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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

100 years ago in Spokane: Seattle visitor suspected of extending drug ring

Spokane police detectives were searching for links to a Seattle drug ring following the arrest of an alleged dealer 100 years ago today. (S-R archives)
Jim Kershner

Spokane police cracked down on a thriving Northwest “drug ring.”

One member of the ring, D.R. Wolfe, was discovered with $500 worth of cocaine, morphine and other drugs in his hotel room.

“We have found that Wolfe came in on the Great Northern from Seattle and had stopped at many places on the road,” said a detective. “Letters written back to Seattle positively prove the presence of the Seattle ring here. … Wolfe had written to a woman in Seattle, telling her how sales were progressing.”

Two more alleged drug users were arrested at a hotel on Second and Howard. They confessed to being “addicted to the habit.”

Police said the drug ring operated the same as any other business dealing in a staple.

“A regular salesman seems to make the rounds, arranging for sale and delivery,” said a city detective. “We had been positively sure of the existence of representatives of the gang here, but until the other night we could not positively confirm it.”

From the labor beat: Hundreds of railroad shop men were still on strike in Spokane, Hillyard, Parkwater and Spirit Lake.

There appeared to be some movement toward settling the strike nationally, but no resolution had yet been announced.

So far, freight and passenger service had not been curtailed, and railroad officials predicted they could keep the trains running on schedule for a few more days.