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14 records – page 1 of 2.

Other Name
PROJECTOR LENS
Date Range From
1970
Date Range To
1980
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
GLASS, BRASS, PLASTIC
Catalogue Number
P20120038006
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
PROJECTOR LENS
Date Range From
1970
Date Range To
1980
Materials
GLASS, BRASS, PLASTIC
No. Pieces
1
Length
26
Diameter
6.8
Description
PROJECTOR LENS; NARROW BRASS “MIN” LENS WITH INSCRIBED TEXT “KOLLMORGEN OPTICAL CORP. NORTHHAMPTON, MASS., MADE IN U.S.A., BX 241, F: 1.9, 3 ¼ IN., E.F. 65992”; SILVER CENTER RING WITH TWO BRASS-COLOURED ENGRAVED RINGS RUNNING AROUND WIDTH OF LENS AND TEXT “SUPER SNAPLITE”; WIDE “MAG” LENS IS BLACK WITH WHITE PRINTED TEXT “MAG, MAGNA – COM 65, 9122176, ISCO – GOTTINGEN, MADE IN GERMANY, MIN”. LENS BODY HAS SURFACE SCRATCHES AND CHIPPING, LENS GLASS HAS DUST AND DIRT SPOTS, AND BRASS FINISHING ON SILVER CENTER RING IS WORN AWAY. LENSES AND BODY IN OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
BUSINESS
LEISURE
History
ON APRIL 11, 2018, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED LARRY AND ANDREA BECKER, OWNERS OF THE FORMER WATERTON THEATRE IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA WHERE THE PROJECTION EQUIPMENT WAS USED. DURING THE INTERVIEW, THE BECKERS ELABORATED ON HOW THEIR THEATRE CLOSED, HOW THE EQUIPMENT WAS USED IN THEIR THEATRE, AND HOW AL ANCTIL CAME INTO POSSESSION OF THE THEATRE PROJECTION EQUIPMENT. LARRY BECKER SPOKE TO HOW ANCTIL BECAME THE OWNER AND DONOR OF THE EQUIPMENT, STATING, “THIS EQUIPMENT IS BUILT AND DESIGNED TO EXHIBIT 35 MM MOTION PICTURE FILM. IN 2011, WHEN WE DISPOSED OF THE EQUIPMENT, FILM WAS BECOMING OBSOLETE. IT WAS NO LONGER AVAILABLE TO US AS AN EXHIBITION MEDIUM, SO WE WERE FACED WITH THE CHALLENGE OF CONVERTING TO A DIGITAL PROJECTION, IF WE WANTED TO CONTINUE SHOWING MOTION PICTURES. WE HAD TO GET RID OF THIS, AND AL [ANCTIL] THOUGHT HE HAD A USE FOR IT. AT THE TIME, HE WAS SELLING US COFFEE. WE WERE RUNNING A COFFEE SHOP IN THE THEATRE, SO WE HAD THAT RELATIONSHIP WITH AL; AND I’M NOT SURE WHY AL WANTED IT…I DON’T KNOW IF HE EVER INTENDED TO USE IT. I THINK, UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES, IT MIGHT BE USEFUL, IF SOMEBODY COULD ACCESS SOME 35 MM FILM TO RUN THROUGH IT. WHEN WE HEARD THAT AL WANTED IT, WE SAID “SURE, YOU CAN HAVE IT AL. WE NO LONGER HAVE ANY USE FOR IT.”” “IT WAS THE COST OF THE CONVERSION [THAT INFLUENCED OUR DECISION TO CLOSE]. INITIALLY, WHEN ALL OF THE THEATRES WERE FACED WITH THE CONVERSION, WITHIN A VERY SHORT WINDOW, THE DEMAND FOR THE EQUIPMENT WAS VERY HIGH; COSTS WERE VERY HIGH, AND IT JUST WASN’T FINANCIALLY VIABLE IN A SEASONAL OPERATION, SO WE DECIDED NOT TO PROCEED, AT THAT TIME, WITH THE DIGITAL UPGRADING/CONVERSION. WE WERE WORKING QUITE HARD, BECAUSE WE WERE RUNNING A COFFEE SHOP, AN ICE CREAM STORE, AND A MOVIE THEATRE. THE MOVIE THEATRE WAS THE FUN PART OF IT.” “WE WERE AT THE END OF OUR LAST SEASON IN 2011, AND WE HAD WORKED OUT AN ARRANGEMENT WITH THE TENANT, TO TAKE IT OVER, TO RUN IT AS A ‘STAGE AND GRILL’ KIND OF OPERATION. THEY WERE GOING TO PUT A KITCHEN IN, AND SERVE MEALS, AND PRESENT MUSIC ACTS ON STAGE.” LARRY BECKER DISCUSSED THE PURPOSE OF THE LENS IN USE WITH PROJECTOR EQUIPMENT, STATING, “FILM WAS STILL AVAILABLE IN BOTH FORMATS, AND WHEN IT CAME IN, WE HAD TO KNOW WHICH FORMAT IT WAS, BECAUSE THEN WE WOULD USE THE APPROPRIATE LENS. [THE LENS] WAS STILL IN USE. PRODUCTION COSTS WERE PROBABLY…A LITTLE HIGHER IF THEY WERE SHOOTING IN THE CINEMASCOPE. I THINK THE FLAT LENS, THE 185 ASPECT RATIO WAS A BETTER RATIO FOR TELEVISION. I ALWAYS THOUGHT THAT, IF THEY THOUGHT THAT THE MOVIE WAS GOING TO HAVE A SHORT RUN IN THEATRES, AND THEN A BROADER AUDIENCE ON TELEVISION, THEN THAT FORMAT [185 ASPECT RATIO] WAS MORE SUITABLE. WE REPLACED [THE ORIGINAL LENSES]. THE LENSES ARE…A COMPOSITE OF GLASS, AND THE ADHESIVES IN THEM DO BREAK DOWN AFTER A WHILE, ESPECIALLY WITH THE HEAT, SO LENSES HAVE TO BE REPLACED PERIODICALLY. [THE LENS WAS] FROM THE EARLY ‘90S. THE BECKERS SPOKE ABOUT THEIR ARRIVAL IN WATERTON AND THEIR HISTORY WORKING IN THEATRES, WITH LARRY BEGINNING HIS CAREER WORKING IN THE PALACE THEATRE IN CALGARY, ALBERTA. IN 1975, THE BECKERS BECAME INTERESTED IN PURCHASING THE THEATRE IN WATERTON, AND BY 1976 THEY WERE RUNNING THE WATERTON THEATRE. LARRY NOTED HOW THE BECKERS BECAME INVOLVED WITH THE WATERTON THEATRE “I WAS TRAVELING TO WATERTON. I HAD NEVER BEEN TO WATERTON. I HAD AN OCCASION TO GO TO GREAT FALLS. IT WAS ON…A BUSINESS TRIP, AND IT WAS OVER A WEEKEND. I LOOKED AT THE MAP, AND I THOUGHT, “IF WE LEAVE AROUND DINNERTIME ON FRIDAY, WE CAN SPEND A NIGHT IN WATERTON…AND THEN WE CAN CONTINUE TO GREAT FALLS THE NEXT DAY.” GOT INTO WATERTON, AND, BY THIS TIME, THE SUN HAD SET, AND I STILL DIDN’T REALIZE I WAS IN THE MOUNTAINS. I SORT OF LOOKED AROUND. I DIDN’T HAVE A ROOM BOOKED, AND GOT A ROOM IN ALLEN’S LAKESHORE BUNGALOWS, WHICH WERE ON THE SHORE OF WATERTON LAKE, AT THAT TIME, AND WHEN I GOT UP IN THE MORNING, AND LOOKED AROUND, I COULDN’T BELIEVE WHERE I WAS. I MEAN, IT WAS JUST THE MOST BEAUTIFUL THING…IT WAS STUNNINGLY, GORGEOUS! THEN I THOUGHT, “I’LL TAKE A STROLL AROUND TOWN”, AND THERE WAS A MOVIE THEATRE. OF COURSE, BEING IN THE BUSINESS, I’VE GOT TO STOP AND YOU…FIND OUT WHAT’S GOING ON THERE. I CHATTED WITH A YOUNG FAMILY THAT WERE LOOKING AFTER THE PLACE FOR LOTTIE BREWERTON. LOTTIE, AND HER HUSBAND, GORDON, HAD BUILT IT BACK IN ’35. LOTTIE WAS GORDON’S WIDOW. SHE WASN’T INVOLVED IN THE OPERATION, BUT SHE HAD SOME YOUNG FAMILY THAT WERE HELPING HER OUT, SO, IN THE CONVERSATION, THEY SAID, “YOU KNOW, I THINK LOTTIE WANTS TO SELL.” I WENT BACK TO CALGARY, AND NEVER REALLY THOUGHT TOO MUCH ABOUT IT UNTIL SEVERAL MONTHS LATER, AND IT WAS SORT OF ON MY MIND, AND I THOUGHT, “WELL, I’M GOING TO GET AHOLD OF LOTTIE AND SEE WHAT THE DEAL IS HERE?” “IT NEEDED WORK. IT’S NOT A BIG MONEY-MAKING OPERATION IN WATERTON, SO IT WAS…HARD TO DO THE THINGS THAT NEEDED TO BE DONE. OVER THE YEARS, WE KIND OF KEPT IT GOING…BUT IT WAS ALWAYS…AN EXPERIENTIAL THING. IT WAS KIND OF AN ANTIQUE IN ITSELF. IT WAS NEVER INTENDED TO BE LIKE THE CITY THEATRES – IT’S A MUCH MORE CASUAL ENVIRONMENT.” “I LIKE THE STYLE OF THE BUILDING. IT’S A GORGEOUS OLD BUILDING – TUDOR-REVIVAL. IT’S GOT AN INTERESTING HISTORY. BACK IN THE MID-‘30S, PARKS CANADA WAS ENCOURAGING DEVELOPMENT IN WATERTON, AND WAS GIVING OUT THE COMMERCIAL LEASES, BUT THEY ALSO WANTED SORT OF AN ARCHITECTURAL THEME TO THE TOWNSITE. THEY HAD AN ARCHITECTURAL DIVISION, AND THEY HAD ARCHITECTS ON STAFF, AND IT WAS THAT BRANCH OF PARKS CANADA, THAT DESIGNED THAT BUILDING, AND MANY OF THE OTHER BUILDINGS IN WATERTON. IT’S GOT SOME CHARM. IT’S NICE THAT WAY.” ANDREA BECKER ADDED, “IT’S…A PRIVILEGE TO BE A WATERTON BUSINESS OWNER. IT’S A VERY SMALL COMMUNITY, AND IT’S A LIFESTYLE KIND OF ENVIRONMENT, AS WELL, FOR THE BUSINESS PEOPLE THERE. WE…FEEL THAT IT IS A SPECIAL THING TO DO…” LARRY BECKER SPOKE TO HIS TRAINING WORKING IN THEATRES AND HIS EARLY START IN THE WATERTON THEATRE, “WHEN I STARTED DOING PROJECTION WORK, IT WAS A LICENSED TRADE IN THE PROVINCE OF ALBERTA, AND, IN THE EARLY DAYS OF MOTION PICTURE EXHIBITION, THE FILM STOCK WAS A SILVER NITRATE FILM STOCK WHICH WAS, LITERALLY, EXPLOSIVE. PROJECTION ROOMS, INCLUDING THE ONE IN WATERTON, WERE BUILT LIKE A BUNKER. THEY WERE CEMENT ROOMS, WITH FIRE SHUTTERS, THAT WOULD SLAM SHUT IF SOMETHING WENT WRONG IN THE PROJECTION ROOM. THE APPRENTICESHIP PROGRAM TO BECOME A PROJECTIONIST WAS A 3 YEAR PROGRAM, AND THERE WAS DIFFERENT CATEGORIES OF LICENSING. WHEN I STARTED IN [1977] I OWNED THE THEATRE IN FORT MACLEOD AND I HAD TO DO AN APPRENTICESHIP, IN MY OWN