An earthquake on a Sunday morning in March 1963 literally shook Southeast Missouri churchgoers out of their pews.
The tremblor struck at 11:35 a.m. and was recorded at the seismograph at Southeast Missouri State College. The next days' newspapers carried stories about the shake-up, but no Richter scale estimates were published at the time.
Missourian stories' described plaster falling, mirrors dancing on walls, dishes and windows rattling, and church lamps doing cart-wheels.
But what I found most interesting were the reactions of churchgoers. Here's the Missourian's coverage of the event.
March 5, 1963:
All this reminded me of an earthquake I experienced as a child. It took place in 1968, after my grandmother, Clara Glaus Stehr, came to live with us. After the death of her husband, Raymond, my grandmother lived in an addition my dad built to our house on South Sprigg Street.
I can still recall sitting with my grandmother watching television, when the quake struck. While I can't remember it damaging the house in any way, I do remember being frightened.
The other thing I can recall was a large religious statue falling from its high glass shelf onto my grandmother's bed. Miraculously, it wasn't hurt. But once returned to her perch, she always wore a wire around her throat securing her to the wall. I always thought it looked odd, like she had on a very ugly necklace.
Here's the story of that quake: