The libraries’ Walter J. Brown Media Archives and Peabody Awards Collection, the only public institution in the state devoted entirely to preserving moving images, has received a varied film collection, including what are likely Georgia’s earliest surviving home movies.
The donation includes home movies on reels of 28mm, 16mm and 8mm films that span from approximately 1917 into the 1960s.
The films come from Pebble Hill Plantation, which was the winter home for the Howard Melville Hanna family of Cleveland, Ohio. Elizabeth “Pansy” Ireland Poe, granddaughter of Howard Melville Hanna, was the last family member to live in the Thomasville plantation’s main house until her death in 1978. Earlier, she created a foundation to ensure the property would become the historic house museum and environmental preserve it is today. Pebble Hill’s trustees donated the family’s films to UGA to protect their unique scenes of the family and property.
Always on the lookout for films that depict Athens, UGA, Georgia and the Southeast region to add to the visual history of the South, the media archives will host one of the national Home Movie Day screening events Oct. 20 from 2-4 p.m. at the Richard B. Russell Building. A second Home Movie Day will be held Nov. 3 from 1-3 p.m. at the White County Public Library in Cleveland.