Rare Amatuer Film Shows Small Town Ohio In 1937

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posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 09:11 AM
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Hey all! I found this video that was uploaded to youtube. It depicts Depression-era life in the town of Groveport & Canal Winchester, Ohio.


My family moved to the area when I was 8 yrs old. They were and still are very cool little towns. Of course, things change, and urban sprawl has surrounded the area, but you can still go to the 'old downtown' and things look pretty much the same. Canal Winchester is located just outside Columbus, Ohio to the southeast. Groveport is just down the road to the west of Canal.



Canal Winchester was founded in 1828 by Reuben Dove and John Colman. When construction of the Ohio & Erie Canal came through Dove's wheat field, he wanted to sue the state. The canal workmen instead convinced him that he would be better off laying out a town, because the area was midway between Columbus and Lancaster. On November 4, 1828, Reuben Dove and John Colman recorded the first plat for Winchester, Ohio, in Violet Township, Fairfield County. Dove named the village after his father's hometown of Winchester, Virginia.

Winchester flourished because of agriculture and transportation. The Ohio and Erie Canal brought passengers, freight and a means to transport grain to market. The first canal boat floated through Winchester in 1831. In 1869, the railroad came to Canal Winchester, bringing continued prosperity.

The village was named Canal Winchester when the post office was established in 1841, because there was another village in the state with the name of Winchester. The village was annexed to Madison Township, Franklin County, in 1851. In May 1866, the Ohio Secretary of State granted incorporation papers for the Village of Canal Winchester.


The film gives a pretty candid look into small town America in 1937. It's almost like looking out the window of a time machine. So far, no one has been able to determine who made it, but moving cameras were extremely uncommon in 1937 outside of Hollywood and newsreel production. This film is especially interesting to me as I graduated from Canal Winchester High School in 1994 and I lived very close to Groveport.


Mostly shot in Groveport, there are some scenes of Canal Winchester including the People's Bank (now Town Hall), Bolenbaugh's Hardware (still in business), Editor O.P. Gayman in front of the Times newspaper building (on E. Waterloo now Fitness Firm) and a scene of a truck owned by a long-defunct C.W. Dairy. Hat's off to the unknown man or woman who took the time to make this old flicker! ...Wouldn't it be a good thing to film your town & neighbors as they are today? ...to serve as a time capsule like this when 25-50-75+ years have gone by? Thanks to Mrs. Patty Kallies of Groveport for making this little historical gem available.


The high school building was the oldest working school in Ohio when I attended. Eventually it was converted to an Administrative building sometime in the early 2000's. It is a very cool building and I am glad I can say that I attended school there. You can see the school building in the film at around the 3:00 mark.

Here is what it looks like now


I love it when treasures like this are found. I hope you enjoy it.
edit on 11-2-2014 by jtrenthacker because: (no reason given)




posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 09:42 AM
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the playgrounds look better than now haha....



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 09:59 AM
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cosmicexplorer
the playgrounds look better than now haha....


That's the first thing I noticed. Even in the 80's when I was in elementary, the playground still had swings, slides, seesaws. Out in a grassy area was chin-up bars, huge concrete sewer pipes and big obstacles/climbing walls made of logs. How did we ever make it out alive? (rolls eyes).



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 10:20 AM
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What an amazing find OP!!!!!

Can you imagine the stories that some of the older people in that video could have told about their lives? Would have been amazing to listen to.


I did get a chuckle out of the track and field events. Were they in their underwear?

And the school buses!

Man, all the political correct, wrap 'em in bubblewrap people would stroke out over a lot of that video!!!! LMAO.



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 10:37 AM
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Thanks for posting! Love these little time-machine gems.

Did anyone notice how polite and respectable everyone in the film was? The way the men take their hats off for the camera...

The old folks in the film were interesting too. Some of them must have been born around 1850. You can see a different history/culture in their faces.

Whoever filmed this, did a professional job for the time.

soulwaxer



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 10:45 AM
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OP, I don't mean to steer away from your neck of the woods, but this may interest you and others as well.

