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200 Years Ago a Great Earthquake Killed Up to 20% of the Population Around New Madrid, Missouri - What If That Earthquake Happened Today? This is the 200th anniversary of the strongest earthquake to strike our country in recorded history. Sam Penny's Novels, Memphis 7.9 (Revised), and Broken River (now available on Kindle) describe what would happen in a repeat of that same event today Livingston, TX (I- Newswire) December 16, 2011 - 200 years ago, on December 16, 1811, the first of four in a series of great earthquakes stuck the New Madrid Seismic Zone under the Mississippi River, wrecking havoc over 650,000 square miles in what is now the central United States, shaking the foundations of cities from Toronto, Ontario to Boston, Massachusetts to Charleston, South Carolina. In 2002 and 2005 Sam Penny published two novels, "Memphis 7.9 (Revised)" and "Broken River," which described a scenario of the conditions that represented his best estimates of what the world in the affected area would be like should a similar seismic event occur today on the New Madrid Seismic Zone. Both of these books are available through Penny has just published Kindle versions of the books as well. Back in 1811 over the next two months another three gigantic earthquakes struck the New Madrid Seismic Zone under what was then the western edge of our country - what now is the center of the United States of America. The first event is estimated to have been a 7.9 magnitude event focused near what is known today as the bottom of the Missouri boot- heel. A second earthquake the same size happened six hours later thirty miles north under New Madrid, Missouri. The third earthquake on January 23, 1812 was of smaller intensity, but it was followed on February 7, 1812 by the largest event on the thrust zone, again under the shattered village of New Madrid. Aftershocks continued to shake the region for the next five years. The 1810 census reported the population of the affected region to be about 5,000, plus as many as 20,000 slaves. This covered the cities along the Mississippi and Ohio rivers, including Louisville, New Madrid, and down to Memphis. That census did not even consider the sizable Native American Indian population in the area. Some estimates suggest that as much as 20% of the total population was killed as a result of the seismic activity and pestilence that followed. It was a small number back then, but today over 32 million people live in the threatened region; 20% would be 6.4 million. Both of Penny's books received Honorable Mention at the MidSouthCon Science Fiction Fair and are noted for their detailed descriptions of the effects of seismic shaking along the New Madrid Seismic Zone. Penny says, "My books are based upon analytical studies of what the new world will be like in Memphis and along the Mississippi River when such a seismic event takes place. It is not a matter of IF, but of WHEN." The USGS estimates that in the next 50 years there is a a 25 to 40 percent chance of a magnitude 6 or larger earthquake, including a 7 to 10 percent chance of another series like that of 1811 and 1812. The books consider both the immediate dynamic impacts of the strong seismic events that will happen in the region, as well as the effects upon society as the infrastructure of civilization falls apart around the area. "I am pleased with the response of some who live along the New Madrid Seismic Zone in their preparations for an obvious event in their future," Penny says, "but I am still concerned with the lack of preparation in the overall region for what could be their fate in the not too distant future." Penny's books are available at and at The Kindle versions of the book are available exclusively at

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About TwoPenny Publications: TwoPenny Publications publishes the works of novelist Sam Penny. Company Contact Information: TwoPenny Publications Sam Penny 205 Rainbow Dr #10503, Livingston, TX 77399-2005 Phone: 512-632-4626 Published in: Other Tags: earthquake predictions    new madrid seismic zone    seismic hazards     Published on: December 16, 2011 Original Source: 200 Years Ago a Great Earthquake Killed Up to 20% of the Population Around New Madrid, Missouri - What If That Earthquake Happened Today?

200 Years Ago a Great Earthquake Killed Up to 20 of the Population Around New Ma