December 9, 2013 in City

Then and Now photos: Pawn shops on Spokane’s West Main Avenue

 
In the 1962 photo below, a sign on the left reads “E-Z Loans.” The building was occupied by Millman Jewelers and E-Z Loan, a shop started by Henry and Sadie Millman in 1929, next door to the store’s current location at 407 W. Main Ave. in Spokane. Henry Millman was born in Romania in 1900 and came to America at age 5. He became a skilled watchmaker and jeweler, and operated his store for almost 45 years. At one time, it sat next to Dutch’s, in the old Ulrich’s Cafe, and Huppin’s, both of which operated as pawn shops at one time. This year, Huppin’s consolidated its audio, video and photography showroom to its North Division Street location, and Dutch’s went out of business following the death of owner Gary Singer, leaving Millman E-Z Loan as the last pawn shop on the block. All three businesses were owned by members of prominent Jewish families from the Spokane area. Annette Silver, who was once married to a grandson of the Millmans, has been running the Millman shop for the last 32 years. She uses Henry’s watch repair cabinet as a shelf. She hopes the two empty buildings next door find tenants soon. “This whole block looks so dark. I miss the foot traffic from those places and I sure miss those guys over there” at Dutch’s, she said. “They’re a good bunch of guys.” Henry Millman died in 1974, followed by Sadie in 1975. – Jesse Tinsley

July 11, 1962: The south (left) side of the 400 block of West Main Avenue in downtown Spokane was once home to multiple pawn shops, bars and pool halls.

Jesse Tinsley photo Buy this photo
Present day: The 400 block of West Main Avenue has lost such stores as Dutch’s and Huppin’s, but Millman E-Z Loan has endured.


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