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


Today’s weather will include cloudy skies and a light rain. The high will reach 41° with a low of 26°. The rain will most likely continue this evening and into tomorrow.

The body of Archbishop Prendergast lies in state today at the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul. The Archbishop is clothed in pontifical robes including a purple cassock, a white miter and purple gloves. His coffin rests on a raised, draped platform in the center of the main aisle. A constant stream of men, women and children have entered the Cathedral to pay their final respects to the leader of this city’s Roman Catholics. Among those paying their respects were representatives of every protestant denomination and over 1000 boy scouts representing all of Philadelphia’s Catholic parish troops.

Also on duty are honor guards from many of the city’s Catholic organizations which will stand guard over the Archbishop’s body today and throughout the evening until tomorrow morning’s funeral Mass. The organizations include: the Catholic Philopatrians; St. Vincent de Paul Society; Knights of Columbus; Holy Name Society; Ancient Order of Hibernians; Cahill Club; Knights of St. John; United German Societies; United Irish Country Society; United Italian Society; United Polish Society and the Colored Catholic Union. At 7:30 this evening a choir of priests will chant and pray the Office of the Dead.  The doors of the Cathedral will remain open until 11:00pm tonight.

Pennsylvania’s Food Administrator, Howard Heinz (shown below), spoke today at a luncheon at Wanamaker’s tea room. During his remarks he warned that pro-German activity is going on in every part of the Commonwealth. These activities include sabotage and propaganda against the food-saving program. Mr. Heinz also said Pennsylvania is honeycombed with German spies and propagandists and that “Before we can make any real headway toward winning this war we must string up thousands of these pro-Germans and shoot them full of holes”. Mr. Heinz is the founder and president of the H.J. Heinz Company, known for its “57 varieties”.

Howard Heinz

On the sports beat, baseball players are beginning to travel to warmer climes to prepare for the season. Grover Cleveland Alexander is reportedly in Hot Springs, Arkansas but he is still holding out for a $10,000.00 bonus or he says he will not report to the Cubs. The battery staff of the New York Giants has also arrived in Hot Springs. And the first squad of pitchers and catchers of the Cleveland Indians has left for New Orleans to begin training. On the high school basketball scene, LaSalle will meet Catholic High later this afternoon at Traymore Hall, Franklin Street & Columbia Avenue.