100 years ago in Spokane: A local woman's 'perfect arms' were a media sensation when she visited Los Angeles on business

March 5, 2023

The Los Angeles newspapers claimed to have found the woman “with the most beautiful pair of arms in the world” – proven, they said through measurements.

She was Veta L’Ehmann, a Spokane swimming expert and dancer.

When she arrived in Los Angeles on a business trip, some unknown person tipped off the newspapermen that the two finest arms in the world were in town. The reporters and photographers gathered in the lobby of her hotel and called her room.

She was flabbergasted.

“I never heard about my perfect arms before,” she told them.

The newspapermen were undeterred. They proceeded to interview her and photograph her. The Los Angeles Express, among other papers, put her on the front page and predicted that she would end up in the movies.

She treated the story mainly as a joke, and so did the Spokane Daily Chronicle. But the Chronicle did admit that “she really and truly has a wonderful pair of arms,” and a “a perfect figure” and “beautiful face.”

She was married to Spokane’s assistant city labor agent. He said she never intended to be in the movies, “but since all this publicity about her arms has come out, she has had several mighty interesting offers.”

From the health beat: A Davenport Hotel bellboy heard what sounded like a body falling in Room 423.

So he summoned the house detective. Together, they found Dr. H.J. McCarthy, a well-known Spokane physician, lying on the floor in a pool of blood. He was bleeding profusely from a cut on his arm.

He was rushed to Sacred Heart Hospital, where he was given blood transfusions. He lost “literally quarts of blood.” He was able to give a statement to police while receiving blood transfusions.

He said he attempted to alleviate a severe headache by “bleeding myself a little,” so he punctured the artery in his left arm. But then he fell asleep and, when he woke up, found he had bled far too much. When he tried to get up and call for aid, he collapsed.

That’s when the bellboy heard the thud of a body falling.

The doctor’s friends were donating blood in an effort to save his life, but his condition remained critical.

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