M Maso.

The great earthquake of 1894. A complete report of the effects of the recent great earthquake online

. (page 1 of 3)
Online LibraryM MasoThe great earthquake of 1894. A complete report of the effects of the recent great earthquake → online text (page 1 of 3)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook
















ft Q







AKTHQUAKES are frequent in
Japan, says J. J. RTCIN in his
able interesting work on this
country. Such violent distur-
bances, he continues, fortu-
nately occur but seldom, that is to
say. according to previous experience
and expectation, about one in every
twenty years. The last destructive earth-
quake, however, our author observes,
took places in the autumn of 1855,
so that already twenty-five years have
elapsed without a recurrence and the
old rule apparently no longer holds.
This was written in 1880, and although
in that year a shock of considerable
violence was felt it was not until
of the 28th October,
seismic disturbance of
dimensions transpired,
amply atoned for any |
the extent of the area af-
the terrific devastation

the morning
1891, that a
any startling
That, however,
delay, and by
fected, and

wrought, maintained the reputation of
Japan for being subject to such fearful
visitations. Less extensive in area
hut more serious locally the recent

shock will undoubtedly be looked upon
as the most severe Yokohama has ex-
perienced since the advent of foreigners.
It was a startling reminder that this is the
land of earthquakes, and, indeed, Japanese
histories teem with incidents of the
phenomena. There is a legend that in 286
B.C., Fujiyama was formed, as well as Lake
Biwa, by one of these subterranean up-
heavals. The earliest authentic instance
is that which occurred in 416 A.D.,
when the Imperial Palace was thrown
to the ground. Again in 599, the build-
ings throughout the province of Yamato
were all destroyed, and special prayers
were ordered to be offered up to the deity
of earthquakes. In 679, a tremendous
shock caused many fissures, or chasms, to
open in the province of Chikuzen and
Chikugo, in Kiushiu, the largest of these
fissures being four miles in length and
twenty feet in width. In 685, a terrible
disturbance occurred. Mountains were
toppled over, rivers overflowed and tre-
mendous destruction resulted. In the pro-
vince of Tosa an area of five million
tsubo sank into the sea. But corning
to a later period, we find that in 1702
the lofty walis of the outside and inside


moats of the castle of Yedo were destroyed,
tidal waves broke along the coast in the
vicinity, and the road leading through
the famous pass of Hakone, was closed
up by alteration in the surface of the
earth. Indeed Tokyo lias been frequently
victimized, and fire in nearly every in-
stance has supplemented the catastrophe.
In 1703, such a calamity happened cost-
ing, it is estimated, the lives altogether
of 200,000 persons, and laying the capital
in ruins. We have not space here to
refer to all the ravages of this terrible
visitant, but confining ourselves to the
present century we note that Dewa was
the theatre of repeated concussions in
1804, and in 1822 150 shocks were felt
in Tokyo in the course of three days.
Once more, in 1828, an earthquake
occurred in Echigo, and 30,000 men,
women and children were destroyed.
Two years later Kioto was afflicted. The
Tokugawa Palace, Nijo, was among the
buildings overthrown while the number of
people slain was described as innumerable.
It was not one shock, but three, following
each other in rapid succession at four in
the afternoon, the ground rocking like
waves. The affrighted people were too
terror stricken to do anything and it was
days before their senses returned to
them. Other shocks occurred in the
same year, in 1835, and 1847, and then
in 1854 the provinces of Suruga, Mikawa,
Ise, Totomi, Iga, Settsu and Harima, as
well as the whole of Shikoku were severely
shaken. It was this earthquake which
destroyed the town of Shimoda, in the
province of Izu, which had been opened
as a foreign port in Japan, while a Eus-
sinn frigate, the J)inna, lying in harbour

at the time, was so severely damaged
by the shock, and the waves which
it raised that she had to be abandoned.
The last great shock, prior to the Gifu
catastrophe, occurred on November 10th,
1855. On that occasion Tokyo again
suffered. The chief shock occurred at
night and the city was immediately con-
verted into a rubbish heap, thirty fires
breaking out in various quarters and com-
pleting the terrible work of destruction.
For two weeks the shocks were almost con-
tinuous though of decreasing magnitude.
It is calculated that 16,000 buildings were
overthrown, and 104,000 lives lost in that
awful cataclysm. Curiously, then as
now, the area of disturbance was very
limited, and it gave substance to the
supposition that the volcanic agencies at
work on Vries Island may not have been
altogether unconnected with the distur-
bance. But of that we may have some-
thing to say hereafter.


