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Jim Kershner’s This day in history

From our archives, 100 years ago

Spokane was suffering through a severe cold snap, with the temperature hitting 10 below zero at Manito Park. Meanwhile, doctors and various other busybodies raised a new public health concern: low-necked dresses for women.

Medical men, without exception, said that the new fashion for V-necked collars “leads to severe colds and pneumonia.”

“It’s a bad practice and ought not to be done,” scolded one doctor.

However, no doctors could come up with an actual example of a low-necked dress leading to disease. The matron in charge at St. Luke’s Hospital said she had seen no such cases and that all of the pneumonia cases they had were men, who, she added, “wore no such dress.”

From the duel file: An Austrian bartender, a notorious “gun man,” entered a Greek coffeehouse and made “slurring remarks” about the Greek Orthodox Christmas celebration.

This led to a fight, in which the bartender, a Roman Catholic, bashed a man over the head with a stool. A boy ran to a nearby hotel and told the injured man’s sister about the fight.

She ran shouting down Browne Street, near Main, toward the bartender.

Both had pistols and both began firing. She fell with a bullet in her breast. Her condition was described as serious.