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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

100 years ago in Spokane: Jilted husband-to-be files lawsuit against woman who scorned him

Emile Frank Woehl, of Chicago, said he left his job in order to wed Verona Swantkoski of Spokane. When he arrived, she refused to marry him.  (S-R archives)
By Jim Kershner The Spokesman-Review

A jilted man filed suit against his former fiancée for $5,000 in an unusual breach-of-promise case.

County clerks believed that “this was the first case ever filed in Spokane County where a man seeks damages from a woman for breach of a marriage promise.”

Emile Frank Woehl said he became engaged to Verona Swantkoski of Spokane and “showered his attentions” and money on her.

He was working a lucrative job in Chicago, but she refused to marry him unless he gave up his business and moved to Spokane.

So he arrived in Spokane, prepared for a wedding.

But Swantkoski had changed her mind. She refused to marry him.

Woehl’s lawsuit claimed that he spent a lot of money on “taxi rides, theaters and dinners.” Moreover, the entire incident made him a “nervous wreck.”

From the labor beat: The “unemployed married men” who marched on City Hall a day earlier voted to form their own union.

The group was formed during a meeting of 70 men in the city’s free employment office.

They received no satisfaction from City Hall, but the Spokane Chamber of Commerce’s unemployment committee expressed sympathy.

The chairman of the committee said that a survey showed that 532 married men in Spokane were without work, and they had a total of 797 children.

“A large number of these children are hungry now,” said the chairman. “I believe this organization can do a great deal toward getting work for the fathers of these children and thereby making it possible for them to be fed properly.”