While surveying the Filson’s audio-visual collection last week I found an 8mm Filson home movie. Entitled “The Filson Moves Along” the film includes footage from May 1971 of “scenes of the Filson Club party preparations, Mr. Harry Hill carving ham, members preparing beaten biscuits and ham on the day before the party” and also scenes from the Filson Club Christmas party on December 23, 1971. This find demonstrates the excitement that home movies can generate. The staff here is looking forward to seeing what the Filson was like nearly forty years ago. Just like any historic document, home movies connect us to our past and can provide information about the way we used to live.
On October 17, 2009, The Louisville Film Society and the Filson Historical Society will be sponsoring the city’s first observance of Home Movie Day. Created in 2002 by a group of film archivists, Home Movie Day is an international event that celebrates amateur film making and aims to educate the public about film preservation. During an event, sponsors provide preservation know-how and a venue and the public provides the films from their personal collection. Community members are invited to bring films (16mm, 8mm, and Super 8mm) to the Filson Historical Society starting at 9am. The Louisville Film Society will be on hand to inspect, repair and clean the films. Following the cleaning and inspection phase, the films will be projected on-site the same day for a public screening. The event is free and open to the public.
As the director Martin Scorsese once said, “Film is history. With every foot of film that is lost, we lose a link to our culture, to the world around us, to each other, and to ourselves.” Come to the Filson Historical Society and find out how you can help preserve your own piece of history.
Find out more about the international event Home Movie Day by visiting the official website.