St. Louis Post-Dispatch from St. Louis, Missouri on October 20, 1957 · Page 122
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St. Louis Post-Dispatch from St. Louis, Missouri · Page 122

St. Louis, Missouri
Issue Date:
Sunday, October 20, 1957
Page 122
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Contouring IPhotio IHIistioiry olr a Missouri Town f1" in'- ' 111 "" " ; Page & v . . v-rV. a fete 7 ."V-T iG yi'N " :; , 1 ,1 V By GARY W. FIRGUSON of tilt PICTURES Staff A LIVING DIARY OF THE COMMUNITY, written in motion pictures, ha been tarted at St. James, MiMouri. To fill In the yellowing chapters that are beyond range of the movie camera, still photographs of bygone days have been assembled. The old pictures on these pages aie from this collection. Many were found, faded and forgotten, in a general rummaging through attics, nooks and crannies. St. James, population 2000, lies in the Ozark foothills, 100 miles southwest of St. Louis on Highway 66. With one exception it is a fairly 'typical small town. The exception was the devoted interest of Mrs. Lucy Wortham James, a granddaughter of one of the town's founders. Through her great uncle, R. G. Dun of the firm of Dun & Bradstreet, Mrs. James inherited a large fortune. Upon her death in New York in 1938. she left over $2,000,000 in a trust fund for educational and charitable purposes. Some of this money was used to establish the James Foundation for philanthropic activities in the St. James area. From the foundation have come public buildings, scholarships and numerous other grants. The pictorial history is one of its projects. Potentialities of such an undertaking were indicated by a short movie of community life made in St. James several years ago. The concept of the project was worked out gradually by Ralph Hayes, director of a New York organisation that administers the James Foundation's funds, and by Miss Grace E. Muller, vice president of the foundation and librarian of the James Memorial Library in St. James. In the spring of 1956, Condor Films Incorporated of St. Louis began taking 16 millimeter color movie sequences showing present - day life in the community. Early this spring an appeal was made for old still pictures. From the 3Va hours of movies shot during the first year, a 22 -minute film was made. It contains some enactments of important moments in St. James' past. As the project continues, films will be taken of community observances, of groups such as graduating classes and municipal officials, of the changing landscape, of senior citizens' telling about the long-ago. Black and white negatives of all sequences are stored in special vaults in New York. In the introduction to the movie, Hayes indicates the range of possible benefits the originators envision for the project. He says: "We recorded it (life in St. James) not because it is unusual but because it isn't; because something like this has been happening all over America, because this is America." V-' Parade in 1912 is highlight of town's annua Yeoman Conclave. Spectators, some of whom use umbrellas for shade, stand in clusters along the route. Procession includes variety of horse - drawn vehicles, rang-ing from small carriages to heavy wagons. t. . ... 7 T ' - v "- Getting present -day counterpart of old Post Office photo (picture to right), Bradford Whitney of Condor Films checks view through movie camera. Among items expected to be of special interest in future are posters in window. Photo by ARTHUR WITMAN of the PICTURES Staff .. V HA" .-! t . I . , '. 1 -i , IT: rfi - J I -6 t$-y Post Office portrait in 1892 was turned in by Mrs. Harry Boisselier of Steelville Missouri, standing in doorway. At that time she was assistant postmaster. Street scene in JSI5 is from an old post card. Town band used stand in inter- coming of railroad in 1860 as shipping point for nearby Maramec Iron Works section for concerts. Tracks are of Frisco Railway. Town was founded with Plant, founded in 1826 by Mrs. lames' great grandfather, was closed in 1876 PICTURES St. Louis Post-Diipetch, Sunday, October 20, l57

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