View Full Version : Interesting film clip

08-08-13, 06:08 AM

This film was "lost" for many years. It was the first 35mm film ever that has come to light. It was taken by camera mounted on the front of a cable car as it`s traveling down the street. You feel as if your really there, standing at the front looking down Market Street San Francisco, amazing piece of historic film.
The number of automobiles is staggering for 1906. Absolutely amazing!
The clock tower at the end of Market Street at the Embarcadero wharf is still there. .... How many "street cleaning" people were employed to pick up after the horses? Talk about going green!

Great historical film!

http://www.youtube.com/watch_popup?v=NINOxRxze9k (http://www.youtube.com/watch_popup?v=NINOxRxze9k)

This film, originally thought to be from 1905 until David Kiehn with the Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum figured out exactly when it was shot. From New York trade papers announcing the film showing to the wet streets from recent heavy rainfall & shadows indicating time of year & actual weather and conditions on historical record, even when the cars were registered (he even knows who owned them and when the plates were issued!).. It was filmed only four days before the Great California Earthquake of April 18th 1906 and shipped by train to NY for processing. Amazing, but true!

No wonder there had to be laws created to regulate driving habits. This is insane. Good thing they couldn't go very fast.

Look at the hats the ladies were wearing and the long dresses. Some of the cars had the steering wheels on the right side, I wonder when they standardized on the left? Sure was still a lot of horse drawn vehicles in use. Mass transit looked like the way to get around.. Looks like everybody had the right of way.

Perhaps the oldest "home movie" that you will ever see!

Ken 1gramps1

08-08-13, 11:22 AM
what a mess
is a wonder that not crashes every second ... but a terrific movie

08-08-13, 03:21 PM
I still meet some of them drivers every day during rush-hour. Had no idea how old they really aregringrin

08-09-13, 03:40 PM
What a fantastic bit of video history! Thanks a ton for posting it Ken!

I was born in San Fransisco and raised in Monterey. Yes, that clock tower is still there and yes, the Cable Car still runs on Market St. but boy it sure doesn't look like that now! 1no1And thank God for THAT! It would be fun if I could go back in time with my F250 Diesel and drive down Market in the midst of this film! But then again, think what it would look like to see a buckboard trying to make it's way through modern traffic.1shocking1

08-09-13, 06:26 PM
Great piece of history Ken... Actually looks like rush hour here where I live...he1he

08-12-13, 08:23 PM
The pedestrians didn't seem to mind stepping out in front of traffic either. he1he

Thanks for posting! 1yeah1


08-14-13, 04:41 PM
That was pretty cool. Almost like riding a time machine.

08-15-13, 12:30 PM
I wonder if some of the kids running right in front of the car knew about the video recording, so that's why they were being daredevils. I imagine being recorded on video would have been a pretty rare thing back then.

07-31-17, 03:21 AM
Thank you! for posting this video! Ken!

My mothers mother would have been four at the time, I don't remember anything for sure at four, but at five I do! Life for my grandmother would not have been SO urban as San Fransisco, she lived in Parker's Prairie, Minn.

Thank you again for posting! -maybe our forum needs a category for Time Machines?


07-31-17, 02:09 PM
If one tried to do such a film now you'd catch a few people walking in front of the cable car either staring at their news feed on their smart phones or texting or taking selfies followed by the sound of "Oh, sh.......t when they finally saw the cable car was on top of them!

06-29-20, 07:38 PM
I love this film!

I view it semi regularly and have turned others onto it.

I did purchase a copy of the complete film, but without the cool music? -I was a little disappointed.

It is an engrossing set of images! Pre-1918 pandemic, pre-earthquake, pre-wars! A different world.