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Jim Kershner’s this day in history

From our archives, 100 years ago

The headline was intriguing, if a little insensitive: “Hangs Himself By Foot – Serious Predicament Has Amusing Feature.”


It turns out a Seattle sailor, of French extraction, was using a block and tackle on the mast to lift the engine out of “Labelle,” his motor launch. He somehow got a foot caught in the chain, which yanked him straight up, upside down.

With his free foot, he “thoroughly kicked the contraption,” while bellowing Gallic expletives. He succeeded only in getting his other foot caught.

His screams attracted a crowd, but nobody knew how to work the releasing gear. A Japanese sailor finally hit on the obvious solution. He chopped down the mast.

The Frenchman was unharmed, although his head bounced on the deck.

From the fire beat: A fire in Cheney’s business district destroyed four blocks.

The fire started in the Nickerson Clothing Store and then spread into adjoining buildings. A grocery store and hardware store also were destroyed. Authorities were still attempting to determine how it started.

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1955: Disneyland had its opening day in Anaheim, Calif.


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