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100 years ago in Spokane: Cold snap creates coal-shortage fears

A shortage of coal, caused by a recent nationwide strike, raised fears that the city would run short of fuel during the brutal cold spell. (Spokane Daily Chronicle archives)

The temperature hit 14 below zero in Spokane, the Spokane Daily Chronicle reported, and the city was forced to adopt “drastic and far-reaching” fuel-saving schedules for businesses and factories.

Most would be open only from 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Some businesses, such as theaters and billiard rooms, would be open only from 5 to 11 p.m.

A shortage of coal, caused by a recent nationwide strike, raised fears that the city would run short of fuel during this brutal cold spell.

The entire Northwest was locked in the cold snap, and many cities were running short of coal.

From the Sunday matinee file: The Spokane Ministerial Association backed down from its effort to close theaters on Sundays, after taking “much unfavorable criticism.”

The ministers admitted that the public interpreted their earlier stance as an attempt “to prevent people of this city from enjoying such Sunday amusements at they may desire, at theaters or elsewhere.”

The ministers ultimately agreed to a new ordinance that affirmed Spokane’s longstanding practice of allowing Sunday movies, plays and other amusements.

From the bank robber beat: Spokane detectives spent the last 24 hours searching for the Union Park Bank bandit, with no luck.

After the gun-toting robber sped away in an auto, “two wagon loads” of police officers were immediately sent out. Yet they found no trace.

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