Mr. Till. Reel 3.

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About this work


This amateur film footage is part 3 of Mr Till's tour of Canada and the US; here he arrives in Seattle briefly (perhaps to refuel), moving onto Portland and then more aerial shots. He visits the International Exposition in San Francisco; the gardens and exhibits are busy. A large crowd gathers to watch a band; San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge is in the background. Till has also captured lots of incidental footage of American people relaxing. The exhibits from other nations are evident. Till flies to Los Angeles and Boulder Dam; Grand Canyon and the Colorado River. Much of the travel takes place by plane. In New York, from the vantage point of a skyscraper, views of the city are seen (the Empire State Building is under construction). Cherbourg Harbour is arrived at by ship (there is a submarine in the bay); Till captures the unloading of various cargo on the dockside. England is sighted from the bows of the ship. An intertitle says 'The End'.


[Place of publication not identified] : [publisher not identified], 1939.

Physical description

1 DVD (11 min.) : silent, black and white, & color
1 Videocassette (DIGIBETA) (11 min.) : silent, black and white, & color, PAL

Copyright note

Not known.


Supporting paperwork available in the department.
This amateur footage was shot by Dr Anthony Stedman Till in 1939; Till himself donated them to the library and provided some information about them. He set off on his own expedition across Canada and the US in 1939 before the outbreak of war. The footage he shot is mostly colour. He was a highly regarded surgeon (his specialism was in thyroid and abdominal surgery). His visit to Canada seems to be of a professional nature with two visits to hospitals - Toronto General Hospital and The Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota. At Toronto General Hospital members of the medical staff are named although some of the footage shot inside is rather dark and a little unsteady. At the Mayo Clinic we are shown an operating theatre with what appears to be open heart surgery taking place. Many major landmarks feature along this journey including the Heights of Abraham, Niagara Falls, Rocky Mountains, Vancouver Bay, etc. The footage certainly marked a turning point in Till’s life: in 1940 he joined the RAMC and served in the Middle East, Cape Town and Suez. He was captured and became a POW, imprisoned in Stalag VIIA. As a POW he operated on fellow prisoners and local civilians, then at some point (according to his obituary), he was repatriated to the UK for his services (he spoke fluent German). He was then part of the 181st Field Ambulance, which was in the vanguard of the medical relief of Bergen-Belsen, a Nazi concentration camp.
An obituary outlining Till's life can be read here:



Where to find it

  • Location Access
    Closed stores
    3295S 3/4


  • LocationStatusAccess
    Closed stores
    3295D 3/4

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