Chicago Tribune

Their Ballots Cause Defeat of Official in City’s Recall Election.
Executive Was Charged with the Misuse of Power to Aid Gamblers.

Seattle, Wash., Feb. 7. — [Special.] — Women ruled in the recall election held in Seattle today. It is the first time the women have had the privilege of the ballot in this state. The recall election was brought about in an attempt to oust Mayor Hiram C. Gill and to elect George W. Dilling. Returns from one-third of the city indicate Gill has been ousted and Dilling elected by a majority of 4,000 votes.

The leader of the suffragists in this state refused to intervene in the mayoralty fight because of the fact that the agitation arose because Mayor Gill and his chief of police, C. W. Wappenstein refused to yield to those who sought the establishment of a district for confining vice.

Opponents Rely on Women

The women did not have the franchise when Gill was elected a year ago, so that the shrewd politicians in the state recognized that the women held the deciding hand in today’s election.

Many picturesque scenes were enacted in the day’s voting. Women, richly dressed and riding in their own automobiles, drove to the polling places to vote, and stood in line, while others with shawls over their heads, who had been to market and brought eggs and meat and garden truck in their arms, took their turns in the booths and marked their choice for mayor. Contrary to expectations, the women did not make many mistakes in balloting.

Woman Aged 80 Votes First

The first woman to vote was Mrs. Rebecca Hall, aged 80. She was waiting at the fire station polling place for two hours before the polls opened. She announced her alliance to Gill. She marked her ballot carefully and without hesitation while being snapped by a photographer.

Intimidation of voters and insults to women by election workers were reported to the police, and in every instance Chief Wappenstein ordered the men arrested. Five hundred John Doe warrants were in the hands of the election judges and a number of them were used.

The election was the first test of the recall in Washington politics and a deep interest was taken in the campaign. The civic question was that of the so-called vice segregation. It was charged against Mayor Gill that his segregation policy was in reality one of vice segregation and that the gambling and red light district was the source of police graft.


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