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. So, check back often for new editions. To share your family or neighborhood stories, please email PhillyWWIyears@gmail.com
TODAY IN PHILADELPHIA – SATURDAY, AUGUST 18, 1917
There will be clear bright skies over the city today. The high will reach 81° with the low tonight near 63°. Fort Mifflin on the Delaware is being prepared for defense. A sentry house has been erected at the main entrance which will be consistently maned. All the shrubbery around the Fort has been cut down so clear views are given to the defenders. Also heavy barbed wire is being installed all along the fences and walls to prevent anyone from climbing into the reservation.
In entertainment this weekend there will be band music all around the city. The Philadelphia Band will be at City Hall Plaza, The Fairmount Park Band will perform at Belmont Mansion, the Energetic Band is at Hunting Park and the Municipal Band will play at Cornelius Park, Frankford Avenue and Comly Street. All performance are free and begin at 8:00pm.
In Vaudeville at the Globe Theatre, Market & Juniper Streets, the whirlwind dancers Slatko’s Rollickers will share the stage with the wonderful singing production Beaux and Belles. At the Cross Keys, 60th & Market, Larry Reilly and his company will be singing Irish favorites followed by that bevy of bewitching beauties, The Roseland Girls.
On the motion picture screen, at the Regent, 17th & Market, Emmy Wehlen stars in “Miss Robinson Crusoe” a comedic retelling of the well-known story. At the Strand, 36th & Germantown Avenue, Arthur Ashley stars in “The Iron Ring” a story of the terrible consequences of infidelity in marriage. At the Leader, 41st & Lancaster Avenue, Fanny Ward stars in the dual role of twin sisters in the melodrama “the Crystal Gazer”. And at the Imperial, 40th & Spruce Street, Bessie Barriscale stars in “Hater of Men”, the story of a girl reporter who questions marriage after covering a sensational divorce. She breaks off her engagement and begins living the life of a libertine. But after nearly losing her virtue she realizes her mistake and returns to the man who loves her to be wed.
On the western front, for the third straight day German troops staged massed counter-attacks against British forces northeast of Lens, Belgium. And as before all the attacks were repulsed. The number of German men lying dead along the battlefield is staggering. Also British positions beyond Langemarck are being consolidated while the French have gained more ground around Steenbeck. In the air, a fleet of 111 French aeroplanes staged a massive air raid on German aviation fields. The targets included the Colmar aviation center, the Frescati and Habsheim camps, Chamblay station and Freiburg which is just 11 miles from the Rhine. Dozens of German aeroplanes and zeppelins were destroyed.
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