April 24, 2019 – “Checking Sources and Clearing Misinformation”

Hello, everyone!

I learned during the course of my viewership and review of the Home Movie Collection that when the opportunity presents itself for corrections on previously recorded notes, take it. Especially if one of the sources comes from a site used in the past to learn about one’s own family. This does not mean that resorting to such sites becomes necessary when visual confirmation works just fine, too. Today’s shift put both of these lessons into practice.

As usual, I plugged the Home Movie Collection into my computer and resumed my progress. I thought of something that provided results for me in the past. The family in the footage visited a cemetery for Memorial Day. As I watched the footage, I noted the names on the headstones shown and used FindAGrave.com (well, another website that pointed towards the entries on FindAGrave.com) to locate the cemetery. The results revealed the family visited Green Park Cemetery in Portland, Indiana.

With these results, I realized that the chances of revealing the identity of a Texas cemetery I saw in a previous set of films through this method greatly increased. Sure enough, I found out that the family visited Fairview Cemetery in League City, Galveston County, Texas. The satisfaction of finding this information brought a smile on my face.

The next locations the family I am currently following visited include Niagara Falls. Some of the scenes from their visit matched those covered by other families in the Collection. This family made a unique contribution by taking a walking tour along the Niagara River and filming the rushing river and the worn down sediments along the river’s sides.

They also visited Fort Niagara in Youngstown, New York. Located at the mouth of Lake Ontario, the French built the fort in 1726 and the British captured it in 1759 during the French and Indian War. The fort exchanged hands between the British and American forces during the American Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. Since 1934, the preservation of the fort continues as a museum. The family visited the fort in the 1950s and the videographer filmed a panorama of the fort’s interior, a view of Lake Ontario from the fort, and one of the family’s small daughters running around the fort’s parade grounds.

Next, the family visited Lake Ouachita, Arkansas. The lake’s scenery gave a very beautiful aura and breathtaking sights as the camera panned to reveal the natural beauty of the lake. That said, the family did not interact much with the site except film the visitor center and the Blakely Mountain Dam. Apparently, the United States Army Corps of Engineers created the lake as a reservoir between 1948 to 1953 as a means to harness hydroelectric energy.

While I loved learning about the sites seen in the footage, I noted an egregious error on the part of my predecessors. The notes read that the videographer filmed a drag race and the footage’s condition did not meet optimal conditions. The records from the donor indicated they filmed the Indianapolis 500  from 1955. After watching the footage, I confirmed the latter and questioned how someone confuse a drag race for the most prestigious stock car race in the history of the sport. This still boggles my mind.

Eventually, my shift ended and I saved my work, packed the hard drive, and returned all related materials to the stacks. Before I left, Ms. Rubin informed me that manual labor waited for me next week. On that note, I bid farewell to the staff and left for the day.

In review, I answered some questions by using a source I used personally and corrected some mistaken information. Next week, I finish this current set and wait for what Ms. Rubin intends for me. Until then, enjoy the weekend and stay safe! Bye!


Author: 57r3l574d

I am currently a Graduate Student at the University of Central Florida and simultaneously employed by the university library's Special Collections and University Archives as a Other Personnel Service (OPS) Student. Expected to graduate in 2019 with a History MA - Public History Track.

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