St. Louis and Vicinity, MO Severe Earthquake, Oct 1857
About twenty minutes past four, this morning, the vicinity of St. Louis was visited by an earthquake, unequalled in severity by any within the range of our experience. There were two distinct shocks, with an interval of seven minutes between them.
The first was the more violent. It was preceded by a deep, loud, rumbling sound as of underground thunder, which filled space with its volume and impressing all who heard it, with an idea of mightly, irresistible power. The shock, which instantly followed, lasted several seconds, and made windows rattle and houses quiver with its rapid vibrations. The premonitory sound and the movement which followed in its wake, both appeared to come form the east (some say the south-east) and to roll away in an opposite direction. We imagine that are few of our citizens who did not have the good fortune to experience the phenomenon, as the rumbling was long and loud enough to rouse one from even the deepest slumber. Some were so alarmed as to mediate an abandonment of their houses.
Both shocks were felt at Kirkwood and at Meramec Station on the Pacific railroad, where they were quite as violent as in this city; and we learn that during the interval between the concussions, a meteor of unusual size and brilliancy, shot acros[sic] the sky from the south towards the north. It was seen simultaneously by persons at Kirkwood and Meramec, the two points being seven miles apart. Those who "timed" the last shock inform us that it lasted thirty-eight seconds.
St. Louis News.
Liberty Weekley Tribune Missouri 1857-10-16