Foster, Charles Henry Wheelwright Collection

      film (2832 ft.) : si., b&w and col. ; 16mm
      1926 – 1942
      Marblehead, Massachusetts
      Needham, Massachusetts
      The collection consists of 7 reels silent, black and white, and color, 16 mm film, totaling approximately 2832 feet, as well as one VHS tape, one DVD and one born-digital compilation. The films were shot between 1926 and 1942, and feature the home movies of the family of C.H.W. Foster.

      Charles Henry Wheelwright Foster (1859-1955) was born in Brookline, Massachusetts, the son of Charles Orin Foster, a Boston sugar importer. He married Mabel Hill in 1885. The couple had nine children: Charles Orin Foster (Carl) (1887-1933), Catherine Hill Tappan (Cath) (1888-1975), Reginald Candler Foster (Reg) (1889-1945), Hilda Chase Foster (1891-1974), Edith Hill Farwell (Dede) (1893-1977), Ruth Mallard Foster (1894-1896), Caroline Wheelwright Sizer (Cal) (1896-1985), Barbara Weld (Barbie) (1899-1952), and John Wheelwright Foster (1907-1913).

      The family home was at the Charles River House in Needham, Massachusetts. CHW Foster was an avid yachtsman, owning a number of boats in his lifetime. The family often spent time sailing out of Marblehead, Massachusetts, and owned a summer house in Marblehead, as well as a nearby inn for sailors (today the home of the Boston Yacht Club).

      The films in this collection were shot by family members of CHW Foster, in particular Hilda Chase Foster. Copies of some of the family papers, including histories, genealogies, and a book of the boats owned by CHW Foster are also housed at Northeast Historic Film. The original papers of CHW Foster and his descendants are held at the Massachusetts Historical Society, while the MIT Museum's Hart Nautical Collection has about 4300 nautical photographs, some half-models, and books in its Charles H. W. Foster Collection. 

      From the donor:
      "Future historians and filmmakers may well be able to enrich their accounts by cross-referencing the home movies (in Northeast Historic Film) with the diaries and letters and scrapbooks (mostly in the Massachusetts Historical Society) and with the magnificently commercially-shot still photographs (at MIT)."

        Northeast Historic Film
        The Collection is open for research.
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        10 Items in this collection