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Thursday, April 2, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Spokane

100 years ago in Spokane: Flu worries continue to grow; ‘unsightly’ billboards removed along highways

Flu cases continued to trend upward, leading to new worries about a serious epidemic for the second year in a row, the Spokane Daily Chronicle reported on Jan. 29, 2020. (Spokesman-Review archives)
Flu cases continued to trend upward, leading to new worries about a serious epidemic for the second year in a row, the Spokane Daily Chronicle reported on Jan. 29, 2020. (Spokesman-Review archives)

Flu cases continued to trend upward, leading to new worries about a serious epidemic for the second year in a row.

By mid-afternoon, 59 new flu cases were reported, bringing Spokane’s total to 268.

Construction workers rushed to finish an emergency flu hospital at a former skating rink at Sinto and Cannon streets. They were converting it into a makeshift hospital by erecting partitions for medical wards, nurses’ quarters and a kitchen.

“The heat will be furnished by a nearby shingle mill, and supplementary stoves will be provided if necessary,” said the Spokane Daily Chronicle. “At present the shingle mill runs its boilers only days, but with the conversion of the building into a hospital, may run all night to furnish heat.”

Seven area Red Cross nurses, currently acting as instructors, were called in to serve as influenza nurses.

From the billboard beat: About 1,500 “unsightly advertising signs” were removed from the main highways of the region, thanks to the Inland Automobile Association.

Apparently, they had the cooperation of many of the sign owners themselves.

“The action of a great many of the sign owners has been commendable,” said the association secretary. “Recently, R.L. Dolby removed, at his own expense, about $300 worth of signs at the request of the association. About a week of good weather will clean up all signs in our jurisdiction in the vicinity of Spokane.”

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