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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Jim Kershner’s this day in history

From our archives, 100 years ago

William Wall, 14, “fat and freckled,” won the pie-eating contest at the Butchers and Grocers Annual Picnic at Liberty Lake.

Young William ate a whole huckleberry pie in six minutes, with his hands tied behind his back. “Every scrap not adhering to eyebrows, nose or chin found its way into William’s interior,” a correspondent said.

In the Fat Men’s Race, Ray Waggoner won “with D.H. Herbert larding the earth for a close second.”

From the transportation beat: Spokane County’s personal property statistics reflected a fundamental shift in the way people were getting around.

The number of horses in the county declined from 20,319 to 18,843 in one year. The number of autos jumped from 2,185 to 2,938 over the same period.

From the movie beat: The Clemmer Theater (now the Bing Crosby Theater) was preparing for the biggest movie event of the year, the showing of D.W. Griffith’s “The Birth of a Nation.” Big American flags were “being draped on the walls and balconies” and pictures of Lincoln, Grant and Lee were being hung.

Reserved tickets were sold in advance, and “strong demand” for this controversial movie was reported. The premiere was still four days away.

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