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 often for new updates.

To share your family or neighborhood stories, please email PhillyWWIyears@gmail.com


The weather forecast today calls for rain throughout the day and probably tomorrow. Today’s high will reach 74° and the low about 58°.

The funeral of Edmond Hauptfuhrer was held today at the young man’s family home at 2900 North Lawrence Street. Hauptfuhrer was killed by Ida Riehl after he refused to marry her. A large crowd of curiosity seekers delayed the ceremony until late this afternoon. Many of these spectators were young girls who apparently wanted to catch a glimpse of the dead man. Eventually police arrived to manage the crowd. Among the mourners attending was Ida Riehl’s father. He had closed his restaurant out of respect for the Hauptfuhrer family and said today “Their loss is our loss”. The young man was buried at Greenmount Cemetery, 2nd Street & Bristol Pike.

It is, of course, graduation time in the schools, colleges and universities of our area and a number of institutions have bestowed their laurels on students today. The Philadelphia College of Osteopathy will award diplomas to 14 graduates tonight at Witherspoon Hall, Juniper & Walnut Streets. Also, The Philadelphia Polyclinic College will hold its graduation ceremony tonight in the Hospital’s amphitheater at 18th & Lombard Streets. Nine young ladies will receive nursing degrees. Finally, St. Mary’s Hospital will graduate 6 nurses today.

The Lubin Company has “borrowed” the battleship Alabama, presently docked at League Island, for the filming of scenes for a coming motion picture. In return for this favor Mr. Siegmund Lubin (shown below) provided the officers and crew of the ship with a moving-picture show and a smoker. The battleship was decorated for the evening with lights, banners and a large special screen. Of course, Mr. Lubin also invited the officers and crews of other vessels at the Navy Yard and also the friends of all navy and marine personnel as special guests. After the film a dance was held and refreshments provided.

5-26-1915 Siegmund Lubin


On the western front, The French are claiming success in their drive to Arras. However, the British have admitted losing ground in the Ypres region. The retreat is blamed on the German release of huge clouds of asphyxiating gas at the British positions forcing the troops to withdraw. On the Italian front, 3 distinct offensives are being undertaken by Italy. The 1st is a drive on Trieste, the 2nd is through the Cadore region of the alps. The 3rd is a drive on the city of Trent. The Italians report that all these actions have met with success. In the east, Austro-German forces in Galicia are again on the march towards Przemysl.