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 – WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 8, 1917
Today’s forecast call for partly cloudy skies with possible showers tonight. The high will reach 85° with the low tonight near 73°. Today at the Navy Yard construction began on an aircraft plant which will build the most advanced type of flying machines in the world. Construction of the plant is expected to cost $1,000,000.00. The Yard was selected by Secretary Daniels because of the calm waters of the Delaware River and the highly skilled work force of this city. Mr. Daniels said when fully completed the plant will employ between 3000 and 4000 men.
Philadelphia’s draft machinery is barely creaking along. This city has a draft quota of 14,000 men. But as of today only 2,520 conscripts have been examined and of those 1,652 were accepted. Many of those accepted have filed for exemptions based on the fact they have wives and children to support. Officials of the draft boards here believe it may take a month to fill the city’s quota.
In national news, the United States Shipping Board, which recently took over the construction of all American ships, announced today it will also take over operation of every vessel flying the American flag. The action is being taken to control and organize cargo movement for war needs. In international news, reports from Pekin, China state that Acting President, Feng Kwo-Chang, has given his consent to the Cabinet’s decision to declare war on Germany and join the Allies. However, before taking the final step of declaring war, President Kwo-Chang is waiting for word that the provincial governors of the country are in agreement.
In baseball, the Phillies game in Pittsburgh was postponed due to rain. The A’s hosted the St. Louis Browns at Shibe Park today. The teams were tied at 4 after 9 innings. In the top of the 10th Big George Sisler drove home what looked like the winning run for the Browns, giving them the lead at 5 to 4. But in the bottom of the 10th, with Stuffy McInnis on 1st, Walloping Wally Schang launched a deep shot into the bleachers to give the A’s the win, 6 to 5.
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