THEATRE, BEFORE I WAS ALLOWED TO OPERATE THE EQUIPMENT. I BECAME A CERTIFIED PROJECTIONIST. I MENTION THE EARLY DAYS WITH THE SILVER NITRATE FILM, WHICH WAS HIGHLY FLAMMABLE, AND DANGEROUS. THAT HAD BEEN REPLACED BY ACETATE FILM, LONG BEFORE I BECAME INVOLVED, AND SO THE FILM STOCK WAS NO LONGER…COMBUSTIBLE, AND SO IT WAS A MUCH SAFER ENVIRONMENT. NONETHELESS, SOME OF THE OLD REGULATIONS SORT OF CARRIED FORWARD, AND SLOWLY CHANGED.” “ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WAS INTERESTING ABOUT THE THEATRE WHEN I TOOK IT OVER IS THAT, FOR LIGHT SOURCES IN THE PROJECTION ROOM, THE LAMPS THAT ILLUMINATED THE SCREEN WERE BURNING CARBON ARCS. CARBON ARCS CAME IN A BOX; YOU INSTALLED THEM IN THE LAMP HOUSE. WHEN YOU STARTED THE MOVIE, YOU’D STRIKE THEM TOGETHER, AND THEY WOULD CREATE AN ARC AND FLAME BETWEEN THESE CARBON RODS. THAT WAS WHAT PRODUCED THE LIGHT. IT WAS MAGNIFIED BY A MIRROR DOWN THROUGH THE LENS, AND WITH THE SCREEN. WITH THAT KIND OF A LIGHT SOURCE, YOU HAD TO BE IN THE PROJECTION ROOM…ALL THE TIME. YOU COULDN’T LEAVE THE PROJECTION ROOM WHILE THE MOVIE WAS RUNNING. AS A MATTER OF FACT, PROJECTION ROOMS HAD TOILETS IN THEM DURING THAT PERIOD. CHANGING THAT OUT WAS ONE OF THE FIRST THINGS THAT I DID, BECAUSE IT MADE IT A LOT EASIER TO GET OUT OF THE PROJECTION ROOM. THE OTHER THING – THE FILM WAS RUN OFF OF 18 20-MINUTE REELS AT THAT TIME, SO THERE WERE 2 PROJECTORS. WE WERE CONSTANTLY CHANGING BACK AND FORTH, FROM ONE PROJECTOR TO THE OTHER. GETTING RID OF THE CARBON ARC LAMP HOUSES, AND INSTALLING A PLATTER SYSTEM, WHICH ALLOWED…THE PROGRAM TO BE SPLICED TOGETHER ON THE SINGLE REELS.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT AND HISTORIES OF THE WATERTON THEATRE, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20120038001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20120038006
Acquisition Date
2012-10
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail

PROJECTOR, MOTION-PICTURE

https://collections.galtmuseum.com/en/permalink/artifact13342
Other Name
MOTIOGRAPH AA PROJECTOR
Date Range From
1940
Date Range To
1950
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
STEEL, GLASS, PLASTIC
Catalogue Number
P20120038001
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
MOTIOGRAPH AA PROJECTOR
Date Range From
1940
Date Range To
1950
Materials
STEEL, GLASS, PLASTIC
No. Pieces
4
Height
202
Length
57
Description
A. PROJECTOR, FILM. GREY METAL BODY FIXED AT FRONT WITH MOTIOGRAPH AA PROJECTOR MECHANISM. BACK OF THE BODY HAS POWER (“ON/OFF”) AND IGNITE SWITCHES; BACK HAS GAUGES WITH GLASS COVERS MARKING HOURS (“16270”) AND 0-100 MV. BACK HAS SILVER LABEL WITH BLACK TEXT “STRONG X-16 TWO-SIDE LAMPHOUSE, D.C. VOLTS 28-32, D.C. AMPS. 60-95, TYPE NO. 76002-3, SERIAL NO. 65196, MFD. BY THE STRONG ELECTRIC CORP., TOLEDO, OHIO, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, 76100” AND A BLUE STICKER ON LABEL “CSA SPECIAL TESTING LABORATORIES, S108124, ACCEPTANCE”. BACK HAS THREE BLACK DIALS MARKED “V”, “H”, “F”; FRONT HAS THREE BLACK DIALS MARKED “V”, “H”, “F” ON BLACK METAL PLATE WITH WHITE TEXT “VERT”, “HORTZ”, “FOCUS”. BASE HAS A WHITE SWITCH BENEATH THE MAIN LAMP HOUSE. LAMP HOUSE SIDE HAS HINGED COVER WITH SILVER AND RED PLATE FIXED TO COVER, “CAUTION, USE FACE MASK, OBSERVE SAFETY RULES, ALLOW LAMP TO COOL 10 MIN BEFORE OPENING DOORS”. FRONT HAS REEL MOUNTS FIXED TO TOP AND BOTTOM; TOP REEL MOUNT IS MARKED “A-675” AND HAS SILVER SHIPPING REEL WITH 35MM FILM ATTACHED (B); BOTTOM REEL MOUNT IS MARKED A-676 AND HAS EMPTY SILVER SHIPPING REEL ATTACHED (D). BENEATH REEL MOUNT IS MOUNTED ELECTRIC CHANGEOVER MECHANISM; UNFINISHED STEEL WITH SILVER SCREWS AND INSERTS; SILVER PLATE ON FRONT OF MECHANISM HAS RED TEXT READING “ZIPPER” AND BLACK TEXT READING “ELECTRIC CHANGEOVER, PATENT 1796970, OTHER PATS. PEND., MODEL 14-14, SERIAL 2537, VOLTS 117 A.C., AMPS 2, MFD. BY ESSANNAY ELECTRIC MFG., G.G., 1438 N. CLARK ST., CHICAGO 10, ILL.” MOTIOGRAPH AA PROJECTOR MECHANISM HAS LENS ATTACHED AT FRONT (C); MOTIOGRAPH AA PROJECTOR MECHANISM HAS RED DIAL BESIDE FRONT CHAMBER COVER WITH WHITE TEXT “FRAME”. MOTIOGRAPH AA PROJECTOR MECHANISM HAS HINGED CHAMBER COVER WITH FRONT FIXED SILVER PLATE WITH RED TEXT READING “MOTIOGRAPH” IN RED, AND YELLOW AND BLACK LABEL READING “SHARP’S THEATRE SUPPLIES LIMITED, FILM EXCHANGE BUILDING, PHONE M-4076—CALGARY, ALBERTA.” INSIDE HINGED CHAMBER COVER IS WHITE LABEL “UL, MODEL AA, FRAMING LAMP 120V 25W, MOTIOGRAPH INC., CHICAGO”. BENEATH IS LOWER CHAMBER WITH STEEL AND GLASS HINGED COVER. BASE OF LAMP HOUSE PEDESTAL IS SCRATCHED; INSIDE OF MOTIOGRAPH AA PROJECTOR MECHANISM TOP CHAMBER IS DETACHED BLACK METAL SLIDE WITH CENTER CUT OUT AND RED KNOB AT THE END. OVERALL PROJECTOR AND COMPONENTS IN GOOD CONDITION. B. FILM REEL, 37.2CM DIAMETER X 4.3CM DEEP, INCLUDES 35MM FILM. SHIPPING REEL; UNFINISHED PRESSED STEEL; FIXED WITH UNMARKED WHITE TAPE. REEL IS HANDMARKED WITH RED “T”. C. LENS, PROJECTOR, 41.7CM LONG X 11.5CM DIAMETER. CINEMASCOPE/ANAMORPHIC (LONG LENS) FORMAT. BRASS END COMPONENT IS STAMPED “SUPER SNAPLITE”, “KOLLMORGEN OPTICAL CORP”, “BX 241 F:1.9 3 ¼ IN.” SILVER LENS COMPONENT IS MARKED “MADE IN JAPAN, 19313, PROMINAR ANAMORPHIC”. LENS FRONT IS BLACK; LENS GOES TO 350 FEET. D. FILM REEL, 37CM DIAMETER X 5.3CM DEEP, SHIPPING. UNFINISHED PRESSED STEEL, EMPTY, HANDMARKED IN RED “2” AND ON MASKING TAPE IN BLACK “7”. FIXED TO LOWER REEL MOUNT ON PROJECTOR.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
BUSINESS
LEISURE
History
ON APRIL 11, 2018, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED LARRY AND ANDREA BECKER, OWNERS OF THE FORMER WATERTON THEATRE IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA WHERE THE PROJECTION EQUIPMENT WAS USED. DURING THE INTERVIEW, THE BECKERS ELABORATED ON HOW THEIR THEATRE CLOSED, HOW THE EQUIPMENT WAS USED IN THEIR THEATRE, AND HOW AL ANCTIL CAME INTO POSSESSION OF THE THEATRE PROJECTION EQUIPMENT. LARRY BECKER SPOKE TO HOW ANCTIL BECAME THE OWNER AND DONOR OF THE EQUIPMENT, STATING, “THIS EQUIPMENT IS BUILT AND DESIGNED TO EXHIBIT 35 MM MOTION PICTURE FILM. IN 2011, WHEN WE DISPOSED OF THE EQUIPMENT, FILM WAS BECOMING OBSOLETE. IT WAS NO LONGER AVAILABLE TO US AS AN EXHIBITION MEDIUM, SO WE WERE FACED WITH THE CHALLENGE OF CONVERTING TO A DIGITAL PROJECTION, IF WE WANTED TO CONTINUE SHOWING MOTION PICTURES. WE HAD TO GET RID OF THIS, AND AL [ANCTIL] THOUGHT HE HAD A USE FOR IT. AT THE TIME, HE WAS SELLING US COFFEE. WE WERE RUNNING A COFFEE SHOP IN THE THEATRE, SO WE HAD THAT RELATIONSHIP WITH AL; AND I’M NOT SURE WHY AL WANTED IT…I DON’T KNOW IF HE EVER INTENDED TO USE IT. I THINK, UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES, IT MIGHT BE USEFUL, IF SOMEBODY COULD ACCESS SOME 35 MM FILM TO RUN THROUGH IT. WHEN WE HEARD THAT AL WANTED IT, WE SAID “SURE, YOU CAN HAVE IT AL. WE NO LONGER HAVE ANY USE FOR IT.”” “IT WAS THE COST OF THE CONVERSION [THAT INFLUENCED OUR DECISION TO CLOSE]. INITIALLY, WHEN ALL OF THE THEATRES WERE FACED WITH THE CONVERSION, WITHIN A VERY SHORT WINDOW, THE DEMAND FOR THE EQUIPMENT WAS VERY HIGH; COSTS WERE VERY HIGH, AND IT JUST WASN’T FINANCIALLY VIABLE IN A SEASONAL OPERATION, SO WE DECIDED NOT TO PROCEED, AT THAT TIME, WITH THE DIGITAL UPGRADING/CONVERSION. WE WERE WORKING QUITE HARD, BECAUSE WE WERE RUNNING A COFFEE SHOP, AN ICE CREAM STORE, AND A MOVIE THEATRE. THE MOVIE THEATRE WAS THE FUN PART OF IT.” “WE WERE AT THE END OF OUR LAST SEASON IN 2011, AND WE HAD WORKED OUT AN ARRANGEMENT WITH THE TENANT, TO TAKE IT OVER, TO RUN IT AS A ‘STAGE AND GRILL’ KIND OF OPERATION. THEY WERE GOING TO PUT A KITCHEN IN, AND SERVE MEALS, AND PRESENT MUSIC ACTS ON STAGE.” ON THE PROJECTOR, LARRY BECKER INDICATED, “IT WAS OLD [IN 2011]. IT WAS VERY WELL-DESIGNED, AND BUILT EQUIPMENT, WHEN