1783 New Jersey earthquake

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1783 New Jersey earthquake
UTC time1783-11-30 03:50
Local dateNovember 29, 1783
Magnitude5.3 Mfa[1]
Areas affectedProvince of New Jersey
Max. intensityVII (Very strong)

The 1783 New Jersey earthquake occurred on November 29 in the Province of New Jersey. With a magnitude estimated at 5.3,[2] it stands as the most powerful earthquake to occur in the state.[3]


Shaking was felt from New Hampshire to Pennsylvania.[4] 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.[5] The earthquake caused intensity VII damage on the Mercalli intensity scale.[6] George Washington was sleeping at Fraunces Tavern when the earthquake struck, but he was not woken by the tremors.[7]


  1. ^ Stover & Coffman 1993, p. 306.
  2. ^ 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.
  3. ^ "New Jersey Earthquake Information". USGS. July 16, 2008. Archived from the original on December 16, 2008. Retrieved November 19, 2008.
  4. ^ "Damaging Earthquakes Felt in New Jersey". New Jersey Geological Survey. Retrieved November 19, 2008.
  5. ^ "Historic Earthquakes: New Jersey 1783". USGS. July 16, 2008. Retrieved November 15, 2008.
  6. ^ Dombroski Jr. R. David. "Earthquake Risk in New Jersey". New Jersey Geological Survey. Retrieved November 19, 2008.
  7. ^ Chernow, Ron (2010). Washington: A Life. New York: Penguin Press. ISBN 978-1-59420-266-7.

Coordinates: 40°49′08″N 74°29′53″W / 40.819°N 74.498°W / 40.819; -74.498