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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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100 years ago in Spokane: Mayor agrees to give up position

C.M. Fassett was succeeding C.A. Fleming as the mayor of Spokane, the Spokane Daily Chronicle reported on Dec. 4, 1917. (Spokesman-Review archives)
C.M. Fassett was succeeding C.A. Fleming as the mayor of Spokane, the Spokane Daily Chronicle reported on Dec. 4, 1917. (Spokesman-Review archives)

The office of Spokane mayor changed hands, in a surprisingly nondramatic fashion.

In 1917, the mayor was not directly elected. The city commissioners (aka city council members) simply chose one of their own to become mayor.

At their most recent meeting, they chose C.M. Fassett as mayor, to succeed C.A. Fleming, who had been mayor for the past two years. Fleming and Fassett had both been re-elected handily to their city commissioner posts, and Fleming “made no serious objection” to transferring the honor of mayor to Fassett. At his own request, Fleming took over as the commissioner of the department of public affairs.

As for Fassett, this was his second stint as mayor. He had been mayor from 1913 to 1915, “and expressed gratitude over its award to him again.”

The Spokane Daily Chronicle’s editorial page expressed its approval.

“Spokane is proud to again bestow that title upon you,” said an editorial. “You have ‘played on the square’; always courteous and obliging; always ready to meet a man halfway; lenient, ofttimes when stringency was expected; afraid or slacking from your duty – never.”

The transfer of the office would take place officially on Jan. 1, 1918. Fassett said that he would continue to fulfill the duties of his other post — that of a draft exemption board member.

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