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. So, check back often for new editions. To share your family or neighborhood stories, please email PhillyWWIyears@gmail.com


The snow fell last night and covered the city with up to two inches in some neighborhoods. Another few inches may fall tonight as the temperature drops. Today’s high will be 41° with a low tonight of 26°. With the snowfall of yesterday and tonight, Philadelphia will have its first white Thanksgiving since 1899.

A Grand Jury delivered its report on Moyamensing Prison to Judge Davis in Quarter Sessions Court today. The report found the conditions of the institution and the treatment of the prisoners “perfectly satisfactory”. The Grand Jury did suggest that the practice of detaining people at the prison for failure to pay their debts on capias warrants should be revised. A previous Grand Jury had recommended that the prison superintendent and the board of inspectors be locked in cells for a time so they could understand what prisoners’ experience.

In entertainment news, all Philadelphia is excitedly exclaiming “Caruso is here”! The great tenor (shown below) was in superb form last night at the Metropolitan Opera House, 1109 Chestnut Street, appearing as Des Grieux in Puccini’s Manon Lescaut. He electrified the audience with the power, clarity and pure loveliness of his voice.

Enrico Caruso

In sports, tomorrow will give Philadelphians numerous sporting events to enjoy. There will be football at Franklin Field as Cornell visits Penn. At Frankford the Naval Training School takes on Frankford A.A. and Catholic High meets Germantown High at 29th & Indiana Avenue. Also the Machine-Gun Company of the 316th Infantry will take on an all-star team made up of men from Logan, Oak Lane, Feltonville and Olney at the Pennsylvania and Reading Railroad field at Tabor Road Station. The majority of the men in the Machine-Gun Company are themselves from Olney so the game should be a spirited contest. There will also be boxing at the Olympia, Cambria and National clubs. At Holmesburg Junction the Independence Gun Club has scheduled a trapshooting competition. And in basketball the Camden Crusaders will travel to Kensington to meet the Jasper Jewels at Nonpareil Hall, Kensington Avenue & Ontario Street.