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. We will also recount the events occurring in the war on that day. So, check back each day for new editions.
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TODAY IN PHILADELPHIA – FRIDAY, AUGUST 13, 1915
The city will see another partly cloudy day with the possibility of thunderstorms this evening. The high will be about 86° with the low near 69°.
In there a milk war in South Philadelphia? Dolfinger’s Standard Dairies, 16th & Tasker Streets, is claiming that rival companies are sabotaging its business and that 2 policemen are helping them. The company has asked Director of Public Safety Porter and District Attorney Rotan to investigate. Harry Dolfinger, the company’s president, claims that his wagon drivers have been stopped and threatened on their route. Also, drivers have been bringing back empty milk bottles containing notes saying the customer no longer wanted Dolfinger milk. All this seems to be the result of a rumor spread in South Philadelphia that all Italians working for the company had been fired. Witnesses have told company representatives that the rumor has been spread by 2 policemen who had also written the notes. Dolfinger’s is placing advertisements in newspapers to counter these rumors (shown below).
In politics, in what is considered a brilliant move Congressman William Vare has removed one of his competitors for the Republican nomination for Mayor. Former Postmaster Thomas Smith has been appointed to a position on the Public Service Commission by Governor Brumbaugh. Mr. Smith was supported by the Penrose-McNichol faction and would have been offered as a “harmony” candidate. The removal of Mr. Smith now clears the way to the nomination for Congressman Vare and perhaps the Mayoralty [Editor’s Note: In 1916, Thomas Smith would be elected Mayor of Philadelphia].
On the sports beat, yesterday young Ben Kaufman (shown below), 13 years old of the Central Branch Y.M.C.A., jumped into the Schuylkill River at Conshohocken for a 5 mile swim down to the Flat Rock Dam. He was cheered on by fellow Y.M.C.A. members all along his route. Ben is the youngest boy ever to attempt to swim this route. He is an accomplished swimmer and has won a number of events.
In baseball, the Athletics visited the Yankees at the Polo Grounds today in the first of a three game series. The game was tied at 2 after the 4th and took 12 innings before the Highlanders scored the winning run. The Phillies opened their series here with the Boston Braves this afternoon with Grover Cleveland Alexander on the mound. “Alex the Great” pitched 9 strong innings and the Phillies won 5 to 3. This is Alexander’s 21st win of the season.
In the east, Prince Leopold and his Bavarian army has captured Siedice, 50 miles from the great Russian fortress of Brest Litovsk. Seven Austro-German armies are now being massed for a huge assault on Brest Litovsk. On the western front, the efforts of the German Crown Prince, Frederick William, to smash the French defenses at Verdun have again resulted in failure.
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