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Tuesday, April 23, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Spokane

100 Years Ago in Spokane: Bolshevist ties, labor council vote all in a day’s paper

The Spokane Daily Chronicle recounted a debate in the Spokane Central Labor Council over whether to endorse a new organization called the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Council. A representative of that council was quoted as saying, “Some say we are bolsheviki – well, maybe we are.” Some in the audience responded by shouting, “This is not Seattle.” (Spokane Daily Chronicle / S-R Archives)
The Spokane Daily Chronicle recounted a debate in the Spokane Central Labor Council over whether to endorse a new organization called the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Council. A representative of that council was quoted as saying, “Some say we are bolsheviki – well, maybe we are.” Some in the audience responded by shouting, “This is not Seattle.” (Spokane Daily Chronicle / S-R Archives)

The Spokane Daily Chronicle ran two stories that warned darkly of bolshevist plots in Spokane.

First, police said they found evidence that Harry M. Wicks, a “professed bolshevist” was connected with a California bomb plot. Wicks was being held in Spokane on charges of disloyalty and “white slavery.”

Authorities discovered a letter from Wicks mentioning a meeting of the C.C.C., which they believed was the Catsclaw Club of California, a “secret organization alleged to have been behind several of the California bomb plots.”

Police believed the organization was expanding into the Northwest.

In a second story, the Chronicle recounted a debate in the Spokane Central Labor Council over whether to endorse a new organization called the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Council.

A representative of that council was quoted as saying, “Some say we are bolsheviki — well, maybe we are.”

Some in the audience responded by shouting, “This is not Seattle.”

James Lyden, the Seattle organizer of the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Council, said that they were mainly in favor of unionism, which is why the central council should support them.

“We are broke,” said Lyden. “We have no office or place to meet.”

A number of speakers said that they did not want to exchange Spokane’s relatively peaceful labor relations for the “strife-torn conditions that prevail on the Coast.”

A motion to deny the endorsement passed.

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