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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Spokane

Jim Kershner’s this day in history

From our archives, 100 years ago

Spokane police caused a scene of panic when they raided a Chinese and Japanese gambling house in Spokane’s Chinatown on Trent Avenue.

The officers forced their way through one door and then splintered another, revealing a wild scene. What the paper referred to as “agitated celestials” were clamoring for exit at barred windows. One man tried to hide under a pile of coats.

Gold and silver coins were “rolling in all directions.”

Police rounded up 19 people on the all-purpose charge of vagrancy.

From the money beat: A fortune departed Spokane on a train to Portland – $200,000 in gold.

This was to be Spokane’s contribution to the gold reserve at the newly established Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.

The gold was sent with C.W. Beers of the American Express company and two armed men who watched the strongbox day and night.

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1942: During World War II, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed a measure establishing the U.S. Women’s Coast Guard Reserve, or SPARS (an abbreviation of the U.S. Coast Guard motto “Semper Paratus” – “Always Ready”).

1943: During World War II, U.S. forces seized control of Tarawa and Makin atolls from the Japanese.

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