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Family home movie from the 1930s

This standard 8 film shows a typical family home movie and is the oldest in my collection dating from, I believe, the 1930s.

Like many films which I’ve collected over the years there are no markings on the film reel which give any solid clues as to the age of the film, so the actual scenes provide most of the evidence. However, the film does have engraved on it’s aluminium reel, ‘Kodascope Eight Reel‘ with a copyright of 1930 so that puts a bottom limit to the date. I believe Kodascope was the name Kodak used for it’s home movie projectors.

A still from a family home movie from the 1930s showing their car
1930s car from a family home movie

I’ve therefore worked out the date of the film from the scenes and images it contains, and the biggest clues to me are the hairstyle of the woman in the film and the car which appears at about 1 minute in. Although it’s possible that the car could be quite old and the film taken in the 1940s, for me the hairstyle puts it in the 1930s – what do you think?

As to the subject matter there are hand written on the reel the words, ‘Chesham’, ‘Cherry BL’, ‘Tent’ and ‘Rascal’. I’m pretty sure these relate to the subject matter of the film and a reminder to the photographer what this family home movie featured.

I’ve made a few more edits to the film than I normally would; because it is in black and white I’ve removed a lot of scenes of trees moving in the breeze1 and I’ve also added a sound track with what sounds like appropriate music to me. I’d be interested to know if anyone has any strong views on this – should the films be left completely unadulterated or does some music add to the drama of the piece?

When I watched the film, other than the obvious age of it the other thing which struck me was the scene where the mother puffs smoke at her baby to startle it. A completely innocent and amusing action at the time but one that would be definitely frowned upon today and quite a lesson in social history!

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If you see anything in the film which you recognise or you think gives clues to the location or date, please let me know in the comments below. Also, please share this post with your friends if you think they may be able to help locate scene in this film.

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A software developer by profession and an amateur photographer by hobby I've been interested in all things photographic since I was a teenager some 40 years ago. Many of my interests centre around vintage film photography and cinematography.

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