IT WAS NEW. THE PROJECTOR IS…THE HEART OF THE OPERATION, AND IT’S A MOTIOGRAPH PROJECTOR WITH THE MOTIOGRAPH SOUND HEAD…AND THAT WAS PROBABLY NEW IN THE LATE '40S OR EARLY ‘50S, WHEN THE MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY WAS IN AN ABSOLUTE HEY-DAY. HUGE INVESTMENTS WERE MADE IN DEVELOPING HIGH QUALITY EQUIPMENT FOR THE MOTION PICTURE EXHIBITIONS. THIS PROJECTOR, EVEN THOUGH IT WAS VERY OLD, BENEFITTED FROM THAT DESIGN PERIOD, AND WAS STILL WORKING REASONABLY WELL.” “WE REPLACED THE LAMP HOUSE [FROM AN OLD CARBON ARC LAMP TO…A ZENON BULB AS A LIGHT SOURCE]. [WE PICKED UP BULBS AND EQUIPMENT] FROM ‘TEN STORIES’. “[THERE WOULD BE A] BELL HERE, BEFORE WE PUT THE PLATTER SYSTEM IN… [THE BELL] WAS ATTACHED TO THE PROJECTOR, AND THIS WAS WHEN THESE SMALL 20 MINUTE REELS WOULD BE LOADED ON TO THIS REEL LINE, AND WHEN THERE WAS ABOUT 2 OR 2 1/2 MINUTES FILM LEFT ON THE PAY-OUT REEL…[THE] BELL WOULD START TO RING; START TO TURN AT A SPEED, AND THAT WAS TO SIGNAL THE PROJECTIONIST TO GET READY, BECAUSE HE WAS GOING TO HAVE TO DO A CHANGE-OVER. WHEN THAT BELL RANG, THE PROJECTIONIST WOULD LOOK THROUGH A PORT IN THE PROJECTION ROOM, AND LOOK FOR A LITTLE DOT UP IN THE RIGHT HAND CORNER OF THE FILM. THERE WOULD BE TWO OF THEM. WHEN YOU HEARD THE BELL, YOU’D STRIKE THE LAMP WITH THE OLD CARBON ARCS; GET THE LAMP HOUSE RUNNING. THEN YOU’D SEE THE FIRST DOT, THAT WAS YOUR SIGNAL TO START THE PROJECTOR, THEN, WHEN YOU SAW THE SECOND DOT, THERE WAS A PEDAL ON THE FLOOR, OR A HAND SWITCH, THAT YOU WOULD ACTIVATE, AND THAT WOULD CLOSE THE SHUTTER ON ONE PROJECTOR, AND OPEN IT ON THE OTHER ONE. IF THE PROJECTIONIST WAS GOOD, IT WAS SEAMLESS. THE AUDIENCE WOULD NEVER KNOW THAT THERE WAS A REEL CHANGE.” “THERE WOULD BE TWO PROJECTORS RUNNING SIDE-BY-SIDE. I DID OPERATE IT FOR A WHILE, WITH THE CHANGE-OVERS, BUT THAT WAS ONE OF THE THINGS THAT I REALLY WANTED TO CHANGE ABOUT WATERTON. I WANTED JUST TO MAKE MY JOB A LOT EASIER. [THAT WAS] THE INTRODUCTION OF THE PLATTER SYSTEM, AND THE ZENON LAMP.” LARRY BECKER DISCUSSED THE PURPOSE OF THE LENS IN USE WITH PROJECTOR EQUIPMENT, STATING, “FILM WAS STILL AVAILABLE IN BOTH FORMATS, AND WHEN IT CAME IN, WE HAD TO KNOW WHICH FORMAT IT WAS, BECAUSE THEN WE WOULD USE THE APPROPRIATE LENS. [THE LENS] WAS STILL IN USE. PRODUCTION COSTS WERE PROBABLY…A LITTLE HIGHER IF THEY WERE SHOOTING IN THE CINEMASCOPE. I THINK THE FLAT LENS, THE 185 ASPECT RATIO WAS A BETTER RATIO FOR TELEVISION. I ALWAYS THOUGHT THAT, IF THEY THOUGHT THAT THE MOVIE WAS GOING TO HAVE A SHORT RUN IN THEATRES, AND THEN A BROADER AUDIENCE ON TELEVISION, THEN THAT FORMAT [185 ASPECT RATIO] WAS MORE SUITABLE. WE REPLACED [THE ORIGINAL LENSES].” THE BECKERS SPOKE ABOUT THEIR ARRIVAL IN WATERTON AND THEIR HISTORY WORKING IN THEATRES, WITH LARRY BEGINNING HIS CAREER WORKING IN THE PALACE THEATRE IN CALGARY, ALBERTA. IN 1975, THE BECKERS BECAME INTERESTED IN PURCHASING THE THEATRE IN WATERTON, AND BY 1976 THEY WERE RUNNING THE WATERTON THEATRE. LARRY NOTED HOW THE BECKERS BECAME INVOLVED WITH THE WATERTON THEATRE “I WAS TRAVELING TO WATERTON. I HAD NEVER BEEN TO WATERTON. I HAD AN OCCASION TO GO TO GREAT FALLS. IT WAS ON…A BUSINESS TRIP, AND IT WAS OVER A WEEKEND. I LOOKED AT THE MAP, AND I THOUGHT, “IF WE LEAVE AROUND DINNERTIME ON FRIDAY, WE CAN SPEND A NIGHT IN WATERTON…AND THEN WE CAN CONTINUE TO GREAT FALLS THE NEXT DAY.” GOT INTO WATERTON, AND, BY THIS TIME, THE SUN HAD SET, AND I STILL DIDN’T REALIZE I WAS IN THE MOUNTAINS. I SORT OF LOOKED AROUND. I DIDN’T HAVE A ROOM BOOKED, AND GOT A ROOM IN ALLEN’S LAKESHORE BUNGALOWS, WHICH WERE ON THE SHORE OF WATERTON LAKE, AT THAT TIME, AND WHEN I GOT UP IN THE MORNING, AND LOOKED AROUND, I COULDN’T BELIEVE WHERE I WAS. I MEAN, IT WAS JUST THE MOST BEAUTIFUL THING…IT WAS STUNNINGLY, GORGEOUS! THEN I THOUGHT, “I’LL TAKE A STROLL AROUND TOWN”, AND THERE WAS A MOVIE THEATRE. OF COURSE, BEING IN THE BUSINESS, I’VE GOT TO STOP AND YOU…FIND OUT WHAT’S GOING ON THERE. I CHATTED WITH A YOUNG FAMILY THAT WERE LOOKING AFTER THE PLACE FOR LOTTIE BREWERTON. LOTTIE, AND HER HUSBAND, GORDON, HAD BUILT IT BACK IN ’35. LOTTIE WAS GORDON’S WIDOW. SHE WASN’T INVOLVED IN THE OPERATION, BUT SHE HAD SOME YOUNG FAMILY THAT WERE HELPING HER OUT, SO, IN THE CONVERSATION, THEY SAID, “YOU KNOW, I THINK LOTTIE WANTS TO SELL.” I WENT BACK TO CALGARY, AND NEVER REALLY THOUGHT TOO MUCH ABOUT IT UNTIL SEVERAL MONTHS LATER, AND IT WAS SORT OF ON MY MIND, AND I THOUGHT, “WELL, I’M GOING TO GET AHOLD OF LOTTIE AND SEE WHAT THE DEAL IS HERE?” “IT NEEDED WORK. IT’S NOT A BIG MONEY-MAKING OPERATION IN WATERTON, SO IT WAS…HARD TO DO THE THINGS THAT NEEDED TO BE DONE. OVER THE YEARS, WE KIND OF KEPT IT GOING…BUT IT WAS ALWAYS…AN EXPERIENTIAL THING. IT WAS KIND OF AN ANTIQUE IN ITSELF. IT WAS NEVER INTENDED TO BE LIKE THE CITY THEATRES – IT’S A MUCH MORE CASUAL ENVIRONMENT.” “I LIKE THE STYLE OF THE BUILDING. IT’S A GORGEOUS OLD BUILDING – TUDOR-REVIVAL. IT’S GOT AN INTERESTING HISTORY. BACK IN THE MID-‘30S, PARKS CANADA WAS ENCOURAGING DEVELOPMENT IN WATERTON, AND WAS GIVING OUT THE COMMERCIAL LEASES, BUT THEY ALSO WANTED SORT OF AN ARCHITECTURAL THEME TO THE TOWNSITE. THEY HAD AN ARCHITECTURAL DIVISION, AND THEY HAD ARCHITECTS ON STAFF, AND IT WAS THAT BRANCH OF PARKS CANADA, THAT DESIGNED THAT BUILDING, AND MANY OF THE OTHER BUILDINGS IN WATERTON. IT’S GOT SOME CHARM. IT’S NICE THAT WAY.” ANDREA BECKER ADDED, “IT’S…A PRIVILEGE TO BE A WATERTON BUSINESS OWNER. IT’S A VERY SMALL COMMUNITY, AND IT’S A LIFESTYLE KIND OF ENVIRONMENT, AS WELL, FOR THE BUSINESS PEOPLE THERE. WE…FEEL THAT IT IS A SPECIAL THING TO DO…” LARRY BECKER SPOKE TO HIS TRAINING WORKING IN THEATRES AND HIS EARLY START IN THE WATERTON THEATRE, “WHEN I STARTED DOING PROJECTION WORK, IT WAS A LICENSED TRADE IN THE PROVINCE OF ALBERTA, AND, IN THE EARLY DAYS OF MOTION PICTURE EXHIBITION, THE FILM STOCK WAS A SILVER NITRATE FILM STOCK WHICH WAS, LITERALLY, EXPLOSIVE. PROJECTION ROOMS, INCLUDING THE ONE IN WATERTON, WERE BUILT LIKE A BUNKER. THEY WERE CEMENT ROOMS, WITH FIRE SHUTTERS, THAT WOULD SLAM SHUT IF SOMETHING WENT WRONG IN THE PROJECTION ROOM. THE APPRENTICESHIP PROGRAM TO BECOME A PROJECTIONIST WAS A 3 YEAR PROGRAM, AND THERE WAS DIFFERENT CATEGORIES OF LICENSING. WHEN I STARTED IN [1977] I OWNED THE THEATRE IN FORT MACLEOD AND I HAD TO DO AN APPRENTICESHIP, IN MY OWN THEATRE, BEFORE I WAS ALLOWED TO OPERATE THE EQUIPMENT. I BECAME A CERTIFIED PROJECTIONIST. I MENTION THE EARLY DAYS WITH THE SILVER NITRATE FILM, WHICH WAS HIGHLY FLAMMABLE, AND DANGEROUS. THAT HAD BEEN REPLACED BY ACETATE FILM, LONG BEFORE I BECAME INVOLVED, AND SO THE FILM STOCK WAS NO LONGER…COMBUSTIBLE, AND SO IT WAS A MUCH SAFER ENVIRONMENT. NONETHELESS, SOME OF THE OLD REGULATIONS SORT OF CARRIED FORWARD, AND SLOWLY CHANGED.” I WAS NEVER A PROJECTIONIST IN MEDICINE HAT AND CALGARY. I WAS JUST IN MANAGEMENT, SO I WASN’T THAT FAMILIAR WITH ALL OF THIS [WHEN WE BOUGHT THE WATERTON THEATRE]. IT WAS A BIT OF A LEARNING PROCESS FOR ME. I ENDED UP DOING AN APPRENTICESHIP IN MY OWN THEATRE IN FORT MACLEOD. I HIRED A PROJECTIONIST THE FIRST COUPLE OF YEARS IN WATERTON, AND I HAD TO BRING SOMEBODY DOWN FROM CALGARY TO RUN THE PROJECTOR. WHEN I GOT INTO FORT MACLEOD, I WANTED TO DO MY OWN PROJECTION WORK, AND THAT’S WHEN I DID THE APPRENTICESHIP.” [THE PROJECTIONIST WE BROUGHT TO WATERTON] WAS A FELLOW BY THE NAME OF DOUG COOPER…HE WAS FAMILIAR WITH THIS EQUIPMENT. THE CHANGES HAD STARTED IN THE CITY, BUT HE WAS FAMILIAR WITH DOING THIS KIND OF WORK. HE HAD LEARNED ON IT TOO, SO IT WASN’T A MYSTERY TO HIM. HE WAS ABLE TO MANAGE IT QUITE WELL. [WE HIRED] A DIFFERENT GUY EACH YEAR. DOUG WAS THE FIRST YEAR.” “ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WAS INTERESTING ABOUT THE THEATRE WHEN I TOOK IT OVER IS THAT, FOR LIGHT SOURCES IN THE PROJECTION ROOM, THE LAMPS THAT ILLUMINATED THE SCREEN WERE BURNING CARBON ARCS. CARBON ARCS CAME IN A BOX; YOU INSTALLED THEM IN THE LAMP HOUSE. WHEN YOU STARTED THE MOVIE, YOU’D STRIKE THEM TOGETHER, AND THEY WOULD CREATE AN ARC AND FLAME BETWEEN THESE CARBON RODS. THAT WAS WHAT PRODUCED THE LIGHT. IT WAS MAGNIFIED BY A MIRROR DOWN THROUGH THE LENS, AND WITH THE SCREEN. WITH THAT KIND OF A LIGHT SOURCE, YOU HAD TO BE IN THE PROJECTION ROOM…ALL THE TIME. YOU COULDN’T LEAVE THE PROJECTION ROOM WHILE THE MOVIE WAS RUNNING. AS A MATTER OF FACT, PROJECTION ROOMS HAD TOILETS IN THEM DURING THAT PERIOD. CHANGING THAT OUT WAS ONE OF THE FIRST THINGS THAT I DID, BECAUSE IT MADE IT A LOT EASIER TO GET OUT OF THE PROJECTION ROOM. THE OTHER THING – THE FILM WAS RUN OFF OF 18 20-MINUTE REELS AT THAT TIME, SO THERE WERE 2 PROJECTORS. WE WERE CONSTANTLY CHANGING BACK AND FORTH, FROM ONE PROJECTOR TO THE OTHER. GETTING RID OF THE CARBON ARC LAMP HOUSES, AND INSTALLING A PLATTER SYSTEM, WHICH ALLOWED…THE PROGRAM TO BE SPLICED TOGETHER ON THE SINGLE REELS.