|Fun City Facts
The Rockville Bridge, the longest stone arch bridge in the world, is in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
The world's largest man-made waterfall is 438 feet tall. It is the spillway over the Shasta Dam in Redding, California.
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Spokane, the largest city in the Inland Northwest, is the seat of Spokane County in the State of Washington. It's name comes from the Native American tribe that inhabited the region. It's nickname, the Lilac City, was influenced by the distinctive flowers that bloom throughout the area in springtime.
Spokane means "Children of the Sun" to the Native Americans of the area. Before the 1700's Native Americans settled along the Spokane River for fishing and hunting in the surrounding area.
Finan McDonald and Jacques (Jaco) Finlay arrived in the Spokane area in 1810 with orders to build a small trading post they named the Spokane House where the Spokane and Little Spokane Rivers met. This was the first white settlement in Washington State.
As the result of Territorial Legislature on November the 29, 1881 the city was incorporated as the city of Spokane Falls. The city was renamed Spokane, dropping "Falls" from the name, in 1891.
On August 4, 1889 tragedy struck as a frame building in the downtown area caught fire. There was not enough water pressure at the fire hydrants to put the fire out and the man in charge of the water system was not in town. The fire burned out of control, ravaging 32 buildings in 27 city blocks.
In 1974 Spokane hosted the World's Fair and Expo bringing with it a boom in the cities notoriety and population. Spokane still holds the record as the smallest city ever to host a World's Fair and was the first city to ever host a fair with an environmental theme.
Spokane is now home to the world's largest fun-run, Bloomsday, which started in 1977 and the world's largest 3-on-3 basketball tournament, Hoopfest, founded in 1990.
Chief Spokane Garry
|1903 - 1977
Born May 3, 1903, Harry Lillis "Bing" Crosby is one of the most popular and celebrated singers and film artists in US history. His family made Spokane their home in 1906. His childhood home now serves as Gonzaga University's Alumni Association office. Gonzaga's Law Libray was constructed and dedicated as a memorial to Bing Crosby.
Bing Crosby popularized the singing style of crooning, which he did with conversational ease.
The movies in his career sold over one billion tickets! The most famous of which is the 1954 classic, White Christmas.
|Chief Spokane Garry
The Native American leader, Chief Spokane Garry was born in 1811 in the Marian Indian village where the Little Spokane River emptied into the Spokane River. The son of Chief Ileeum Spokane of the Middle plains Spokane Indian Tribe.
Growing up around the white traders who built their post near his tribe, Garry never feared o the British (King George men) or the Americans (The Bostons).
Garry and two of his brothers were chosen to be taught at the Anglican Mission School in Winnipeg, Canada, by the Hudson's Bay Company in 1825. When he arrived there, custom dictated that he receive a new respected name. Spokane Garry was the chosen name which remained until his death in 1892.
Upon returning to Spokane, he brought the teachings and religion of the white man. He had a great interest in the needs of his people and forging peace between them and the white settlers. He also married the daughter of another tribal chief whom he named Lucy.
In 1888 white men took his land. After a long legal battle the property was awarded to the people who took the land from him with no compensation to him or his family.
Even then Garry believed there was good in all men, and said "Inside us humans there is the same colored blood, so we should treat each other equally under this God of ours."
Chief Spokane Garry died—homeless and penniless on January 14, 1892.
February 24, 2024