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Jim Kershner’s This day in history » On the Web: spokesman.com/topics/local-history

From our archives, 100 years ago

Spokane’s firehouse scandal kept getting hotter and hotter.

The captain of the No. 10 Fire Station often brightened “the dull monotony of a fireman’s life” with nocturnal visits from women in his private office.

His fellow firemen testified, in a civil service hearing, that the captain entertained women in his private room “with the door shut and the blinds pulled down.” During one such visit, he stuck his head out the door at 11 p.m. and told the other firemen it was OK if they all went to bed.

Even more scandalous was testimony from the husband of one of these women. He said he and his wife lived only three blocks from the station. His wife was constantly pestering him to take her skating on a nearby pond. Once they got to the pond, the captain would invariably be there and she always wanted the captain to lace up her skates for her.

After she was properly laced up, the captain would skate away with her, leaving the husband standing there.

The husband was now suing for divorce, naming the captain as one of the causes.

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1948: The Supreme Court ruled covenants prohibiting the sale of real estate to blacks or members of other racial groups were legally unenforceable.



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