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 – FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 1917
There will be cloudy and overcast skies today with periods of rain. The high will reach about 42° with the low tonight near 34°. Philadelphia’s women are fully committed to do their patriotic duty. That was evidenced today when a $25,000.00 donation was made to the Red Cross by the Philadelphia chapter of the Pennsylvania Women’s Division for National Preparedness. Mrs. George W. Childs Drexel and Mrs. J. Gardner Cassatt presented the check which will go to the organization of a military base hospital.
More violence occurred overnight in the sugar strike. A mob attacked policemen escorting a motor truck carrying Negro strike breakers. The incident occurred at Swanson Street & Washington Avenue. The mob pelted the police with bottles, bricks and other objects. Only the decisive and forceful action of the police prevented the incident from escalating to the proportions of Wednesday night. Two strikers were shot and a number of others injured.
Two different kinds of riots occurred in South Philadelphia today. These were over the price and shortage of food. One was at the shopping area along 4th Street between Christian and Queen Streets. About 50 women protesting the scarcity of fish attacked the shop of Jacob Potankis. For weaponry they used crockery and pots pilfered from an adjacent store. The call for police was heard at the 2nd & Christian Streets station. Magistrate Imber, who was at the station holding court, took detectives in his automobile and sped off to the scene. Once there he drove his vehicle towards the women frightening them and disbursing the mob. A similar disturbance took place along 7th Street near Morris where several hundred Jewish women took out their frustration on sidewalk pushcarts and shops. Here again police had to be called to stop the mayhem.
On the sports beat, a deal has been reached between the Phillies and Grover Cleveland Alexander. The new contract calls for a salary of $12,500.00. That is $2,500.00 less than Alex was asking for but still puts him in the top 6 of baseball salaries. Tris Speaker is earning $17,500.00, Ty Cobb and Eddie Collins receive $15,000.00. Walter Johnson also earns $12,500.00. John J. McGraw and George Stallings are reported to earn more than Alexander but they are managers.
In basketball, it will be a battle for 1st place tonight as the Jasper Jewels go to Cooper Battalion Hall, 23rd & Christian Streets, to meet the Greystock Greys. Jasper is coming off a strong win over DeNeri last night which gave the Kensingtonians 1st place in the standings. But a loss tonight to the Greys would put Greystock in the top spot.
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