Sunday, June 4, 2023

This Day in MendoHistory: July 21, 1917- ‘The Promise’ Screened at Kellieowen Hall Depicting Life in a Lumber Camp


In collaboration with Mendocino’s Kelley House Museum, MendoFever will be publishing their “This Day in Mendocino History” Facebook posts. The Kelley House Museum works hard to document and curate Mendocino County’s rich history and can be visited in the seaside town of Mendocino.

Photo: The Maru and log raft at one of the Big River booms, 1916. This photograph was posed for the filming of The Promise. The Promise was filmed in Mendocino in 1916 and featured a number of coast residents and scenes, many taken on Big River. (Verda Wakerley Winney, Harry J. Wakerley Collection, Kelley House Photographs)

On this day in Mendocino history…

July 21, 1917 – Joe Nichols presented one of the first motion pictures filmed on the Mendocino Coast at his picture house inside Kellieowen Hall on the southwest corner of Ukiah and Lansing. “The Promise” featured a number of local coast residents including Mendocino Lumber Company woods boss, Ed Boyle. Scenes had been shot in several coast locations during December 1916.

This silent movie was partially set in a lumber camp, and the film included footage from the Boom, Boyle’s Camp, and other locations along Big River. During a dramatic river scene, the leading man, Harold Lockwood, was thrown from a log jam into the water after a dynamite explosion was set off by the villain.

Nichols had gone to considerable trouble and expense to get the film so quickly, but his efforts paid off – the following week, the Mendocino Beacon reported several families had come into town to see the movie.

“𝘔𝘦𝘯𝘥𝘰𝘤𝘪𝘯𝘰 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘔𝘰𝘷𝘪𝘦𝘴: 𝘏𝘰𝘭𝘭𝘺𝘸𝘰𝘰𝘥 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘛𝘝 𝘔𝘰𝘵𝘪𝘰𝘯 𝘗𝘪𝘤𝘵𝘶𝘳𝘦𝘴 𝘍𝘪𝘭𝘮𝘦𝘥 𝘰𝘯 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘔𝘦𝘯𝘥𝘰𝘤𝘪𝘯𝘰 𝘊𝘰𝘢𝘴𝘵” 𝘣𝘺 𝘉𝘳𝘶𝘤𝘦 𝘓𝘦𝘷𝘦𝘯𝘦. 𝘔𝘰𝘳𝘦 𝘵𝘩𝘢𝘯 50 𝘧𝘪𝘭𝘮𝘴 𝘧𝘳𝘰𝘮 1904 𝘵𝘰 2001 𝘶𝘴𝘦𝘥 𝘭𝘰𝘤𝘢𝘭 𝘴𝘤𝘦𝘯𝘦𝘳𝘺 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘭𝘰𝘤𝘢𝘭 𝘢𝘤𝘵𝘰𝘳𝘴. $20. https://www.kelleyhousemuseum.org/store/

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Matt LaFever
Matt LaFeverhttps://mendofever.com/
I like to think of myself as a reporter for the Average Joe. Journalism has become a craft defined largely by city dwellers on America's coasts. It’s time to take it back. I have been an Emerald Triangle resident since 2006 and this is year ten in Mendocino County. Please, email me at matthewplafever@gmail.com if you know a story that needs to be told.

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