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Opinion >  Column

100 years ago in the Inland Northwest: A film crew nearly drowned trying to shoot a canoe trip, and an early ‘narcotic poisoning’ death was suspected

 (S-R archives )
(S-R archives )

A movie crew attempting to film a canoe trip lost all of the cameras and film – and nearly their lives – when their vessels capsized in the Clark Fork River near Thompson Falls, Montana.

The movie men, from Portland, had planned to make a 1,200-mile canoe trip from Thompson Falls to Portland.

As it turned out, their trip lasted 15 minutes. They immediately hit a whirlpool and lost all of their equipment and provisions. Two men had to swim for their lives.

“They returned to Portland today, but it was by way of the Great Northern Railway instead of the river,” a correspondent wrote.

From the police beat: Ed Olson, 32, a lumberjack, was found dead at the Great Northern Hotel, and police suspected he died of “narcotic poisoning.”

Police said the proprietor of the hotel had been arrested several times for selling narcotics and liquor. Police had recently raided the hotel and seized narcotics. The proprietor had recently completed a 60-day jail sentence.

The cause of death wasn’t verified, but the circumstances looked suspicious. Olson was found fully dressed, face down across a bed, with no signs of injury or illness.

Police said that if narcotic poisoning was confirmed, they might seek murder charges against the proprietor and his wife.

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1918: South African anti-apartheid leader and president Nelson Mandela was born in the village of Mvezo.

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