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Thursday, December 13, 2018  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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100 years ago in Spokane: City plans funeral pyre for Kaiser Wilhelm II to celebrate end of World War I

Spokane was making plans for a giant “peace festival,” including a giant funeral pyre for Kaiser Wilhelm, to celebrate the end of the war, The Spokesman-Review reported on Nov. 22, 1918. (Spokesman-Review archives)
Spokane was making plans for a giant “peace festival,” including a giant funeral pyre for Kaiser Wilhelm, to celebrate the end of the war, The Spokesman-Review reported on Nov. 22, 1918. (Spokesman-Review archives)

Spokane was making plans for a giant “peace festival,” including a giant funeral pyre for Kaiser Wilhelm, to celebrate the end of the war.

An effigy “of one W. Hohenzollern, late emperor of Germany,” would be burned at the stake in the 40-foot bonfire. The bonfire will “light up the river for a mile.”

“There will be a parade through the streets, with the captive in chains in the executioner’s cart,” said the paper. “… One by one the noted victims of the kaiser’s mad ambition will rise from the river bank and add a torch to the flames.”

Among the victims would be “the women and children of the Lusitania.”

From the casualty beat: Capt. David H. Cohn, a Spokane attorney, died of wounds received in France on Nov. 1, 1918.

Cohn was a former star high school athlete at the old South Central High School in Spokane.

From the flu beat: Optimism abounded that the flu “epidemic crest” had passed, said a headline. However, the death toll rose to 203 and 145 new cases were reported.


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