External Links Relevant to Burton Holmes


A short video from the George Eastman House about "Preserving the World of Burton Holmes," with Patrick Loughney and some of the old footage, on YouTube.

The Travel Film Archive website, with short snips of films from many great travel filmmakers and lecturers, including Holmes. More specifically about Holmes is the Burton Holmes Archive, with classy layouts, a link to their Flickr stream, and other opportunities. Documentary filmmaker Patrick Montgomery is the creator of these great sites, and others.

The McCune Collection at the Library of the city of Vallejo, California, has scanned and put online most of the volumes of the original Travelogues set. This is an amazing and wonderful thing to see someone do! You'll find them on their website, under menu items Home > The Collection > People of Interest > Burton Holmes (1870-1958). Quite a lot of other great things to see there, too.

The Burton Holmes film "Seeing London" is online at the Internet Archive. You can watch it via streaming media if you have a fast connection, or download it to your computer. (Warning! it is very large.) Running time, 13 minutes.

A long blog entry about Holmes, and Holmes' projectionist E. Jesse Greene, by Jesse's granddaughter. How wonderful is this 21st century.

SilentMovies.com presentation on Rattlesnake Jack, filmed by Holmes (and cameraman Oscar B. Depue) in Arizona in 1898 and 1899.

An original ad for the Travelogues from a Google scan of a 1907 issue of McCLURE'S MAGAZINE.

A good-sized sample of Jeanette Roan's paper "Exotic Explorations: Travels to Asia and the Pacific in Early Cinema" is online in partial view at Google (scroll back one page to begin).

A list of Holmes' early MGM sound short subjects, on Vitaphone.org: twelve films, made October through December 1930. Well, it's probably here somewhere; but they've redesigned the website and now you can't find them. Possibly here somewhere.

IMDB has a list of more than 140 films made by Holmes 1916-25. No descriptions beyond the titles, except this one: Mirrors of Nature (1920) "A pictorial exploration of the beautiful images made by the reflections of water beneath bridges, mountains, and villages."

Elsewhere in IMDB is a spot for the industrial films made by Burton Holmes Films, Inc. Currently, only one example, "Air Transportation" (1947).

A Burton Holmes animated cartoon! "Tube Testers" discussed in some detail on the Big Cartoon Database. "Live action with animated segments. Part of the 'Radio Technician Training Series" produced for the United States Navy.'"

Burton Holmes' star on Hollywood Boulevard, and where to look for it; photographs © by Kolby Kirk.

The American Film Institute has yet a different list of Holmes' documentary films. The only one with any descriptive detail is that for Around the World With Burton Holmes; May 1922.

The National Geographic Society website is worth looking at. Searching the site will turn up zero references to Burton Holmes; we've already tried that.

The Alexander Palace Russian History website has dozens of sections, online books, photographs, drawings, and more, about Russia in the past. In particular, they have scanned in the photographs (and provided explanatory material) from the "St. Petersburg" section of Holmes' Lectures, Vol. 8, the same book from which we scanned the Trans-Siberian Railroad trip we present on TravelHistory.org.

The Travel Adventure Cinema Society is an organization of filmmakers and producers of travel films in the Holmes tradition. We'd like to get more information about them. They have an interesting Links page.

Domitor, a group which studies silent film

The Johnson-Shaw Stereoscopic Museum in Meadville, Pennsylvania. Holmes wrote descriptions for numerous stereoscopic slide sets for Keystone, concentrating on travel destinations and remote locations. Was this a precursor of BHI's interest in Holography?

It was suggested some years ago that the Human Studies Film Archives at the Smithsonian Institution would be a good place to find out more about Holmes and his work. Perhaps someone involved there can speak to this. On the web we can see that in 2003 Stasia Millett donated to their archive a "Film collection of professionally produced ethnographic and natural history titles marketed for home consumption in the twenties and thirties by companies such as Kodak Cinegraph, Burton Holmes Travel Film-Reels and Pathegrams." They are described more fully as a collection originally put together by her father and featuring "Burton Holmes Film-Reels of Travel" includinc Canton China, Making Manila Cigars, From Cocoon to Kimono, Tonga Isles, and several titles marketed for the Century of Progress Exposition (Chicago World’s Fair 1933-34).

The Library of Congress has some Holmes films. See more details on our page on Collections and Archives.

Holmes at the famous Mather Mountain Party in 1915, an important meeting in the history of the National Park Service.

Gary Zellerbach's history of the Holos Gallery opens (paragraph 2): "After seeing my first holograms in 1977 at Burton-Holmes' small shop on the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles, my enthusiasm and intrigue were such that I soon thereafter travelled to New York to visit the Museum of Holography." See our section on the latter days of BHI for more on Holography programs.

Early on television: In October of 1949 Chicago television set owners could watch a Burton Holmes Travelogue Southwestern Wonderland on Channel 4 at 9 p.m.

You can read online an article "The Scenic Wonders of the World" by Burton Holmes, from POPULAR MECHANICS for September, 1934.

Blog (Korean history, in English) discussing restoration and recent release of the 1899 film of Korea, with speculation as to whether it was actually filmed in 1910 or so. There is a link to a website said to have the film online, but there seem to be technical issues and we haven't seen it yet.

A longish review in German, with pictures, of Caldwell's Burton Holmes Travelogues: The Greatest Traveller of His Time, 1892-1952. On the DER SPIEGEL website

A site for collectors of Bolex movie cameras. Tourists and some professional travelers carried these around, and no one today knows how much of the travel film work we see came from these.


Tourists at the Banff Springs Hotel, Alberta, Canada, 1916

Tourists at the Banff Springs Hotel, Alberta, Canada, 1916. © BHHC; all rights reserved

Update history: This page created 5 May 2004. Latest revision 11 October 2010.