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT AND HISTORIES OF THE WATERTON THEATRE, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20120038001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20120038001
Acquisition Date
2012-10
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail

PROJECTOR, MOTION-PICTURE

https://collections.galtmuseum.com/en/permalink/artifact3790
Other Name
THEATRE PROJ. SILENT FILM
Date Range From
1906
Date Range To
1912
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
IRON, STEEL, TIN
Catalogue Number
P19870049000
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
THEATRE PROJ. SILENT FILM
Date Range From
1906
Date Range To
1912
Materials
IRON, STEEL, TIN
No. Pieces
2
Height
122.5
Length
121.0
Width
50.8
Description
PROJECTOR CONSISTS OF CARBON ARC RODS, CONTROLS AND HOUSING MOUNTED ON RAILS FOR ADJUSTMENT. A FILM WINDING MECHANISM MOUNTED ABOVE TAKE-UP REEL HOUSING. MISSING LENS. UNIT SITS ON 4 LEGS AND IRON FRAME. LEG EXTENSIONS MISSING. OTHER PARTS MAY BE MISSING. SEE CONSERVATION REPORT.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
BUSINESS
LEISURE
History
POWERS CAMERAGRAPH, NEW YORK NICOLAS POWERS NO. 6 CAMERAGRAPH. ORIGINAL PROJECTOR OF EMPRESS THEATRE (1912-1950'S) LOCATED ON 5TH ST. SO. DONOR'S FATHER OWNED THEATRE. REQUIRED 2 PEOPLE TO OPERATE LIGHT GENERATED FROM CARBON ARC SPARKS SUPPLIED BY BATTERY. ORIGINATING IN SILENT FILM ERA, WAS REPLACED IN 1930'S WITH ADVENT OF "TALKIES". CARBON ARC TECHNOLOGY WAS INVENTED IN 1808 BY HUMPHRY DAVY. IT PRODUCES A BRILLIANT LIGHT SO LONG AS THE CARBON RODS CAN BE KEPT THE PROPER DISTANCE APART. IT HAS THE DISADVANTAGE OF PRODUCING A GREAT DEAL OF SMOKE & HEAT.
Catalogue Number
P19870049000
Acquisition Date
1987-08
Collection
Museum
Less detail
Date Range From
1970
Date Range To
1980
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
METAL
Catalogue Number
P20120038002
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1970
Date Range To
1980
Materials
METAL
No. Pieces
1
Height
3.9
Diameter
38.1
Description
SILVER METAL REEL; 10 METAL RODS CONNECT FROM OUTER METAL RING TO INNER SPOKE; REEL HAS TWO PARALLEL SETS OF RODS CONNECTING TO INNER SPOKE. INNER SPOKE IS SURROUNDED BY METAL CIRCULAR CASING IN FIVE PIECES WITH HOLES CUT OUT OF METAL. INNER SPOKE, CASING, AND METAL RODS ARE RUSTED; CASING PIECE HAS ENGRAVED TEXT “MADE IN U.S.A.” OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
BUSINESS
LEISURE
History
ON APRIL 11, 2018, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED LARRY AND ANDREA BECKER, OWNERS OF THE FORMER WATERTON THEATRE IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA WHERE THE PROJECTION EQUIPMENT WAS USED. DURING THE INTERVIEW, THE BECKERS ELABORATED ON HOW THEIR THEATRE CLOSED, HOW THE EQUIPMENT WAS USED IN THEIR THEATRE, AND HOW AL ANCTIL CAME INTO POSSESSION OF THE THEATRE PROJECTION EQUIPMENT. LARRY BECKER SPOKE TO HOW ANCTIL BECAME THE OWNER AND DONOR OF THE EQUIPMENT, STATING, “THIS EQUIPMENT IS BUILT AND DESIGNED TO EXHIBIT 35 MM MOTION PICTURE FILM. IN 2011, WHEN WE DISPOSED OF THE EQUIPMENT, FILM WAS BECOMING OBSOLETE. IT WAS NO LONGER AVAILABLE TO US AS AN EXHIBITION MEDIUM, SO WE WERE FACED WITH THE CHALLENGE OF CONVERTING TO A DIGITAL PROJECTION, IF WE WANTED TO CONTINUE SHOWING MOTION PICTURES. WE HAD TO GET RID OF THIS, AND AL [ANCTIL] THOUGHT HE HAD A USE FOR IT. AT THE TIME, HE WAS SELLING US COFFEE. WE WERE RUNNING A COFFEE SHOP IN THE THEATRE, SO WE HAD THAT RELATIONSHIP WITH AL; AND I’M NOT SURE WHY AL WANTED IT…I DON’T KNOW IF HE EVER INTENDED TO USE IT. I THINK, UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES, IT MIGHT BE USEFUL, IF SOMEBODY COULD ACCESS SOME 35 MM FILM TO RUN THROUGH IT. WHEN WE HEARD THAT AL WANTED IT, WE SAID “SURE, YOU CAN HAVE IT AL. WE NO LONGER HAVE ANY USE FOR IT.”” “IT WAS THE COST OF THE CONVERSION [THAT INFLUENCED OUR DECISION TO CLOSE]. INITIALLY, WHEN ALL OF THE THEATRES WERE FACED WITH THE CONVERSION, WITHIN A VERY SHORT WINDOW, THE DEMAND FOR THE EQUIPMENT WAS VERY HIGH; COSTS WERE VERY HIGH, AND IT JUST WASN’T FINANCIALLY VIABLE IN A SEASONAL OPERATION, SO WE DECIDED NOT TO PROCEED, AT THAT TIME, WITH THE DIGITAL UPGRADING/CONVERSION. WE WERE WORKING QUITE HARD, BECAUSE WE WERE RUNNING A COFFEE SHOP, AN ICE CREAM STORE, AND A MOVIE THEATRE. THE MOVIE THEATRE WAS THE FUN PART OF IT.” “WE WERE AT THE END OF OUR LAST SEASON IN 2011, AND WE HAD WORKED OUT AN ARRANGEMENT WITH THE TENANT, TO TAKE IT OVER, TO RUN IT AS A ‘STAGE AND GRILL’ KIND OF OPERATION. THEY WERE GOING TO PUT A KITCHEN IN, AND SERVE MEALS, AND PRESENT MUSIC ACTS ON STAGE.” LARRY BECKER DISCUSSED THE PURPOSE OF THE FILM REEL IN THE THEATRE, STATING, “[THIS WIRE REEL] IS A PROJECTION ROOM REEL, AND A GOOD, WELL-EQUIPPED PROJECTION ROOM WOULD HAVE A FULL SET OF THESE, AND WOULD NEVER USE THESE IN A PROJECTOR, BECAUSE THEY ARE USUALLY BENT UP, AND NOT IN VERY GOOD SHAPE. “[WE WOULD TAKE THE SHIPPING REEL, WITH THE FILM ON IT, AND THEN] WIND IT ON TO THE WIRE. IF YOU DIDN’T HAVE THEM…YOU COULD USE THE SHIPPING REELS. A LOT OF THEATRES ENDED UP RUNNING OFF SHIPPING REELS, ULTIMATELY, ESPECIALLY WHEN THEY BECAME PLASTIC, BECAUSE THEY DIDN’T BANG UP SO BAD.” THE BECKERS SPOKE ABOUT THEIR ARRIVAL IN WATERTON AND THEIR HISTORY WORKING IN THEATRES, WITH LARRY BEGINNING HIS CAREER WORKING IN THE PALACE THEATRE IN CALGARY, ALBERTA. IN 1975, THE BECKERS BECAME INTERESTED IN PURCHASING THE THEATRE IN WATERTON, AND BY 1976 THEY WERE RUNNING THE WATERTON THEATRE. LARRY NOTED HOW THE BECKERS BECAME INVOLVED WITH THE WATERTON THEATRE “I WAS TRAVELING TO WATERTON. I HAD NEVER BEEN TO WATERTON. I HAD AN OCCASION TO GO TO GREAT FALLS. IT WAS ON…A BUSINESS TRIP, AND IT WAS OVER A WEEKEND. I LOOKED AT THE MAP, AND I THOUGHT, “IF WE LEAVE AROUND DINNERTIME ON FRIDAY, WE CAN SPEND A NIGHT IN WATERTON…AND THEN WE CAN CONTINUE TO GREAT FALLS THE NEXT DAY.” GOT INTO WATERTON, AND, BY THIS TIME, THE SUN HAD SET, AND I STILL DIDN’T REALIZE I WAS IN THE MOUNTAINS. I SORT OF LOOKED AROUND. I DIDN’T HAVE A ROOM BOOKED, AND GOT A ROOM IN ALLEN’S LAKESHORE BUNGALOWS, WHICH WERE ON THE SHORE OF WATERTON LAKE, AT THAT TIME, AND WHEN I GOT UP IN THE MORNING, AND LOOKED AROUND, I COULDN’T BELIEVE WHERE I WAS. I MEAN, IT WAS JUST THE MOST BEAUTIFUL THING…IT WAS STUNNINGLY, GORGEOUS! THEN I THOUGHT, “I’LL TAKE A STROLL AROUND TOWN”, AND THERE WAS A MOVIE THEATRE. OF COURSE, BEING IN THE BUSINESS, I’VE GOT TO STOP AND YOU…FIND OUT WHAT’S GOING ON THERE. I CHATTED WITH A YOUNG FAMILY THAT WERE LOOKING AFTER THE PLACE FOR LOTTIE BREWERTON. LOTTIE, AND HER HUSBAND, GORDON, HAD BUILT IT BACK IN ’35. LOTTIE