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Spokane Falls review. [volume] : (Spokane Falls, W.T. [Wash.]) 1883-1890
Alternative Titles:
  • Weekly review
Place of publication:
Spokane Falls, W.T. [Wash.]
Geographic coverage:
  • Spokane, Spokane, Washington  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
  • Spokane Falls, Spokane, Washington  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
Frank M. Dallam
Dates of publication:
  • Vol. 1, no. 1 (May 19, 1883)-7th yr. (Feb. 27, 1890).
  • English
  • Spokane (Wash.)--Newspapers.
  • Washington (State)--Spokane.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01206731
  • Also issued on microfilm from Bell & Howell, Micro Photo Div.
  • Archived issues are available in digital format from the Library of Congress Chronicling America online collection.
  • Daily editions: Spokane Falls Evening Review, 1884; Spokane Evening Review, 1884-1885; Morning Review, 1885-1889; Spokane Falls Review (Spokane Flls, Wash. : 1889), 1889-1891.
sn 86072021
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Spokane Falls review. [volume] May 19, 1883 , Image 1


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Spokane Falls review.

In January 1883, Frank Middlemore Dallam travelled from his home in California to the young but promising railroad town of Cheney, in Washington Territory, to investigate the prospects of starting a paper. Though Cheney had recently wrested the county seat from neighboring Spokane Falls, a tour of the two towns convinced Dallam that its neighbor had the better outlook. Eager to promote their town, several prominent citizens there suggested that he start a new Republican paper in opposition to the Democratic Spokane Falls Chronicle, the only paper in town at the time. After a few months of consideration at home, Dallam returned with his family and printing equipment in April.

Dallam intended to begin publication of his new paper on the first Saturday in May. Unfortunately, a crucial piece of his press was lost in shipment. After waiting two weeks for the arrival of a replacement, he sought another printing press and made arrangements with Frank C. Montgomery, publisher of the Cheney Sentinel to use his press. With only two forms, Dallam set the type for the first two pages in Spokane Falls, hauled the forms 20 miles to Cheney by wagon, printed the first two pages, and returned to Spokane Falls to set the type for the second two pages, which he then had to return to Cheney to print. The first edition of the Spokane Falls Review appeared May 19, 1883. In this manner, Dallam printed the first two editions of his paper before the necessary part arrived, allowing him to print the third edition on his own press.

Dallam's bet on Spokane Falls soon paid off. Gold was discovered in the Coeur d'Alene Mountains in the fall of 1883. Thanks to its location nearer the mines and access to water power and transport, Spokane Falls quickly surpassed Cheney as the preferred stop of miners both for outfitting and investing their new-found wealth. Dallam expanded his paper with a daily edition during the resulting boom. He purchased a power press in 1884, one of the first in Washington Territory, to increase production. He was also one of the first in the territory to take advantage of the joint Oregonian-Associated Press service, which condensed the Associated Press dispatches sent by telegraph into a single report sent to subscribers. In early 1886, Horace Titus Brown, veteran Montana printer, visited Spokane Falls, and word spread that he sought to establish a paper and secure the Associated Press franchise for Spokane Falls. To beat the potential competition, Dallam quickly bought the Associated Press franchise for $5,000, paid in part with an IOU, and then sold a one third interest in the Review to Brown for $1,875. He sold a second third to Henry William Greenberg.

In late 1887, Dallam sold his interest to Brown and Greenberg, who sold the paper to Patrick Henry Winston, James Monaghan, Charles B. King, and Willis Sweet in April 1888. Sweet soon sold out to Monaghan and King, who then sold their shares to Harvey Winfield Scott and Henry Lewis Pittock of the Portland Morning Oregonian. Winston's share eventually passed to Anthony McCue Cannon. The new owners purchased an old Presbyterian church, moved the paper there in April 1889, and installed a Goss perfecting press and electrotyping outfit in June. Fortuitously, the move placed the Review's printing plant out of the path of a fire that razed the downtown business district on August 4, 1889. A few years later, a March 24, 1891 election changed the name of the town from Spokane Falls to Spokane and consequently the Spokane Falls Review became the Spokane Review.

New competition sprang up on March 9, 1890 when the first edition of The Spokane Falls Spokesman was published by Horace Titus Brown, earlier part-owner of the Review, who teamed up with Joseph French Johnson and Joseph Howard Watson, journalists from Chicago. The rivalry between the two papers quickly became intense with both losing large sums of money in the competition. The Spokesman was forced to seek additional financial support from Chicago journalist William Hutchinson Cowles, who moved to Spokane to better manage his investment. The Review had substantial debts from the construction of an impressive new building in 1891. In February 1893, the two papers were consolidated under the name of the Spokane Review with Scott, Pittock, Cannon, and Cowles as stock holders. Cowles bought out Scott and Pittock in June 1894, and Cannon sometime later, finally bringing control of the paper back to Spokane. Immediately after gaining a controlling interest, Cowles renamed the paper the Spokesman-Review.

Provided by: Washington State Library; Olympia, WA