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  • The mystic swing /

    From Edison films catalog: The professor shows his power to Mephisto by mysteriously placing a young lady in a swing. Mephisto then shows his power by making the young lady disappear from the swing, to the surprise of the professor. The professor makes another mystic pass and produces a second young lady then in the swing, and also a skeleton. 60 feet. $9.00.

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1900
  • Life rescue at Long Branch /

    "Shows a number of bathers enjoying a dip in the surf. A young lady is suddenly seized with cramps, throws up her hands, and goes down for the second time. A life boat approaches and one of the life guards seizes her by the hair as she sinks for the last time. She is pulled into the boat and rowed ashore. The picture then ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1901
  • White Wings on review /

    Filmed on an unidentified street in New York City, probably Fifth Avenue. Rows of men wearing the white uniforms of New York City street sweepers (known as White Wings) march by the camera. Each row has a police escort. The parade of uniformed men continues until several hundred pass. Immediately following the marching men come approximately a hundred horse-drawn two-wheel carts of the kind ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1903
  • Sampson and Schley controversy--tea party /

    From Edison films catalog: This subject is in three scenes, showing beautiful dissolving effects. Scene 1 shows Admiral Schley upon the bridge of the Brooklyn commanding the American Fleet in Santiago Harbor. The Spanish fleet is seen to emerge from Santiago Harbor. Simultaneously ships and forts open fire on the American fleet. Scene 2. The Man Behind the Gun. The gun crews are seen ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1901
  • The unappreciated joke /

    From Edison films catalog: Scene, interior of a street-car. A stout man enters and sits down alongside of a friend and proceeds to read a comic paper. He shows a joke in the paper to his friend, and they both laugh heartily. The friend leaves the car, and his absence is not noted by the stout man. An elderly matron takes the seat. Without ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1903
  • An artist's dream /

    From Edison films catalog: The scene opens in the interior of an artist's studio. Mephisto appears mysteriously and signals the pictures to come to life. They step down from the frames and walk forward, admiring their costumes. Mephisto then touches the artist on the shoulder, awaking him, and disappears. The artist, after rubbing his eyes, sees the picture on his right hand side and ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1900
  • How a French nobleman got a wife through the New York Herald personal columns /

    From Edison films catalog: The picture opens with a "Personal" advertisement which actually appeared in the New York Herald of August 25th, 1904: "Young French Nobleman, recently arrived, desires to meet wealthy American girl; object matrimony; will be at Grant's Tomb at 10 this morning, wearing boutonniere of violets." The first scene shows the young "Nobleman" in his dressing room. He picks up the ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1904
  • Esquimaux leap-frog /

    The film, photographed from a single camera position, shows buildings resembling igloos on ice floes, in front of which persons clothed as Eskimos play a game of leapfrog. From a contemporary Edison film company catalog: SCENE IN THE ESQUIMAUX VILLAGE. Ungulado. [code for telegraphic orders]. This shows several Esquimaux at the game of "Misheetak," or leap frog, which differs somewhat from the civilized game, ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1901
  • Panoramic view of the Golden Gate /

    This film, photographed from the front of a moving steam engine, shows the scenic portion of the Ferries and Cliff House Railroad route along the bluffs and cliffs of Lands End (at the northwest corner of San Francisco) overlooking the Golden Gate and the Marin headlands. The line gave access to the famed Cliff House and Sutro Baths, previously accessed by the Point Lobos ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1902
  • President McKinley and escort going to the Capitol /

    "The film begins by showing military personnel on horseback. The camera was positioned on a side street and photographed representatives of several different companies of American cavalry. Just as the film ends, foot soldiers and West Point cadets preceding the two horse-drawn carriages, one containing President McKinley's party, come into view"--Early motion pictures. "This most excellent picture was secured at the junction of Pennsylvania ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1901
  • New York City dumping wharf /

    The film shows a wharf where a barge is being loaded with trash from two-wheeled, horse-drawn wagons. The trash is dumped off the edge of the pier onto the barge, where men with shovels are spreading the piles of debris. The camera pans left to the next barge, where four-wheeled carts are shown dumping excavation rubble. Probably filmed on the East River, this is ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1903
  • The magician /

    From Edison films catalog: The scene opens on a theatrical stage. The magician enters from the wings, and making a bow to the audience, removes his coat and hat, and they disappear mysteriously into the air. He then takes a white handkerchief from his pocket, holds it over his knees, and his long trousers disappear, and behold! he is clad in knickerbockers. He next ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1900
  • Panorama of gorge railway /

