English (Text Version) > Historical Fires
Wildfires, like it or not, are part of the history of the United States and all other countries with forests and grasslands. Though they are natural-and necessary-they still destroy buildings and kill people caught in their paths. Since the founding of the United States Forest Service (USFS), fires have been suppressed in the United States. Foresters realized only recently the devastating effects of no fires on forests.
The following pages tell the stories of the biggest and most devastating fires in the history of the United Sates, and how these fires effected the economy, government, forest policy, and small towns and communities.