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Death Rapids - Columbia River
Description: Men navigate a rowboat past a turbulent section of the Columbia River known as "Death Rapids."
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Clip #: TFA-303D
Length: 3:49
Year: 1921
Color: B/W
Sound: Silent
Library: TFA Network
Decade: 1920s
Region: North America
Country: Canada
Subject: Boats
Original: 16mm
1920s, Canada, British Columbia, Columbia River, Death Rapids, Dalles des Morts, men loading supplies into rowboat and departing on journey down river, people waving goodbye from riverbank, turbulent whitewater rapids, men guiding boat on detour around “Death Rapids,” men emptying water from boat, man removing boot and pouring out water, men setting up camp for night after reaching calm water, silhouette man in tent putting on nightcap and lying down in sleeping bag

This film documents the first complete running of the Columbia River from end to end, including a 200 mile stretch of white water north of Revelstoke BC, formerly called "Big Bend". The river is now flooded by dams and the long chain of deadly rapids that captured the imaginations of so many adventurers is gone forever. Several people claimed to have been the first to run this river but Lewis R. Freeman, featured in this film, is usually credited with the feat. Lewis Ransome Freeman (4 October 1878, Genoa Junction, Wisconsin – 6 November 1960 Pasadena, California) was an American explorer, journalist and war correspondent who wrote over twenty books chronicling his many travels, as well as numerous articles.The film is actually an excerpt from a fictional film called "The Farmer" about a man who grows tired of watching the river go past his property and, on impulse, he decides to follow it to the sea. The original producer was Chester-Outing Pictures and cameraman/filmmaker was Len H. Roos of New York. Freeman is the man on the left in the soft knit hat seen at 2:39:53:20. The man next to him on the right at that same time stamp is Andy Kitson - a local boatman. The third man in this clip is Bob Blackmore, the owner of the boat and a noted riverman. Blackmore can be identified at 2:40:43:04 on the right of the boat, in the light shirt. The two of them accompanied Freeman for sections of his dangerous journey down the as yet untamed Columbia. Thanks to Cheryly Jacklin-Pirano for this information

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