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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

100 years ago in Spokane: Mystery of kidnapped baby solved when mother comes forward

 (Spokane Daily Chronicle Archives)
Jim Kershner The Spokesman-Review

Who snatched little Lucille Norris, 8 months old, from her crib?

The mystery was solved when Marie Norris, Lucille’s mother, admitted she took the child from the home of Mrs. E. Kinnson, where the baby was being boarded.

“I did it because it wasn’t a fit place to keep her,” said the mother.

This statement started a new controversy, as Kinnson offered a different opinion: “She took her away to escape paying a board bill.”

Norris had taken Lucille there two months ago while she looked for work. She claimed that she subsequently discovered that “the baby was in a condition no mother would keep her in.” So she arrived unannounced at the house while Kinnson was away and took the baby from her crib.

“I couldn’t let her stay in such a place,” she said.

Kinnson scoffed at that explanation, and said the baby was given the best care. She said the baby’s board bill was long overdue, and Norris simply didn’t want to pay it.

A Spokane Daily Chronicle reporter noted that the baby was now “cooing playfully” at the home of a friend of Norris.

“Thrilling escapes and board bills worry her not at all.”

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