Rare 1930’s Movie Footage of Mattapoisett After Great 1938 Hurricane
These days, we take video of almost anything and everything. See something weird? Take a video. See an outfit you like? Try it on and send your friends a video to see if they like it, too. Somebody's driving like a lunatic in traffic? Catch it on video. It's just part of life in 2022.
Back in 1938, however, this was obviously not the case. Home movies were anything but common. That's why it is so cool when we are able to find them. It's especially fun when public spaces are filmed so that we can compare them now to what they looked like decades ago.
According to the New England Historical Society, the Great 1938 Hurricane surprised nearly everyone. "September 21, 1938, was supposed to be a breezy fall day here one the SouthCoast. Few paid attention to the storm barreling up the coast."
According to the NEHS, the Great 1938 Hurricane made landfall in Connecticut. By late afternoon, the SouthCoast was getting slammed by "one of the most powerful and destructive hurricanes ever to hit Southern New England". Between 400-800 people died.
To this day, a marker stands by Mattapoisett Town Beach displaying water levels on a utility pole from both the Hurricane of 1938 and Hurricane Bob in 1991.
A big thank you to Tim Smith who shared this video of Mattapoisett Village. The footage was taken in the immediate aftermath of the Great 1938 Hurricane. Tim says that he worked on some film transfers for the family of the late Al Sears. Taking a closer look, he found some pretty rare footage of 1930's Mattapoisett.
"Up until now I had only seen static photographs," said Smith. "It's a very short piece and is slowed down about 75% and stabilized."
Then and Now: Vintage Mattapoisett Pictures After Great 1938 Hurricane
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