The area that was to become the City of Peshtigo was first settled in about 1838. With the Peshtigo River flowing through the heart of the city, logging and wood products were the economic focus of the new settlement as logs were easily moved on the river. Wood products still provide much of the employment for the 3,500 residents of Peshtigo today. Peshtigo is rich in history and historically known as “The City Rebuilt from Ashes” as it had the worst recorded forest fire in North America claiming well over 1000 lives. The bustling boom town was destroyed on October 8, 1871, the same day as the Chicago fire, and a handful of other fires in the Midwest. Though the loss of life and property damage was far greater in Peshtigo, the Chicago fire received more attention.