(From. Wednesday's "Oazette.")

fHE earthquake which occurred about two
o'clock on Wednesday afternoon, the
20th June, was a short one, but as sharp as
any experienced by most foreign residents in
Japan. One resident who had lived in earth-
quake countries all his life and in countries
where shocks are of almost daily occurrence
informed our reporter that he had never
before experienced such a shock. As soon
as the violence of the shock was realised
people rushed from their houses into the
streets, and did not venture back until there
was little fear of recurrence. On the boats in
the harbour, we understand, the earthquake
also created a commotion. That the shock was


not a local one is shown by the deaths and ; other was despaired of. The injured were
damages to property at Tokyo. Considering ! removed to the charity hospital at Negishi.
the violence of the shaking it is extraordinary | The children's injuries fortunately were slight,
that the damages have not been greater in j The disaster created the greatest excitement
Yokohama; but as it is, the number of fallen ! in the city; and during the whole of the
chimneys and smashed roofs in the city is j afternoon Messrs. Wilson's establishment was
beyond count ; while on the Bluff thousands | surrounded by large crowds,
of dollars worth of ornaments, &c., have been j Throughout the Settlement and the Bluff
destroyed. These damages, however, are in- ! damages are reported. There is probably not
significant compared witli the calamity a foreign house in Yokohama where some

which occurred at Messrs. Wilson and Co.'s
go-downs at Nos. 258 and 260, Settlement.
These buildings are quite new, having
been only recently completed. They are of
red brick, with white stone dressings. Be-
tween the tea-firing godowns at the rear and
the go-downs abutting on the road is a
space about eighteen feet wide, which was

damage has not been done. The upheaval
upset tables- and dashed vases, curios and
crockeryware to the ground. The floor of
Messrs. Arthur & Bond's curio store on the
Bund was strewn with broken curios, among
the number being some valuable vases. The
firm estimate the damages at $1,000. At
Mr. Kuhn's and at Messrs. Deakin Brothers

covered with corrugated iron and supported by j tbe dama S e was verv sli S ht -
uprights and beams, tied together with iron In Honmura Road the roof of a brick build-
bolts ; and above this was a light wooden ! in - a butcher ' s sho * and a general store-
phtform. The earthquake shock had the I slid off and fche froilt of fcbe building is cracked
effect of toppling over a triangular-shaped j and is now ba S in S over towards the road.
portion of the upright wall of the front go- | Fortunately no-one was injured. Asmallhouse
down, and this fell onto the end of the I atthe reai> of the Balfcimore Inn ' in the same
wooden platform, smashed through the cor- J locallt y' also collapsed; while the walls of the
rugated iron roof and buried a number of men, | Cosmopolitan Inn were cracked and some big
women, and children in several tons of! s of stone ;

debris. As might be expected, this crash,

... . . ,, , ., , At No. 68, in Mam Street, a chimney has

together with the quivering of the build-

_ . ,. j been completely twisted. Every stone m it

ing, filled the people engaged m the go- ig arafce . and it seemg a miraole that

downs with fear ; but as soon as the shock .

it did not fall m the shock.
ceased, and the frightened people had to j The Eagtem World Qffice fn Wafcer

some extent recovered from the excitement, j gtreefc algo had ft bad sbaking . The chim .
the work of digging out the buried persons j neyg seeming on the point of falling> gfcakeSf
was commenced. About twenty-fivemen, ropeg> and danger noticeg haye been plftced
women, and children were covered by | round tbe building.

the fallen bricks and mortar. All were j Chimney copings at Messrs. Cabeldu,
eventually extricated ; and at the time of j Batchelor, and Schneider's houses at No. 80,
going to press last evening we were informed Main Street, fell to the ground ; but for-
by the police that one man, whose head tunately nobody was injured. The ceiling of
and limbs were injured, died after linger- i a room in Mr. Cabeldu's house also came
ing an hour and a half; and the life of an- 1 down.


Among a large number of other places
where chimneys collapsed were Messrs. Isaacs
and Brother's, No. 195 ; Messrs. Frazar &
Co.'s, No. 200 ; and at a house occupied by a
Chinaman at 183.

The chimney of a dwelling-house at No.
121 fell and smashed the roof of a press
godown occupied by Mr. C. L. Eymard. In the
rear of this building there was a most pecu-
liar effect, the walls collapsing and leaving
the frame standing.

