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Opinion >  Column

100 years ago in Eastern Washington: A women’s club wanted to ban ‘destructive literature’

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

The region’s “club women” voted to ban the sale of “destructive literature.”

They did not exactly define “destructive literature,” but we can safely assume they meant magazines and dime novels they deemed less than wholesome.

“At our public news stands, we find destructive literature being sold under various sorts of disguises,” Mrs. E. Phyllis Carlton Smith of Spokane said. “Stops should be put to this, as poor literature is one of the greatest evils which any country can have.”

A resolution urging such a ban was passed at the regional meeting of the Washington State Federation of Women’s Clubs in Chewelah. The club women also urged stricter enforcement of Prohibition laws.

The club women were certainly not taking a stand against all literature. In fact, at the same meeting, they urged the establishment of county library districts.

From the business beat: Roy Kinnear, president of the Building Owners and Managers’ Association of Seattle, believed that it was time for Seattle and Spokane to end their commercial rivalry.

“Seattle and Spokane should bury the hatchet and cooperate for the best interests of the state,” Kinnear said, in a talk at the Davenport Hotel. “There has been too much selfishness in the past. Possibly Seattle has been guilty of most of it, though Spokane, too, has been selfish.”

He said the Associated Industries of Seattle would send out a committee to various parts of Eastern Washington to “restore harmony between the East and West sides.”

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