Exhibition Reel of Two Color Film (ca. 1929)

An experimental color short in Brewster Color, preserved by George Eastman House and presented on the More Treasures DVD set.

“Lost” Features Black Chariot and Flowing Gold Among 47 Films To Be Saved

Contact: David Wells (415-392-7291, wells@filmpreservation.org)

San Francisco, CA (September 30, 2020)—The National Film Preservation Foundation today announced grants to save 47 films, including “lost” titles Flowing Gold (1924), a silent melodrama starring Anna Q. Nilsson set in the early days of the Texas oil boom, a surviving print of which was discovered in the Czech Republic’s National Film Archive; and Black Chariot (1971), a grassroots-financed feature about the Black liberation struggle, directed by Robert L. Goodwin and starring Bernie Casey.

“For nearly fifty years Black Chariot has been considered ‘lost,’ and as a result, relegated to a footnote in film scholarship,” said Jacqueline Stewart, Professor of Cinema and Media Studies at the University of Chicago and host of “Silent Sunday Nights” on Turner Classic Movies. “Goodwin produced, directed, and wrote this film with primary financing coming from the Black community. He took ads out in the local Black press as a fundraising and marketing effort, similar to pioneering filmmakers like Oscar Micheaux and George and Noble Johnson of the Lincoln Motion Picture Company in the 1910s. It is particularly significant that this film has been located at the National Museum of African American History and Culture because of its mission to tell the American story through an African American lens.”

Among the other films funded for preservation are: The Maid of McMillan (1916), a student film made at Washington University in St. Louis; Green Paradise: The Story of a Camping Trip (1931), an amateur short featuring the earliest known color footage of the Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex in western Montana; Russia (1971), Theodore Holcomb’s observational documentary about the Soviet Union, with narration by journalist Harrison Salisbury; The City of Dreams (1983), a 70mm tribute to Chicago and its citizens; footage of the poet Robert Frost’s annual lecture at Agnes State College; demonstration reels of the Rotoscope widescreen projection system invented by Rowe Carney and Tom Smith; documentation of paranormal psychologist Jule Eisenbud’s research on psychic Ted Serios and his purported ability to record thoughts on photographs; sponsored films from the 1977 mayoral campaign of Ernest “Dutch” Morial, the first African American mayor of New Orleans; and rare titles by women experimental filmmakers JoAnn Elam, Naomi Levine, Naomi Uman, and Dorothy Wiley. For a full list, click here.

Since its creation by Congress in 1996, the NFPF has provided preservation support to 315 institutions and saved 2,547 films through grants and collaborative projects. The grants are made possible by funds authorized through The Library of Congress Sound Recording and Film Preservation Programs Reauthorization Act of 2016, secured through the leadership of the Library of Congress, and the contributions of public-spirited donors.

The NFPF preservation grants target newsreels, silent-era films, culturally important home movies, avant-garde films, and endangered independent productions that fall under the radar of commercial preservation programs. The awards provide support to create a film preservation master and two access copies of each work. Films saved through the NFPF programs are used in education and seen widely through screenings, exhibits, DVDs, television broadcasts, and the Internet. A curated selection of the preserved films is available for viewing on the NFPF website, and more than 250 additional titles have been made accessible by our grant recipients.

The grant recipients are:

  • Agnes Scott College (GA)
  • Alaska Moving Image Preservation Association (AK)
  • American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (NY)
  • American Museum of Natural History (NY)
  • Amistad Research Center (LA)
  • Anthology Film Archives (NY)
  • Association for Cultural Equity (DC)
  • Bruce Museum (CT)
  • Chicago Film Archives (IL)
  • Chicago Film Society (IL)
  • Fort Lewis College (CO)
  • Frelinghuysen Morris House & Studio (MA)
  • George Eastman Museum (NY)
  • John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art (FL)
  • Knox County Public Library (KY)
  • Maine Maritime Museum (ME)
  • Montana Historical Society (MT)
  • National Gallery of Art (DC)
  • National Museum of African American History and Culture, Smithsonian Institution (DC)
  • New York Public Library (NY)
  • Oklahoma State University (OK)
  • Pacific Film Archive (CA)
  • Pan Am Historical Foundation (CA)
  • San Francisco Silent Film Festival (CA)
  • State Historical Society of Missouri (MO)
  • UCLA Film & Television Archive (CA)
  • University of Alaska Fairbanks (AK)
  • University of California, Santa Barbara (CA)
  • University of Maryland, Baltimore County (MD)
  • University of Oregon (OR)
  • University of Washington (WA)
  • Washington University in St. Louis (MO)
  • XFR Collective (NY)
  • Yale Film Study Center (CT)

The National Film Preservation Foundation is the nonprofit organization created by the U.S. Congress to help save America’s film heritage. The NFPF is the charitable affiliate of the National Film Preservation Board of the Library of Congress. For a complete list of projects supported by the NFPF, visit the NFPF website: www.filmpreservation.org.

# # # # #