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Sunday, February 23, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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100 years ago in Spokane: Hoping this year’s better than the last

“1919 is gone. It was one of the dreariest and most disappointing years that has harried humanity in a century,” wrote the editors. (SR archives)
“1919 is gone. It was one of the dreariest and most disappointing years that has harried humanity in a century,” wrote the editors. (SR archives)

Good riddance to 1919, one lousy year.

That was the message of the New Year’s editorial in The Spokesman-Review.

“1919 is gone. It was one of the dreariest and most disappointing years that has harried humanity in a century,” wrote the editors.

This sounds a bit melodramatic, considering that 1919 was the first year of relative peace following the shocking violence and disruption of World War I. Yet the editors cited the discord surrounding the peace treaty and the League of Nations as part of 1919’s dismal record, along with labor unrest and the “railway problem.” They also suggested that President Woodrow Wilson should “dismount from his high horse.”

The editors weren’t too optimistic about 1920, either.

“The dawn of the new year finds the horizon filled with threatening clouds. Eastern Europe and Asia are charged with political dynamite. Central and Western Europe are only very slowly and feebly recovering from the war. Canada and the United States suffer in considerable degree from the troubles of their European associates. It is time for American statesmen and capitalists to practice unselfishness and wisdom to the utmost if 1920 is to be a better year for civilization and society than 1919 was.”

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