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 OCTOBER 18, 1918
Today’s weather will bring clear bright skies with the high temperature near 61° and the low about 47°.
The Department of Health reports only 1,881 new cases of influenza in the last 24 hours. The number of deaths in that period was 661 which is 50 less than the previous day. It was also revealed today that Mayor Thomas Smith is ill with influenza and resting at his home in Glenside. The Mayor however did release a statement advising that the city would contribute up to $75.00 toward the funeral expense of any influenza victim whose family is poverty stricken. The Mayor noted that this isn’t just an act of charity but also a measure taken in the interest of public safety since many bodies remain unburied due to some families lacking funds to pay undertakers.
The quarantine imposed at Camp Dix, New Jersey in an effort to stop the Spanish influenza has been lifted. The decision was made after only 14 new cases of influenza and pneumonia and 4 deaths were reported in the last 24 hours. There will be a partial lifting of the quarantine at Camp Meade in Maryland. There in the last 24 hours only 18 new cases of influenza and 8 cases of pneumonia have been reported. Unfortunately there were also 26 deaths. However, the improved conditions allowed for the reopening of the open air theater and the sports field for recreation.
Philadelphia and the Third Federal District lag far behind in the quota set for it in the Fourth Liberty Loan campaign. With just 2 days left the city and district is $277,500,000 short of its goal of $516,809,000. The city’s allotment for the outstanding sum is $134,000,000. Yesterday Mr. John Wanamaker pledged $3,500,000.00. His son Rodman pledged another $1,000,000 and the Philadelphia employees of his store subscribed for an additional $2,758,000.00.
The British and Belgian armies are clearing Belgium of the German invaders. Everywhere in the country the Germans are being driven back. British sailors and marines have taken Ostend which was once used as a submarine base by the Germans. King Albert and his Queen, Elizabeth, entered the city this afternoon. The British have also taken Lille and Belgian and British troops have entered Bruges. The nightmare of the Teutonic occupation of brave Belgium is coming to an end. In France, the First American Army is continuing its offensive east of the Meuse River taking the summit in the forest of Bois de la Grand Montagne. While west of the Meuse the Rainbow Division led by Douglas MacArthur has taken the fortified hill Cote de Chatillon.
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