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JOHN BRAY COLLECTION Vol. 1 A BRAY NATURE GRAPH (approx. 60 min.)
Using mostly films from the silent area, this edition has been reedited, with special sound tracks and narration added.
1. GIANTS OF THE NORTH, photographed by Amos Burg as he traveled through Alaska shows 100-ton whales jumping into the air, giant bears chasing salmon, salmon jumping, cameramen making camp, and visiting bear cub. Great stuff!
2. THE OREGON CAMERA HUNT (1937) depicts the travels through Oregon's Cascade Mountain Range, and shows ground moles, badgers, skunks, a baby lynx, and even a mule-ride up Mount Ain.
3. IN NATURE'S WORKSHOP (1937) provides a beautiful close-up photography of designs within ice crystals, frozen vapor, and quartz. Some very nice snow scenes.
4. LEAPING THROUGH LIFE (1937) explores the world of frogs by visiting a frog contest, and depicting how they are born and develop.
5. OUR BIRD CITIZENS (1937)
6. WOOD AND BIRDS (1933)
JOHN BRAY COLLECTION Vol. 2 A BRAY NATURELOGUE (approx. 41 min.)
All of these clips were made circa 1915
1. LITTLE FRIENDS OF THE WILD is a film short which depicts a mother showing her son about the little creatures of the wild. It then cuts to the little boy playing in the snow and points out the little animals nearby, such as woodpeckers, deer, a raccoon, a squirrel, an owl, a bear cub, and a skunk. These are some very cute film shorts.
2. NATURE'S TEN BUILDERS is a profile of destructive caterpillars showing how they grow, different phases of their development, and even how to destroy them.
3. OUTWITTING THE ANT, a picture by the New York Zooland Park's curator Dr. R.L. Dimaris, provides a profile of the Ant Lion.
4. TRAP DOOR SPIDER describes the Trap Door Spider and its artful ways of camouflaging itself.
5. MAKING FRIENDS WITH CHIPMUNKS was photographed by William and Irene Finley of the National Association of the Audubon society for the Protection of Wild Birds and Animals.
6. ADOPTING A BEAR CUB was also photographed by the Finley’s.
JOHN BRAY COLLECTION Vol. 3 THE SCIENCE OF LIFE
This collection of different health reels covers the upkeep of personal health and touches on such topics as syphilis, gonorrhea, birth, etc. Produced by the Surgeon General of Public Health, Reel XIII covers general personal hygiene. Reel XI concentrates on the personal hygiene of young men while Reel X concentrates on that of young women.
JOHN BRAY COLLECTION Vol. 4 (45 min)
Made circa 1943, these films provide an excellent look into air travel in the 1940s. They offer detailed photographs of all types of hot air balloons and gliders, as well as motor-propelled aircraft.
1. YOUTH TRAIN FOR AVIATION is a film made by the National Aeronautics Association and dedicated to the air-minded youth of today. Narrated by Robert Shane, best known as Inspector Henderson on the TV show SUPERMAN, this film shows a number of model airplane club meetings and has the added highlight of an animated look at a skyrocket taking off for the moon. This rare and exciting footage gives an interesting retrospective as to the state of aviation in the 1940s as well as its future as perceived by the National Aeronautics Association.
2. ESSENTIAL PARTS AND TYPES OF PLANES BASED ON THE TRAVELING AIR SHOW is a film short which shows off all types of gliders planes and gives a demonstration of other types of planes at Pennsylvania's Franklin Institute.
3. BRAY-OTIS SERIES OF PRE-FLIGHT TRAINING FILMS (1943) demonstrates three lessons for pilots.
Lesson #1: Aircraft and How They Fly includes great footage of all types of aircraft including autogyros, bladed planes, helicopters, and gliders.
Lesson #2: Motions of a Plane covers a plane's yaws, pitches, and rolls. Lesson #3: Flying the Turn demonstrates how to make a plane turn.
JOHN R. BRAY PRESENTS: Vol. 5 SEEING THE WORLD WITH THE RAMBLING REPORTER (45 min)
1. WILDMAN'S LAND, narrated by Malcolm La Prado in 1937, covers a trip to Borneo in the Dutch West Indies. More than merely showing spectacular shots of the countryside, it offers a profile of and look at the Wild Men of Borneo: how they, live cook, hunt, and survive.
2. LET'S TALK TURKEY, filmed in 1936, covers a trip to Constantinople, a midground of both Asian and European influences.
3. With JEWEL OF ASIA (1936), you can travel through Siam and its capitol city Bangkok, as well as travel between British India and French Indo-China.
4. VALE OF KASHMIR (1936), narrated by J. Guy Swafford, takes you to the area from which this travelogue gets its name, in the heart of the Himalayan Mountains, which is profiled as the most beautiful land of the eastern world, and also includes a look at Srinagar, its capitol.
