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, MAY 26, 1917
There will be increasing cloudiness over the city today with the possibility of rain overnight and into tomorrow morning. The high will reach 70° and the low about 51°. This morning at the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul, Archbishop Prendergast, the head of the Roman Catholic Church of Philadelphia and vicinity, ordained 28 young seminarians to the priesthood. The men included 17 students from St. Charles Borromeo Seminary in Overbrook, 5 from St. Vincent’s Seminary of Germantown and 6 from the Augustinian Monastery of St. Thomas at Villanova.
Fifteen hundred school children will take part in a historical pageant today in Fairmount Park. The pageant will be held in the glen just across from the Belmont Plateau. The play will depict the unfolding of America from the time of the Indians to today. There will be scenes depicting Indian village life, the arrival of the European settlers and the Revolutionary War. America’s march west will be reenacted along with the development of her great cities and our most famous inventors. The event is organized by the Department of Physical Education of the public schools.
In entertainment this weekend, Germantown High School presents a “Karnival and Frolick” this evening to benefit the athletic association and the school fund. The festivities will include shadow motion pictures, clowns, a deaf and dumb quartet, Dutch and Russian dancers and minstrels. On the motion picture screens there is an interesting variety of photoplays around the city including William S. Hart in “The Desert Man” at the Apollo, 52nd & Thompson Streets. At the Imperial, 60th & Walnut Streets, Valeska Suratt stars in the fantasy adventure “She”. And at the Frankford, 47th & Frankford Avenue, the magnificent Regina Badet stars in “Atonement” a love story about a Greek dancer pursued by an evil count willing to anything to possess her.
A massive air assault was launched by German aeroplanes on England last night. Sixteen planes took part in the raid. Seventy six people were killed and 134 wounded making this the deadliest air raid of the war. The dead include 27 women and 23 children. The raid took place on the English cities of Dover and Folkestone on the southeast coast. When the raid was discovered the Royal Flying Corps took to the air and drove the Germans off. Six German aircraft were brought down while the others escaped.
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