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 JULY 6, 1917
There will be fair skies over the city today with increasing cloudiness overnight. Today’s high will be 83° with the low about 67°. Philadelphia housewives can now add mule and horse to their families’ dinner menus. The Pennsylvania Legislature passed and Governor Brumbaugh signed the law allowing such delicacies into effect last night. The law was enacted in anticipation of shortages of beef and pork due to military needs. Some butchers in the city believe mule or horse will never be in demand due to the biblical prohibition in the Book of Leviticus and the ban on the practice issued by Pope Gregory III in 732 A.D.
Thirteen Socialists were arrested last night and held today on heavy bail by Magistrate Stevenson at the 61st & Thompson Street Police Station. Magistrate Stevenson told the 6 women (shown below) and 7 men that Philadelphia will not tolerate anti-American propaganda or interference with America’s war effort. The group was arrested last night as they attempted to circulate anti-conscription literature in West Philadelphia. This morning almost 500 loyal and true Americans crowed into the courtroom and around the police station waiting for the cases to be called.
Initially the defendants displayed a jocular demeanor, smiling and even laughing. That changed once the judge began dealing with the accused. Magistrate Stevenson asked each socialist if they were a citizen. Those responding no were charged with inciting to riot and held on $5,000.00 bail. The ones claiming to be Americans were charged with treason and $10,000.00 bail levied on them. By that point all the jokes, smiles and laughing disappeared. The crowd applauded enthusiastically and let out cheers each time the judge imposed bail.
In sports, the Athletics are traveling today to Chicago to open a 4 game series. The Phillies had Honus Wagner day at National League Park paying a well-deserved tribute to “Old Hans”. The 44 year old is serving a duel role as player/manager until Hugh Bezdek arrives to take the helm for the rest of the season. Even though Wagner only managed one hit today his Pirates were victorious by a score of 8 to 5. And at the Cambria A.C., Frankford Avenue & Cambria Street, there will be open-air boxing under the stars tonight. Young McGovern meets Johnny Rosner in the featured bout. Four other fights are on the card.
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