Title ID 511Collection ID6
Title[Grant: Voyage to America]
CollectionGrant Family Film Collection
Genre/TypeAmateurIndependent AmateurNon-fictionActuality/Factual
ThemeLeisure Travel Urban Life
KeywordsAircraft Airports Boats Buildings Celebrations Docks Family Games Harbours Monuments Piers Parades Railways Rivers Seaside Resorts Shops Steamships Tourism Urban Areas Water Transport
LocalSouthampton New York City Manhattan Harlem Coney Island Niagara Falls National Park
NationalEngland United Kingdom United States North and Central America
ProductionGrant Family
ParticipantsCharles Donald Grant - Musical Director; Major Montague I. Gluckstein (Chairman of the Board of Directors of J. Lyons & Co. Ltd.) Snake-Hips Johnson: Club-owner of Jack Johnson.
FormatMixed Colour and Black & White Silent
Duration37 min. 50 sec.
Copyright & AccessCopyright restrictions apply, contact Screen Archive South East for details


A voyage aboard the RMS Queen Mary to New York City, with a tour of several landmarks, a trip on the Elevated Railway, the district of Harlem and Coney Island. The trip includes a flight aboard an aircraft to visit the Niagara / Horseshoe Falls and later the return trip on the RMS Aquitania. The colour has a red cast and is de-saturated.


In black and white film, the ‘Queen Mary’ transatlantic cruiser is seen leaving Southampton. Scenes on the journey show: Balmoral Castle, the ship in open sea, deck games, family members posing for the camera, a Japanese family. On arrival at New York there are scenes of the Statue of Liberty, city views, the Empire State Building, a panorama of the city from the top, various street views, the Chrysler Building, the Rockafeller Center with its Statue of Prometheu, a Coca Cola advertisement on a building. At a parade, a military band is seen marching with instruments and ticker-tape descends onto the parade. A shop front for Webber & Heilbraun is seen.

A Family is seen on board a ship. The film then returns to scenes of New York including: a man with a cine-camera, panoramic views from a from skyscraper (Rockafeller Center ?) towards Central Park, the Chrysler Building viewed from the Rockafeller Center followed by a view of the Statue of Prometheus. Street views and family members are seen followed by a sign for ’Radio City 50e street’. A train passes through on the Elevated Railway section of line. Scenes continue with: the statue of Atlas at the Rockerfella Center, Coney Island, the RMS Queen Mary, a sign for ’Jack Johnson Restaurant’. At an airport a Douglas DC-3 aircraft "NC 16008 - US MAIL" American Airlines is seen on the runway at "Gate 5", followed by views through aircraft window.

Colour film shows Niagara Falls seen from a bridge. Returning to the ship, there are funnels, passengers waving, scenes of the harbour with other large ships, a panorama of New York's skyline and views onboard ship.

Returning to Black and White film, there are street views of Harlem, billboards and newspapers in Chinese and Japanese, a shoeshiner, views taken from an open front of an Elevated Railway carriage, China town, and a car ride to Grant’s tomb. At Coney Island there are scenes of a merry-go-round and the sea. At Atlantic City there are beach scenes, side show attractions, the Promenade, the Switchback and roller coaster. ‘Airsleeper to the coast’: boarding a flight on a Douglas DC-3 aircraft "NC 16008 - US MAIL" American 2a and aircraft on the runway at "Gate 5". This is followed by a montage of shots showing Niagara Falls and Horseshoe Falls with dissolve transitions, and the tourist boat: “Maid of the Mist”.

Returning to colour film, scenes show the falls, a lifebuoy on the ship ‘Aquitania, Liverpool’, a dockyard, the Statue of Liberty. On the journey back to the UK, there are deck games including shuffleboard, views from ship at sea, passengers and Charles Donald Grant walking around the deck.

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