On this day in 1857, the Ohio Life Insurance and Trust Company failed, setting off an economic depression known as the Panic of 1857. According to historian John Pardee, “The Panic of ’57 flattened both towns [Duluth and Superior] completely, they having as yet no substance.… Superior kept a few stores open; on the Minnesota side there was not one place of business open. Then, and for ten years, the Duluth people did their necessary trading in Superior, by boat or on the ice. Walter Van Brunt stated that “Those who stayed did anything to keep alive. They trapped beaver and mink and even muskrat, which had a trading value. … After the first year or two, the settlers raised potatoes. And the lake was full of fish and the woods of rabbits. To this day, survivors of that period … are known as fish-eaters.…Every house in Duluth, but two, had stood open and unoccupied for three years. Only the Luce warehouse in Portland sheltered the public offices. This was a fearfully lonely place in a forgotten corner of the world, and both Duluth and Superior seemed deserted and Godforsaken.” Read about how Duluthians survived the panic and ensuing depression here and learn more about the Panic of 1857 here.