Historic Hotel

June 29, 1925, Santa Barbara, CA (Unknown photographer)

The Santa Barbara earthquake took place at 6:42 am on June 29, 1925 with a duration of 19 seconds, a magnitude of 6.8, and an epicenter located in the ocean off the coast of Santa Barbara. Believed to be a result of an extension of the Mesa or Santa Ynez fault lines, the earthquake reverberated throughout California being felt as far south as Orange County. The Santa Barbara earthquake caused severe damage to structures located in the business district near State Street, resulted in $8 million in damages, and caused 13 deaths. Two of those deaths occurred at the famous Arlington hotel, which hosted a variety of wealthy patrons, presidents, and royalty. Bertram D. Hancock, son of Southern California oil and real estate tycoon G. Allan Hancock, and Edith Forbes Perkins, widow of Charles E. Perkins, President of the C.B. &Q. Railroad, were victims of the earthquake. They died when a 50,000 gallon tank installed in the hotel to prevent fire damage crashed through their rooms located in the five story section pictured above.

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