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Opinion >  Column

100 years ago in Spokane: Boy Scouts started using carrier pigeons to communicate with ‘anxious mothers’ while on trips

UPDATED: Fri., Nov. 6, 2020

 (Spokane Daily Chronicle archives )
(Spokane Daily Chronicle archives )
By Jim Kershner The Spokesman-Review

Spokane’s Boy Scouts acquired a long-distance communication system: a pair of carrier pigeons.

“Anxious mothers will no longer have to worry over their Boy Scout sons who go on long trips and do not return home at the appointed hour,” the Spokane Daily Chronicle wrote. “… Hereafter, when troops hike into the hills, they will be required to take a pigeon with them. In case of delay or if the boys get lost, they can send a message home.”

The carrier pigeons were given to the scouts by R.L. Price of Hillyard, who said the pigeons were “formerly property of the government.”

The Boy Scouts were so enamored of their pigeons they said they planned next year to “raise young pigeons for distribution throughout this section of the country.”

From the accident beat: M.R. Mastin died in a terrible accident at the city’s asphalt plant.

Mastin, a plant employee, climbed up to put a belt on the overhead mixing shaft. Somehow, his clothing got caught on the revolving shaft and he was “whirled to his death.”

He was 58 and survived by a wife.

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

2016: Republican Donald Trump was elected America’s 45th president, defeating Democrat Hillary Clinton in an astonishing victory for a celebrity businessman and political novice.

2000: A statewide recount began in Florida, which emerged as critical in deciding the winner of the presidential election. Earlier that day, Vice President Al Gore had called Texas Gov. George W. Bush to concede, but called back about an hour later to retract his concession.

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