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 – THURSDAY, MARCH 28, 1918
There will be fair skies over the city today with the high reaching 50° and a low tonight of 38°. Today Christians the world over will commemorate Maundy Thursday or Holy Thursday. The day is believed to coincide with the Last Supper of Jesus and His Apostles. For Roman Catholics this is the first of the major days of Holy Week. Many Protestant denominations also hold special services.
An infant baby girl was left in a hallway in a building near 10th & Christian Street. The child was wrapped in a shawl with a note attached written in Yiddish. It seems the little girl is a “war baby”. The note read “Please I ask you to mind my baby until I get well. Her father has gone to war. I have been thinking of giving my baby to a home but I do not want my Jewish baby’s religion to be changed to any other.” The child has been taken to Philadelphia hospital. Anyone with knowledge of the name or whereabouts of the mother should contact police.
A terrible fire at the stable of H.P. Boone, 3231 North Lee Street, resulted in the burning to death of 18 horses and the near destruction of 8 houses adjacent to the barn. All the homes are on Willard Street. The residents of the homes narrowly escaped suffocation from the billowing smoke. The smell of burning horse flesh permeates the neighborhood. Mr. Boone is a dairyman and believes the fire was deliberately set.
Members of the Japanese War Mission came to Philadelphia today for a tour of the Hog Island Shipyard and various munitions plants around the city. The Japanese were reportedly awed at the sight and size of Hog Island and expressed their astonishment at the scale of operations there. The Japanese were able to watch as the keel of the fifth merchant vessel being built at the yard was laid.
On the sports beat, 270 teams have signed up so far to compete in the annual University of Pennsylvania Relay Carnival. The teams include 61 colleges, 85 high schools, 50 prep school, 11 parochial institutions and 6 army and navy camps. The games will be held on April 26 and 27 at Franklin Filed. Down in Florida at Camp Johnson outside of Jacksonville, Connie Mack and his A’s took on the army team for a solid game of baseball. The soldiers’ team had the best of the A’s winning 3 to 0.
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