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Harry Caldwell Collection

 Unprocessed Material
Identifier: TAMIS-MIC 2020.002

Content Description

16mm motion pictures taken by Methodist missionary Harry Caldwell during his missions work in Fujian province, China, during the 1930s, as well as elements of a documentary produced circa 1949 from these films. The films depict rural agricultural practices, life in Buddhist monasteries, Taoist rituals, grassroots (or "popular") religious activities, Chinese military drills, an urban flood, vernacular architecture and local landmarks, and the facilities and activities of Caldwell's Methodist congregation. Intertitles and audio narration throughout the films convey Rev. Caldwell's commentary on their content, which reflects the era in which Caldwell lived and shot these films, as well as the fervency of his religious beliefs.

Acquisition Type



Gail Harris, Harry Caldwell's granddaughter, donated the films to the Calvin M. McClung historical collection in 2009.

Restrictions Apply


Use Restrictions

The original films are too fragile for access. Patrons may use digital transfers on-site or via a secure video link, pending TAMIS' staff approval.


  • Creation: 1933-1949



21 Reels (12 film cans) : All films are Kodak black-and-white 16mm. Most are dual-perforation reversal picture camera originals, with some print, negative, and soundtrack-only elements. ; Approximately 10,000 feet of film