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TitlePre-Confederation historical seismicity of Nova Scotia with an examination of selected later events
LicencePlease note the adoption of the Open Government Licence - Canada supersedes any previous licences.
AuthorGeomarine Associates Limited
SourceGeological Survey of Canada, Open File 1917, 1988, 904 pages, Open Access logo Open Access
Documentopen file
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
RelatedThis publication contains the following publications
File formatpdf
ProvinceNova Scotia
Lat/Long WENS -68.0000 -60.0000 47.2500 43.0000
Subjectsgeneral geology; geophysics; seismicity; earthquakes
Released1988 11 01; 2008 03 25; 2008 04 08
AbstractA recent four-month archival, contract research program for the Earth Physics Branch* of the Canada Department of Energy Mines and Resources bas investigated the historical seismicity of Nova Scotia from 1752-1867. Long runs of all available issues of long-publishing Halifax newspapers were scanned for all earthquakes and tsunami. All earthquake references were extracted to as­certain the usefulness of the newspaper and the degree to which the journal covered seismic events, or simply used them as fillers, if at all. The Halifax 'Royal Gazette' was found to not detail local news very well and to not detail local earthquakes at all in the period of 1752 to 1813 when the Halifax Acadian Re­corder became the local newspaper of record. The Acadian Re­corder was found to be much better for the study. A twenty-year period of the Yarmouth Herald was also scanned from 1848 to 1867 to gauge the comparative coverage and to sample the Province at the southwest end where more earthquakes appear to have been felt over the last 200 years. Some 6,000 newspaper issues were ex­amined in the study and about 478 newspaper articles and other references were extracted in the study for inclusion in the final report. These articles allowed eighty five** event-specific reports to be assembled in this report. Prior to this study beginning, only three tsunami were known to have impinged on the shores of Newfoundland in 1755, 1864 and 1929; and one of these, in 1929, was known for Nova Scotia; now three newly-documented tsunami are known to bave affected the shores of Nova Scotia: at Liverpool, in the Yarmouth area and at Cape North in Cape Breton. There may be a fourth tsunami that also affected northernmost Cape Breton. A previous­ly-unreported tsunami has been documented for Newfoundland with another possible tsunami seen in Lake Huron, Ontario. A recent earthquake and small tsunami in Greenland are also documented. Prior to this study beginning only thirteen earthquakes were known in Nova Scotia for the pre-1916 period this number is reduced to ten when the three 'ghosts' found 1n this study are removed. Some fourteen new, previously-undocu­mented, earthquakes have been defined for Nova Scotia; three definite (and three possible) 'ghost' or erroneous events have been defined and five more events will have their dates correc­ted. Three seismic events that may each be related to a meteorite impact have been found. Significant new data for some nine previously-known Nova Scotia events have been found. Similarly, about thirty three** apparently new, previously-undocumented, event?? for New Brunswick, the northeast U.S. and for Upper Canada may have been found with new data on thirteen other previously-known events in these areas. Only four previously-known events, in Nova Scotia, failed to yield new data when event-specific newspaper searches were done. There were six other Nova Scotian events, in the period 1868 to 1915, for which time ran out and no event-specific searches were done; there were also fifteen late nineteenth or early twentieth century events in southern New Brunswick, at Eastport, Maine, or in the Bay of Fundy, which may have been felt in Nova Scotia, but which had no work done on them whatsoever, for the same reason.

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