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 each day for new editions.
To share your family or neighborhood stories, please email PhillyWWIyears@gmail.com
TODAY IN PHILADELPHIA –THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 17, 1916
Today’s weather calls for fair skies with light winds from the west. Temperature will be a bit warmer with the high about 45° and the low near 30°.
Business leaders and officials of the University of Pennsylvania have joined together to advocate for the building of a new sports stadium. This is in reaction to the loss of this year’s Army-Navy game to New York City. Earlier this month rumors began swirling that the military academies would move the game to the Polo Grounds because of the larger seating capacity of that field in comparison to Franklin Field. That move has now been made official. The proposed stadium here will have a seating capacity of 100,000 and be located on land owned by the city and Woodlands Cemetery which is adjacent to the University’s Botanical Gardens. The cost to build the structure is estimated at $750,000.00. Plans for the structure have been developed by George Nitzsche of the University of Pennsylvania and have been approved by the Chamber of Commerce. Additionally, it was noted that if the stadium is built it will give the city an excellent venue with which to bid on the next Olympic Games.
Captain Logan Feland (shown below), commander of the Marine Barracks at the Navy Yard has received instructions from General George Barnett, commandant of the Marine Corps, to provide all instructors necessary for the training of members of the Drexel Biddle Military Corps. Mr. A.J. Biddle hopes to enroll 30,000 volunteers to his corps from this city alone. The volunteers are to be trained and prepared for active service should it become necessary.
On the sports scene in high school basketball Northeast defeated West Philadelphia 29 to 22 and moved into a 1st place tie in the league with Central High. In other games Catholic High beat Camden High 35 to 24 and Germantown Academy downed Jenkintown High 38 to 32. In baseball the American League released its schedule for the 1916 season today. The Athletics will open their season in Boston on April 12th. The A’s will open at Shibe Park on April 20th also against the Red Sox
Rumania reports that its aeroplanes have spotted upwards of 50,000 Bulgarian and German troops massing across its border with Bulgaria. The Rumanians believe this is a not so subtle warning against Rumania entering the war on the side of the Triple Entente. In the Middle East, with the fall of the Turkish fortress of Erzerum in Armenia the Russian army under Grand Duke Nicholas captured 40,000 Turkish troops. The remainder of the garrison is fleeing westward under the command of German Field Marshals von der Goltz and Liman von Sanders.
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