Love Your Pet Day – Means Family Home Movies

Today on National Love Your Pet Day, Special Collections & Archives celebrates not only our own pets, but those of our collection creators as well!

Dog and people at beach, 1954
Means Family and dog at beach, 1954. From MSS 2018-004, Box 9, Reel 6.

MSS 2018-004 includes home movies from the family of Dr. Bruce Means, many of them featuring summer road trips throughout the United States. The 1954 film shown above starts off with footage of the family dog at the beach (presumably Florida) and, at around the 9 minute 15 second mark, shows the same dog again, playing in the snow (possibly in Alaska).

Home movies are a growing part of our personal papers collections. To ensure access to commercially obsolete media, FSU Libraries partners with expert film preservation firms to produce high-quality digital versions for use in our Digital Library and by users like you.

This particular movie is from a set of films donated by Dr. Bruce Means of the FSU Department of Biological Science in 2019. The Means family films can show us not only a mid-20th century family at play, but also serve as documentation of many US locations that have changed considerably since. This kind of “accidental” secondary value is a significant part of why archivists choose to collect and preserve archives in the first place!

To learn more about Dr. Bruce Means, his family, and his work, visit the finding aid for his collection.

Published by Rory Grennan

Rory Grennan is Director of Manuscripts Collections at Florida State University Libraries Special Collections & Archives.

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