WAS GORDON’S WIDOW. SHE WASN’T INVOLVED IN THE OPERATION, BUT SHE HAD SOME YOUNG FAMILY THAT WERE HELPING HER OUT, SO, IN THE CONVERSATION, THEY SAID, “YOU KNOW, I THINK LOTTIE WANTS TO SELL.” I WENT BACK TO CALGARY, AND NEVER REALLY THOUGHT TOO MUCH ABOUT IT UNTIL SEVERAL MONTHS LATER, AND IT WAS SORT OF ON MY MIND, AND I THOUGHT, “WELL, I’M GOING TO GET AHOLD OF LOTTIE AND SEE WHAT THE DEAL IS HERE?” “IT NEEDED WORK. IT’S NOT A BIG MONEY-MAKING OPERATION IN WATERTON, SO IT WAS…HARD TO DO THE THINGS THAT NEEDED TO BE DONE. OVER THE YEARS, WE KIND OF KEPT IT GOING…BUT IT WAS ALWAYS…AN EXPERIENTIAL THING. IT WAS KIND OF AN ANTIQUE IN ITSELF. IT WAS NEVER INTENDED TO BE LIKE THE CITY THEATRES – IT’S A MUCH MORE CASUAL ENVIRONMENT.” “I LIKE THE STYLE OF THE BUILDING. IT’S A GORGEOUS OLD BUILDING – TUDOR-REVIVAL. IT’S GOT AN INTERESTING HISTORY. BACK IN THE MID-‘30S, PARKS CANADA WAS ENCOURAGING DEVELOPMENT IN WATERTON, AND WAS GIVING OUT THE COMMERCIAL LEASES, BUT THEY ALSO WANTED SORT OF AN ARCHITECTURAL THEME TO THE TOWNSITE. THEY HAD AN ARCHITECTURAL DIVISION, AND THEY HAD ARCHITECTS ON STAFF, AND IT WAS THAT BRANCH OF PARKS CANADA, THAT DESIGNED THAT BUILDING, AND MANY OF THE OTHER BUILDINGS IN WATERTON. IT’S GOT SOME CHARM. IT’S NICE THAT WAY.” ANDREA BECKER ADDED, “IT’S…A PRIVILEGE TO BE A WATERTON BUSINESS OWNER. IT’S A VERY SMALL COMMUNITY, AND IT’S A LIFESTYLE KIND OF ENVIRONMENT, AS WELL, FOR THE BUSINESS PEOPLE THERE. WE…FEEL THAT IT IS A SPECIAL THING TO DO…” LARRY BECKER SPOKE TO HIS TRAINING WORKING IN THEATRES AND HIS EARLY START IN THE WATERTON THEATRE, “WHEN I STARTED DOING PROJECTION WORK, IT WAS A LICENSED TRADE IN THE PROVINCE OF ALBERTA, AND, IN THE EARLY DAYS OF MOTION PICTURE EXHIBITION, THE FILM STOCK WAS A SILVER NITRATE FILM STOCK WHICH WAS, LITERALLY, EXPLOSIVE. PROJECTION ROOMS, INCLUDING THE ONE IN WATERTON, WERE BUILT LIKE A BUNKER. THEY WERE CEMENT ROOMS, WITH FIRE SHUTTERS, THAT WOULD SLAM SHUT IF SOMETHING WENT WRONG IN THE PROJECTION ROOM. THE APPRENTICESHIP PROGRAM TO BECOME A PROJECTIONIST WAS A 3 YEAR PROGRAM, AND THERE WAS DIFFERENT CATEGORIES OF LICENSING. WHEN I STARTED IN [1977] I OWNED THE THEATRE IN FORT MACLEOD AND I HAD TO DO AN APPRENTICESHIP, IN MY OWN THEATRE, BEFORE I WAS ALLOWED TO OPERATE THE EQUIPMENT. I BECAME A CERTIFIED PROJECTIONIST. I MENTION THE EARLY DAYS WITH THE SILVER NITRATE FILM, WHICH WAS HIGHLY FLAMMABLE, AND DANGEROUS. THAT HAD BEEN REPLACED BY ACETATE FILM, LONG BEFORE I BECAME INVOLVED, AND SO THE FILM STOCK WAS NO LONGER…COMBUSTIBLE, AND SO IT WAS A MUCH SAFER ENVIRONMENT. NONETHELESS, SOME OF THE OLD REGULATIONS SORT OF CARRIED FORWARD, AND SLOWLY CHANGED.” “ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WAS INTERESTING ABOUT THE THEATRE WHEN I TOOK IT OVER IS THAT, FOR LIGHT SOURCES IN THE PROJECTION ROOM, THE LAMPS THAT ILLUMINATED THE SCREEN WERE BURNING CARBON ARCS. CARBON ARCS CAME IN A BOX; YOU INSTALLED THEM IN THE LAMP HOUSE. WHEN YOU STARTED THE MOVIE, YOU’D STRIKE THEM TOGETHER, AND THEY WOULD CREATE AN ARC AND FLAME BETWEEN THESE CARBON RODS. THAT WAS WHAT PRODUCED THE LIGHT. IT WAS MAGNIFIED BY A MIRROR DOWN THROUGH THE LENS, AND WITH THE SCREEN. WITH THAT KIND OF A LIGHT SOURCE, YOU HAD TO BE IN THE PROJECTION ROOM…ALL THE TIME. YOU COULDN’T LEAVE THE PROJECTION ROOM WHILE THE MOVIE WAS RUNNING. AS A MATTER OF FACT, PROJECTION ROOMS HAD TOILETS IN THEM DURING THAT PERIOD. CHANGING THAT OUT WAS ONE OF THE FIRST THINGS THAT I DID, BECAUSE IT MADE IT A LOT EASIER TO GET OUT OF THE PROJECTION ROOM. THE OTHER THING – THE FILM WAS RUN OFF OF 18 20-MINUTE REELS AT THAT TIME, SO THERE WERE 2 PROJECTORS. WE WERE CONSTANTLY CHANGING BACK AND FORTH, FROM ONE PROJECTOR TO THE OTHER. GETTING RID OF THE CARBON ARC LAMP HOUSES, AND INSTALLING A PLATTER SYSTEM, WHICH ALLOWED…THE PROGRAM TO BE SPLICED TOGETHER ON THE SINGLE REELS.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT AND HISTORIES OF THE WATERTON THEATRE, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20120038001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20120038002
Acquisition Date
2012-10
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1970
Date Range To
1980
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
TIN, BRASS
Catalogue Number
P20120038003
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1970
Date Range To
1980
Materials
TIN, BRASS
No. Pieces
1
Height
4
Diameter
38.3
Description
SILVER METAL REEL WITH BRASS SPOKE IN CENTER; REEL IS COMPRISED OF TWO CIRCULAR METAL PIECES FIXED TO BRASS SPOKE; SURFACES OF METAL SIDES HAVE FOUR LARGE HOLES CUT-OUT, FOUR MEDIUM HOLES CUT-OUT, AND FOUR SMALL HOLES CUT-OUT. CIRCULAR SCRATCHES RING CENTER OF BOTH SIDES OF REEL. BOTH SIDES OF REEL ARE SCRATCHED FROM WEAR. OVERALL GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
BUSINESS
LEISURE
History
ON APRIL 11, 2018, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED LARRY AND ANDREA BECKER, OWNERS OF THE FORMER WATERTON THEATRE IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA WHERE THE PROJECTION EQUIPMENT WAS USED. DURING THE INTERVIEW, THE BECKERS ELABORATED ON HOW THEIR THEATRE CLOSED, HOW THE EQUIPMENT WAS USED IN THEIR THEATRE, AND HOW AL ANCTIL CAME INTO POSSESSION OF THE THEATRE PROJECTION EQUIPMENT. LARRY BECKER SPOKE TO HOW ANCTIL BECAME THE OWNER AND DONOR OF THE EQUIPMENT, STATING, “THIS EQUIPMENT IS BUILT AND DESIGNED TO EXHIBIT 35 MM MOTION PICTURE FILM. IN 2011, WHEN WE DISPOSED OF THE EQUIPMENT, FILM WAS BECOMING OBSOLETE. IT WAS NO LONGER AVAILABLE TO US AS AN EXHIBITION MEDIUM, SO WE WERE FACED WITH THE CHALLENGE OF CONVERTING TO A DIGITAL PROJECTION, IF WE WANTED TO CONTINUE SHOWING MOTION PICTURES. WE HAD TO GET RID OF THIS, AND AL [ANCTIL] THOUGHT HE HAD A USE FOR IT. AT THE TIME, HE WAS SELLING US COFFEE. WE WERE RUNNING A COFFEE SHOP IN THE THEATRE, SO WE HAD THAT RELATIONSHIP WITH AL; AND I’M NOT SURE WHY AL WANTED IT…I DON’T KNOW IF HE EVER INTENDED TO USE IT. I THINK, UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES, IT MIGHT BE USEFUL, IF SOMEBODY COULD ACCESS SOME 35 MM FILM TO RUN THROUGH IT. WHEN WE HEARD THAT AL WANTED IT, WE SAID “SURE, YOU CAN HAVE IT AL. WE NO LONGER HAVE ANY USE FOR IT.”” “IT WAS THE COST OF THE CONVERSION [THAT INFLUENCED OUR DECISION TO CLOSE]. INITIALLY, WHEN ALL OF THE THEATRES WERE FACED WITH THE CONVERSION, WITHIN A VERY SHORT WINDOW, THE DEMAND FOR THE EQUIPMENT WAS VERY HIGH; COSTS WERE VERY HIGH, AND IT JUST WASN’T FINANCIALLY VIABLE IN A SEASONAL OPERATION, SO WE DECIDED NOT TO PROCEED, AT THAT TIME, WITH THE DIGITAL UPGRADING/CONVERSION. WE WERE WORKING QUITE HARD, BECAUSE WE WERE RUNNING A COFFEE SHOP, AN ICE CREAM STORE, AND A MOVIE THEATRE. THE MOVIE THEATRE WAS THE FUN PART OF IT.” “WE WERE AT THE END OF OUR LAST SEASON IN 2011, AND WE HAD WORKED OUT AN ARRANGEMENT WITH THE TENANT, TO TAKE IT OVER, TO RUN IT AS A ‘STAGE AND GRILL’ KIND OF OPERATION. THEY WERE GOING TO PUT A KITCHEN IN, AND SERVE MEALS, AND PRESENT MUSIC ACTS ON STAGE.” LARRY BECKER DISCUSSED THE PURPOSE OF THE FILM REEL IN THE THEATRE, STATING, “[THIS IS A] SHIPPING REEL. WHEN FILMS WERE SHIPPED IN THE FILM BALLS TO THE THEATRES, THIS IS THE KIND OF REEL THEY CAME ON.” “[WE WOULD TAKE THE SHIPPING REEL, WITH THE FILM ON IT, AND THEN] WIND IT ON TO THE [WIRE REEL]. IF YOU DIDN’T HAVE THEM…YOU COULD USE THE SHIPPING REELS. A LOT OF THEATRES ENDED UP RUNNING OFF SHIPPING REELS, ULTIMATELY, ESPECIALLY WHEN THEY BECAME PLASTIC, BECAUSE THEY DIDN’T BANG UP SO BAD.” THE BECKERS SPOKE ABOUT THEIR ARRIVAL IN WATERTON AND THEIR HISTORY WORKING IN THEATRES, WITH LARRY BEGINNING HIS CAREER WORKING IN THE PALACE THEATRE IN CALGARY, ALBERTA. IN 1975, THE BECKERS BECAME INTERESTED IN PURCHASING THE THEATRE IN WATERTON, AND BY 1976 THEY