Back up 31 years to 1906, San Francisco, a week or two before the big quake:



This is time-travel folks!

soulwaxer
edit on 11-2-2014 by soulwaxer because: (no reason given)
edit on 11-2-2014 by soulwaxer because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 10:52 AM
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reply to post by soulwaxer
 


Yeah I remember seeing this posted elsewhere awhile ago. It is an amazing film. I would love to transport into that time, walking down the street and taking it all in. Just for the day though!



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 11:08 AM
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Oh what a precious find for you to have, OP! A magical time pre-FDA, pre-GMO and gross advertising. How refreshing.

I thoroughly enjoyed viewing the styles, the hairdos, the faces of everyone! I noticed the lack of litter and the general neatness and simplicity of the town. And everyone owned a hat and a fur collar on the coats. People actually walked in the rain! I couldn't help but notice that the students carried less schoolbooks that I had to tote though I saw a rare schoolbag and bike. This was only two years before the start of WW2 and right after the great depression. An interesting glimpse in time for sure. S&F.



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 11:12 AM
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reply to post by jtrenthacker
 


Awesome find! Now the "video or it didn't happen" crowd will have to finally admit that there was, indeed, a 1937.



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 11:20 AM
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Seems we have it backwards. For an era of "depression", everyone looked so happy and full of life. Seems now is more of a depression era. Sad even angry faces as you walk down the street. Not many happy hellos if you can even get eye contact. I loved watching this,and the music reminded hubby and I that we were born in the wrong era. He was swinging and toe tapping the whole time. I had always thought the 30's were a terrible time,I guess for some but not all. When this film was made my mother would have been 13, and my father 9 respectively. Was nice to see what their childhood must have been like. Also makes me see how far away we are drifting as a whole,from the morals and values that in those times thrived. Wish I had a time machine...



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 11:35 AM
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reply to post by jtrenthacker
 


So cool - thanks for sharing!
I only saw one obese person... the butcher standing in the doorway of the meat store, lol.
No high fructose corn syrup back then, or highly processed foods. NATURAL (non-gmo) veggies, no hormones in meats.

Plus, they were way more active. They walked or rode bikes more b/c there were a LOT less cars. Plus, they weren't sitting around glued to some electronic gadget like you and me!!!



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 12:14 PM
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jtrenthacker
reply to post by soulwaxer
 


Yeah I remember seeing this posted elsewhere awhile ago. It is an amazing film. I would love to transport into that time, walking down the street and taking it all in. Just for the day though!

Just for the day.. are you sure? I don't know if I am.

Notice how careless the people are. They have the space to move freely. They don't seem fearful at all. Kids running in front of trams like they are on a playground.

Look at us now, we spend a lot of our time in miles of traffic, with long faces, staring at our i-phones. Looking for where our soul went. Everyone trying their best to fit into all the right categories.

What I see in these films is real life human beings. Now, I mostly see robots, and the occasional human being.

soulwaxer



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 12:26 PM
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soulwaxer
OP, I don't mean to steer away from your neck of the woods, but this may interest you and others as well.

Back up 31 years to 1906, San Francisco, a week or two before the big quake:



This is time-travel folks!

soulwaxer
edit on 11-2-2014 by soulwaxer because: (no reason given)
edit on 11-2-2014 by soulwaxer because: (no reason given)


Amasing video , but i dont see time travelers , hahahaha



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 01:25 PM
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soulwaxer

jtrenthacker
reply to post by soulwaxer
 


Yeah I remember seeing this posted elsewhere awhile ago. It is an amazing film. I would love to transport into that time, walking down the street and taking it all in. Just for the day though!

Just for the day.. are you sure? I don't know if I am.

Notice how careless the people are. They have the space to move freely. They don't seem fearful at all. Kids running in front of trams like they are on a playground.

Look at us now, we spend a lot of our time in miles of traffic, with long faces, staring at our i-phones. Looking for where our soul went. Everyone trying their best to fit into all the right categories.

