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 temperature was a brisk 29° this morning as Philadelphians made their way to work. The remainder of the day will see partly cloudy skies with the high reaching 38° and the low about 25°.

Mayor-elect Thomas Smith announced his cabinet today and it appears his selections were a direct rebuke of Senator Boies Penrose. No Penrose men were appointed but 6 proposed members are known associates of the Vare-McNichol faction of the Republican Party. The choices are considered the opening round in the fight to break the Senator’s control of the party in this city and diminish his authority state wide. The remaining seats were provided to unaffiliated individuals or personal acquaintances of the Mayor-elect such as his personal physician, Dr. Wilmer Krusen, who will be Director of Public Health.

Joseph Santoro, 19 years old of 707 South 7th Street, (shown below) is in jail today for attempting to kill his wife to keep her from leaving him and joining a burlesque company. Mrs. Santoro is but 15 years old and is in Hahnemann Hospital. Mr. Santoro claims his wife’s sister, Fannie Toresky who is a burlesque performer, persuaded the young girl to run away with her. Miss Toresky is also being held as a material witness. Mrs. Santoro left her home Saturday afternoon and when her husband found her missing he searched all night long. Finally he learned his wife was at Broad Street Station waiting to take a train to New York. He confronted the girl and when she refused to return home with him he shot her in front of hundreds of stunned spectators. The bullet entered the girl’s shoulder. The injury is not life threatening.

Joseph Santoro

Joseph Santoro

On the sports beat, in billiards two of the world’s experts will meet here today and tomorrow in exhibition matches. Willie Hoppe, the American Champion will meet Koji Yamada the Japanese master at Sol Allinger’s Emporium, 1207 Market Street. The first match will start at 8:00pm this evening with tomorrow’s game at 2:30pm. Once the two complete their tour of America they will travel to the Orient to play exhibitions there. In boxing tonight at the Olympia A.A., Broad & Bainbridge Streets, 5 bantamweight matches are on the card including Lew Tendler against Kid Goodman and in the main bout, Johnny Ertle meets Young Diggins.



On the western front, the heavy rains in France and Belgium have for the last few days lessened military engagements. But yesterday under clearing skies artillery bombardments again commenced. The Germans are striking at French trenches southwest of Loos and the French are replying with cannonades in the Hetsas region of Belgium. In the east, the Russians have reportedly suffered heavy losses in a series of attacks against German positions southwest of Babit Lake, west of Riga in Latvia. All the assaults were repulsed.