WERE RUNNING THE WATERTON THEATRE. LARRY NOTED HOW THE BECKERS BECAME INVOLVED WITH THE WATERTON THEATRE “I WAS TRAVELING TO WATERTON. I HAD NEVER BEEN TO WATERTON. I HAD AN OCCASION TO GO TO GREAT FALLS. IT WAS ON…A BUSINESS TRIP, AND IT WAS OVER A WEEKEND. I LOOKED AT THE MAP, AND I THOUGHT, “IF WE LEAVE AROUND DINNERTIME ON FRIDAY, WE CAN SPEND A NIGHT IN WATERTON…AND THEN WE CAN CONTINUE TO GREAT FALLS THE NEXT DAY.” GOT INTO WATERTON, AND, BY THIS TIME, THE SUN HAD SET, AND I STILL DIDN’T REALIZE I WAS IN THE MOUNTAINS. I SORT OF LOOKED AROUND. I DIDN’T HAVE A ROOM BOOKED, AND GOT A ROOM IN ALLEN’S LAKESHORE BUNGALOWS, WHICH WERE ON THE SHORE OF WATERTON LAKE, AT THAT TIME, AND WHEN I GOT UP IN THE MORNING, AND LOOKED AROUND, I COULDN’T BELIEVE WHERE I WAS. I MEAN, IT WAS JUST THE MOST BEAUTIFUL THING…IT WAS STUNNINGLY, GORGEOUS! THEN I THOUGHT, “I’LL TAKE A STROLL AROUND TOWN”, AND THERE WAS A MOVIE THEATRE. OF COURSE, BEING IN THE BUSINESS, I’VE GOT TO STOP AND YOU…FIND OUT WHAT’S GOING ON THERE. I CHATTED WITH A YOUNG FAMILY THAT WERE LOOKING AFTER THE PLACE FOR LOTTIE BREWERTON. LOTTIE, AND HER HUSBAND, GORDON, HAD BUILT IT BACK IN ’35. LOTTIE WAS GORDON’S WIDOW. SHE WASN’T INVOLVED IN THE OPERATION, BUT SHE HAD SOME YOUNG FAMILY THAT WERE HELPING HER OUT, SO, IN THE CONVERSATION, THEY SAID, “YOU KNOW, I THINK LOTTIE WANTS TO SELL.” I WENT BACK TO CALGARY, AND NEVER REALLY THOUGHT TOO MUCH ABOUT IT UNTIL SEVERAL MONTHS LATER, AND IT WAS SORT OF ON MY MIND, AND I THOUGHT, “WELL, I’M GOING TO GET AHOLD OF LOTTIE AND SEE WHAT THE DEAL IS HERE?” “IT NEEDED WORK. IT’S NOT A BIG MONEY-MAKING OPERATION IN WATERTON, SO IT WAS…HARD TO DO THE THINGS THAT NEEDED TO BE DONE. OVER THE YEARS, WE KIND OF KEPT IT GOING…BUT IT WAS ALWAYS…AN EXPERIENTIAL THING. IT WAS KIND OF AN ANTIQUE IN ITSELF. IT WAS NEVER INTENDED TO BE LIKE THE CITY THEATRES – IT’S A MUCH MORE CASUAL ENVIRONMENT.” “I LIKE THE STYLE OF THE BUILDING. IT’S A GORGEOUS OLD BUILDING – TUDOR-REVIVAL. IT’S GOT AN INTERESTING HISTORY. BACK IN THE MID-‘30S, PARKS CANADA WAS ENCOURAGING DEVELOPMENT IN WATERTON, AND WAS GIVING OUT THE COMMERCIAL LEASES, BUT THEY ALSO WANTED SORT OF AN ARCHITECTURAL THEME TO THE TOWNSITE. THEY HAD AN ARCHITECTURAL DIVISION, AND THEY HAD ARCHITECTS ON STAFF, AND IT WAS THAT BRANCH OF PARKS CANADA, THAT DESIGNED THAT BUILDING, AND MANY OF THE OTHER BUILDINGS IN WATERTON. IT’S GOT SOME CHARM. IT’S NICE THAT WAY.” ANDREA BECKER ADDED, “IT’S…A PRIVILEGE TO BE A WATERTON BUSINESS OWNER. IT’S A VERY SMALL COMMUNITY, AND IT’S A LIFESTYLE KIND OF ENVIRONMENT, AS WELL, FOR THE BUSINESS PEOPLE THERE. WE…FEEL THAT IT IS A SPECIAL THING TO DO…” LARRY BECKER SPOKE TO HIS TRAINING WORKING IN THEATRES AND HIS EARLY START IN THE WATERTON THEATRE, “WHEN I STARTED DOING PROJECTION WORK, IT WAS A LICENSED TRADE IN THE PROVINCE OF ALBERTA, AND, IN THE EARLY DAYS OF MOTION PICTURE EXHIBITION, THE FILM STOCK WAS A SILVER NITRATE FILM STOCK WHICH WAS, LITERALLY, EXPLOSIVE. PROJECTION ROOMS, INCLUDING THE ONE IN WATERTON, WERE BUILT LIKE A BUNKER. THEY WERE CEMENT ROOMS, WITH FIRE SHUTTERS, THAT WOULD SLAM SHUT IF SOMETHING WENT WRONG IN THE PROJECTION ROOM. THE APPRENTICESHIP PROGRAM TO BECOME A PROJECTIONIST WAS A 3 YEAR PROGRAM, AND THERE WAS DIFFERENT CATEGORIES OF LICENSING. WHEN I STARTED IN [1977] I OWNED THE THEATRE IN FORT MACLEOD AND I HAD TO DO AN APPRENTICESHIP, IN MY OWN THEATRE, BEFORE I WAS ALLOWED TO OPERATE THE EQUIPMENT. I BECAME A CERTIFIED PROJECTIONIST. I MENTION THE EARLY DAYS WITH THE SILVER NITRATE FILM, WHICH WAS HIGHLY FLAMMABLE, AND DANGEROUS. THAT HAD BEEN REPLACED BY ACETATE FILM, LONG BEFORE I BECAME INVOLVED, AND SO THE FILM STOCK WAS NO LONGER…COMBUSTIBLE, AND SO IT WAS A MUCH SAFER ENVIRONMENT. NONETHELESS, SOME OF THE OLD REGULATIONS SORT OF CARRIED FORWARD, AND SLOWLY CHANGED.” “ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WAS INTERESTING ABOUT THE THEATRE WHEN I TOOK IT OVER IS THAT, FOR LIGHT SOURCES IN THE PROJECTION ROOM, THE LAMPS THAT ILLUMINATED THE SCREEN WERE BURNING CARBON ARCS. CARBON ARCS CAME IN A BOX; YOU INSTALLED THEM IN THE LAMP HOUSE. WHEN YOU STARTED THE MOVIE, YOU’D STRIKE THEM TOGETHER, AND THEY WOULD CREATE AN ARC AND FLAME BETWEEN THESE CARBON RODS. THAT WAS WHAT PRODUCED THE LIGHT. IT WAS MAGNIFIED BY A MIRROR DOWN THROUGH THE LENS, AND WITH THE SCREEN. WITH THAT KIND OF A LIGHT SOURCE, YOU HAD TO BE IN THE PROJECTION ROOM…ALL THE TIME. YOU COULDN’T LEAVE THE PROJECTION ROOM WHILE THE MOVIE WAS RUNNING. AS A MATTER OF FACT, PROJECTION ROOMS HAD TOILETS IN THEM DURING THAT PERIOD. CHANGING THAT OUT WAS ONE OF THE FIRST THINGS THAT I DID, BECAUSE IT MADE IT A LOT EASIER TO GET OUT OF THE PROJECTION ROOM. THE OTHER THING – THE FILM WAS RUN OFF OF 18 20-MINUTE REELS AT THAT TIME, SO THERE WERE 2 PROJECTORS. WE WERE CONSTANTLY CHANGING BACK AND FORTH, FROM ONE PROJECTOR TO THE OTHER. GETTING RID OF THE CARBON ARC LAMP HOUSES, AND INSTALLING A PLATTER SYSTEM, WHICH ALLOWED…THE PROGRAM TO BE SPLICED TOGETHER ON THE SINGLE REELS.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT AND HISTORIES OF THE WATERTON THEATRE, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20120038001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20120038003
Acquisition Date
2012-10
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1970
Date Range To
1980
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
Metal
Catalogue Number
P20120038004
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1970
Date Range To
1980
Materials
Metal
No. Pieces
1
Height
4
Diameter
25.3
Description
TARNISHED METAL REEL; TWO CIRCULAR METAL SIDES ATTACHED WITH A CENTRAL SPOKE; BOTH CIRCULAR PIECES HAVE FIVE LARGE HOLES CUT-OUT. FIVE HOOKS CONNECT THE CENTRAL SPOKE TO BOTH SIDES. TEXT ENGRAVED ON THE SURFACE OF BOTTOM SIDE READS “WARNER BROS., TAYLOREEL CORP., ROCHESTER, N.Y.” TEXT ENGRAVED ON THE SURFACE OF THE TOP SIDE READS “TAYLOREEL CORP., ROCHESTER, N.Y.” SIDES AND CENTRAL SPOKE ARE RUSTED. OVERALL GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
BUSINESS
LEISURE
History
ON APRIL 11, 2018, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED LARRY AND ANDREA BECKER, OWNERS OF THE FORMER WATERTAN THEATRE IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA WHERE THE PROJECTION EQUIPMENT WAS USED. DURING THE INTERVIEW, THE BECKERS ELABORATED ON HOW THEIR THEATRE CAME TO A CLOSE, HOW THE EQUIPMENT WAS USED IN THEIR THEATRE, AND HOW AL ANCTIL CAME INTO POSSESSION OF THE THEATRE PROJECTION EQUIPMENT. LARRY BECKER SPOKE TO HOW ANCTIL BECAME THE OWNER AND DONOR OF THE EQUIPMENT, STATING, “THIS EQUIPMENT IS BUILT AND DESIGNED TO EXHIBIT 35 MM MOTION PICTURE FILM. IN 2011, WHEN WE DISPOSED OF THE EQUIPMENT, FILM WAS BECOMING OBSOLETE. IT WAS NO LONGER AVAILABLE TO US AS AN EXHIBITION MEDIUM, SO WE WERE FACED WITH THE CHALLENGE OF CONVERTING TO A DIGITAL PROJECTION, IF WE WANTED TO CONTINUE SHOWING MOTION PICTURES. WE HAD TO GET RID OF THIS, AND AL [ANCTIL] THOUGHT HE HAD A USE FOR IT. AT THE TIME, HE WAS SELLING US COFFEE. WE WERE RUNNING A COFFEE SHOP IN THE THEATRE, SO WE HAD THAT RELATIONSHIP WITH AL; AND I’M NOT SURE WHY AL WANTED IT…I DON’T KNOW IF HE EVER INTENDED TO USE IT. I THINK, UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES, IT MIGHT BE USEFUL, IF SOMEBODY COULD ACCESS SOME 35 MM FILM TO RUN THROUGH IT. WHEN WE HEARD THAT AL WANTED IT, WE SAID “SURE, YOU CAN HAVE IT AL. WE NO LONGER HAVE ANY USE FOR IT.”” “IT WAS THE COST OF THE CONVERSION [THAT INFLUENCED OUR DECISION TO CLOSE]. INITIALLY, WHEN ALL OF THE THEATRES WERE FACED WITH THE CONVERSION, WITHIN A VERY SHORT WINDOW, THE DEMAND FOR THE EQUIPMENT WAS VERY HIGH; COSTS WERE VERY HIGH, AND IT JUST WASN’T FINANCIALLY VIABLE IN A SEASONAL OPERATION, SO WE DECIDED