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HMD Report: Raleigh 2012

HMD Report: Raleigh

Total Audience: around 75 & 14 volunteers—89
Number of people bringing films: 19
Number of films screened by Gauge: 36 total
8mm: 15
Super 8: 15
16mm: 6
9.5mm: 0
Video: 0

Press (pre-event and post-event):
*Small mention in Independent Weekly (free weekly) by Chris Vitiello.
*Small mentions the previous week in daily newspaper, Raleigh N&O.
*Marsha Orgeron and Skip Elsheimer on NPR’s The State of Things on Friday 10/21
*Hit the blogs, Facebook, and email lists.

Our event started off with a bang: a woman brought in her family films (which she could
not remember ever having seen) and one of the reels was labeled “Spacewalk” on the
box. It begins with some family footage in Kinston, NC and then some footage of all of
these people in a field with cars. You see glimpses of a big cross and a man in a hood.
The woman who brought the film, somewhat mortified, told us that her parents always
talked about going on a road trip and seeing all of these folks on the side of the road in
Smithfield, NC, and stopping to see what fun was being had—it turned out to be a Klan
rally, and they were too afraid to just drive away, so they stayed a while and filmed a
very short segment while they were there. The next shot is of a television broadcast of
the first ever spacewalk, Alexi Leonov (March 18, 1965)—Soveit, comrades! Not much
American historical memory of that one. An amazing time capsule and testament to the
value of home movies—we couldn’t have planned it better ourselves.

Other highlights:

  • Awesome 16mm film from the 1960s of an astronaut in a “total body exerciser,”
    intended to be used by astronauts in space. Film was donated by William Thornton.
  • An 8mm amateur educational film brought by a woman who worked for the Toledo,
    Ohio, library, shot in 1972. “I made this movie when I worked at the Toledo, Ohio,
    public library (in the Young Adult division) and wanted to show how things have
    changed”—it was shown to library staff all over Ohio. The film starts in black and white,
    with unfriendly libraries, all reading a book titled “Revolting Librarians.” Greaser comes
    up to one librarian, looking for “anything on Motorcycles,” but can’t find anything on
    the subject in the card catalog. The film switches to color, showing how libraries have
    become more open (they roll out the red carpet). Young adults rush the library, checking
    out hundreds of books. The film ends by showing how books can be practical, showing
    people how to do everything from Yoga to auto repair to playing the guitar. A poster
    reads: “We’re more than a library, we’re ideas.”
  • Incredible Super 8 film shot in 1972 at the Republican convention in Miami Beach.
    Footage of camp Nixon, protestors, people in big Nixon masks, barricades, followed by
    footage of his grandmother, glass bottom boat with snorklers.
  • Great 1947 8mm footage shot at 1323 Canterbury Road, Raleigh—the woman who
    brought it described it as feeling like it was out in the country back then. The home is
    now engulfed by a mansion and is very much in the heart of Raleigh.
  • Neat 1970s 16mm footage shot in New Jersey of a family owned factory, accompanied
    by stories by the son of the family about the mob.
  • Super 8 footage from November 1982 of a trip the woman who brought the film took
    with her two sons to New York City: shots from the Ferry, Battery Park, Twin Towers,
    Statue of Liberty, accompanied by a great story of how she sent one of her sons down
    to the hotel restaurant to get her a coke and he ended up getting lost and the chaos that
  • 8mm reel from 1963 shot in Great Falls Montana at a Kennedy Speech a few days
    before he was killed: gathering people, different angles. The woman who brought it
    described an extra sense of personal devastation at the Kennedy assassination because
    they saw him just a few days before. Part 2 is backyard with husband, wife and son, son
    riding tricycle.
  • Lots of nudie shots of baby Katrina Lamberto as she was either eating her own feet or learning to walk—and using a black lab to help hold herself up—worth the price of admission, folks!
  • 8mm reel purchased from a thrift store of a beauty queen parade in California—ca.
    1950s—amazing stuff! Beauty queens in dresses in cars, beauty queens in bathing suits
    walking and posing. People commented on the fact that their bodies looked normal!!!!
    Different times…
  • Several different movies with babies eating grass and pine needles!
  • Super 8 footage of a St. Patrick’s Day parade in Savannah Georgia, with Shriners-o-
  • Two different experimental films shot by two of our volunteers in the 1980s—Skip
    Elsheimer and Grant Samuelson

Lots of folks won HMD Bingo, with prizes courtesy of volunteer Charlotte Walton,
Merge Records, the State Archives, A/V Geeks, and Cameron’s gift shop in Chapel
Hill. Our HMD runs almost on autopilot now thanks to a pretty well-oiled protocol and
seasoned volunteers—we’re happy to share tips and resources with anyone wanting to
start a HMD of their own and we hope to have more up and running in the state next year.
Thanks to all of our amazing volunteers!

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