Monday, June 22, 2015

Spokane Falls' First Train Arrives on June 25, 1881

The website for Washington history is , The Free Online Encyclopedia of Washington State History. This is such a fun website to go browsing in, especially if you're a student of eastern Washington history.

Did you know that the first train to arrive into Spokane Falls came on June 25, 1881. Quoting from the above website, "Almost the entire town turned out to greet the officials and passengers. Graham's Band provided music. When the train arrived, the band was almost drowned out by the bell, the whistle and venting steam. Dignitaries read congratulatory telegrams to the crowd and afterward enjoyed refreshments and social events."

Did your eastern Washington living ancestors come on the train? Would have been after 1881, right?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

My first Eastern WA family came from central IL to Walla Walla in 1871, so presumably they didn't come by train, at least not for the final leg. A nephew and family of that man came to the area around Lake Coeur d' Ailene (I've lived in Seattle all my life and can never learn to spell this right!) in 1890, so they could well have come to Spokane on the train, and backtracked to ID. A bit later, say 1905, they moved by train to Walla Walla. That move to Walla Walla was made largely because of Whitman College. My g grandparents wanted their then 7 children to have access to the quality higher education available there. My grandmother, the oldest, got her degree in music, most of the other girls in education, I don't know what the one surviving boy got his in, and the baby went to Eastern WA College for her degree in education. When the final branch of that family moved from IL straight to Walla Walla in 1903, I'm guessing they went through Spokane, and therefore on the train to Walla Walla. I'd never really thought about this question before, and even my grandfather, who was about 10 at the time, is now gone.