LANSING, MI. (WILX) - October 8 is a significant day in weather history.
In 1871 there were 8 "great fires" that occurred. The weather played a part in them as it was early fall and a drought, as well as very windy during that time. (Source WILX)
In 1871 there were 8 "great fires" that occurred. The weather played a part in them as it was early fall and a drought, as well as very windy during that time.
We have all heard of the Chicago Fire as almost 4 square miles of the city burned down.
However, the deadliest fire was in Wisconsin in a town called Peshtigo, where over 2,000 people were killed and the town was burned down.
This fire spread into the Upper Peninsula.
It started when they were burning grass for new railroad beds.
In the lower Peninsula fires broke out near Holland to Kalamazoo.
Manistee and Gaylord area had fires.
Alpena had a fire.
A fire that raced across the thumb region and did not stop until it reached Lake Huron took 3 days to put out.
Some of these fires still to this day we do not know how they started.
"The weather conditions that summer and fall were in a bad drought so everything was like tinder," said Weather Authority, Andy Provenzano.
"A strong low pressure system entered the lakes region with extreme gusty winds. This meant that when a fire broke out, it was not going to stop very easily."
The fire they say reached close to 2,000 degrees turning sand into glass.
The fuel that burned were pine trees and needles and fallen trees by the numerous lumber mills.
You can watch Andy's Facebook Live about these fires below.
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