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


There will be clear and fair skies over the city today but the temperature remains cold. The high will reach near 39° with the low tonight about 21°. The strike by members of the Amalgamated Clothing Workers’ Union begun on February 25th has finally ended. An agreement was reached between the Union and a number of manufactures of this city providing an immediate increase in wages of 10% with an additional 5% increase on April 15. Almost 10,000 members participated in the strike.

Today is the last day of the City’s Baby-Saving Week. Programs will be held in schools, public buildings and factories in support of this movement and to raise public awareness of the need to take better care of babies. Many men and women will also be wearing flowers today as a show of support. Dr. Wilmer Krusen, Director of Public Health and Charities issued a statement reporting that in 1914, 113 of every 1000 babies died in this city. Last year that number was reduced to 91 in every 1000. Dr. Krusen said that although this is good progress more can be accomplished by teaching mothers about proper sanitary conditions for the home and having mothers nurse their own babies. Additionally, Director Krusen stated that if more visiting nurses could be provided to help mothers in the poorer areas of the city this number could be further reduced.

In the Mexican situation, the 1st and 2nd American Cavalry Brigades have crossed into Mexico in pursuit of Pancho Villa and his army. Today Mexico’s Provisional President Venustiano Carranza has responded to the American military incursion by stating that Mexico will have no objection to the action if it is assured that Mexican forces will be provided the same privilege of crossing into American territory in their pursuit of rebels and outlaws.  Also, the Mexican government reported that General Bertani has been dispatched with 1200 soldiers to intercept Villa’s troops in Chihuahua State.

On the sports scene, the Meadowbrook Games have opened at Convention Hall, Broad Street & Allegheny Avenue. Over 15,000 spectators greeted the hundreds of track athletes for what will undoubtedly be the largest indoor track carnival of the season. Virtually every collegiate star in the east will be participating. In Eastern League Basketball tonight South Philadelphia’s DeNeri team (shown below) will play a double header at Musical Fund Hall, 808 Locust Street. The first game will be against the league leading Greystock Greys of Grays Ferry with the nightcap against Trenton. This is also the first doubleheader staged in Philadelphia by the Eastern League since 1912.

3-11-1916 DeNeri Basketball Team 1916

In boxing tonight at the National A.C., 11th & Catherine Streets, 5 bouts are on the card including Joe Azvedo against Johnny O’Leary and Patsey Cline meeting Eddie Morgan.