Historical Tours

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Historic Spokane's "Age of Elegance" (Time: 3 hours)

Enjoy a tour of the rich history, historic homes and attractions of Spokane. Learn about where the city began as you travel along the Spokane River where the grounds of the former Expo '74 site are located. The Falls on the River are the heart of this site, now the popular Riverfront Park. Then, ascend up "The Hill" with views of the city and stunning mansions. Tour inside the majestic St. John's Cathedral. Discover Manito Park while strolling through the formal Duncan sunken gardens, Joel Ferris Perennial Gardens, authentic Japanese Gardens and flower-filled Gaiser Conservatory. See the historic area of Browne's Addition where many of the old mansions are being restored to their original splendor. Tour the Crosbyana Room at Gonzaga University to see Bing Crosby memorabilia.


Historic Walking Tour of Downtown Spokane (Time: 2-3 hours)

Learn about the early fur traders and pioneers who settled along the Spokane River. See the former Expo '74 site, now Riverfront Park that has become the center piece of a vibrant downtown core with eateries, shopping and cultural venues. At The Falls on The River hear the legend American Indians tell of its formation. Your guide will tell you about architects and the buildings they created after the Great Fire of 1889. Take a look at the new bronze busts on the Spokesman-Review building depicting many of the founders of this Inland Northwest area. Stroll through the Davenport Hotel, the art-deco Fox Theater (when available) and Steam Plant Square.


Spokane's "Home Town Boy" Makes it Big! The Early History of Bing Crosby (Time: 3 hours)

Harry Lillis Crosby was born in Tacoma, Washington on May 3, 1903. His family moved to Spokane when he was three years old. One story about his nickname "Bing" has to do with his favorite cartoon strip "The Bingville Bugle"; his friends started calling him "Bing" because his favorite character was "Der Bingo" in that comic strip. Bing attended Webster Elementary School and Gonzaga High School, graduating in 1920. He spent three and a half years at Gonzaga University, majoring in law. Bing's music career started in Spokane and matured to the time he left with his friend Al Rinker to audition in Hollywood. He not only defined pop music as we know it today, he became a motion picture icon and a trail blazer in the development of radio and television industries. On this tour learn more about Bing and tour his childhood home, the Crosbyana Room with his memorabilia at Gonzaga University, Downriver Golf Course where he learned to play golf, the Bing Crosby Theater (formerly The Met Theater) where he performed between vaudeville acts, and numerous other sites that figured prominently in his life.


The Silver Valley and Historic Wallace (Time: 7 hours)

Get a realistic glimpse of the old mining days on the way to the world's richest Silver Mining District. Stop at Cataldo Mission, the oldest building in the State of Idaho, built by the Coeur d'Alene Indian Tribe and Jesuit Missionaries in 1853. Then to Wallace, the Silver Capital of the world. Ride the trolley up to the Sierra Silver Mine where you'll put on your hard hat, go into the mine, see the veins of ore and learn how the miners worked, be sure you have your jacket. Have lunch at the beautifully restored historic Jameson Hotel. After lunch, tour the Oasis Rooms, an actual old Bordello to see what really made Wallace famous! There's time to look through the silver shops before returning to Spokane. This is a seasonal option.


The Historic Silver Valley and the Crystal Gold Mine (Time: 6 hours)

Learn about the boom days of the late 1800's on the way into the richest Silver Mining District in the world. Along the way, view beautiful Lake Coeur d'Alene with its world-class Coeur d'Alene Resort Golf Course. Tour the Cataldo Mission, the oldest building in the State of Idaho, built by the Coeur d'Alene Indian Tribe and Jesuit Missionaries in 1853. Enjoy lunch at the Enaville Resort, the former Snake Pit, built in 1880 as a supply depot for the early miners during the Mining Rush. This log building has driftwood furniture, and eclectic art hanging from the walls and ceilings. Then to the Crystal Gold Mine, an authentic 1890's underground gold mine. See native silver, gold bearing quartz, unusual crystal formations and mining artifacts. Learn how the miners worked with only the use of a pick and dynamite and a candle on their hard hat for light. Pan for gold and precious gem stones that are native to Idaho.


Lunch at the F. Lewis Clark House on Hayden Lake (Time: 3½ hours)

Enjoy an elegant lunch at the fabulous Clark House, a mansion beautifully restored bringing it back to its original splendor. When built, this 15,000 square foot home was the most expensive home in the state of Idaho. After lunch, listen to the intriguing story of the man who lived there, how he mysteriously disappeared and the history of the home.


Kirtland Cutter Architectural Tour (Time: 5 hours)

During the late 1800's tremendous wealth poured into Spokane from mining, railroading and real estate development in the area. The wealthy spent their fortunes building lavish mansions and fortunately for them, Kirtland Cutter, who had studied art and then drifted through Europe making sketches of buildings, ended up in Spokane. After the great fire of 1889, Cutter started to work as an architect. On this tour see several of the structures and experience the greatness of this man's creations. As you tour through the city you will see the spectacular Davenport Hotel, Monroe Street Bridge, the Chronicle Building, the Campbell House, (located next to the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture), the Glover Mansion and the Steam Plant Grill. Have lunch or dinner at one of the historic homes or the Steam Plant Grill.