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Catalog Data

Created by:
Maurice Sorrell, American, 1914 - 1998  Search this
8mm Film (a): acetate film;
Reel (b): plastic;
Film Can (c): metal
Duration: 11.5 Minutes
Film Length: 145 Feet
motion pictures (information artifacts)
8mm (photographic film size)
This 16mm film is from a collection of home movies shot by Maurice Sorrell between 1945 and 1975. The collection features travel footage, family outings, and gatherings with family and friends.
Consists of: 8mm Film (a), Original film reel (b), Original film canister (c).
2016.95.9.1a: 8mm film. This home movie begins with an exterior shot of a home with the number “3664” on the top stair of the stairs leading up to the porch. Sorrell, a boy, and a dog walk out of the door and proceed down the stairs. There is a quick exterior shot of the house from a left angle. A woman exits the house and walks down the stairs with the dog. Another shot of a woman and man with a camera in his hand walking out of the front door and down the front porch. The young boy and the dog are sitting on the porch behind them, and close up shots of the dog and the boy follow. Next, there are multiple shots of animals in a zoo. Animals include alligators, other reptiles, a turtle, a giraffe, a camel, flamingos, penguins, hippos, elephants, a bull, monkeys, and a bear. There are intermittent shots of Sorrel and his family and/or friends walking around the zoo, sitting on a bench, and walking down the street together. There is a title card that reads “Our Friends”, that is followed by multiple shots of guests shaking hands for the camera in front of a white backdrop. A little girl dances in front of the backdrop, and the camera fades to the same girl dancing, in a different outfit, in front of a white curtain next to a piano. When she finishes her routine, the came fades to black and fades in to a another, older girl, dancing in the same room. At the end of her routine, the younger girl twirls into the frame and they both bow together. The camera fades to black, fades back into the same scene, and cuts to the younger girl dancing by herself again. There is another cut to the two girls standing together and smiling for the camera. The final shot is a medium close up shot of a man and a woman sitting on a couch smiling and talking.
2016.95.9.1b: Original film reel.
2016.95.9.1c: Original film can. This film canister has handwriting on the top. Handwritten pencil reads: “The Gang, Wendell Cooper”. Handwritten marker reads: “Sterling Sugar Beauty Zoo”.
African American  Search this
Amusements  Search this
Dance  Search this
Domestic life  Search this
Families  Search this
Film  Search this
Social life and customs  Search this
Travel  Search this
Credit Line:
Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, Gift of Bonita F. Bing & The Late Blanche Beatrice Sorrell
Object number:
Restrictions & Rights:
Unknown - Restrictions Possible
Rights assessment and proper usage is the responsibility of the user.
See more items in:
National Museum of African American History and Culture Collection
Collection title:
Maurice Sorrell Film Collection
Media Arts-Film and Video
Data Source:
National Museum of African American History and Culture