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 – MONDAY, MARCH 26, 1917
As the prospect of war becomes clearer, Philadelphia is doing its part to prepare to answer the nation’s call. Today Philadelphia’s 1st and 3rd Infantry Regiments of the Pennsylvania Guard have been called to duty by the Governor. The Governor received word from Washington this morning that the regiments were to be mustered into Federal service. They will be sworn in on Wednesday.
And the women of Bryn Mawr College are doing their part as American flags fly over every building on campus. The 455 girls of the college are pledging to fill positions of service for which they are most qualified. Some are to learn wireless operations, some will be chauffeurs, others first aid workers or clerical workers and some will join the Navy as yeomen. Dr. Marion Parris Smith is compiling a list designating which girls will serve where. Already 200 of the ladies are taking Red Cross classes to acquire basic training in first aid.
At the Navy Yard this morning the interned German sailors were sent on their way to their new venue in Georgia. For the Germans it was a bittersweet day as they left behind the friends and sweethearts they have gained in this city and the little village they built to remind them of their homeland. Almost 800 Teutons, crewmen of the Kronprinz Wilhelm and Prinz Eitel Friedrich, boarded special trains for the trip south. Over 500 policemen guarded the area along with Marines and blue jackets.
The Germans, it must be said, acted with the utmost discipline, order and dignity during the evacuation. They marched in columns of two carrying their clothing and personal items acquired since coming here. Some even had pet dogs which followed them onto the trains.
In sports, the Greystock Greys came back last night to tie the championship series in Eastern League Basketball and force a 3rd and final match against the Jasper Jewels. The boys from Kensington were just no match for the pride of Grays Ferry. The Greys controlled the game from start to finish with the final score of 35 to 17. There was some unsportsmanlike conduct by supporters of both teams. It involved trying to upset players with crude and impolite remarks. But since the spectators involved never touched the cage there was little the referee could do. The deciding game will be played on Wednesday night.
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