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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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100 years ago today: Wilson finds success as short story writer

Published in the August 27, 1921 Spokane Daily Chronicle.  (S-R archives)
Published in the August 27, 1921 Spokane Daily Chronicle. (S-R archives)
By Jim Kershner The Spokesman-Review

Cherry Wilson, a young Spokane woman, was enjoying remarkable success as a short story writer.

In three years, she had published 30 stories in national magazines.

It all began when she found herself “facing the absolute necessity of keeping the home fires burning while nursing an invalid husband.”

She and her husband had taken up a claim high on a mountain near Republic. There, “she gained her inspiration for writing.” Now they were back in Spokane, but she continued to be inspired by her time in the wild country.

Her latest was called, “The Valley of the Sinister Blossoms,” appearing in the Western Story Magazine, published in New York. It centers on the Indian legend of the camas flower. The editor of that magazine had asked her to write a series on the same themes.

She also was writing regularly for New West Magazine.

“They tell me that I have had unusual success for a novice,” she said. “I know it is fascinating work and I am appreciative of the welcome my stories have found.”

From the court beat: Ray English, a Spokane teenager, pleaded not guilty to manslaughter. This added to the mystery surrounding the case, in which an Otis Orchards pedestrian died after being struck by an auto full of teens.

Another teen in the same car, Roger Bartelt, was serving time in the state reformatory, after confessing he was the driver of the car and pleading guilty.

But the two teen girls in the car had now signed affidavits stating that English, not Bartelt, had been driving the car.

As a result, English was charged with manslaughter. The governor had been asked to release Bartelt from the reformatory. But the governor denied the request, saying he wanted to wait until the English trial ran its course.

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