At No. 124 a Chinese child was injured by
a brick falling from a chimney, and at 153
the roof fell in.

In Aioicho, Nichome, a brick house fell and
smashed part of the adjoining house. In
Honcho-dori the only damage worthy of note
is the fall of the roof of a brick house.

On the Bluff the earthquake created the
greatest excitement and fear among residents.
At many of the houses chimneys came down
with a crash and every resident is bewailing
the loss of treasured curios and crockeryware.
In some houses the walls have been com-
pletely denuded of ornaments.

At Mr. C. K. -Marshall Martin's house
at 265 three chimneys came down ; at Mr.
J. E. Beale's, No. 58, the chimney top-
pled over and fell through the roof; and
chimneys also fell at Mr. J. A. Eraser's, No.
21, at No. 72, No. 85, the U. S. N. Hospital ;
while at the Convent one of the side walls
has given way. A landslip occurred at Man-
darin Bluff.

Communication by train with Kobe is inter-

took place at Higashi-yato, several tons of
: loose earth failing and raining a dense
cloud of d'.ist which people in the Settlement
took at first for a fire. In both cases, no one
was injured nor was any damage caused to

A portion of the Noge range known as

Zeikwan-yama, near the temple of Fukutoku-

Inari, also gave way, but the falling earth

stopped midway. Here, too, no damage was

i caused.



A portion of a cliff near the Ishikawa Pri-
mary School gave way, throwing down a
large quantity of earth on to a small
space below the cliff, from -the compound
of 1,426, Nakamura. Another land-slide

(From Thursday's "Gazette.")
To attempt to give anything like a com-
prehensive list of the damages resulting from
I the shaking up which Yokohama experienced
i on Wednesday would be hopeless, for so far as
i can be gathered there is hardly a house in the
Settlement or on the Bluff that has not
suffered more or less injury. Clarendon
House, which it was feared by many would
i not stand an earthquake, had a severe test
and is reported to have stood it well. The
proprietor says not a beam was heard to
crack ; several vases were thrown down from
brackets, but the house moved like a solid
rock. At Tokyo the earthquake proved
more destructive than in Yokohama ; while
Kobe escaped the shock altogether.

The, accident at Mr. Wilson's godown at
i No. 258 was more disastrous than was believed
i to be the case when we went to press on Wednes-
I day night. Altogether 25 were buried in the
i debris 8 men and 17 women and girls.
One man died an hour and a half after being
rescued; and yesterday morning our representa-
! tive was informed that three women died during
the night in the Negishi Hospital, as the re-
sult of injuries to the head.

In the street up Yatozaka on the Bluff

there were many fissures, the largest being 20

! yards long and 5 inches wide. In the com-





pound of 142 the cracks were very numerous, by Mr. Wakao Ikuzo, and the office of the
some being 2 feefc deep and 8 or 9 inches j Asamatsu-gumi in Bentendori Rokuchome
wide. Nos. 86 and 89 were so dangerously j collapsed.

damaged that the Police sent firemen I Three children were killed in Kawasaki by
and demolished the buildings completely, as the fall of a stone wall of the Daishi temple.
they were likely to cause injuries to passers i

by. The Convent, No. 83, suffered greatly. I WATERWORKS AND WIRE COMMU-
In the damage of furniture, Mr. Smedley NTCATIONS.

seems to have been one of the greatest j The Yokohoma Waterworks seems to have
sufferers, so far. Mrs. Hegfc, 59, had a | suffered much by the earthquake. The water-
narrow escape with three children, a chim- ! supply, which bad already become much
ney top falling just behind her, and she j diminished in the Ota reservoir, is now im-
fell to the ground unconscious. Fortunately pure. A telegram from Hodogaya states that
the explosive storage was quite safe. A riki- j the iron pipes have leaked, and the engineers
sha-man of the Italian Consulate, Chuzo by j are busy in surveying the damage,
name, was knocked down by a brick falling, | Telegraph and telephone wires were broken
and was removed to Negishi Hospital but j in many places and communication is in-
died the same night. About 50 houses i te'-rupted, especially that to the north of
suffered more or less. i Tokyo.

At the time the shock occurred Mr. J.

