Researching the Issued Content of American Newsreels
Research on American newsreel content has been limited by the difficulties of accessing visual records and by a lack of authoritative data on the contents of issued newsreels in the United States. This chapter introduces an important new data resource developed by the Cline Center for Democracy at the University of Illinois Urbana–Champaign, USA. This data resource includes a comprehensive record of story summaries for newsreel issued by four of the main titles distributed in the United States: American Pathé News (1915–1957); Hearst News of the Day (1919–1967); Paramount News (1927–1957); and Universal News (1929–1967). It also includes story summaries from The March of Time (1935–1950). Originally collected in the 1980s for use in Jonathan Pollard’s CineScan database, this collection contains over 100,000 story summary records. This chapter serves as an introduction to this new resource, as well as to other available data sources for researchers interested in American newsreel content, including the World Newsreels Online collection assembled by Alexander Street Press.