San Francisco Actuality, Days Before 1906 Earthquake

by Sophia Savage
October 18, 2010 7:00 AM
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Thompson on Hollywood

Much of downtown San Francisco was destroyed in 1906's infamous earthquake. How precious then is A Trip Down Market Street, an eleven minute film which 60 Minutes producer David Browning says "captures a city full of life and promise."

Browning saw a scratched up version last spring and tracked down a digitally restored version that was commissioned by film archivist Rick Prelinger, and discovered more on the film's origins when he spoke to another archivist, David Kiehn, who was able to confirm the film's date. The film shows eery - and miraculous - foresight in filming what would be destroyed less than a week later.

The film is after the jump.

IndieWIRE's Eugene Hernandez was equally smitten with the Miles Brothers film, which is a continuous shot from a camera mounted on a cable car from 8th & Market St. to the Ferry Building. Hernandez writes: "It’s no secret that I’m rather obsessed with Actualities, those vintage observational films made in New York City [among other cities] more than 100 years ago. Film cameras captured real-life, turn of the century America from 1896 - 1906."

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