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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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100 years ago in Spokane: Woman angered by judge’s ruling socks bailiff twice in the nose

Annie Davis was angry with a judge’s ruling in a rent dispute – so she reared back and punched the bailiff in the nose, the Spokane Daily Chronicle reported on Dec. 22, 1920. The newspaper also reported that hoteliers, including Louis Davenport, were hoping to bring a challenge in the U.S. Supreme Court to a minimum wage law approved by the Industrial Welfare Commission. The Washington Supreme Court had just affirmed the rules, which provided chambermaids a 6-day work week and raised weekly wages by $3 to $18.
Annie Davis was angry with a judge’s ruling in a rent dispute – so she reared back and punched the bailiff in the nose, the Spokane Daily Chronicle reported on Dec. 22, 1920. The newspaper also reported that hoteliers, including Louis Davenport, were hoping to bring a challenge in the U.S. Supreme Court to a minimum wage law approved by the Industrial Welfare Commission. The Washington Supreme Court had just affirmed the rules, which provided chambermaids a 6-day work week and raised weekly wages by $3 to $18.

Mrs. Annie Davis was angry with a judge’s ruling in a rent dispute – so she reared back and punched the bailiff in the nose.

Twice.

Apparently, she connected. As the Spokane Daily Chronicle delicately put it, the punches “caused that organ to bleed.”

It took place at the end of a hearing in which Mrs. Davis had asked the court to force Mrs. Cora Kincannon Smith to pay $7, which Mrs. Davis said she was owed on rent advanced for the use of the Moose hall for “spiritualist meetings.”

When the judge made a ruling on a piece of evidence, it evidently angered Mrs. Davis.

She loudly accused the judge and the clerk of being “liars, thieves and crooks.” This did not go over well, and the judge ordered the bailiff to eject Mrs. Davis from the courtroom.

“No one-legged constable can throw me out!” she shouted, as he tried to take her by the arm.

Then she smacked him in the nose, twice. Bleeding, he hauled her to the entrance, where she “tore loose” and ran out of the courthouse.

“She sure possesses a wallop,” said the bailiff as he tended to his nose.

From the refugee beat: About 500 Spokane residents turned out at the Great Northern Depot to greet three rail cars full of Polish and Russian children, refugees from those “hungry, Bolshevik-stricken lands.”

Spokane’s Polish community organized the welcome and presented the children with Christmas candy. Most of the children were girls about 10 years old.

This was only a brief stopover in Spokane. The refugees had come by ship to Seattle and were headed for permanent homes in Chicago.

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