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


The forecast is for rain today and through the evening. The high temperature will reach about 79° and the low around 60°.

Today in the Court of Oyer and Terminer Judge Ralston imposed the sentence of death upon Jacob Miller. Miller shot and killed detectives Tucker and Maneely on March 25th. The judge ordered that Miller be executed in the electric chair instead of by hanging because the crime was committed after June 13, 1913, when the legislature changed the method of execution. In other crime news, an enormous explosion shook a portion of the northern section of the city this morning. The explosion was caused by the detonation of dynamite in the quarry near 21st & Church Lane. The dynamite was set off by William and Edward Fry and Daniel Quinn of Rufe Street. The 3 have been arrested.

George W. Childs Drexel launched his new $30,000.00 yacht the “Akbar” (shown below) from the Mathis Yacht Building Company at Cooper Point, Camden. The palatial yacht is 75 feet long with two 200-horsepower engines and can travel at 22 knots. [Editor’s Note: The Navy purchased the yacht on May 17, 1917 and placed her in commission on May 31st as the USS Akbar (SP-599). She was used to patrol coastal waters].

6-11-1915 USS Akbar

The people of Kensington and especially mothers are finally getting a long sought day nursery. The nursery will be located at 3086 Emerald Street and mothers who work will be able to leave their children with trained matrons. Also, school age children can go there for lunch at Noon. The facility will open on July 1st.

Agents of the French government have been ordered by the City to cease branding horses that they buy at the horse markets along Market Street in West Philadelphia. It was learned that the French were branding the animals after the markets were closed for the evening. The Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals brought the practice to the City’s attention.


On the western front a heavy fog is inhibiting fighting in the Arras region. But there are reports of attempted German counter-attacks near Neuville-St.Vaast which have been repulsed. There are also reports from Amsterdam that the Germans are moving a new army of 500,000 men to the western front.  In the east, the German army under General Mackenzen which was marching on Lemberg, Galicia has been defeated with heavy losses. Also, the Russians claim that the Austro-German army under General von Linsengen has been driven back across the Dniester River. In the Dardanelles, an almost non-stop bombardment has been taking place over the last 48 hours with Anglo-French warships shelling the Turkish forts and the Turks returning fire.