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Jim Kershner’s This day in history

From our archives, 100 years ago

Spokane’s suffragists were debating a new and intriguing idea: All women, even unmarried women, going by the title of “Mrs.”

Why should unmarried women be placed in a different class than married women?

“This is certainly worth considering,” said Mrs. Fassett, the president of the Nonpartisan League, a women’s political group. “All the men are known as ‘Mr.’ whether they are married or not, and it seems peculiar that they should make any distinction with women. I do not see why the women should not have the same privilege.”

The Spokane leader of a women’s garment workers union said it would be nice for unmarried women to, for instance, register as “Mrs.” at a hotel, to “keep us from being insulted at least.”

Some people, however, weren’t so sure about the idea. One argument was that “it would cheat Cupid” – cause some women not to marry – because “many women marry in order to secure the title Mrs.”

Spokane women seemed to scoff at that argument. They were, however, nervous about the idea of “Mrs.” being compulsory. They said that unmarried women should have the right to choose.

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1960: An earthquake of magnitude 9.5, the strongest on record, struck southern Chile.

Top stories in Spokane

Before the falls: Spokane and the history of river cities

The falls are beautiful, they’re powerful and they’re the reason for the city. Spokane is one of a small number of American cities that have falling water in their hearts, and it’s no accident. The reasons for a city are many, but chief among them is water – for drinking, for transportation, for industry and, most recently, for beauty.