BLASTS FROM THE PAST Nov. 13 – Small majority in favour of prohibition

Chronicles of Boundary Country from the pages of The Boundary Creek Times Volume V, No. 6 – October 15, 1898

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Chronicles of Boundary Country from the pages of The Boundary Creek Times Volume V, No. 6 – October 15, 1898

Alcohol Prohibition Plebiscite – “The plebiscite of last week was disappointing to the prohibitionists. About one-fourth of the electors of the Dominion cast their ballots… with only a small majority in favour of prohibition. It is scarcely probable that the government will feel bound to take any notice of the vote as it cannot be considered an expression of public opinion. In Greenwood, there are about 140 registered voters in the city. Of these, 27 showed sufficient interest in the question of prohibition to record an expression of their opinion. Sixteen were against prohibition and eleven in favor.”

Poor, Miserable Grand Forks – The Boundary Creek Times and the Grand Forks Miner ran a continuous running battle in the late 1890s as to which town was the preeminent trading and supply centre in the Boundary. When the Miner described Grand Forks as “the metropolis and general supply point for the Boundary Creek district”, the editor of the Times had had enough and responded sharply as follows: “Grand Forks is not in the Boundary Creek country; does not, nor can it ever do, the business of the Boundary Creek country. It is a poor, miserable, rural hamlet, situated in a frog pond near the Kettle River, surrounded by a few beautiful farms but miles away from the mining centres and from the business of the mining camps. Its people quarrel among themselves and take advantage of every opportunity to show that they have no confidence in the town nor in each other. It is a wholesale centre for nothing but gossip and scandal. As a manufacturing town, its most striking productions are the amusing extravagant effusions of the Grand Forks Miner.”

Poker is not a Game of Chance – “Miller & Leyson, of the Gem Cigar Store, who were charged with running a gambling joint, appeared for trial before Judge Spinks. While G.H. Ford, the witness for the prosecution, was in the box, the crown prosecutor asked him to describe the game of poker. ‘Oh, that’s not necessary,’ said the Judge, ‘you and I know what draw poker is; we’ve played together.’ Judge Spinks announced that he often played poker and didn’t consider himself a gambler. He held that poker wasn’t a game of chance. The prosecutor smartly threw out the case and the charge was dismissed.”

Driven off the Street – After the city of Greenwood announced that they intended to level Government Street to a height, or perhaps a depth, deemed more appropriate, the Times had these comments. “Government Street is no longer a thoroughfare. Business men finding that the Government Street ‘cut’ would leave them in mid air, have moved as fast as they could get suitable buildings elsewhere. The west side of the street is not so seriously affected by the cut. But Alderman Barrett, on the east side, will be forced to build a six-foot stone wall to keep his lawn from sliding into the Government Street cut.” (ed. – Barrett’s house is better known today as the McArthur House, at 326 S. Government Avenue—and the stone wall still looks very nice.)