The Great Peshtigo Fire of 1871 -- Site Index
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Peshtigo Fire Facts & Trivia

It's pronounced PESH ti go'. DO NOT say it the way Michelle Pfeiffer did in "The Deep End of the Ocean."

William B. Ogden, a "lumber baron" with interests in Northeast Wisconsin as well as Chicago, suffered great property losses in both fires.

The official population of Peshtigo in 1871 was 1,700.

For days before the great fire, smoke on Green Bay was so dense that daylight navigation was done by compass, and fog horns blew steadily.

Nineteen survivors attended ceremonies on the 80th anniversary of the fire in 1951. The oldest was 96.

In the year 2000, 11,555 people from all 50 U.S. states, Washington, D.C. and 22 foreign countries, visited the Peshtigo Fire Museum.

Peshtigo has a street named Chicago Court, and Chicago has a street named Peshtigo Court.

When news of the tragedy at Peshtigo reached Wisconsin's capital on Oct. 10, 1871, the Governor and other state officials were away at Chicago, helping the victims of that fire.

The first National Fire Prevention Week was proclaimed October 4-10, 1925 by President Calvin Coolidge.

The memorial at the Peshtigo Fire Cemetery was the first official state historical marker authorized by the State Historical Society of Wisconsin.

Wisconsin State Natural Area #234 (Bloch Oxbow) contains charred tree stumps that may date to the Peshtigo Fire.

The main character on the TV show "Caroline in the City" claims Peshtigo as her hometown.

The name Peshtigo is a native Indian word believed to mean "snapping turtle" or "wild goose."

At the time of the fire, Peshtigo was located in Oconto County. (Marinette County wasn't formed until 1879.)


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Cite as: Deana C. Hipke. The Great Peshtigo Fire of 1871. <>
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