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Newsreel heaven! British Pathé post 90,000 Historical Films on YouTube

It’s almost #toogoodtobetrue

The week, British Pathé, turned its archive of more than 90,000 historical films (or 3500 hours) over to YouTube.  This rich collection of captioned newsreels and documentaries spans the 1890s through the early years of the 21st century.  With coverage ranging from fashion to warfare and sport to travel it should be welcome by students and teachers of history and culture.

I can see teachers embedding this stuff all over their wikis and websites.  It’s especially tempting fodder for analysis and for media remix.  (Think Mozilla Popcorn Maker.)

My favorite of the playlists is A Day that Shook the World, with its the 85 videos that recall

days of the Twentieth Century that proved to be era-defining and pivotal in the course of modern history. These are the days on which political revolutions, technological breakthroughs, and sporting triumphs took place, and whose effects were felt the world-over. Beginning with the funeral of Queen Victoria and recounting such iconic events as the Hindenburg airship disaster and the Cuban Missile Crisis, the series also contains concise overviews of more recent events such as the Asian Tsunami and the 2012 Olympic bid.

Among the other films in this playlist are:

You may want to turn away, but you’ll find it hard not to watch this British Pathé montage of 10 Tragedies Caught on Film.

Some other sources of historical video news:

Newsreel Archive

Newsreel Archive (YouTube Channel)

Newsreels from Prelinger Archives (Internet Archive)

Library of Congress Online Films

March of Time

MIRC Newsfilm Collections

TV News Search & Borrow (Internet Archive)

Joyce Valenza About Joyce Valenza

Joyce is an Assistant Professor of Teaching at Rutgers University School of Information and Communication, a technology writer, speaker, blogger and learner. Follow her on Twitter: @joycevalenza

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