The Idaho Press September
EIGHTEEN DEAD WERE
IN WOODS BUT ONE DAY
Big Creek Lumber Company Employe
Says All Unfortunates Wers
men who were found dead between Big and Trout creeks had
been in the woods only one day,” said P. W. Christensen, an employe of the
Milwaukee Lumber company, who has just arrived from Big creek , where he was
during the great fire last week.
“I was at headquarters camp Saturday when the men got off the train and were started into the woods. The ranger told us that his camp was running short of supplies and he wanted to know if we could not put up a lunch for the men. We did this and they continued on their way into the woods.
“All of them were young men, scarcely one of them being over 25 years of age. Nearly everyone was an American, too. I think that I saw only two foreigners in the crew, and they were Scandinavians.
“The fire has burned from the head of Big creek down to the river and the 500 men in the employ of the Milwaukee Lumber company which was building a railroad to the upper creek had wonderful adventures.
“When the wall of flame was seen advancing the men built backfires and this aided them in making their escape. They were forced to travel many miles in the creek. They kept wet blankets over them or kept the water on their clothing. Out of all this great force, though, not a single one lost their lives, but there were many narrow escapes.
“I understand that the company will go ahead with its road. Much of the pine is standing, but it will be necessary to go ahead and cut it within a couple of years before it begins to rot.
“The company is building a fine road. The bridges and everything connected with its construction are of a most substantial character.
'Some valuable teams were lost in the fire and about all of the camps and their fixtures.