly” 1969, in the retro – Express, June 30, 1969, issue 938

The legend, always present – every April 18, the city celebrates with great pomp the anniversary – is only adding to the nervous climate. “Land of uprooted and new entrants, California, assures the psychologist Harvey Ross, is a constant reminder of dream and mystery”. Where this great fear of the year 2000, surprising in the America of the satellites, but that, according to professor Edward Stainbrook, “crystallizes around the earthquake distress usually floating”. Anguish that even the emblem of the “Frisco”, the Phoenix rising from the ashes, is not enough to dismiss.