Discover the unique history, charm and diversity of downtown Spokane


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Central downtown, the heart of downtown Spokane. After the 1889 fire, in which much of downtown Spokane was destroyed, a number of architects relocated here and made names for themselves by designing enduring buildings of the then current, and now remarkable, styles of the day. These include the Arts and Crafts bungalows, Queen Anne houses, Tudoresque mansions, Romanesque churches, and Gothic commercial buildings, as well as Classic Revival office buildings and Art Deco theaters. The years between the fire and World War II were rich in regards to the development of a vibrant downtown and a city of national renown. As early as 1905, President Theodore Roosevelt was quoted as saying in the Chamber of Commerce publication, Spokane: A Modern City, I never saw two such cities anywhere as Spokane and Seattle. If my eldest boy was large enough to be choosing a place, I would advise him to locate in one or the other of those cities and it is a shake-up between them.