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100 years ago in Spokane: Artwork from San Francisco worth thousands of dollars somehow wound up in a Hillyard lodging house

 (Spokane Daily Chronicle archives)
(Spokane Daily Chronicle archives)

Police with a search warrant entered a lodging house in Hillyard and found three valuable paintings, stolen from an amusement complex in San Francisco.

One painting was titled “Cliff House” by W.A. Coulter (misspelled “Colter” in the Spokane Daily Chronicle) and was worth an estimated $10,000. The other two were “Woman Reclining” and “A Wooded Scene,” artists not specified.

Unfortunately, all three paintings were found on the floor “and were in such a condition as to be worthless unless they can be restored,” the sheriff said.

The paintings were folded and “have the appearance of being carried in a suitcase for some time.”

They were stolen from the Sutro Baths, a famous amusement area near the Cliff House in San Francisco. Spokane police apparently received a tip that the paintings were in the Hillyard lodging house. Police gave no indication of how the paintings ended up there, or if any arrests were made.

From the crime beat: Hendin Nelson, the inept “highwayman” who attempted to hold up a Gonzaga University priest, was in a great deal of legal trouble. He was formally charged with robbery in Superior Court.

The would-be holdup was thwarted when the college’s vice president, the Rev. James Kennelly, came upon the scene in a Gonzaga hallway and “entertained” Nelson until police arrived.

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1798: Congress passed the Sedition Act, making it a federal crime to publish false, scandalous or malicious writing about the United States government.

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