Cain's children were playing in the drawing
room at No. 119. The shock brought
down a chimney, which crashed through the
roof and ceiling and fell into the room,
causing considerable damage, but fortunately
no-one was injured. At Mr. A. W. Payne's


Another seisin ological convulsion has, writes
our Tokyo correspondent, given Tokyo the
worst shaking up it has had for thirty-eight
years. On Wednesday afternoon promptly at 2
o'clock there was a low rumbling sound heard,

house at No. 132 a chimney fell, and the | an( i then the houses began to rock, at first only
walls were fractured, while in the garden gently as if not fully prepared for the task,
fissures a foot deep and 20 feet long were fchen the shaking became more rude and then
caused. ; ruthless. In a few moments the dust was

The Bluff Police summoned their full staff | seen to fly on the roofs, then tiles came
and firemen, and made all preparations pos- 1 battering down ' to the ground. For a

sible for a recurrence of the shocks.

In the native town, there were no fatalities.

few moments only the chimneys reeled
and rocked as if trying to regain their balance

A twelve-year-old girl, Kondo Fusa by name, and then came thundering down. At other
in the employ of Tomoye Hanjiro, Hagoromo- places they broke through the loof and
cho Nichome, was injured on her left arm and I ceiling and came into the rooms. Such was
foot, by the fall of a stone torii at the temple the case at No. 28, Tsukiji, at the residence of
of Benteu. Damage to property is not so j Rev. David Thompson, D.D. Here the chim-
small as at first believed. Roofs fell in, walls I ney of the one storey house fell through the
were fractured and tiles slid down from many roof and ceiling into the parlour, striking the
houses. Curio and porcelain dealers stiffered ; keyboard of the piano as it had never before
most, A house in Honcho Shichome, owned i been struck, and smashing other furniture,


Among this latter also a writing table at which wall fell down, striking him on the head
one of Mr. Thompson's daughters had been and then crushing him almost beyond
writing up to the very moment the shaking be- recognition. He died in less than an
gan. As the quaking became severer the hour afterwards. Another student also
young lady sprang up and left the room and received serious injuries. Bishop McKim, who
had scarcely stepped out when down came has his study in the tower of the new school
the chimney with an awful crash, a large piece building, was rushing down stairs when
still unbroken striking the very spot where ; several large bricks struck him on the head,
she had been writing only a moment before. : Fortunately he had a heavy stiff summer hat
At Mr. A. Thompson's, the druggist, on so that he was not seriously injured,
the East half of whose large house is The beautiful brick church in Tsukiji, of this
occupied by Mr. Ambler, the chimneys on same Mission, was badly injured. So also
both sides came through roof and ceiling, on tbe liew Theological Hall. Both will no
Mr. Ambler's side falling into nursery, and the j doubfc liave to be rebuilt, at a very con-
nurse with great presence of mind quickly siderable cost.

snatched away the small child from the Tlms ifc is throughout Tsukiji, at some
bed on which it was lying. A moment later P laces worse and at others not so bad. Most
the child would have been dead. At No. 6, bouses wil1 iiave to be ^plastered outside and
Rev. W. J. White's, the chimney fell inside ' Vases ' dishes ' wines and the like >
through the roof and upstairs ceiling into the I were destr y ed without number,
boy's bed-room. Had it occurred at night; Out in the city it is no better than here. At
the two could hardly have escaped death or one P lace teu aue said fco ba ve perished by
serious injury. At No. 49, a one storey build- facing debris. A friend just sends a post-
ing, both chimneys broke through the roof | card saying that one student of his school
and ceiling. Fortunately the house was un- perished. The Meiji Gakuin will have to be
occupied at the time and hence no persons | rebuilt. But for fuller reports we shall be
were killed or injured. The old stone build- ! obliged to wait a few days,
ing, No. 51, the Tract Repository, also suffered 1 FROM ANOT HER CORRESPONDENT.

badly, the upper tier of stones just under the j The earthquake here seems to have picked
roof on the west side falling out to the street out different sections of the city upon which
and also nearly all of the west half of the to shew its violence. Tsukiji suffered very
roof. But the saddest and worst remains yet j badly, there is hardly a house without some
to be told. The greatest loss sustained by damage to its chimneys. St. Paul's school,
any of the Foreign Missions is that by the belonging to the A. E. Mission, is badly
American Episcopalians. The Saint Paul's wrecked. A Japanese teacher was killed in
school building, which had already trying to leave the building. Fortunately he
beencondemned asunfitforfurther occupancy, ; was about tbe onl in ifc> Thifl

gave way on both the north and south sides. to be tbe one hurt in Tguhiji t ,

Here a Japanese connected with the school, there were several near escapes. Bishop
and at the time in the building, thinking it MoKim was only saved by the thick sun hat
safer outside no doubt, started to run out. he had on

