The Science of the ’64 Earthquake

earthquake image credit usgs
Photo by USGS.

Fifty years ago the greatest earthquake ever recorded in North America hit southcentral Alaska, devastating Anchorage. On the next Hometown Alaska, we’ll talk about the scientific story of the quake. Our quake became the most studied in history, and helped change basic understanding of how the earth’s crust works. Fifty years later, what have we learned about why big quakes happen?

HOST: Charles Wohlforth


  • Dave Norton, UAF Osher Lifelong Learning Institute
  • Peter Haeussler, Research Geologist, USGS Alaska Science Center
  • Greg Danner, Science Curator, Anchorage Museum



  • “The Orphan Tsunami of 1700: Japanese clues to a parent earthquake in North America” Atwater, B.F. 2005
  • “Earthquake storms: The fascinating history and volatile future of the San Andreas Fault” Dvorak, J. 2014
  • “The Million Death Quake: The science of predicting Earth’s deadliest natural disaster” Musson, R. 2012
  • “On Shaky Ground: An invitation to disaster” Nance J.J. 1988
  • “Plate Tectonics: An insider’s history of the modern theory of the earth” Oreskes, N. 2003
  • “Cascadia’s Fault: The coming earthquake and tsunami that could devastate North America” Thompson, J. 2011


  • Call 550-8433 (Anchorage) or 1-888-353-5752  (statewide) during the live broadcast (2:00 – 3:00pm)
  • Send email to before, during or after the live broadcast (e-mails may be read on air)
  • Post your comment or question below (comments may be read on air)

LIVE BROADCAST: Wednesday, March 26 2014. 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. AKDT

REPEAT BROADCAST: Wednesday, March 26, 2014. 9:00 – 10:00 p.m. AKDT

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USGS_64 quake
Photo by USGS.

cwohlforth (at) alaskapublic (dot) org | About Charles

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