Spokane Industry


Spokane Industry


From the earliest years of white settlement, Spokane has been an industrial center. Powered by the falls, much of this industry processed the raw materials of the surrounding countryside for export to the Pacific ports or the Midwest. However, Spokane’s industries also provided needed finished goods to its own citizens and those of surrounding communities.

This collection illustrates Spokane’s industrial role with a series of images focused on major and minor industries. Dependent on the power of the Spokane River, sawmills and flour mills feature prominently but so do breweries, metal fabrication and furniture making.

These images were largely taken prior to World War II but a few images show factories and warehouses following their postwar closure.

Collection Items

Spokane -- Furniture and Cabinet Shop (#01)
During the Great Depression, building contractor Wallfred Charles "Jack" Peelgren at work in his furniture and cabinet shop. Taken in 1935.

Spokane -- Flour Mills (#01)
The Echo Mill was the second flour mill constructed on the Spokane River at the site of Spokane Falls. S.G. Havermale and George Davis built it in 1881. The original electric power plant is at the lower left.

Spokane -- Flour Mills (#02)
The old C&C Spokane Flour mill before renovation and redevelopment taken during the summer of 1973.

Spokane -- Flour Mills (#04)
The C&C mill on Post St. and the lower falls. Date unknown.

Spokane -- Flour Mills (#06)
A view of the falls and the C&C Flour Mills on Post Street taken in 1901.

Spokane -- Flour Mills (#15)
C&C Milling Company mill and lower falls. Date unknown.

Spokane -- Breweries (#13)
Spokane Brewing Co. brewery and warehouse (later Sicks Rainier Brewery). Spokane County courthouse is in the distance and the Spokane River and powerhouse is in the foreground. Date unknown.

Spokane -- Breweries (#02)
The Schade Bottling Works, part of the Schade Brewery on Trent Ave. Horse teams and drivers are posed with kegs. Date unknown.

Spokane -- Breweries (#03)
The main building of the Schade Brewery on Trent Ave. Date unknown. Railroad tracks are in the foreground. Date unknown.

Spokane -- Breweries (#04)
The staff of the Schade Brewery poses in front of keg barrels. Bernhardt Schade is posed in the front row on a keg. In the third row, fourth from left is Henry Mraz, bookkeeper and student at Gonzaga. Wenzel Mraz, the brewmaster, is to his left. …

Spokane -- Breweries (#05)
An interior view of the main Schade Brewery building showing part of the brewing machinery around the turn of the century.

Spokane -- Breweries (#12)
Bernhardt Schade drinking beer with his father, cousin and brother-in-law in his office at the Schade Brewery. From left to right - C. Julius Schade (father), P.G. Bernhardt Schade, A.L. Frederick Schade (cousin and future legislator from the 6th…

Spokane -- Industries -- Brown Metal Works (#07)
Plane built by William and Thoburn Brown at the Brown Metal Works in Spokane, ca. 1934.

Spokane -- Industries -- Brown Metal Works (#03)
Between 1932 and 1940, Brown Metal Works built and delivered aluminum body, streamlined buses with rear motors. Adults and children pose in front of a completed bus.

Spokane -- Industries -- Brown Metal Works (#01)
Thoburn and William Brown with their Metalark II. Taking over their metal company from their father, they manufactured airplanes during the 1930s. Taken c. 1933.

Spokane -- Industries -- Vinegar Works (#01)
The west side of the Keller-Lorenz Vinegar Works. This structure was built in 1888 for F.G. Hieber as a brewery. In 1890, using the same vats, the Keller brothers began manufacturing vinegar. Date of photograph unknown.

Spokane -- Industries -- Central Premix (#01)
Aerial view of the Central Premix plant on Division, just north of the Spokane River. Taken c. 1940.

Spokane -- Industries -- Distilling (#01)
Spokane Distilling Co. distillery located on Trent. Offices at 257 Main Ave in 1893.

Spokane -- Industries -- Meat Industry and Trade (#02)
The E.H. Stanton meat packing plant prior to 1917. That year, it was sold to Armour & Co. The plant was located on the E 3300 block of Trent Ave. An observer watches cattle in holding pens next to the railroad tracks. Taken c. 1914.

Spokane -- Industries -- Oil Refineries (#01)
Man standing in front of storage tanks at Spokane Oil and Refining Co. near Hillyard. Date unknown.

Spokane -- Industries -- Oil Refineries (#06)
Storage tanks and smokestack at Spokane Oil and Refining Co. Date unknown.

Spokane -- Industries -- Oil Refineries (#08)
A man leans against pipes at the Spokane Oil and Refining Co. Date unknown.

Spokane -- Industries -- Printing (#04)
Men pour concrete for a sidewalk in front of the Inland American Printing Company on West Sprague. Date unknown.

Spokane -- Industries -- Smelter (#01)
The smelter on the east bank of the Spokane River downstream from the Bowl and Pitcher. Taken March 16, 1929.

Spokane -- Sawmills (#02)
The Scranton & Downey Mill in a photo taken c. 1872.

Spokane -- Lumber Mills (#01)
Water reflection on river at McGoldrick Mill in an undated photo. This mill was located on the Spokane River below Gonzaga University and is currently a pond and grassy riverbank.

Spokane -- Lumber Mills (#02)
Man poses in the aftermath of the Spokane Mill Co. fire of 1892.

Spokane -- Lumber Mills (#03)
Men posing in front of the Sawmill Phoenix about 1900 with the first Washington Water Power plant in the foreground. Name changed to Phoenix Mill in 1906.

Spokane -- Lumber Mills (#05)
Spokane Mill Company plant. Date unknown.

Spokane -- Breweries (#06)
Exterior shot showing the Schade Brewery on Trent.

Spokane -- Electric power plants (#01)
Power plant on the river.

Spokane -- Electric power plants (#02)
View of the power house on the river.

Spokane -- Electric power plants (#04)
Electric power plant on the middle falls. Copy print.

Spokane -- Electric power plants (#06)
Long Lake power plant under construction

Spokane -- Electric power plants (#08)
Looking upriver. Interurban depot on landfill (copy print).

Spokane -- Electric power plants (#09)
"Old generating plant at middle falls. From original by C. A. Cook, Tacoma."

Spokane -- Electric power plants (#10)
Initial construction of old Monroe Street Bridge, 1891. (Copy print)

Spokane -- Electric power plants (#13)
Little falls power plant
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