NOT TO PROCEED, AT THAT TIME, WITH THE DIGITAL UPGRADING/CONVERSION. WE WERE WORKING QUITE HARD, BECAUSE WE WERE RUNNING A COFFEE SHOP, AN ICE CREAM STORE, AND A MOVIE THEATRE. THE MOVIE THEATRE WAS THE FUN PART OF IT.” “WE WERE AT THE END OF OUR LAST SEASON IN 2011, AND WE HAD WORKED OUT AN ARRANGEMENT WITH THE TENANT, TO TAKE IT OVER, TO RUN IT AS A ‘STAGE AND GRILL’ KIND OF OPERATION. THEY WERE GOING TO PUT A KITCHEN IN, AND SERVE MEALS, AND PRESENT MUSIC ACTS ON STAGE.” LARRY BECKER DISCUSSED THE PURPOSE OF THE FILM REEL IN THE THEATRE, STATING, “[THIS IS A] SHIPPING REEL. WHEN FILMS WERE SHIPPED IN THE FILM BALLS TO THE THEATRES, THIS IS THE KIND OF REEL THEY CAME ON.” “[WE WOULD TAKE THE SHIPPING REEL, WITH THE FILM ON IT, AND THEN] WIND IT ON TO THE [WIRE REEL]. IF YOU DIDN’T HAVE THEM…YOU COULD USE THE SHIPPING REELS. A LOT OF THEATRES ENDED UP RUNNING OFF SHIPPING REELS, ULTIMATELY, ESPECIALLY WHEN THEY BECAME PLASTIC, BECAUSE THEY DIDN’T BANG UP SO BAD.” THE BECKERS SPOKE ABOUT THEIR ARRIVAL IN WATERTON AND THEIR HISTORY WORKING IN THEATRES, WITH LARRY BEGINNING HIS CAREER WORKING IN THE PALACE THEATRE IN CALGARY, ALBERTA. IN 1975, THE BECKERS BECAME INTERESTED IN PURCHASING THE THEATRE IN WATERTON, AND BY 1976 THEY WERE RUNNING THE WATERTON THEATRE. LARRY NOTED HOW THE BECKERS BECAME INVOLVED WITH THE WATERTON THEATRE “I WAS TRAVELING TO WATERTON. I HAD NEVER BEEN TO WATERTON. I HAD AN OCCASION TO GO TO GREAT FALLS. IT WAS ON…A BUSINESS TRIP, AND IT WAS OVER A WEEKEND. I LOOKED AT THE MAP, AND I THOUGHT, “IF WE LEAVE AROUND DINNERTIME ON FRIDAY, WE CAN SPEND A NIGHT IN WATERTON…AND THEN WE CAN CONTINUE TO GREAT FALLS THE NEXT DAY.” GOT INTO WATERTON, AND, BY THIS TIME, THE SUN HAD SET, AND I STILL DIDN’T REALIZE I WAS IN THE MOUNTAINS. I SORT OF LOOKED AROUND. I DIDN’T HAVE A ROOM BOOKED, AND GOT A ROOM IN ALLEN’S LAKESHORE BUNGALOWS, WHICH WERE ON THE SHORE OF WATERTON LAKE, AT THAT TIME, AND WHEN I GOT UP IN THE MORNING, AND LOOKED AROUND, I COULDN’T BELIEVE WHERE I WAS. I MEAN, IT WAS JUST THE MOST BEAUTIFUL THING…IT WAS STUNNINGLY, GORGEOUS! THEN I THOUGHT, “I’LL TAKE A STROLL AROUND TOWN”, AND THERE WAS A MOVIE THEATRE. OF COURSE, BEING IN THE BUSINESS, I’VE GOT TO STOP AND YOU…FIND OUT WHAT’S GOING ON THERE. I CHATTED WITH A YOUNG FAMILY THAT WERE LOOKING AFTER THE PLACE FOR LOTTIE BREWERTON. LOTTIE, AND HER HUSBAND, GORDON, HAD BUILT IT BACK IN ’35. LOTTIE WAS GORDON’S WIDOW. SHE WASN’T INVOLVED IN THE OPERATION, BUT SHE HAD SOME YOUNG FAMILY THAT WERE HELPING HER OUT, SO, IN THE CONVERSATION, THEY SAID, “YOU KNOW, I THINK LOTTIE WANTS TO SELL.” I WENT BACK TO CALGARY, AND NEVER REALLY THOUGHT TOO MUCH ABOUT IT UNTIL SEVERAL MONTHS LATER, AND IT WAS SORT OF ON MY MIND, AND I THOUGHT, “WELL, I’M GOING TO GET AHOLD OF LOTTIE AND SEE WHAT THE DEAL IS HERE?” “IT NEEDED WORK. IT’S NOT A BIG MONEY-MAKING OPERATION IN WATERTON, SO IT WAS…HARD TO DO THE THINGS THAT NEEDED TO BE DONE. OVER THE YEARS, WE KIND OF KEPT IT GOING…BUT IT WAS ALWAYS…AN EXPERIENTIAL THING. IT WAS KIND OF AN ANTIQUE IN ITSELF. IT WAS NEVER INTENDED TO BE LIKE THE CITY THEATRES – IT’S A MUCH MORE CASUAL ENVIRONMENT.” “I LIKE THE STYLE OF THE BUILDING. IT’S A GORGEOUS OLD BUILDING – TUDOR-REVIVAL. IT’S GOT AN INTERESTING HISTORY. BACK IN THE MID-‘30S, PARKS CANADA WAS ENCOURAGING DEVELOPMENT IN WATERTON, AND WAS GIVING OUT THE COMMERCIAL LEASES, BUT THEY ALSO WANTED SORT OF AN ARCHITECTURAL THEME TO THE TOWNSITE. THEY HAD AN ARCHITECTURAL DIVISION, AND THEY HAD ARCHITECTS ON STAFF, AND IT WAS THAT BRANCH OF PARKS CANADA, THAT DESIGNED THAT BUILDING, AND MANY OF THE OTHER BUILDINGS IN WATERTON. IT’S GOT SOME CHARM. IT’S NICE THAT WAY.” ANDREA BECKER ADDED, “IT’S…A PRIVILEGE TO BE A WATERTON BUSINESS OWNER. IT’S A VERY SMALL COMMUNITY, AND IT’S A LIFESTYLE KIND OF ENVIRONMENT, AS WELL, FOR THE BUSINESS PEOPLE THERE. WE…FEEL THAT IT IS A SPECIAL THING TO DO…” LARRY BECKER SPOKE TO HIS TRAINING WORKING IN THEATRES AND HIS EARLY START IN THE WATERTON THEATRE, “WHEN I STARTED DOING PROJECTION WORK, IT WAS A LICENSED TRADE IN THE PROVINCE OF ALBERTA, AND, IN THE EARLY DAYS OF MOTION PICTURE EXHIBITION, THE FILM STOCK WAS A SILVER NITRATE FILM STOCK WHICH WAS, LITERALLY, EXPLOSIVE. PROJECTION ROOMS, INCLUDING THE ONE IN WATERTON, WERE BUILT LIKE A BUNKER. THEY WERE CEMENT ROOMS, WITH FIRE SHUTTERS, THAT WOULD SLAM SHUT IF SOMETHING WENT WRONG IN THE PROJECTION ROOM. THE APPRENTICESHIP PROGRAM TO BECOME A PROJECTIONIST WAS A 3 YEAR PROGRAM, AND THERE WAS DIFFERENT CATEGORIES OF LICENSING. WHEN I STARTED IN [1977] I OWNED THE THEATRE IN FORT MACLEOD AND I HAD TO DO AN APPRENTICESHIP, IN MY OWN THEATRE, BEFORE I WAS ALLOWED TO OPERATE THE EQUIPMENT. I BECAME A CERTIFIED PROJECTIONIST. I MENTION THE EARLY DAYS WITH THE SILVER NITRATE FILM, WHICH WAS HIGHLY FLAMMABLE, AND DANGEROUS. THAT HAD BEEN REPLACED BY ACETATE FILM, LONG BEFORE I BECAME INVOLVED, AND SO THE FILM STOCK WAS NO LONGER…COMBUSTIBLE, AND SO IT WAS A MUCH SAFER ENVIRONMENT. NONETHELESS, SOME OF THE OLD REGULATIONS SORT OF CARRIED FORWARD, AND SLOWLY CHANGED.” “ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WAS INTERESTING ABOUT THE THEATRE WHEN I TOOK IT OVER IS THAT, FOR LIGHT SOURCES IN THE PROJECTION ROOM, THE LAMPS THAT ILLUMINATED THE SCREEN WERE BURNING CARBON ARCS. CARBON ARCS CAME IN A BOX; YOU INSTALLED THEM IN THE LAMP HOUSE. WHEN YOU STARTED THE MOVIE, YOU’D STRIKE THEM TOGETHER, AND THEY WOULD CREATE AN ARC AND FLAME BETWEEN THESE CARBON RODS. THAT WAS WHAT PRODUCED THE LIGHT. IT WAS MAGNIFIED BY A MIRROR DOWN THROUGH THE LENS, AND WITH THE SCREEN. WITH THAT KIND OF A LIGHT SOURCE, YOU HAD TO BE IN THE PROJECTION ROOM…ALL THE TIME. YOU COULDN’T LEAVE THE PROJECTION ROOM WHILE THE MOVIE WAS RUNNING. AS A MATTER OF FACT, PROJECTION ROOMS HAD TOILETS IN THEM DURING THAT PERIOD. CHANGING THAT OUT WAS ONE OF THE FIRST THINGS THAT I DID, BECAUSE IT MADE IT A LOT EASIER TO GET OUT OF THE PROJECTION ROOM. THE OTHER THING – THE FILM WAS RUN OFF OF 18 20-MINUTE REELS AT THAT TIME, SO THERE WERE 2 PROJECTORS. WE WERE CONSTANTLY CHANGING BACK AND FORTH, FROM ONE PROJECTOR TO THE OTHER. GETTING RID OF THE CARBON ARC LAMP HOUSES, AND INSTALLING A PLATTER SYSTEM, WHICH ALLOWED…THE PROGRAM TO BE SPLICED TOGETHER ON THE SINGLE REELS.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT AND HISTORIES OF THE WATERTON THEATRE, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20120038001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20120038004
Acquisition Date
2012-10
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
COMPLIMENTS OF SICK'S SIGN
Date Range From
1950
Date Range To
1975
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, PAINT
Catalogue Number
P20100013007
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
COMPLIMENTS OF SICK'S SIGN
Date Range From
1950
Date Range To
1975
Materials
WOOD, PAINT
No. Pieces
1
Height
0.6
Length
30.3
Width
45.8
Description
SIGN, YELLOW/BROWN PAINT ON PLYWOOD. WRITING IN RED AND GREEN PAINT READS, “COMPLIMENTS OF SICKS’, HOUSE OF LETHBRIDGE”. TWO GREEN SILHOUETTES ON EITHER SIDE OF THE “SICKS’”. HAND PAINTED. BACK OF SIGN HAS A MENU WRITTEN IN PERMANENT MARKER READS, “MILK, BUTTERMILK, TOMATO JUICE, APPLE JUICE 10¢, SOUP 25¢, PIE 20¢, CAKE 10¢, SANDWICHES 25¢. BACK OF SIGN IS UNFINISHED WOOD WITH VARNISH AROUND THE EDGES THAT WRAPS AROUND FROM THE FRONT.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
ADVERTISING MEDIUM
Historical Association
BUSINESS
History
