Arrow-right Camera


Jim Kershner’s This day in history

From our archives, 100 years ago

William Jennings Bryan, the “peerless leader of democracy” (as the Spokane Daily Chronicle called him in a headline), arrived for a full day of speeches and events in Spokane.

He immediately disposed of one burning question: He would not be the Democratic candidate for president in 1912, as he was in 1896, 1900 and 1908.

“Nobody but an idiot – someone lacking in ordinary intelligence – would make the assumption that I am still a candidate for president,” he said. “I do not understand the workings of the minds of men who have heard me declare for the last three years and a half that I would not make the race again, and still doubt this fact.”

Bryan made speeches at North Central High School and Gonzaga College in the morning, and at the Auditorium theater in the afternoon.

At Gonzaga he reiterated his belief that faith and work were the two most important things in life – put them together and you had a “combination hard to beat.”

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1789: The Constitution of the United States went into effect as the first Federal Congress met in New York. (The lawmakers then adjourned for lack of a quorum.) … 1861: Abraham Lincoln was inaugurated as the 16th president of the United States. The U.S. Government Printing Office began operation.