Sally Johnston Collection
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Collection Identifier(s)
[Lauren K. Woods--home movies] , 1949
Credit: Lauren K. Woods home movies, Sally Johnston Collection, Northeast Historic Film. Lauren K. Woods with two nurses.
Credit: Excerpt from Lauren K. Woods home movies, Sally Johnston Collection, Northeast Historic Film. Lakewood Theater, ca. 1930s.
Primary Format and Extent
video (145 mins.) : si., b&w and col. ; Betacam SP
Collection Date Range
1936 - 1968
Summary
The Sally Johnston Collection consists of home movies shot by Lauren and Violet Woods, mostly in New England, between 1936 and 1968. Footage includes casual views of cast and crew members at the Lakewood Theatre, a summer playhouse near Skowhegan, Maine, and the arrival of a train in Madison, Maine, as well as recreation including tennis. Among the actors identified at Lakewood is Humphrey Bogart. Woods filmed excursions to the Skowhegan Fair, an agricultural fair near Lakewood that included harness racing and circus performers with an elephant. There is footage of the Lippitt Players at the Barn Theatre, in Cumberland, Rhode Island.
A sequence shows nurses caring for female patients in outdoor beds at a hospital in Massachusetts in the 1930s. The collection also includes views of household domestics including an African American woman in uniform and a baby nurse with the family at their lake house.
Coverage includes the Woods children as infants and as toddlers. There is an incomplete amateur comedy, "Mr Doodle," about a housebreaker. Interior footage from "Mr. Doodle" and travel footage of Florida are out of focus; there are other focus and exposure problems.

Later footage depicts Sally Woods Johnston's two small daughters at play. There are trips to Miami, Florida, and Roanoke, Virginia, a beauty pageant parade with contestants waving from open cars, and 1968 backyard color footage.

Biographical/Historical Notes
Lauren K. Woods was a theater professional who worked in the Chautauqua circuit in the 1920s. He was involved with summer theaters including Lakewood in Madison, Maine, and the Barn Theatre in Cumberland, Rhode Island. With his wife, Violet McClure Woods, Woods founded the Amateur Theatre Guild in Boston, which sponsored itinerant directors of small town performances including "The Circus" and "Movie Queen." Woods wrote the scripts and supervised the traveling directors, who were mostly young women. Movie Queen home talent shows also included a short film, also called "Movie Queen," shot in that town.

The Woods' daughter, Sally Woods Johnston (1937- ), appears in the collection, as does her brother, Lauren K. Woods III. Around 1939 the Woods family left Boston and moved to Pawtucket, Rhode Island. They worked with the Lippitt Players in Cumberland, and ran a cinema, The Strand, in Hope Valley, Rhode Island. The Lauren K. Woods Theater at Monmouth University, Monmouth, New Jersey, is named after Violet and Lauren's son, LKW III; his son is LKW IV.

People and Organizations
Sally Johnston, Lakewood Theatre
Genre(s)
Amateur
Place(s)
Repository
Northeast Historic Film
Availability
The Collection is open for research.
Condition Governing Reproduction and Use
Authorization to reuse and/or reproduce must be obtained from Northeast Historic Film. See http://www.oldfilm.org/research for more information.
Items in this collection: 9
Showing 1 - 9 of 9:
1) [Lauren K. Woods—home movies] Reel 1
View of grandstand at the Skowhegan Fair in Maine. CUs of faces. Harness racing, women dancing on stage, juggler with rings, circus animals (camel, elephant on stage doing tricks.) V...more
2) [Lauren K. Woods—home movies] Reel 2
Toddler in snowsuit and boots walks around outside for camera. Interior shots of child in crib with book, light and shadows. Views of infant laying in crib. Pan wall of photos in Lake...more
3) [Lauren K. Woods—home movies] Reel 3
Color footage men playing tennis at a club in Lakewood, ME. CUs of friends watching and enjoying each others' company on a summer day. B&W footage more tennis, then views of midway at...more
4) [Lauren K. Woods—home movies] Reel 4
Toddler in walker/stroller outdoors learning to walk and push the walker. Mother or caregiver helps push. Same child in high chair, playing with toy. Dark and shadow. Sitting on flo...more
5) [Lauren K. Woods—home movies] Reel 5
Brief shot sign on road "Turn Right for Lakewood. 200 Yds to theatre, bungalows…America's Foremost Dramatic….Consecutive Years…" Pan buildings at Lakewood, and woods nearby, and espec...more
6) [Lauren K. Woods—home movies] Reel 6
B&W footage marked Agfa 1941 in film. Out of focus and dirty frame, overexposed pans of colonial home, children playing outdoors, and posing, and what looks like a birthday party. Col...more
7) [Lauren K. Woods—home movies] Reel 7
Color, out of focus and dirty footage of family around house, playing in snow, learning to ski on lawn and melting snow, sledding. Boy gets up on horse, horse riding group lesson, sign...more
8) [Lauren K. Woods—home movies] Reel 8
Color footage, Brief shots in hospital, maybe for a produced comedy? Snow shots, and view of two guests under a fur blanket on a dog sled. A building with Olympic rings logo is in the...more
9) [Lauren K. Woods—home movies] Reel 9
Mother (Violet Woods) as older woman. Children on bikes, boy blowing bubbles, children playing in yard (grandchildren?) Entrance to the Hotel Roanoke, pan of Roanoke city skyline,...more
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