What I see in these films is real life human beings. Now, I mostly see robots, and the occasional human being.

soulwaxer


That's a good point and I agree. Still, it would be awfully hard for me to adapt to not having any technology (I love my gizmos). Also the poverty of the depression era would be rough. On the flip side, as others stated, it would be a much simpler life, less distractions and perhaps worry. If I could pick an ideal time to live in, I would have to choose the late 40's/early 50's. It was after the war and the USA was booming in every sense. It would have been a great time to live and raise a family in my opinion.



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 02:46 PM
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soulwaxer
Just for the day.. are you sure? I don't know if I am.

Notice how careless the people are. They have the space to move freely. They don't seem fearful at all. Kids running in front of trams like they are on a playground.

Look at us now, we spend a lot of our time in miles of traffic, with long faces, staring at our i-phones. Looking for where our soul went. Everyone trying their best to fit into all the right categories.

What I see in these films is real life human beings. Now, I mostly see robots, and the occasional human being.


You see what you want to see. the "Good old days" were called "These trying times." The people you see here were extremely poor, most of them. Indoor plumbing and electricity were a godsend and probably did not exist in the rural areas. The lifespan for men was 58, women: 62. Medical care was primitive and epidemic diseases like Polio were common. Transportation was extremely expensive. The fastest way was by train, which cost a fortune. Those who had automobiles could expect near daily break-down and flat tires happened every day.

Many of the children you see are a few years from draft age, and they would have been in WW II and sent off to foreign wars. Of course, their attitude was different. It was their patriotic duty, but also, they had no choice. It was not a volunteer service. Socially, church attendance was virtually required if you were to have any place on society at all, as long as it was a Protestant denomination, and you will notice the absence of Blacks and Asians. Though in Ohio there probably weren't many, those who were lived "elsewhere" and Lord help them if they wanted a drink of water from the public drinking fountain, much less a restaurant or soda counter. And if you were Gay? Forget it.

If you had a telephone it was with a party-line shared with several other customers handled by an operator who had the "phone company central office" in a closet in her home and knew everyone's business. There was no expectation of privacy in communications. If you were lucky enough to have a radio, it was a central appliance and the whole family gathered around to listen to President Roosevelt tell the American populace they had "nothing to fear but fear itself."

There were a lot of very frightened people then who felt like the whole world was coming around down on their heads. Four years later it did and the nation was engaged in a massive struggle we don't even understand today. So you go right ahead and wax nostalgic about those times, but I'll put up with some traffic today and take my iPhone over what they had back then any day.
edit on 2/11/2014 by schuyler because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 03:04 PM
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There were a lot of very frightened people then who felt like the whole world was coming around down on their heads.


That kind of reminds me of what we have now.



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 03:21 PM
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I couldn't stop watching this for some reason, thanks OP. Some of the old folks in that vid were around in the mid 1800's.. For some reason seeing a live person from that era is really interesting to me.

I also noticed that the kids were actually encouraged to hold hands back then. Did anyone else catch that? It seems like it was a rule of discipline or something with no intent for it being something sexual. (walk in pairs, hold hands) Now days kids get slapped with sexual harassment for that! How times have changed..
edit on 11-2-2014 by Wookiep because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 05:04 PM
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jtrenthacker

There were a lot of very frightened people then who felt like the whole world was coming around down on their heads.


That kind of reminds me of what we have now.


Rather than quote only that single sentence, what about the rest of the three paragraphs? Are you saying you would want to trade the world of 1937 with what you have now? That's the issue that was raised.
edit on 2/11/2014 by schuyler because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 05:11 PM
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Very Cool...I live in Columbus Ohio area and do work in Canal and Groveport sometimes.

I get contemplative peering through that small window in time at these people living their normal everyday lives for a moment that has come and gone just as most of them have...just as all of our moments and all of us eventually will as well.



posted on Feb, 11 2014 @ 05:15 PM
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Great video and post OP. S&F

I live in Circleville, just south of Groveport and I actually work in Groveport. I love the little old towns around Columbus. Old Canal is a beautiful area. Would loved to have seen what life was like around here when all the old canals in the area were hustling and bustling back in the day. All the old locks are just run down relics in the woods now.





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