    From Edison films catalog: One of the most interesting places in the vicinity of Niagara Falls is the Whirlpool Rapids, where the immense volume of water which passes from the Falls, speeds along through its rocky and tortuous passage towards the ocean. The camera in securing this picture was placed at the front end of a train ascending the grade at a very rapid ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1900
  • Bird's-eye view of San Francisco, Cal., from a balloon /

    As early as 1874, passenger balloon flights were being made over San Francisco. San Franciscans - and Americans in general - were fascinated with the thrills and dangers of flight. Although balloon technology had not advanced greatly by the turn of the century, attempts at man-powered flight were sustaining public interest. The era of powered flight arrived in 1903 with the Wright brothers' flight ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1902
  • A dull razor /

    From Edison films catalog: This picture shows an old gentleman seated at his shaving table. The razor is evidently giving him a great deal of trouble, as he catches hold of the brush and with a great show of impatience he hurriedly coats his face with the foaming soap and makes a second attempt at removing his beard. He scrapes and scrapes, and judging ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1900
  • Opening, Pan-American Exposition /

    A group of dignitaries from various countries was photographed from a single camera position participating in a parade marking the opening of the Pan-American Exposition. From a contemporary Edison film company catalog: OPENING OF THE PAN-AMERICAN EXPOSITION ON MAY 20th, 1901. Ungehofft [code for telegraphic orders]. This is a great historical event. Our cameras were stationed in the center of the Esplanade looking toward ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1901
  • A day with Thomas A. Edison /

    A six-part documentary recording the 74-year-old Edison's collaborations with his staff, conversations with industrial leaders, and supervision of the factory's production line. The majority of the film (parts 3, 4, and 5) chronicles Edison's trip to the incandescent light bulb factory and details its manufacturing process.

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1922
  • Spanish dancers at the Pan-American Exposition /

    The film was photographed from the area back of the midway of the Pan-American Exposition. The immediate background indicates the camera was in front of the living quarters of the gypsy dancing troupe. Several female gypsies in costume appear and dance. From a contemporary Edison film company catalog: GYPSY DANCE AT THE PAN-AMERICAN EXPOSITION. Unhaltbar. [code for telegraphic orders] The picture was taken in ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1901
  • Sorting refuse at incinerating plant, New York City /

    The subject is a group of about thirty men and boys who are sorting combustible refuse, mostly paper, and stuffing it into large sacks. In the background a man in a hat with an emblem on it can be seen unloading trash from a large wagon. Location may be the New York City Sanitation Department's East 17th Street facility, or possibly the incinerator at ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1903
  • Boers bringing in British prisoners /

    "Here we have a mixed Company of Gordon Highlanders, Irish Fusilliers and English Lancers, as a group of prisoners taken to the rear by a troop of Boer Cavalry. The expression of their faces show who is the victor, and who the vanquished. You can read in the dust and smoke-begrimed countenances of the prisoners, the story of their stubborn resistance to superior numbers ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1900
  • The good sport /

    A domestic comedy about a wealthy young woman whose poor inventor husband becomes rich when he perfects the first elevator that ever stopped even without a floor.

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1918
  • Eiffel Tower from Trocadero Palace /

    The single camera position is from the top of a building identified as the Trocadero Palace; the camera is pointed toward the Eiffel Tower. The film shows only up to the first arch of the Eiffel Tower.

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1900
  • Bombardment of Taku forts, by the Allied fleets /

    From Edison films catalog: The scene opens by showing the battleships maneuvering for a position. They finally draw up in line of battle and commence firing on the shore batteries. Immense volumes of smoke arise from the fleet and from the distant shore. Shots are seen to fall thickly among the vessels and immense bodies of water are thrown up by the explosion of ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1900
  • San Francisco Chinese funeral /

    This film shows most of the ceremonial portion of the funeral procession of Tom Kim Yung (1858-1903), military attache to the Chinese Legation to the United States. The funeral procession took place at 1:00 pm on Wednesday, September 23, 1903, and was probably the largest ever seen in Chinatown. Tom's death (note that Tom is the family name) was the tragic consequence of a ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1903
  • President McKinley taking the oath /

    "This film records President McKinley taking the oath of office. The first camera position shows the seating arrangements prepared for the spectators and witnesses on the steps of the Capitol. At the time the film was taken, there were many empty seats. The second camera position shows the inaugural party during the swearing-in ceremonies. All that can be seen is the black draped balcony ...

    • Original Format: Film, Video
    • Date: 1901