The Sterlings

Frank and Isabella Sterling arrived in the Cheney area in the early 1880's, soon after the railroad started coming through.  Originally a cabinet maker from Detroit, Frank made a living in Cheney as a carpenter and general handyman.  The Sterlings purchased a piece of land in January 1883 from C.G Lipton for $76 dollars, placing the land in Isabella's name.   
 
If Spokane at that time, was the Tombstone of the region with all the mining in the area, then Cheney after the railroad came through was like Abilene, Dodge City or so many other towns that boomed with the coming of the railroad.  So much so that in 1884, Cheney had a panoramic map done just as Spokane had done around the same time.  It was the only community around Spokane to have done so.  On this map, on the land that the Sterlings bought at 308 4th Street, is a house clearly visible by 1884.
 
The house itself gives evidence that Frank Sterling may have been the builder.  The huge beams which provide the support structure for the house were painstakingly hewn with mortise and tenon joinery, using techniques that would have been well known to a cabinet maker. 
 
In July 1886 the Sterlings sold the land for $500, the increase in value since the time they acquired the lot helping to establish the construction date of the house. 
 
   
      
 
Within a few years after they sold the property, Frank and Isabella separated and eventually divorced.  
 
Any further information on descendants of this couple and any corresponding records would be greatly appreciated.  Please see our contact page.
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Heather Scholten,
May 15, 2011, 3:08 PM
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Heather Scholten,
May 15, 2011, 3:08 PM
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