Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Cloudy 49° Cloudy
News >  Spokane

100 years ago today: City urges streetcar lines to merge to reduce costs

By Jim Kershner For The Spokesman-Review

The second of Spokane’s two streetcar systems – the Spokane Traction Co. – declared that it, too, would abandon its streetcar lines if the Spokane City Council wouldn’t get the jitneys off of its routes.

“I was given full power to call in our cars at the moment I believe that it’s the most practical thing to do,” said the company’s general manager. “Abandonment of all lines is inevitable if the jitney competition is continued. You may expect anything now.”

The city responded by suggesting that the two streetcar companies – Washington Water Power and Spokane Traction – should consolidate. One city commissioner said he hoped the companies were finally willing to consider this option.

“We would like to see the consolidation of the systems as a means of lowering the fare,” said a city commissioner. “We are perfectly willing to help the car companies make their lines pay if the fare is reasonable. There are no legal reasons, as far as the city is concerned, why the two car companies could not consolidate and thereby cut down on big overhead expenses and duplication.”

A year later, the two companies would, in fact, consolidate under the name of Spokane United Railways. Yet this would not prove sufficient to save the streetcar system in the long run.

From the missing persons beat: The hunt for William McLachlin, 8, missing for days, was now focused on a frog pond near Corbin Park.

Searchers first believed he might have been buried by a sand slide in a sand pit near the park. The search in the pit proved fruitless.

The pond was dragged by searchers and there were plans to “blast” the pond.

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

Local journalism is essential.

Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.

Active Person

Subscribe to the Coronavirus newsletter

Get the day’s latest Coronavirus news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter.