66 Items in This Collection
1) Florida/Panama to Tahiti, 1936-1937--Adelaide Pearson--home movies. Reel 1
Reel label: 'Florida to Tahiti.' Can label: 'Panama to Tahiti 1936-1937.' ;View of waves from a ship. A passing steam ship. (Film changes to black and white) A life jacket drill on shi...   more
2) Tahiti to Fiji, 1937--Adelaide Pearson--home movies. Reel 2
Can label: 'Tahiti to Fiji Stella Polaris 2 1937.' ;A dance performance (possibly hula or otea), three women and one man performing, accompanied by guitars. Footage of dancers, slowed d...   more
3) Fiji to Ceylon, 1939--Adelaide Pearson--home movies. Reel 3
Can label: 'Fiji to Ceylon Stella Polaris 3 1938.' ;Dance performance. (Fiji?) Dancers preparing kava. Dancers serving kava to tourists. (Film changes to black and white) Dance performa...   more
4) Ceylon to Liberia, 1938-1939--Adelaide Pearson--home movies. Reel 4
Dancers and drummers, continues from previous reel. (Film changes to black and white) Same dancers. A covered wagon pulled by an ox. An elephant and mahouts by a stream. Boats being pul...   more
5) Blue Hill to Jaipur, 1938-1939--Adelaide Pearson--home movies. Reel 5
Ferris wheel and fair scenes in front of Blue Hill harness race. On board a cruise ship, waves, the White Cliffs of Dover. A farm. Sheep. Scenes of the English countryside, a rail yard,...   more
6) Jaipur to Delhi, 1938-1939--Adelaide Pearson--home movies. Reel 6
Boys weaving. Jantar Mantar, (an equinoctial sundial) Jaipur. A cow turning a mill. A man and a boy in a storefront. (Film changes to color) Tourists getting on an elephant. Camels. Peo...   more
7) Delhi to Elwins, 1938--Adelaide Pearson--home movies. Reel 7
A group of children sitting on the ground. Women and children on the street. People sitting on a rooftop. Girls carrying platters on their heads. People on the street. Shots inside a bu...   more
8) Elwins to Calcutta, 1938--Adelaide Pearson--home movies. Reel 8
Rock formation. Village scenes. Children and adults. Men and boys performing an acrobatic dance. A group of children. Children on a swing. Shots of the village. A western man walking ar...   more
9) Calcutta to Bangkok, 1936-1937--Adelaide Pearson--home movies. Reel 9
People making offerings. (?) Shots of a town street. Goats. Women carrying baskets on their heads. Beggars. Boats on a river. (Film changes to color) A temple. A garden. Boats on a rive...   more
10) [Adelaide Pearson--home movies] Elwins to Calcutta (Release Print)
Mahatma Gandhi at Sevagram ashram near Wardha, India, where he lived from April 1936 to near the end of his life.   more
11) Bangkok to Angkor--Adelaide Pearson--home movies. Reel 10
Standing Buddha shrine. Monks washing beside a canal (klong). Panning shot of temple (wat) roof and klong. (Wat Benchamabophit, Bangkok) Wat entrance with yaksha statues. Close up of st...   more
12) Angkor to Peking, 1938-1939--Adelaide Pearson--home movies. Reel 11
A road. Musicians carrying instruments. Dancers performing in front of Angkor Wat. The Cambodian Royal Palace. (with French flags) A funeral procession. Monks, children and a cow near a...   more
13) Peking to Blue Hill, 1938-1939--Adelaide Pearson--home movies. Reel 12
Imperial palace and Temple of Heaven in Peking (Beijing). A procession of boys carrying tasseled poles. A procession of men in white carrying crosses. Pall bearers carrying a coffin. Pa...   more
14) [Coronation of King George VI]
Mix of amateur color and b&w reversal footage and commercially-produced b&w footage, possibly from Castle Films. First portion is color Kodachrome, slightly faded, some twist....   more
15) Visit of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth to Canada and the United States, The
Castle Films production documenting the visit to Canada and the United States by King George VI and Queen Elizabeth in 1939. The royal couple were in the United States from June 7-12.;T...   more
16) Asiatic Potters, India 1938-1939
Titled amateur film: 'Asiatic Potters India 1938-39.' 'Our first Hindu Potter...' etc. Amritsar. 'Miss Paddock, judging the workmanship of the ware.' Good CUs. // Original footage is ap...   more
17) Blue Hill Class Reel 1
Date from edge code on film. // About 20 people in chairs draw people on lawn. Cow is led about in front of them. Shot is from rear of students. Boy climbs on donkey and is led about. L...   more
18) Blue Hill Class Reel 2
Date from edge code on film. // Pekinese dogs on lawn. Asian girl, about 5 years old, gestures, dressed in robe. Waters flowers. Goose. Boy does somersault on lawn, plays in sprinkler....   more
19) Nice, Algiers, Paris. Reel 2.
Title, 'Florence--Eastertime Procession of the Holy Light.' Parade. 'Easter Monday Procession Signa (near Florence).' // Date from edge code. // Men with banners. 'Paris in the Rain and...   more
20) [Nice, North Africa] Reel 1
Title, 'Nice from the sea.' Water, hillside. Title, 'Nice, Promenade des Anglais.' People at tables. Title, 'Herald of the Carnival, Nice.' More such titles. Stable shots, no CUs, relat...   more
21) American Indian
Date from edge code on film. // Hopi House. Grand Canyon. Native American dance with two men. Drummer outside. Various shots of larger group of Indians dancing. About 10 Indians ascend...   more
22) Guatemala, 1932
Title, 'Costa Rica, Billy the Ant Eater.' Woman's legs and small animal on ground. Title, 'Nicaragua, Where More U.S. Marines were ruined by Boredom like this than were killed by Sandin...   more
23) Guatemala, Mexico 1932-1933
Street scenes including vendors, people smiling and waving at camera, bull fight.;A line of men in various uniforms walking down the street. One man breaks off from the group to pose fo...   more
24) Mayan Rites
Title, 'The Spanish Conquistadors destroyed all the sacred temples of the Mayas and built churches on their high foundation pyramids,' etc. Guatemala.;Title card: 'The Spanish Conquista...   more
25) Palestine
Title, 'Life in a tent. Swaddling baby. Making coffee. Spinning. Making bread.' Silhouettes. Exterior. 'Village scenes. Lilies of the Field? Shepherd boys. Views of people outside. Two...   more
26) San Francisco World's Fair
Title, 'The News Parade,' 'San Francisco World's Fair,' A century ago new world pioneers braved months of hardship over unexplored trails and uncharted seas.' Covered wagons, oxen. Ship...   more
27) [Mexico and Central America. Adelaide Pearson--home movies] Reel 1
Shot of buildings and hillside seen through an open window. Shot of the Church of Santa Prisca, Taxco de Alarcón, Guerrero, Mexico. Cut to a shot of dry landscape. (Might be a pyramid)...   more
28) [Mexico and Central America. Adelaide Pearson--home movies] Reel 2
Shot of trees. Decorated chairs and plates at a roadside stand. Shot of an island, seen from a boat on the water. (Isla de Janitizio, Lake Pátzcuaro, Michoacán, Mexico) Dark shot of tre...   more
29) [Mexico and Central America. Adelaide Pearson--home movies] Reel 3
Shot of people in a marketplace and stalls selling ceramics. Shot of a woman seated, selling something from mats on the ground. Various shots of trees and houses. Shot of a road. Men ca...   more
30) [Mexico and Central America. Adelaide Pearson--home movies] Reel 4
Shot of dancers in headdresses, filmed over other spectators’ heads. Performers in masks, with flower garlands. The dancers in headdresses performing. The dancers in masks performing. S...   more
31) [Mexico and Central America. Adelaide Pearson--home movies] Reel 5
Panning shot of mountains. Shot of thatch roofed buildings. Shot of a car next to a sign post. Shot of thatch roof buildings. Panning shots of mountains and a stream. [End of Reel]   more
32) [Mexico and Central America. Adelaide Pearson--home movies] Reel 6
Shot of two trees. Various shots of mountains. Dark shot of what looks like a dam next to a body of water. A boat on the water next to a bridge. Shot of mountains. Shot of fruit trees i...   more
33) [Mexico and Central America. Adelaide Pearson--home movies] Reel 7
A group of men in hats. A woman standing in front of an archway. Blurry shot of mountains. Blurry panning shot mountainous landscape. Shot too blurry to see. Shots of a stone house and...   more
34) [Asiatic Potters, 1938-1939]
Appears to be part of 0291.0015. // Film on Puri leper potters and their methods. Japan. Calcutta. Pegu, Burma; Kuala Lumpur, Bienhoa, French Indochina; Annam. // Original footage is 24...   more
35) [Mexico and Central America. Adelaide Pearson--home movies] Reel 8
Gulls + Puppies - Maine;A person standing beside a body of water. They put rocks in a bag and hit it with a hammer. Cut to a scene of houses on a snowy street. A man shovels coals out o...   more
36) K.D. Scudder, 1931 Riviera -- Adelaide Pearson--home movies, Reel 1
K.D. Schudder, 1931 Riviera - very short film;Two women walking up a path. One woman stops to take a picture with a camera. The women with a camera. People entering a large stone castle...   more
37) Total eclipse of sun, 1932 -- Adelaide Pearson -- home movies, Reel 2
Total eclipse of sun - near Portsmouth N.H. Aug 31, 1932;Shots of the sun during an eclipse. [End of Reel]   more
38) Grand Canyon, 1933 -- Adelaide Pearson -- home movies, Reel 3
Grand Canyon, 1933;Panning shot of the Grand Canyon. A campfire. The river. Pack mules by the water. [End of Reel]   more
39) Brick Yard, Penobscot -- Adelaide Pearson -- home movies, Reel 4
Brick Yard Brick Yard, Penobscot;A man making bricks. A man pushing a wheel barrow past rows of drying bricks. He shakes sand over the bricks. A man laying out bricks. Men stacking bric...   more
40) Carter Digging Clay -- Adelaide Pearson -- home movies, Reel 5
Carter digging Clay;A man (Carter?) digging for clay. [End of Reel]   more
41) [Adelaide Pearson -- home movies] Reel 6
A production on stage of people in period dress. A chorus of children, being conducted by a woman. A group of people with signs (protest? Rally?) People in the crowd wearing strange hat...   more
42) [Adelaide Pearson -- home movies] Reel 7
A tug of war. People in the stands around a field. Dark shots of a crowd of people. A band on a stage. Children on stage in costume, with an American flag, a fief and a drum. A line of...   more
43) Chinese Funeral -- Adelaide Pearson -- home movies, Reel 8
Chinese funeral [illegible];A Chinese funeral procession. [End of Reel]   more
44) Gaudy & Jug Town -- Adelaide Pearson -- home movies, Reel 9
Gaudy & Jug Town Jug Town - 50' + Gaudy - 50';A man working at a potter’s wheel. People watching a potter make a jug. Close up of the potter’s wheel. [End of Reel]   more
45) Feldspar - clams -- Adelaide Pearson -- home movies, Reel 10
Feldspar - clams;A woman (Laura Paddock) and two dog on a rocky shore. Paddock is breaking rocks with a hammer. Paddock digging for clams. [End of Reel]   more
46) [Adelaide Pearson -- home movies] Reel 11
People in period dress. Children in costume dancing. [End of Reel]   more
47) Paddock - Feldspar -- Adelaide Pearson -- home movies, Reel 12
C- bad except 1 shot = Paddock - feldspar;A woman (Laura Paddock) and two dog on a rocky shore. Paddock is breaking rocks with a hammer. [End of Reel]   more
48) B&W - Paddock - copper - quartz - lead -- Adelaide Pearson -- home movies, Reel 13
B&W - Paddock - copper - quartz - lead;A woman (Laura Paddock) examining a stone. Paddock and a dog on a beach. Paddock digging in the sand. Paddock breaking stones with a hammer. [...   more
49) [Adelaide Pearson -- home movies] Reel 14
A woman in costume. A group of children run over to her and sit around her on the grass. A parade with a marching band and children carrying signs, including: ‘BROOKLIN INTERMEDIATE SCH...   more
50) [Adelaide Pearson -- home movies] Reel 15
A woman (Laura Paddock) and dogs sitting by the water. Paddock is breaking stones with a hammer. Paddock examining stones and playing with the dogs. [End of Reel]   more
51) [Adelaide Pearson -- home movies] Reel 16
A woman (Laura Paddock) breaking stones with a hammer and putting the broken pieces in a bag. Paddock digging and collecting sand on the beach, accompanied by dogs. [End of Reel]   more
