READ: LOST TACOMA SILENT FILM "EYES OF THE TOTEM" - TACOMA NEW TRIBUNE
One of our friends and city of Tacoma liaisons, Lauren Hoogkamer, recently sent a friendly email informing us she was wearing the T shirt she gave us an opportunity to design for the city of Tacoma - in the Tacoma News Tribune. Lauren opened up the door and we were able to design and produce the Tacoma Preservation Society Ts and Tacoma Historical Preservation Month Ts for Tacoma. It was an honor to do our civic duty.
The T shirt cameo was awesome but the reason for the article is amazing. Tacoma was once prepped to be the "Hollywood-by-the-Sea". Much like Tacoma was to the railroad industry it was being groomed as the next big thing on the west coast. Apparently we were going to go from the rails to the sails to the big screen. You'll Like Tacoma wasn't the slogan for no reason. There were three films shot in Tacoma “Hearts and Fists”, “Eyes of the Totem” , "Heart of the Yukon” all successful silent films during the times but lost years later in archives.
This is where our amazing friend Lauren enters scene and uses her passion for historic preservation and her experience from Los Angeles Conservancy's “Last Remaining Seats" program reviewing and gaining interest in silent films. According to a 2013 report by The Library of Congress only 14% of America's silent films still survive in their original 35mm format. Needless to say it took Lauren's special set of expertise to do what may have been considered an endless and impossible task. In the end Lauren, with the help of some other key players/researchers, found what was lost on the other side of the country. And now after review the city has resolved after 88 years to show Eyes of the Totem where is was originally sneak previewed - Tacoma’s Rialto Theater on Sept 18. Keep your eyes peeled. We'll be sure to wiggle our way into the theater and keep you posted on getting tickets to the showings.
Read the full story here and thank Lauren Hoogkamer - she is a silent hero here in Tacoma. Pun intended.