COAST-TO-COAST (approx 30 min)
The story of Coast To Coast Stores and its entry into the television advertising market. Coast To Coast has 1000 stores spread among 22 states, and financed its entry into television by raising individual store contributions in the areas affected $300 each. Using two similar markets, Cedar Rapids and Des Moines, Iowa, the company compared television advertising's effects on one market and its absence from another, and found that the stores that advertised on television increased their sales 71%, earning $15 in new sales for each dollar spent on television. The company eventually learned how to coordinate television advertising with a broadcast expert, who advised stores in different markets about different production techniques and approaches.
GE FILMS Vol. 1 (approx 60 min)
The first in a series of four collections of industrial films from General Electric, intended to illustrate various accomplishments and aspects of the company's business from the turn of the century into the 1930's to the postwar period. "WHAT IS ELECTRICITY" explains the nature and sub-atomic characteristics of electricity, using some extremely entertaining graphics and cartoons, and how this relates to our use of it in the home and industry. Additionally, the movie explains how generators work, and the nature of magnetic fields. "WHAT IS LIGHTNING" takes an equally entertaining, if slightly more historically-based slant, going into the perceptions of lightning through the ages from the Greeks and their belief in the god Zeus, up thru Benjamin Franklin's determination that lightning is electricity, to families in the 19th century hiding from electrical storms. The effectiveness of lightning rods is demonstrated in contrasting scenes of families in protected dwellings calmly going about their business during a storm, and we get dramatic representations of lightning being created in the clouds.
GE FILMS Vol. 2 (approx 60 min)
THE DISCOVERY OF X-RAYS is a dramatization depicting the earliest discovery and subsequent harnessing of X-Rays as a vital tool in medicine and industry, recreating the original laboratory conditions under which they were discovered and their earliest uses, from the days when 30 minutes were required to shoot an X-Ray of an injured wrist to the 1930's, when technology had advanced to the point where less than two seconds of exposure was needed.
The second half of this film, set in a university medical office where a young medical student (Captain Midnight's Richard Webb) is told about X-Rays and their uses by an experienced physician, who demonstrates the different uses of X-Ray in radiography and fluoroscopy on different parts of the body. We get close-up looks at the X-Ray and fluoroscope machines of the period, their controls and mechanisms, and the different types and designs of X-Ray machines (including portable units), and a description of the training of radiologists and X-Ray technicians. This film is followed by a short devoted to the photo-tube and the photo-electric cell and their uses in the making of electric eyes, among other devices.
GE FILMS Vol. 3 (approx 60 min)
An entertaining industrial instructional film on "CONFERENCING," designed to show the different ways of mixing personnel and personalities for successful conferences. Jack Albertson, Raymond Bailey (THE BEVERLY HILLBILLIES), and other familiar faces play the department heads called in for a meeting, during which the host and viewers look at a multitude of personnel and personality conflicts and how to resolve them to the advantage of the company. Some of this is a little overly dramatic, but the points are still valid.
The second film deals with the history of the incandescent light bulb and General Electric's Nela Park Lamp Factory, tracing the history, burgeoning production and shrinking costs of light bulb manufacture. Additionally, we get a close look at every aspect of light bulb production from the mass manufacture of glass bulbs to the mining of the tungsten used in the filaments, and the invention and early history of fluorescent lights. All of this is hooked to World War II and the war effort, and generally salutes American industry and its drive to "freedom and liberty" for the world.
GE FILMS Vol. 4 (approx 60 min)
MACHINERY AND ELECTRICITY is a dramatization depicting the effects of electrification of the American farm and the difference it made in peoples' lives. Made in 1936, after the passage of the Rural Electrification Act, the movie tells of farmers' initial resistance to the installation of electrical power--it then shows how farms and farm life are improved by the presence of electrical power through the story of a young couple forced to split up when the wife becomes pregnant and must move to an easier environment; then the young man's father agrees to install electrical cables and life becomes easier, and his daughter-in-law returns to have his grandchild, and life is shown as being better for people, the farm, and even the animals now that electricity is available.
THE ELECTRIC METER is a close look at the invention of the electric meter and 9its subsequent improvement across the century into the 1930's, and the different phases of its manufacture, down to the shaping of individual parts and their testing. Viewers get a close look at the way the meter works, and the way in which G.E. is always trying to improve the quality and accuracy of the meter.