52) [Adelaide Pearson -- home movies] Reel 17
C-bad, too dark - Paddock copper - 1st half possible;A woman (Laura Paddock) walking with a dog. She stops periodically to examine and collect stones. [End of Reel]   more
53) [Adelaide Pearson -- home movies] Reel 18
Women selling items at roadside stands. People on horseback. A tree in a field, with mountains beyond. Market stalls selling with pot and baskets. Panning shot of a cove. A bird swoops...   more
62) [Adelaide Pearson -- home movies] Reel 27
Slides 1-3-5-6-7-9-18-27-25-31-34/ Monte Alban   more
65) [Adelaide Pearson -- home movies] Reel 30
Note in can reads "Slides - 13-14-15-16-24-25-31-32"   more
Pearson, Adelaide Collection
1 Person likes this  |  I like this too
Credit: Adelaide Pearson Collection. Northeast Historic Film. Adelaide Pearson en route to Tahiti, circa 1936.
Primary Format and Extent
film (9,710 ft.) : si., b&w and col. ; 16 mm. reversal pos.
Collection Date Range
1932 – 1945
The collection consists of 66 reels of black and white, and color 16 mm film. These are primarily films created by Adelaide Pearson during her world travels, including the Pacific, Asia, Africa, Central America, and Europe. Reels of a trip to Asia include footage of Mohandas Gandhi visiting an Indian village. Two reels, "Asiatic Potters," focus on pottery techniques in India, Vietnam, and Japan. Other films depict art classes, parades, and scenes at home in Blue Hill, Maine. The collection also contains educational works produced in the 1930s by Castle Films, including ‘Mayan Rites’, ‘San Francisco World's Fair’, ‘Coronation of King George VI’, and ‘The Visit of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth to Canada and the United States’. Historical figures depicted in the films are Mohandas Gandhi, King George VI and the royal family, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Eleanor Roosevelt and Japanese potter Tomimoto Kenkichi.
Biographical/Historical Notes
Adelaide Pearson was born into a wealthy Boston family in 1875. Educated at home, Pearson studied music, literature, and languages, becoming fluent in at least four. As an adult, she was active in several charities and societies, including the Children's Aid Society, the Society of the Companions of the Holy Cross, and Denison House. These served as a platform for her passion for education through art. In 1921 she published "The Laughing Lion and Other Stories" (Archive.org) inspired by her travels and work with children.

In 1928 Pearson moved to Blue Hill, Maine, where she was a major patron of the fledgling Blue Hill Library, and would eventually found the Rowantrees Pottery. In 1938, Pearson undertook a trip around the world with her friend and colleague Laura Paddock (1889-1980) to study various forms of pottery. During this trip Pearson met Mahatma Gandhi in Wardha, India. Pearson dedicated her life to social work, art, and travel. She died in Cuernavaca, Mexico in 1960.

Sheila Varnum (1926-2012) was a longtime friend of Adelaide Pearson, who took over management of the Rowantrees Pottery after the passing of Laura Paddock.

Castle Films was formed in 1924, and became a leading distributor of short films marketed to home audiences. The company was sold to Universal in 1947.

Kimberly Tarr is author of "The World She Watched: An Examination of the Adelaide Pearson Travel Films," an NYU Moving Image Archiving and Preservation thesis project, also presented at the Northeast Historic Film summer symposium in 2009 and at Orphans 7 in New York in 2010.
Amateur, Travelogue
Northeast Historic Film
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.
Post new comment
Your name
Your email address will be kept private