He had only got away some three feet from | At Rie Rokumei Kwan a porch roof fell,
the door when a large part of the brick , killing a coachman, a horse, and rendering


another horse useless and crushing the car- j damaged, the Private Secretary, Kure's resi-
riage. There are several chimneys lying j dence was seriously damaged, a chimney
on the roof of the Imperial Hotel, The j falling through the roof, and the walls having
Hotel Metropole seems uninjured. Trinity j cracked, the rooms are almost destroyed. Mr.
Church in Tsukiji is hadly damaged, while j Kure's family have left the house. The
it is said that the Shiba English Church j Private Secretary Nakada's residence has also
is badly wrecked. The Pres. Mis. Buildings | suffered through cracks on the walls, and
at Shirokane are badly damaged. It is said ! the stones on the eaves being almost dislodged,
that there are several deaths in the city. ! the house is in great danger of a collapse.

Gin/a and its neighbourhood seems to have j Nearly half the residence of Mr. Sato, the

got off without a tile displaced. j Secretary, was destroyed by the wall of Prince

AT THE IMPERIAL CASTLE. I Arisugawa's Palace, falling upon it, the part

In the Imperial Palace, there was fortunately of the wal1 thus fallen being 12 feet high by
no accident, Their Majesties taking shelter in 18 feefc lon g- But no one was lmrt either at
the palace grounds. Ohamberlains and Court j tne office or in tne residences,
ladies were sent to Akasaka Palace, where | Home Department. Nearly all the chim-
H.M. the Empress Dowager lives; but the ! neys have fallen, six of them having pierced
Palace was not in the least damaged and J the roof into the rooms set apart for the

Her Majesty was in the best of spirits.
At 2.30, Imperial Princes, Ministers of State,
and other high officials called at the Im-
perial Castle, Akasaka Palace, and Crown
Prince's Palace. The only damage done to the

Bureaux of Public Works, Prefectural Ad-
ministration, Police Supervision and General
Affairs, and the Secretariat, while a building
behind the Department was completely de-
stroyed. A paper-plasterer, Sato Seibei, was so

Castle was in the cracking of some of the I seriously injured that it is believed he has



Cabinet Building. Through the falling of
the chimneys, the roof was severely damaged,
and the walls cracked and fell off. The
shock coming as the Ministers of State were
in consultation sitting round a table, bits of
plaster fell upon them as they rushed out of the


Privy Council Building. A chimney fell,
and there was very little damage done.

since succumbed. Among those slightly in-
jured, were three clerks, an attendant, and a
workman come to repaint the building. Ma-
kino, a clerk, had a very narrow escape. A
chimney fell through into his room and com-
pletely smashed the table at which he was
writing ; but he escaped unscathed. Mr.
J. de Rijke, an employe of the Department,
who is at present at Hakone, has an official
residence in the Central Observatory com-
pound. The chimney fell and broke the

Household Department. An official, on beams ; Rijke had to take refuge in

seeing the west entrance slightly damaged,
tried to run out and was injured. Attendants

the Observatory with her son and daughter.
Finance Department. The Vice-Minister

and boys were also slightly injured. I and other high officials were in council when

Foreign Office. The tiles fell off in many ! the shock occurred. They all ran out of
places ; and most chimneys have leaned | the building, followed by the clerks,
dangerously. Though the Minister and Vice- Mizoguchi was coming down, when the stair-
MiiiiHU'i-'H residences are not perceptibly

case came off, and he was severely injured in


the thigh. An attendant jumped out of a
window ; but just as he came on the ground,
a chimney fell on top of him and buried him
in its ruins. He was helped out ; and after
medical assistance had been called, the two
men were sent to the Juntendo Hospital.
The clerk is expected to live if his thigh can
be mended. Six chimneys came down at the
Department and destroyed three buildings.
The Official Gaictle office and a disused build-
ing for safes were seriously damaged.

War Department. The chimneys of the
Minister and Vice-Minister's rooms were
knocked down, and walls in many places were
cracked. Damages, however, were compara-
tively slight.


Imperial Body Guard. Only a chimney
came down in the First Infantry Regiment's
barracks, while in those of the Second, a

1 3

Online LibraryM MasoThe great earthquake of 1894. A complete report of the effects of the recent great earthquake → online text (page 1 of 3)