How Chimneys Should be Built
One of the best guides to chimney construction, especially in seismic areas, is the Residential Masonry Fireplace and Chimney Handbook by James E. Amrhein, S.E., former Director of the masonry Institute of America in Los Angeles, CA.
The drawing on the left and the links below are from Jim's Handbook and show the basic ways masonry chimneys are reinforced and connected to the house.
Chimney Seismic Index
Prepared for FEMA by Jim Buckley