On this page we will look back at life in the city during the war years. Here we will provide the visitor with the stories making the news, what was happening in sports and entertainment, city politics, the social scene and the prominent people at the time. We will also recount the events occurring in the war on that day. So, check back often for new updates.
To share your family or neighborhood stories, please email PhillyWWIyears@gmail.com
TODAY IN PHILADELPHIA – FRIDAY, JULY 2, 1915
The forecast calls for partly cloudy skies today with the high reaching 85° and the low tonight about 69°.
Mayor Blankenburg today signed into law the ordinance enabling the $6,000,000.00 loan needed to begin the overhaul of the rapid transit system and start construction on the Frankford elevated and Broad Street subway lines. The Mayor also signed into law an ordinance regulating the operation of jitneys in the city limits. The law requires jitney owners to post a bond of $2,500.00, pay a license fee of $50.00 per vehicle and limits to .05¢ the fare for travel throughout the city. These regulations are decried by jitney operators who argue they are imposed to protect the Philadelphia Rapid Transit Company and they say the costs of the law will drive them from business.
It has been definitively established that Philadelphia holds the world’s record for ice cream consumption. For each summer’s day Philadelphians eat an average of 350,000 quarts of that cold, refreshing delicacy. If those quart boxes were placed on top of each other it would reach 167,708 feet high or 31.7 miles which is 8 time higher than Mt. McKinley! The experts that spend their time doing this sort of calculation estimate that on a Holiday like July 4th, 500,000 quarts will be consumed. And then there’s soda water. There are over 3000 establishments in the city where soda water is sold. And the calculators have calculated that each summer day 900,000 glasses of soda water is consumed by thirsty Philadelphians.
In sports, last night at the Point Breeze Park Motordrome a crowd of 18,000 packed the stands to see America’s own world champion, Clarence Carman, win the 40-mile race over an excellent world class field. Vincenzo Madonna of Italy finished 2nd, George Wiley of New York took 3rd and French champion George Seres finished 4th. Up in Boston rain necessitated the postponement of today’s A’s-Red Sox doubleheader. The Phillies-Braves game here was also postponed due to the wet condition of the field.
On the western front the German offensive continues in the Argonne and all along the line from Arras to Ypres. Crown Prince Frederick Wilhelm commands the Prussian divisions leading the assault against the French forces in the Argonne. At all these points the German attacks have been repulsed by the Allies. It is speculated that the Germans are now rushing troops from the eastern front to the west for one massive assault against either Ypres or in Alsace. In the east, the Austro-German forces continue their sweep towards Warsaw. The Germans are now moving toward Brest-Litovsk in one direction and Ivangorod from another. Both cities are railway hubs and defensive fortresses protecting the roads to Warsaw.