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Jim Kershner’s This Day in History

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From our archives, 100 years ago

The upperclassmen in the “cadet” program (similar to today’s ROTC) played an elaborate prank on a freshman at Washington State College in Pullman.

They invented a fake fraternity and initiated him into it.

Part of the initiation ritual called for the freshman to trudge every morning at 5:30 a.m. to the college stables to feed, water and groom the “commandant’s” horse.

What he did not know was the horse was a decrepit old nag, used for veterinary study.

From the development beat: Camp Comfort, a resort on Medical Lake, was sold to the Medical Lake Sanitarium Co., which intended to erect a “first-class” sanitarium on the site.

Medical Lake was already the site of a mental hospital. A sanitarium was more of a health and convalescent resort.

Camp Comfort consisted of bathing beaches, bath houses, diving towers and boats. The paper didn’t know when construction would start, but reported a “rumor” that it would begin soon.

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1961: FCC chairman Newton N. Minow decried the majority of television programming as a “vast wasteland” in a speech to the National Association of Broadcasters. … 1994: South Africa’s newly elected parliament chose Nelson Mandela to be the country’s first black president.

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