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Wednesday, July 8, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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100 years ago in Spokane: Pontoon bridge floated as ferry replacement; possible shoe ‘profiteering’ probed

A solution to the closing of the Vantage ferry was floated by local officials: build a pontoon bridge, Army style. (Spokane Daily Chronicle archives)
A solution to the closing of the Vantage ferry was floated by local officials: build a pontoon bridge, Army style. (Spokane Daily Chronicle archives)

A solution to the closing of the Vantage ferry was floated by local officials: build a pontoon bridge, Army style.

The Vantage ferry was still shut down after the boat was blown downstream and damaged, the Spokane Daily Chronicle reported. Hundreds of cross-state motorists had been stranded on either side of the Columbia River.

Now Sen. Miles Poindexter and the Spokane County Good Roads Association were putting together a plan to build a pontoon bridge using army equipment secured through the War Department.

The feasibility of this plan was still being studied.

From the inflation beat: Spokane’s shoe stores were facing a federal probe about whether they were “profiteering” and artificially inflating prices.

A federal assistant district attorney, who had conducted the inquiry, said that “the enormous price of shoes at retail here was due to the doubling of gross profits all the way down the line.”

The manager of one local shoe store said that the main reason for high price was that most leather was imported, and war demand had curtailed the importation of leather. This resulted in a shortage of shoes and higher demand.

High postwar inflation, in nearly all sectors, was dominating the headlines in Spokane and the rest of the country.

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