settlers along the river had fled the Miramichi fire in the
late fall of 1825. Traumatized by the loss of their homes,
they retreated into the placid life of the river and hid from
the outside world for long generations. They might have lived
that way forever if Wilhelm hadn't looked at the high ridges
that surrounded them and wondered what lay on the other side.
of Planeville, Wilhelm was an enigma to his peers. He went
into the woods and built his village, and his descendants
lived there for four generations until Planeville was abandoned.
the story of the river people and the village founded by their
adventurous son. A capsule of our dreams and a symptom of
our discontent, Planeville erupted from the wilderness. It
enjoyed a brief prosperity and then disappeared when the forest
loam closed over the rotting houses and abandoned machinery
and graves, leaving behind only stories and misplaced stones.
This story is an examination of what Planeville meant to the
people who lived there, and how the village so completely
disappeared from memory and the public record.