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Jim Kershner’s this day in history

Tue., Jan. 7, 2014

From our archives, 100 years ago

The earliest open-air roses ever grown in Spokane were on display in City Hall, a result of uncommonly warm January temperatures.

The high the day before was 53 degrees, which the paper believed was the warmest January weather since 1899. The average high over the previous several days was 47 degrees, which was about 20 degrees above normal for that time of year.

“The warm spell has pulled all the frost from the ground, and residents of the South Hill report that trees are beginning to bud,” the paper reported. “Also, gardeners who planted winter spinach were dismayed yesterday to see the first signs of early sprouts coming out of the ground.”

The roses came from a Summit Boulevard garden, in a sheltered location on a southwest-facing slope. The red roses “appeared to be perfect in form and condition.”

From the dancing beat: The tango was exempt from Spokane’s “obscene dance” ban, mainly because the fad arrived only after the ordinance was written. The law specifically outlawed the rag, the turkey trot, the Texas tommy, the bunny hug and the Boston dip.

The mayor, who pushed the ban, said he was not too concerned about the tango. “The tango as danced in Spokane,” he said, was not particularly suggestive.

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