20 Jul A look at the 100-year history of The Hutton Settlement: Establishing a tradition of supporting children
By Katherine Barner, KHQ
July 20, 2019
For full video of photo archives, visit: https://www.khq.com/news/a-look-at-the–year-history-of-the-hutton/article_412e74dc-ab21-11e9-92b8-b3abaa2dd892.html
For the past 100 years, the Hutton Settlement has provided hope, opportunity and life to children in Spokane.
Its strong tradition began years before the home was opened in 1919.
Founder Levi William Hutton was orphaned by the age of six in 1866. After years of moving from home to home, Levi headed west to seek his fortune at just 18-years-old.
After spending several years with the Northern Pacific Railroad, Levi and partners acquired Hercules mine. In 1901, Levi and his partners struck rich. The mine was worth $150,000,000. Hutton’s share was $2,000,000.
Levi and his wife May came to Spokane in 1907 and became active in civic affairs.
Levi Hutton vowed that if he ever became rich, he would build a home for children. In 1917, he began construction of the Hutton Settlement on 364-acres of land.
Construction was completed in 1919, and Levi carried in Jane Wiese to her new home. She was the first child to live at the settlement.
In 1926, Babe Ruth, an orphan himself, visited the settlement and spent two hours with the children.
Less than 10 years after founding the settlement, Levi Hutton died of complications from diabetes.
Jane Wiese wrote about his death saying, “his death was the greatest disaster of my life. I can remember that Saturday morning when we were told that he was dead. It was almost unbearable.”
Over the years, the Spokane community has invested in the mission Levi established. Multiple Thanksgiving turkeys have been donated, the Athletic Round Table has invited the children for Christmas dinner, and a benefactor created The Hutton Alumni Scholarship Fund to encourage the continuation of education.
Today, The Hutton Settlement continues their tradition of supporting children with the help of the community. As they venture into the next 100 years, they hope to continue the courageous mission Levi Hutton established.