1933 Discovered Footage! The Misplaced Movies of Arthur B. Holmes

It’s not usually that my two greatest passions–family tree and movie images–intersect. So, when FPP Producer Michael Raso requested if I would analysis up some genealogical information on Arthur B. Holmes’ Thirties 16mm residence film movie (he had bought on ebay), I used to be thrilled to just accept the problem. Fortunately, the shooter of this explicit movie was a widely known man (and household) from New Jersey, making my genealogical work fairly minimal–however hopefully nonetheless fascinating!

The films are just a few reels of 16mm black and white Kodak film movie that, in keeping with the expiry on the unique movie containers, was most likely shot someday within the early Thirties. Upon watching the footage, it seems to be nothing extraordinary to the ‘bare eye’–residence films shot on a summer season (and winter) retreat that includes folks swimming in a lake, mountaineering within the woods, and having fun with their outings. It’s the addition of the shooter’s title and handle on the unique Kodak processing containers, nonetheless, which add a lot extra depth and context.

In accordance with the unique containers, the reels had been shot by an “Arthur B. Holmes” or “A.B. Holmes” whose addresses had been “42 Church St., Montclair, N.J” and “Lake Valhalla, Montville, N.J.”

Misplaced & Discovered – the Cine-Kodak House Films of Arthur B. Holmes

Earlier than my analysis even started, I knew that whoever Arthur B. Holmes was, both he or his household will need to have been fairly nicely off. House films didn’t achieve in reputation–nor affordability–right here within the U.S. till after the Second World Conflict–and nonetheless it was too costly for a lot of. Contemplate the truth that these residence films had been shot through the Nice Melancholy and you’ve got one other layer of proof that whoever made these films had deep pockets for a really costly digital camera, very costly movie, and (most likely) a really costly projector.

Seems the person in query is Arthur Brautigam Holmes, born on the 1st of October 1888 in Montclair, New Jersey. He was the son of Samuel Judd Holmes and Sarah Josephine Brautigam which explains the place Arthur bought his center title.

Certainly, Arthur was from a well-to-do household and achieved nice success in his profession as an internationally-known architect throughout his life. Nonetheless, earlier than I write extra on Arthur, let’s return a era to his father to grasp a bit extra about the place Arthur got here from.

Samuel Judd Holmes was born in Midtown Manhattan in 1859–only a few doorways down from the long run website of the Empire State Constructing. A profitable businessman and service provider, Samuel married Sarah and he and the household moved to Montclair in 1867 and was an early settler of the realm. He constructed the attractive Victorian residence that Arthur grew up in on Park Road in 1887 after shifting out of the house his personal mother and father constructed that ultimately was the location of a really grand resort. In 1897 he and his brothers began an actual property firm which he labored at till only some years earlier than his dying. It was this actual property enterprise that Arthur was possible uncovered to the structure companies and maybe was impressed by the work of his father and enterprise associates.

After a protracted and distinguished profession in actual property, Samuel died at his residence on Park Road after a sudden coronary heart assault on the 16th of January 1932. His spouse died just a few years later in 1935.

The Montclair Occasions – July 22, 1938

Arthur was considered one of 5 kids and, after graduating from highschool, he went on to review at Cornell College–presumably finding out structure. 

His work introduced him to my hometown of Cleveland, Ohio the place he married Alice Blanche Connelly on the 23rd of September 1915. Alice, as was customized on the time, was additionally from a well-to-do household each in Cleveland and in New Jersey which little question made each units of fogeys very glad.

After the couple married they settled down at 18 Burnside Road in Montclair after a while touring across the nation for Arthur’s work which appears to have served as a type of honeymoon. The couple had a daughter, Blanche Josephine Holmes, in June of 1918. Very tragically, Alice died of the 1917/18 Flu Pandemic on the 19th of October that yr leaving Arthur a widower and a single father with a 4-month-old toddler.

Arthur fell in love once more and married Zillah Vezin in Yonkers on the 27th of November, 1923. Zillah was the daughter of the then well-known painter and artist Charles Vezin whose work of New York Metropolis are nicely value trying up.

The 2 had a daughter, Adah Holmes, in 1925.

Arthur would go on to have a really distinguished profession as an architect. He was President of the New Jersey chapter of the American Institute of Architects and the New Jersey Society of Architects and was incessantly requested to talk at universities and schools. He additionally labored internationally, and his career took him from Berlin to Puerto Rico and the West Coast of the US. He was named Planning Director of Montclair for a brief interval earlier than he was commissioned to the Public Works Reserve in Washington, D.C. in 1941.

After his retirement, he moved upstate to Ossining, NY  to be nearer to his daugther, when he died after a brief sickness on the 19th of December, 1968. He left behind his two daughters and several other grandchildren.

The Holmes Household – Lake Valhalla Membership, Montville, NJ circa 1933

The scenes shot within the movies are from Lake Valhalla Club in Montville, New Jersey which continues to be in existence right this moment and will need to have been a summer season vacation spot for Arthur and his household. The exact dates of the photographs are more than likely between 1932 – 1935, however utilizing the genealogical data gained, we will take a extra educated guess at a number of the people within the movie. The person on the roof might very nicely be Arthur himself—although it’s troublesome to see his face.

Lake Valhalla Membership Montville, NJ circa 1935

The 2 ladies who’re featured all through the footage are little question Arthur’s daughters, Blanche and Adah.

The older gentleman at 1:26 (within the residence film on the high of this weblog) could possibly be Arthur’s father, Samuel—although which means the movie was shot someday earlier than his dying in January of 1932.

My analysis reveals that there are a number of direct descendants of Arthur dwelling right this moment. I used to be in a position to monitor down a granddaughter and despatched her a letter.  As of publishing, there was no response however keep tuned! We’ll maintain this up to date as we study extra.

Are you aware one thing about Arthur or his household? Get in contact!

The data obtained about Arthur and his household was extracted from quite a lot of assets and databases, together with the US census information, start, marriage, and dying information, handle directories, passenger ship manifests, and contemporaneous newspaper articles all of that are public document.

In regards to the creator – Cleveland, Ohio native Owen McCafferty lower his tooth on movie images on the age of 11, taking pictures Tremendous 8 films on Kodachrome after discovering his grandfather’s residence films from the 1960’s. That started a life-long ardour for all issues movie images associated, with a particular curiosity in client movement image codecs. Owen taught himself tips on how to course of movement image movie at residence and since becoming a member of the FPP, has examined new movies and supplied in-depth content material to spark a ardour in others who’re fascinated about movement image and movie images. In the course of the day, Owen works as a Product & Innovation Supervisor in Cleveland. An completed Skilled Genealogist, Owen specializes in Prussian, Polish, and Lithuanian analysis out there on-line at

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