THE SCHOOL STORY Vol. 1 (approx 60 min)
"SHOULD YOU STAY IN SCHOOL"--A National Education Association film about school drop-outs and juvenile delinquency. Mike is a potential juvenile delinquent, a bright boy who is frustrated at home by parents who don't understand his interest in electronics and at school by courses in literature that he doesn't care about. He can't wait to leave school and begin earning a living, and he even defaces the front of the new building on the first day. But the school guidance counselor takes an interest in him and notices his interest in electronics--he won't join the Kilowatt Club, but he does start reading technical manuals, and eventually with help from his counselor he discovers Mark Twain's "Life On the Mississippi" and the stories of steamboat pilots on the river; eventually, at his after school job, he even discovers how important reading is.
Mike's interest in music also manifests itself, and he joins the school orchestra as a percussionist and plays at the end-of-semester concert. He also sees just how hard and aimless life is for his friend who did leave school to earn a living. And eventually his parents come to see just how important these things are to him, and encourage him. Finally, Mike admits to having vandalized the wall on the first day of classes and cleans up the damage himself.
"REPORT ON TOMORROW"--A company is considering a move to the state of Oklahoma, and the personnel director is told to make an up close study of the state, in terms of its state colleges, junior colleges, and universities. He takes his family through the state on vacation and finds a population of eager and highly motivated students and faculty members, and an ongoing commitment to education on the part of the Regents and the legislature.
But he also finds that the state is lagging in its per-student support for higher education, and beginning to fall behind other states in its retention of the best faculty members and students. He returns with a report citing the intellectual environment supporting higher education, but meets resistance from the board of directors, who are unconvinced that Oklahoma will maintain or enhance its support for higher education.
THE SCHOOL STORY Vol. 2 (approx 60 min)
"PARENTS ASK ABOUT SCHOOL"--A 1961 question-and-answer session in which parents' questions are answered by education experts from throughout the United States, hosted by then NEA Executive Secretary William C. Carr. Issues include the meaning of a "Language Lab," and an explanation of what it is; Are substitute teachers qualified, which brings the frank answer from several administrators that because of an overall teacher shortage, substitute teachers are, in some cases, not qualified; what are the advantages and disadvantages of ungraded primary schools; can schools help slow learners (a positive approach is emphasized); and why there is no national school curriculum.
"TV: THE NEW FRONTIER IN LEARNING"--A look at television as a then new teaching tool (circa 1961) in a typical 6th grade class. The teacher shows a documentary about fossils and dinosaurs, including interviews, lectures, and demonstrations by experts in the laboratory and the field. The class is then interviewed about their reactions to the film and the use of television in the class, and the teacher points out that no textbook or lecture series could, by themselves, keep the class as interested in the subject as a good film of this type as shown on television.
THE SCHOOL STORY Vol. 3 (approx 60 min)
"PLAN FOR LEARNING"--The Pennsylvania State Education Association presents a look at the battle between taxpayers and schools, in a dramatization about the building of a new school. Administrators, teachers, and architects agree that within the budget they can afford, the new school surroundings should stimulate students and staff. The film traces the development of ideas, all directed towards building a school that the students can love.
Citations are made of information from the American Institute of Architects and U.S. Steel concerning the latest design techniques that yield the best results for students, and showing the risks of cheap construction. Other citations are made of statistics that establish a direct relationship between student test scores and the cost of school facilities. The final case is made before the school board and taxpayers that this is money well and efficiently spent.
"NOT BY CHANCE"--The story of the training of a teacher, dramatized in the education of a student teacher named Donna Morgan. Her studies in biology and psychology, as well as the other areas that she will need, are detailed, along with her experience watching a veteran teacher at work.
She also learns about approaching teaching from a positive aspect, and never passing on her own fears and anxieties to her students. The film ends with a discussion about the growing demand for teachers and the gradually rising salaries, which are making the profession increasingly attractive, along with complaints about the dissipation of energy that takes place in the modern teaching profession.
THE SCHOOL STORY Vol. 4 (approx 60 min)
"CROWDED OUT"--A National Education Association film telling of the plight of teachers and administrators coping with school budgets and facilities that fail to keep up with growing populations. Opening with a teacher deciding to resign rather than put up with the deteriorating conditions in her class and school, the film recounts what conditions were like before the city began to grow, and how conditions became more crowded, eliminating space that was important for extracurricular activities, loading up classes with too many students, and destroying her ability to give her students the individual attention that they sometimes require.
The situation comes to a head when the mother of one of her students demands an explanation from the principal for her daughter's poor reading level, and gets a tour of the school and sees its overcrowding first hand. As a result, she decides to do something about the school's funding levels. The film ends asking the audience questions regarding the attention that they pay to this issue.
"AND GLADLY TEACH"--A look at the process by which teachers are chosen and trained for their jobs and careers, focusing on one student and her experiences, emphasizing a positive approach to dealing with students and their questions, and trying to find the students' interests as a way of getting them to learn. Based on the idea that "good schools cost money, but bad schools cost more."
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