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Paul C. Spehr (1931-2019)

Paul Spehr at the FIAF Congress in Lausanne, 1979 (Photo courtesy of Eva Orbanz)

It is with great sadness that we have heard the passing last Friday of the great film archivist and early film scholar Paul Spehr, a highly respected figure and a friend to many in the global film archiving community. Paul was with the Motion Picture Collection at the Library of Congress from 1958 until his retirement in 1993. He held the post of Assistant Chief, Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division from 1979. He was a close friend of the Giornate del Cinema Muto in Pordenone from its very beginnings in the early 1980s, and received the Jean Mitry Award from that festival in 2014.

He was the author of The Civil War in Motion Pictures: A Bibliography of Films Produced in the United States since 1897 (1961), The Movies Begin: Making Movies in New Jersey, 1887-1920 (1977), American Film Personnel and Company Credits, 1908-1920 (1996), The Man Who Made Movies: W.K.L. Dickson (2008), as well as many articles on early film history and film preservation.

An obituary will be published in the next issue of the Journal of Film Preservation.

Paul C. Spehr (1931-2019)

Paul Spehr at the FIAF Congress in Lausanne, 1979 (Photo courtesy of Eva Orbanz)

It is with great sadness that we have heard the passing last Friday of the great film archivist and early film scholar Paul Spehr, a highly respected figure and a friend to many in the global film archiving community. Paul was with the Motion Picture Collection at the Library of Congress from 1958 until his retirement in 1993. He held the post of Assistant Chief, Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division from 1979. He was a close friend of the Giornate del Cinema Muto in Pordenone from its very beginnings in the early 1980s, and received the Jean Mitry Award from that festival in 2014.

He was the author of The Civil War in Motion Pictures: A Bibliography of Films Produced in the United States since 1897 (1961), The Movies Begin: Making Movies in New Jersey, 1887-1920 (1977), American Film Personnel and Company Credits, 1908-1920 (1996), The Man Who Made Movies: W.K.L. Dickson (2008), as well as many articles on early film history and film preservation.

An obituary will be published in the next issue of the Journal of Film Preservation.