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Dictionary of Wisconsin History

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Search Results for: Keyword: 'peshtigo'

Term: Peshtigo Fire Cemetery (Historic Marker Erected 1951)

Definition:

Peshtigo Cemetery, Oconto Ave., Peshtigo, Marinette County 

On the night of October 8, 1871, a booming town of 1700 people was wiped out of existence in the greatest forest fire disaster in American history. Loss of life and even property in the great fire occurring the same night in Chicago did not match the death toll and destruction visited upon northeastern Wisconsin during the same dreadful hours. The town of Peshtigo was centered around a woodenware factory, the largest in the country. Every building in the community was lost. The tornado of fire claimed at least 800 lives in this area. Many of the victims lie here. The memory of 350 unidentified men, women, and children is preserved in a nearby mass grave.

View related articles at Wisconsin Magazine of History Archives.

[Source: McBride, Sarah Davis. History Just Ahead (Madison:WHS, 1999).]

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