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


There is the strong possibility of thundershowers this afternoon and tonight. The unusual heat continues today with the high reaching 83° and the low only about 65°. Maestro Leopold Stokowski is auditioning new members for the Philadelphia orchestra. The additions are necessary to fill places vacated due to the drafting of two 1st violins, Antonio and Louis Ferrara and the enlistment of 2nd violin Earl Pfouts. There have also been eight resignations.

Roman Catholic Bishop McCort has asked Catholic women to adopt orphaned children. The Bishop made the appeal to Catholic women of comfortable means who may be lonely due to their child serving in the military. There are presently 600 orphans available for adoption with the Catholic Children’s Bureau.

The naval aircraft factory at League Island has announced it intends to turnout an airplane every day. Work will soon begin to enlarge the plant to four times its present size. Overall the Navy intends to spend $20,000,000.00 to improve and expand the Navy Yard. This will also include new shipways for the production of battle cruisers. The plan for the airplane factory is that when the work is completed Philadelphia will be the nation’s leading center for the production of naval aircraft.


 Rumania has capitulated to the Central Powers. The “Treaty of Peace” was forcefully opposed by Queen Marie, the Crown Prince and much of the public. The terms are considered humiliating. But King Ferdinand and his cabinet saw no other option but to acquiesce under the threat of the Royal family being deposed and the country being divided between Austria and Bulgaria. Rumania’s loss to the Allies is considerable but a new country has joined the cause for freedom. Today Nicaragua declared war against Germany. The declaration of war was passed this morning by the Nicaraguan Congress.

King Ferdinand I of Rumania

The western front is comparatively quiet today. However, the lull only applies to infantry engagements. The artillery exchanges continue. Most knowledgeable observers believe that a major German infantry assault is being prepared. Most think it will center in the Arras region or perhaps be a two pronged attack, with one strike east of Amiens and the other at Arras.