When turning my gaze from the river I chanced to look either to the right or left, before me or upwards, I saw nothing but flames; houses, trees, and the air itself were on fire.
Reverend Peter Pernin, Peshtigo, Wisconsin, 1871.
Pernin and other residents of Peshtigo survived the fire by retreating to the Peshtigo River to escape the heat and flames. Pernin published a dramatic eyewitness account of the Peshtigo Fire, which was later reprinted in one of the earliest issues of the Wisconsin Magazine of History.
via: Pernin, “The Finger of God is There,” Wisconsin Magazine of History 2:2 (1918).