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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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100 years ago in Spokane: Experts debated whether driving was giving people ‘motor hoof’

UPDATED: Tue., July 13, 2021

From the July 13, 1921 Spokane Daily Chronicle.  (S-R archives)
From the July 13, 1921 Spokane Daily Chronicle. (S-R archives)
By Jim Kershner The Spokesman-Review

A Spokane chiropodist claimed to have discovered a new, modern foot disorder: Motor hoof.

“It is a certain kind of tumor or wart, right on the sole of the foot,” said Dr. Eric Webolt. “It is caused by the use of the foot in driving a car.”

He claimed that there were “hundreds of cases in Spokane.”

“We also have some patients with ‘short’ nerves,” he said. “This is caused by the driver keeping his foot in a strained position for a long drive. It displaces the metatarsal bones.”

Dr. Mabel Burns, another chiropodist, scoffed at the idea.

“Motor hoof!” she said. “Well, I really don’t believe I have any cases of ‘motor hoof.’ ”

From the accident beat: A midnight joyride which began at a downtown dance hall proved tragic for Florence Lee, 28, a Spokane widow.

She was in an auto with another woman and two men when the driver lost control. The car careened over a small embankment and overturned.

Lee was trapped underneath the car and suffered a fractured skull. The other three people were injured but not as seriously.

The driver told police the steering apparatus malfunctioned and the auto veered suddenly to one side. Police were checking the wrecked car to see if that story checked out. No charges had yet been filed.

On this day

(From Associated Press)

1965: President Lyndon B. Johnson nominated Thurgood Marshall to be U.S. Solicitor General; Marshall became the first Black jurist appointed to the post. (Two years later, Johnson nominated Marshall to the U.S. Supreme Court.)

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