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

100 years ago in Spokane: A 50-gallon moonshine still and ‘departed freaks’ were grabbing readers’ attention

 (S-R archives)
By Jim Kershner The Spokesman-Review

Acting on a tip, two Spokane County deputies pushed their way through forest and underbrush and crept up on an old cabin and tent on Wild Rose Prairie.

One officer rushed to the tent and found a man sleeping.

“Jump up and put ‘em up!” he shouted.

The man in the tent “obeyed with alacrity,” because a rifle was pointed at his chest.

The two men in the cabin, confronted by the other deputy, came out the door and shouted, “Do not shoot, we give up, we give up.”

The prisoners then showed officers what they had been up to.

It was soon obvious that the deputies had hit the jackpot. The men, described as Serbians, proudly showed them their “big layout.”

It was a 50-gallon still, surrounded by 2,000 gallons of mash ready for distilling and kegs filled with finished moonshine. A flume brought water from a nearby creek.

The three men were arrested and charged with moonshining.

From the fashion beat: An advertisement for L.R. Dolby Co., men’s suit makers, had a startling headline: “DEPARTED FREAKS.”

The smaller type below shed some light on this declaration.

“Extreme models in clothing have gone out of style. The Jazz Freaks have gone. Therefore, thinking men of all ages rely upon Dolby to fit them in 100 percent VIRGIN WOOL suits and overcoats that are absolutely in style.”

Also on this day


1959: Guggenheim Museum, designed by Frank Loyd Wright, opens in New York City.