Wednesday, August 10, 2016
Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum -- August 10, 2016
On Sunday, after our ride on the Niles Canyon Railway, we went to the Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum. Saturdays are busy for us, so I have never been able to attend one of their film programs. They have a nice variety of old cameras and projectors, and many posters for Essanay films and others. There are many items about Broncho Billy Anderson and Charlie Chaplin, who made movies in Niles. A volunteer was giving an enthusiastic tour, telling about Gilbert Anderson.
"His Regeneration" starred GM Anderson, but he was not playing Broncho Billy. Chaplin made a cameo appearance.
"Versus Sledge Hammers" was a comedy short made in Niles which starred Margaret Joslin, Harry Todd, Victor Potel and Ben Turpin.
A label on the projector said it was from a company on Golden Gate Avenue in San Francisco. Golden Gate Avenue was a center of the film industry. In the 1970s and 1980s I took black and white film to a lab on Golden Gate for developing.
The California Motion Picture Company produced many of its movies in San Rafael. They starred the beautiful and celebrated prima donna (that's how she was billed), Beatriz Michelena.
A silent movie camera, perhaps a Bell and Howell.
A DeBrie Parvo movie camera
Blackhawk Films must have been having a special one month, because I purchased a Super-8 copy of this Broncho Billy movie.
Another non-Broncho billy part for GM Anderson.
This Model T Ford was parked out front.