Jim Kershner’s this day in history


From our archives, 100 years ago

Did you know that there were once houseboats in Spokane?

A fleet of houseboats was anchored in the Spokane River at Bernard Street. They were in the news in 1913 because the Great Northern Railway was threatening to take away their land access. Their gangways rested on the riverbank owned by the railroad.

One houseboat owner was served notice that his access would be closed.

However, another houseboat owner, who operated a fishing bait market on his boat, said he had received word that the company was willing to lease them access on a formal basis as long as the railroad’s right and title was recognized.

From the divorce beat: Flora “Sister” Bilkiss, Spokane’s most famous street evangelist, was sued for divorce by her husband in Butte.

His suit claimed she was “so devoted to her creed that she had no time for wifely or household duties.”

Sister Bilkiss heartily agreed. When her husband told her to choose between him and Christ, she had no trouble making the choice.

“I loved him, but … I loved Christ better than anything,” she said.

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1913: The American Cancer Society was founded in New York by a group of doctors and business leaders under its original name, the American Society for the Control of Cancer.

Click here to comment on this story »