"Then the long roll deepened and spread into an awful roar, that seemed to pervade at once the troubled earth and the still air above and around."

     On the night of August 31, 1886, shortly after 10:00pm, the Charleston area experienced the Great Earthquake of 1886.  This was the most disastrous event in the city's history.  There were five successive shocks; the first was the worst, the fifth, the least severe.  Citizens rushed into the streets in a state of confusion.  Buildings lay in the streets and whitish clouds filled the air.
     There were an enormous amount of casualities.  A woman jumped from a second story window and injured her spine.  Bricks that were flying in the wind, hitting people in their heads.  One woman fell down her steps and dislocated her hipbones.  Blood was all around and bodies lined the streets.  Paramedics were so desperate to move the wounded that they made strechers from shutters.
     The earthquake subsided for a couple of hours.  But at 1:05am, a sixth shock occured and was followed by a very severe seventh.  These two shocks alone caused fires on King Street and almost as much damage as the five shocks that had occured a few hours earlier. 
     "Save us Lord!" "Have mercy on a poor sinner, Lord!"  "What have we done to bring this on us?"  These were the words that were exclaimed by women, men, and children--all helpless victims of a natural disaster that will never be forgotten.

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