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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Then and Now: Excelsior Youth Center

The Excelsior Youth Center on North Indian Trail Road has been continuing the work of the Sisters of the Good Shepherd, who opened the campus in 1960.

Then and Now: The Hamlin Hotel

The hotel that once stood on the north end of the Monroe Street Bridge was the Electric Hotel, owned by the Washington Water Power Company, and later renamed the Hamlin Hotel. The photos are from around 1910 and 2021.

Then and Now: Bernard and Riverside

Although there were wood-frame buildings on the corner before the great fire of 1889, the lots west of the 1910 Realty Building, which is now the Delaney Apartments, and the corner were rebuilt with single-story brick storefront buildings housing cafes, taverns, auto tire repair shops, laundries, a hat cleaning service and one of Spokane’s first pet stores.

Then and Now: Maplehurst Apartments

In 1908, Dr. Thomas L. Catterson built a three-story-plus-basement apartment block on the southwest corner of Fourth and Maple Street and named it the Geneva Apartments, after his hometown.

The Maplehurst Apartments

The 1908 Maplehurst Apartments, at Fourth Avenue and Maple Street, were built by one of Spokane's first physicians, Thomas L. Catterson.

Spokane Public Library

The 1930 Sears, Roebuck and Co. store at 907 W. Main Ave. became the Spokane Public Library in the early 1960s, then was torn down in 1992 to clear the way for the new library. The 1994 building is currently being renovated again with a $77 million library bond passed by voters in 2018.

Then and Now: Downtown Sears building

As one of many new brick-and-mortar outlets, the first Spokane store opened in 1930 at 906 W. Main Ave. The bright, white modern building with a central tower in art deco style contrasted with the stodgy brick department stores that came before.

Then and Now: The Rookery

From 1890 until the buildings were demolished in 1933, four interconnected buildings wrapped around the southeast corner of Howard Street and Riverside Avenue were simply called the Rookery, the word for a colony of birds’ nests.

Then and Now: High Bridge Park

High Bridge Park was the name given in 1913 to the area that follows Latah Creek from Vinegar Flats, south of Interstate 90, to where the creek meets the Spokane River.

Then and Now: Downtown’s former Crescent Block

Spokane Dry Goods, later renamed The Crescent, opened in 1889 and grew rapidly. Around 1899, the store moved to the 700 block of Main Avenue and connected to a new three-story block facing Riverside. Advertisements in the early 1900s proclaimed The Crescent as “Spokane’s Greatest Store."

Then and Now: Cheney Interurban depot

Demand for commuter train access between Spokane and the West Plains accelerated in 1907, as the state college had become one of the largest teacher-training colleges in the Northwest. 

Then and Now: Weisfield’s Jewelers

Brothers Leo and Sam Weisfield and their brother-in-law Ralph Goldberg had a small watch repair business in Seattle, started in 1917. Before Spokane, they had stores in Seattle, Tacoma, Aberdeen, Bellingham and Mount Vernon.

Then and Now: The Merlin Hotel

The Merlin Hotel, later called the Merlin Apartments, opened in 1911. It was built for attorney Burton J. Onstine for $33,000. Spokane’s population was exploding, having grown from 37,000 residents in 1900 to over 100,000 by 1910. A Spokesman-Review story said there were 120 licensed hotels at the time.

Then and Now: Spokane Community College

The renamed Spokane Technical and Vocational School opened a campus at 3403 E. Mission Ave. in 1958. Separate construction at the former Fort George Wright campus followed in the 1960s. The two schools became separate colleges in 1970. 

Then and Now: Kaiser Trentwood

The Trentwood mill opened during the war effort in the 1940s, and still operates off Trent Avenue. The smelting plant in Mead, also purchased by Henry J. Kaiser, has closed. 

Then and Now: Washington National Guard

Washington Territory first authorized a militia in 1855, before the region became a U.S. state. Since then, members of the national guard have been called up to fight in several conflicts, including both World Wars. 

Then and Now: Ace Concrete gravel pit

The gravel pits in the Inland Northwest were formed by the ice age floods that formed the region's topography millenia ago. One of the area's largest pits is bounded by Park and Thierman roads and Sprague and Broadway avenues in Spokane Valley.

Then and Now: Broadway Truck Service

Broadway Truck Service was built on East Broadway Avenue next to the new freeway east of Spokane in 1960. Roy T. Williams was the president of the company and his brother, Bill, managed what they called Truck Town. 

Then and Now: Rosemary Apartments

The three- and four-room apartments would rent for $25-$35 a month in 1907. Early advertisements referred to the Feulner Building, later the Rosemary Apartments, and touted electricity, continuous hot water and janitorial service.

Then and Now: Electro-Kold

Later moving from residential refrigerators to commercial units, Electro-Kold became a household name under the ownership of Lewis and Clark graduate Edwin S. Matthews.