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North Western Journeys : Spokane Pioneers and Scablands Settlers (Paperback) (John W. Lawton)
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Will and Irene Lawton followed a string of settlers from Wisconsin, where the pine forests were playing out after a quarter century of logging. They established homes and businesses in Spokane, then left in 1906 and settled a few miles west in the scablands of the Columbia Plateau, where they bought land, took up a homestead, and commenced farming and storekeeping. The dream worked until misfortune and flawed assumptions eventually led to the loss of all they had built. The family had been multi-generational and closely knit. But by 1920 the family had scattered because of untimely deaths and the collapse of homesteading. As a fatherless boy, Walter Lawton, Will’s son, spent years in Idaho’s mountains herding sheep to get by.