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.

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


The rain is gone for now and today there will be partly cloudy skies over the city with light variable winds. The high will reach 41° with the low near 26°.

Mrs. Anna Statzell, 35 years old of 2808 C Street, was angered when Mr. Rowland Hill, also 35 of 2743 North Front Street, told her he could not spend New Year’s Eve with her and “watch in the New Year” because he had to work. So, she shot him in the head. The couple has been keeping company for about 6 years. Mrs. Statzell’s husband left her 9 years ago. After shooting Mr. Hill she was overcome by remorse and placed him lovingly in a chair and wiped away the blood. She then realized he needed to be taken to a hospital so she half-carried him to Episcopal Hospital where he is undergoing treatment. The bullet is lodged behind his left eye and may cause him to lose his sight. However, he is expected to survive.

City Councils today received the final annual message of Mayor Blankenburg. The message included a request for an appropriation of $1,200,000.00 for the Department of Health and Charities and pay raises for government workers. Finally, the appropriation requested new office equipment, furniture and carpeting for the Mayor’s office. Mr. Blankenburg noted that since the office is used to welcome distinguished national and foreign guests the old and dilapidated furniture should be replaced to match the importance of the office. He also stated he did not request such things while he was in office to avoid any appearance of his being intemperate with the people’s money.

In national news, a Pan-American Union is being proposed by President Wilson. The proposal will be presented to the representatives of the Latin-American republics who are meeting in Washington, D.C. at the Pan-American Scientific Congress. The Union would call for the naval and military forces of all the Americas to unite to enforce the Monroe Doctrine and defend any one republic threatened or invaded by a European or other foreign power. An unofficial canvass of the South American representatives showed strong support for the proposal.

On the sports beat, DeNeri took a beating from Camden last night in Eastern League Basketball action. The final score was 65 to 35. In American League Basketball St. Columba’s, of 24th & Lehigh, defeated St. Francis Xavier, 24th & Green Streets, 30 to 24 and Madonna beat St. Edward’s, 8th & York Streets, in a closely fought contest 33 to 31.


In the Balkans reports are that Salonica is safe from attack from the Central Powers. Scutari and El Bassan in Albania have been reinforced by 75,000 Serbs. Also the Montenegrins have engaged the Austrians near Djelooplje and forced them to retreat. In Eastern Europe the Russians are launching attacks against Austrian positions in Bukowina and Bessarabia close to the Rumanian border. The attacks could be intended to divert Austrian forces from the Balkans.