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 often for new updates.

To share your family or neighborhood stories, please email PhillyWWIyears@gmail.com


Oh my, how about this weather? That’s the question many are asking today. Yesterday at 4:30pm a terrific lightning and thunder storm broke over the city. It only lasted 20 minutes but when it was over the temperature had dropped 16 degrees, from 89° to 73°. The rain caused some flooding and the lighting did some damage, including striking the Broadway Theatre, Broad & Snyder Avenue, where it tore off some bricks from the corner of the roof. Today’s forecast calls for another hot one with the high again reaching 89° and the low tonight about 72°. And more thunderstorms are expected.

In police news, all 150 of the city’s detectives, acting detectives and special policemen are on a picnic today. The group met at Arch Street wharf and took the “Queen Anne” to Riverview Beach Amusement Park to Pennsville for the outing. In business, another large war material contract was received today by a Philadelphia company. J.G. Brill Company has been contracted by the Russian Empire to produce munitions. The contract is said to be worth several million dollars.

In entertainment, the Philadelphia Band will perform tonight weather permitting at City Hall Plaza. Selections will include the overture from the “Merry Wives of Windsor” by Nicolai. At Willow Grove Park, Arthur Pryor and his American Band will be in concert this week. And the Gentry Brothers Circus is visiting the city this week. This circus is unique because it performs in a different location every night. Tonight’s location is at 29th & Somerset. Tomorrow they will be at York Road and Louden Street. Admission is .25¢.

On the sports scene, both baseball teams had their games postponed due to the storm. At Shibe Park the game was called in the 3rd inning with the A’s up 1 to 0. Lightning strikes just over the field forced Mr. Mack to call a halt. The Phillies game out in Pittsburgh was called before play began. At the Fairmount A.C. tonight, 11th & Spring Garden Streets, Gray’s Ferry’s Bobby Williams will take on Ty Cobb in a featherweight match. Williams is attempting to reestablish himself in boxing circles. This will be his 4th fight in 4 months. There are 5 other bouts on the card.


On the western front, the Germans are conducting a furious bombardment of Compiegne, 45 miles from Paris. Also, near Souchez north of Arras, the Germans are launching infantry assaults in an attempt to regain the ground they lost recently. In the east, enormous German and Austrian assaults are being launched in Poland and Galicia aimed at Warsaw. Also, in Galicia the Austrians are advancing on Lemberg and reports are the Russians are in a disordered retreat.