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, FEBRUARY 24, 1917
There will be clear and fair skies over the city today. The high will be a pleasant 45° with the low tonight about 37°. In news concerning the sugar strike, the union representing the workers issued a statement today declaring they would fight on till their demands were met. The union is demanding a straight 5¢ per hour raise, time and a half for overtime and double time for working on Sundays and holidays. Presently employees are earning 25¢ an hour or $3.00 per day. The Franklin Sugar Refining Company pointed out that their employees also received an annual $5.00 Christmas gift and a pension plan for employees retiring after 30 years paying not less than $20.00 per month.
In national news down in Washington D.C. the suffragettes who are protesting at the White House this week took time out to elect Miss Beulah Amidon of North Dakota the “Prettiest Picket”. We’re sure the men will agree Miss Amidon is a fine choice.
And on a somber note, General Fredrick “Fighting Fred” Funston was laid to rest today with full military honors in the Presidio in San Francisco. The General was commander of the southern forces along the border prior to his death on Monday. General Funston received the Medal of Honor for his courage and skill while serving in the Philippines. Nearly 5000 people attended the ceremony. After 13 canon blasts at 1 minute intervals, the traditional salute for a Major General, Taps was played and the General’s body lowered into the grave. He now rests beside his 9 year old son, Arthur.
On the sports scene in boxing tonight at the National A.C., 11th & Catherine Streets, Art Magirl takes on K.O. Loughlin, Johnny Mahoney meets Jimmy Powers and Preston Brown faces Eddie Fitzsimmons. Admission is 25¢. In basketball last night before a capacity crowd at Cooper Battalion Hall the Greystock Greys beat the Jasper Jewels 27 to 20 and reclaimed the top spot in the league. Tonight South Philadelphia’s DeNeri will host Trenton at the Musical Fund Hall at 8th & Locust.
In the Atlantic, 7 Dutch ships were added to the tally of German submarines today. The ships were caught in the so called war zone at the western approach to the English Channel. On the western front the German army appears to be conducting a coordinated retreat from certain areas of the Somme. German troops today withdrew from Serre, Miraumont, Pys and Warlencourt. And in the Middle East the Turks have evacuated the area from Kut to Sanna-i-Yat and are retreating toward Bagdad.
GET YOUR COPY OF PHILADELPHIA: THE WORLD WAR I YEARS BY CLICKING ON THE LINK BELOW.