DONOR GÜNTER HORN CAME INTO POSSESSION OF THE DONATED OBJECTS WHEN THE LETHBRIDGE BREWERY SHUT DOWN IN 1990. AT THE TIME OF DONATION HORN SAID, “I WAS ONE OF TWO PEOPLE SELECTED BY MOLSON’S TO GET RID OF THE ASSETS, TO DEAL WITH CONTRACTORS AND COMMITTEES, YOU KNOW, DISPOSE OF THE ITEMS. THERE WAS A THIRD PERSON AND HE WAS LOCATED IN SASKATOON, ALSO WORKING FOR MOLSON’S. THAT WAS BASICALLY THE ROLE. I WAS, PRIOR TO THAT, I WAS A BREW MASTER, THE BREWING MANAGER. I WAS FAMILIAR WITH THE PLANT LAYOUT AND EQUIPMENT THAT WAS AVAILABLE; SOME THAT WAS SENT TO OTHER MOLSON’S PLANTS LIKE CALGARY, EDMONTON, BARRIE, REGINA TO GET ENOUGH ITEMS. AND WHAT WAS NOT REQUIRED OR REQUESTED BY MOLSON’S BREWERIES, LIKE OTHER PLANTS, IT WAS MADE AVAILABLE FOR SALE TO PROSPECTIVE BUYERS FOR TANKS AND SOME OF THE MACHINERY. THAT IS BASICALLY IT - THE TEAM OF CONTRACTORS WITH POTENTIAL BUYERS GO TO THE PLANT, SEE WHAT EQUIPMENT THEY WERE INTERESTED IN, OR ALSO WHAT WAS AVAILABLE, AND WE HAD, IN CONJUNCTION WITH A THIRD PERSON IN SASKATOON, PRICES THAT WERE SET FOR DIFFERENT ITEMS AND WE HAD TO MAKE SURE THAT THE RIGHT EQUIPMENT WAS TAKEN OUT AND ALSO THAT THEY ARE PAYING THE SAME QUANTITY FOR THE PRICE THAT WAS SET BY MOLSON’S. WE DIDN’T SET ANY - IT WAS NOT MY FUNCTION TO SET PRICES. THAT WAS MOST LIKELY IN GENERAL WITH THE MEN FROM OTHER PLANTS CLOSURES.” THIS SIGN WAS ORIGINALLY USED IN THE ‘SNAKE ROOM’ AT THE BREWERY. HORN SAID, “THE RECEPTION AREA OR “SNAKE ROOM” IT WAS CALLED WAS STILL THERE WHEN I CAME IN ‘74. WE HAD THE WALL IN THE “SNAKE ROOM” AND IT WAS COVERED WITH, IS IT A 1/3 KEG OR ¼ KEG? THE WHOLE WALL WAS COVERED WITH WOODEN BARRELS, HALF CUT. [THE FUNCTION OF THE SNAKE ROOM WAS] JUST TO HOST PARTIES. ANYBODY COULD BOOK THE “SNAKE ROOM” FOR THEIR FUNCTION. ANYONE, PEOPLE WHO NEEDED A MEETING AND KNEW THE BREWERY WOULD ALWAYS BE OPEN. IT WAS OPEN, NOT JUST TO CERTAIN GROUPS, TO DIFFERENT GROUPS. WE USED TO HAVE THE MASTER BREWERS DOWN THERE. LETHBRIDGE WAS PART OF THE MASTER BREWERS ASSOCIATION THAT MET IN LETHBRIDGE, MET IN CALGARY OR EDMONTON. THIS [SIGN] IS FROM THE SNAKE ROOM AND ON THE BACK [OF THE SIGN] THERE ARE SOME PRICES. [IT DATES FROM] BEFORE MY TIME. IT WAS DISPLAYED SOMEWHERE. MOST LIKELY IT WAS REMOVED PRIOR TO. AGAIN, IN THE OFFICE YOU HAD A ROOM WHERE THEY HAD SOME SUPPLIES AND THEY HAD SOME THINGS THAT WERE TAKEN OUT OF SERVICE AND THIS WOULD BE ONE OF THEM. I DON’T THINK IT WAS THERE AT THE VERY END.” FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE SEE PERMANENT FILE. *UPDATE* IN 2014 COLLECTIONS ASSISTANT JANE EDMUNDSON CONDUCTED A SURVEY OF ART OBJECTS, AND CORRELATED THIS ARTIFACT'S ORIGINAL LOCATION (THE "SNAKE ROOM" AT THE LETHBRIDGE BREWERY) WITH ARTIFACT P20120028003 AND THE ASSOCIATED INTERVIEW WITH DONOR LINDA LIPTAK, WHO WORKED THE BAR AND FOOD SERVICE THERE. SEE RECORD AND PERMANENT FILE P20120028003 FOR MORE INFORMATION AND A TRANSCRIPT OF LIPTAK'S INTERVIEW.
Catalogue Number
P20100013007
Acquisition Date
2010-03
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1925
Date Range To
1930
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, SHEET METAL
Catalogue Number
P19750120000
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1925
Date Range To
1930
Materials
WOOD, SHEET METAL
No. Pieces
1
Height
7.6
Length
12.7
Width
51.0
Description
MARKED ON BACK "R. LIVINGSTON, SUPT., GALT MINE, LETH. ALTA". WOOD AROUND SIGN PAINTED GREEN AT ONE TIME. BACKGROUND OF SIGN PAINTED BLACK AT ONE TIME.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
ADVERTISING MEDIUM
Historical Association
COAL MINING
History
FROM FRONTIER, SASKATCHEWAN. SENT TO FRONTIER IN THE LATE '20'S OR DURING THE '30'S. THESE SIGNS WERE DISPLAYED ON SEVERAL GRAIN ELEVATOR CO. BLDGS IN THIS AREA WHERE EXCELLENT GRADE GALT COAL WAS SOLD IN LARGE QUANTITIES DURING THIS ERA. DONOR DROVE A TEAM OF HORESES 12 MILES TO HAUL COAL TO HIS FARM. SPECIAL BINS WERE BUILT NEAR THE ELEVATORS TO STORE COAL. COAL SHIPPED VIA C.P.R. BY BOXCAR FROM LETHBRIDGE. CONSERVATION REPORT ON FILE. *NOTE* SIGN MISSING AS OF 2004 INVENTORY.
Catalogue Number
P19750120000
Acquisition Date
1975-07
Collection
Museum
Less detail
Date Range From
1925
Date Range To
1930
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, SHEET METAL
Catalogue Number
P19770335000
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1925
Date Range To
1930
Materials
WOOD, SHEET METAL
No. Pieces
1
Height
91.4
Length
151.1
Width
4.3
Description
SIGN SAYS "GALT BURNS ALL NIGHT COAL, FOR SALE HERE TAYLOR SIGN WORKS CALGARY". WOOD FRAME AROUND SIGN PAINTED GREEN AT ONE TIME. BACKGROUND OF SIGN PAINTED BLACK AT ONE TIME. WORDS AND SYMBOLS ARE PAINTED ON SIGN IN YELLOW, WHITE AND BLACK. PAINT IS BADLY CHIPPED AND SCRATCHED OFF AT THE FACE OF THE SIGN. HEAVILY WORN. FRAME UNSTABLE; MOULDING LOOSE; NAILS PROJECT THROUGH FRAME; TOP LEFT CORNER BADLY DAMAGED; 3 PUNCTURE HOLES IN SHEET METAL; NUMEROUS DENTS; PAINT CHIPPED, EXPOSING METAL BACKING.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
ADVERTISING MEDIUM
Historical Association
COAL MINING
Catalogue Number
P19770335000
Acquisition Date
1977-02
Collection
Museum
Less detail
Other Name
WHITEHALL MEASUREMENT GUIDE
Date Range From
1950
Date Range To
1970
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
PAPER
Catalogue Number
P20010103005
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
WHITEHALL MEASUREMENT GUIDE
Date Range From
1950
Date Range To
1970
Materials
PAPER
No. Pieces
1
Height
0.2
Length
50.9
Width
38.0
Description
HEAVY CARD. YELLOWED. THERE IS BLACK PRINT ON ONE SIDE WHICH SHOWS DIFFERENT VIEWS OF A MAN AND HIS TAILOR WHO IS MEASURING HIM. BELOW EACH PICTURE IS A TITLE AND A SHORT EXPLANATION. AT TOP READS "WHITEHALL MEASUREMENT GUIDE". THERE IS ALSO A HOLE AT TOP. CORNERS ARE BENT AND TOP LAYER OF CARD IS PEELING AT EDGES.
Subjects
VISUAL COMMUNICATION T&E
Historical Association
BUSINESS
History
LEO SINGER WAS BORN IN ROMANIA AND IMMIGRATED TO RUMSEY, ALBERTA WITH HIS MOTHER. HIS FATHER WAS KILLED IN WWI. LEO AND HIS MOTHER MOVED TO CALGARY, WHERE HE ATTENDED SCHOOL AND LATER GARBER COLLEGE. IN 1930 HE OPENED A RETAIL CLOTHING STORE IN LETHBRIDGE AND FINALLY MOVED HERE IN 1932. ONE OF THE REASONS HE DECIDED TO MOVE, WAS TO PLAY FOR THE LETHBRIDGE JEWISH ASSOCIATION BASEBALL TEAM. LEO MET HIS WIFE PHYLLIS IN MONTREAL, WHERE SHE WAS BORN AND RAISED, AND THEY MARRIED IN 1942. LEO WAS ACTIVE IN THE LETHBRIDGE COMMUNITY AND WAS INVOLVED IN THE PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT OF THE U OF L. LEO WAS A MEMBER OF THE JEWISH ASSOCIATION, OF WHICH HE WAS PRESIDENT FOR 17 YEARS; THE KIWANIS CLUB, WHICH WAS THE FIRST CLUB IN LETHBRIDGE THAT ALLOWED HIM TO JOIN; RESERVE ARMY, CHAMBER OF COMMERCE, UNITED WAY, LEGION, LABOR CLUB, ARMY AND NAVY, ETCETERA. HE VOLUNTEERED MUCH OF HIS TIME WITH DIFFERENT CLUBS AND ORGANIZATIONS BECAUSE HE FELT THAT THE COMMUNITY HAD TREATED HIM WELL AND HE WANTED TO SHOW HIS GRATITUDE. IN 1930 HE OPENED A STORE ON THE HIGINBOTHAM BLOCK, MOVING THE STORE IN 1940 TO 214 5 ST. S. SINGER'S WAS THE FIRST IN THE CITY TO SPORT A FLASHING NEON SIGN. NAMED LEO SINGER MEN'S AND BOY'S WEAR IN 1955, THE BOY'S CLOTHING ASPECT WAS PHASED OUT IN THE LATE 1980S OR EARLY 90S. SINGER HANDLED BOYS' WEAR PRIMARILY BECAUSE HE WAS THE SOLE DISTRIBUTOR FOR SCOUTS CANADA IN SOUTHERN ALBERTA. MORE THAN 50,000 SCOUTS WERE OUTFITTED BY UNIFORMS SUPPLIED THROUGH SINGER. HE ALSO SUPPLIED THE CITY'S POLICE AND FIRE DEPARTMENTS WITH UNIFORMS FOR MORE THAN 30 YEARS. SINGER'S MOTTO AND TRADEMARK WERE "IT'S NOT THE SALE THAT COUNTS -- IT'S THE CUSTOMER". BEING RAISED IN CALGARY HE WAS INSPIRED TO ENTER THE RETAIL CLOTHING BUSINESS AS A TEENAGER, WHO SPENT AFTER-SCHOOL HOURS WORKING FOR A CLOTHIER AND LATER ENROLLED IN BUSINESS SCHOOL. SINGER SAID HE FELL IN LOVE WITH LETHBRIDGE DURING A WEEKEND BASEBALL TOURNAMENT AND DECIDED TO STAY. LEO SINGER PASSED AWAY IN JANUARY OF 1997.
Catalogue Number
P20010103005
Acquisition Date
2002-03
Collection
Museum
Less detail

14 records – page 1 of 2.