Tag Archives: film

“Mama don’t take my Kodachrome away”

Still from the Zapruder film, which was shot on Kodachrome

Still from "the Zapruder film," which was shot on Kodachrome

The Eastman Kodak Company announced this week that the camera film, Kodachrome, would be taken off the market, citing declining demand for the film in the era of digital photography

During its 74 year history Kodachrome has been relished by professional and amateur photographers alike, both for its exceptional color quality and archival longevity. Over the years, many historically and culturally important moments were documented with some form of Kodachrome film. In fact, Abraham Zapruder’s 8mm reel (the so-called “Zapruder film”) of President John Kennedy’s 1963 assassination was shot on Kodachrome motion picture stock.

Making the transition

Although Kodak has halted production of Kodachrome effective immediately, the company states that the film will be available until it sells out – which they predict will be sometime this fall.

Many Kodak and independent laboratories once processed Kodachrome film, but now only one Kodak-certified facility remains: Dwayne’s Photo in Parsons, Kansas. Dwayne’s Photo’s website proclaims that they will continue processing Kodachrome until December 31, 2010.

Kodak will donate the last rolls of Kodachrome to the George Eastman House photography museum at its headquarters in Rochester, New York.

SHC In the News: SHC to Join SFC on Film Grant; Wilson Accessibility

There have been two very nice articles published in recent weeks highlighting the work of the Southern Historical Collection and our partner collections throughout the Louis Round Wilson Special Collections Library.

The first is an article by the UNC General Alumni Association covering two newly-awarded grants for film preservation that were awarded to the Southern Folklife Collection and the Southern Historical Collection (both headquartered here in the fourth floor penthouse of Wilson Library). These grants will provide critical funds for a project that will allow over 2,350 hours of rare film to be made available to the general public.

The second article is a piece by Ashley Bennett of UNC’s student newspaper, The Daily Tar Heel, discussing some of the great work going on in Wilson Library (and particularly in the Southern Historical Collection) to make our collections more accessible to our patrons

We really appreciate the great press and are excited to see these projects unfold.

Newly Revised and Described (11 July 2008)

Harry Lee Harllee Films (#4773)

Harry Lee Harllee was a naturalist, ornithologist, taxidermist, and founder of the Harllee Museum of Natural History in Florence, S.C. In 1927, he founded the Harllee Construction Company, also in Florence, S.C. In 1947, his nephew, Alexander McQueen Quattlebaum (1913-1987) joined the company as a partner, and it was renamed Harllee-Quattlebaum, Inc. The collection consists of 41 reels of silent, black and white, color and tinted 16-mm film, including both home movies and commercially released films. The home movies were shot, edited, and titled by Harry Lee Harllee. Subjects include members of the Harllee, Quattlebaum, Blackwell, and Dargan families; friends; former slaves; hunting and fishing scenes in North Carolina and South Carolina; Magnolia Plantation and Gardens in Charleston, S.C.; members of the Woodstone Hunting Club; and trips to Washington, D.C., the Florida Keys, and Elon College, N.C., in the late 1920s and early 1930s. Many of the films are extensively edited and contain numerous intertitles identifying people and places. Some also have identifying information written on paper inserts or on their boxes. The commercially released films are primarily short nature documentaries.

Lawrence Foushee London Papers (#4958)

Papers of Lawrence Foushee London (1908-), a retired Curator of Rare Books at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, an active member of Chapel of the Cross in Chapel Hill, N.C., and the Episcopal Church of North Carolina, and an avid family historian. The collection includes personal, church, and family papers documenting London’s relationships with family, friends, and colleagues, and his interest in research and preservation of church history and family history. Correspondence documents family life, including the experiences of his son, Alexander Claypoole London, at boarding school during the 1960s, and later in the Navy Hospital Corps during the Vietnam War; family history and church history research; the response to publication of London’s book on Bishop Joseph B. Cheshire; the experiences of friends serving in the South Pacific during World War II; friendships that grew from common interests in collecting Caruso recordings and bird watching; and the North Caroliniana Society Award that London received in 1991. There is a small amount of material relating to library administration matters. Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina materials document London’s efforts to research and preserve the history of the Diocese and the Chapel of the Cross (Chapel Hill, N.C.). London family papers chiefly consist of 18th- and 19th-century correspondence, indentures, deeds, and other papers of John R. London, Henry Adolphus London, William Lord London, and other family members. Included are deeds transferring ownership of slaves and land, and letters with news of family, business, and political affairs of various family members, chiefly in Chatham County, N.C. Civil War materials include letters from William Lord London regarding camp life and news at home and an 1863 muster roll for the 32nd North Carolina Regiment. Letters of Frank Marsden London to his parents document his art school experience and life in New York. Other materials include miscellaneous writings, a memorial, and genealogical materials.

Matthew Cary Whitaker Papers (#768)

Matthew Cary Whitaker was a physician and planter of Halifax County, N.C. The collection contains family correspondence and other materials, 1728-1870. Included are letters received by Whitaker when he was studying medicine in Baltimore, Md., 1823-1824, and bills, receipts, accounts, and business papers related primarily to plantation operations, including records of slave transactions. Items before 1823 are deeds, accounts, and other papers of the related Fort family, including letters concerning plantations in Lawrence County, Ala. Letters from Fort family members in Alabama to Hilliard Fort of Halifax County, N.C., indicate that Alabama land was more productive than North Carolina land and encourage him to speculate in unclaimed lands in Alabama. Letters to Matthew Whitaker from his brother, Spier Whitaker, and other family members discuss family news, Halifax County political news, opinions of presidential candidates, monetary and other changes made by President Andrew Jackson, and the rising price of grain due to scarcity in Europe. The Addition of 2006 contains correspondence between Whitaker and Fort family members and friends. Topics include family news, Halifax County news, plantation matters, and politics. Included is an 1864 letter from Jefferson Davis to Mrs. Ransom, a Whitaker family friend, discussing the whereabouts of her husband, Major General Robert Ransom Jr. The Addition also contains financial records and receipts including records of slave transactions.