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The great silent films of the Selig Polyscope Company

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Screening Room 2017-02-23T14:10:08+00:00

The Selig Polyscope Company founded in 1896, in Chicago, IL, was one of the first motion picture studios in the world and the first studio in California.  From 1896 to 1923, William N. Selig and the Selig Polyscope Co. produced 2,180 films.  In the early days of the motion picture industry films were made fast, put into channels and then easily forgotten after the first run.  Film stock was chemically volatile and would catch on fire or decompose into dust.

Only a handful of the Selig films and scattered photographic elements of films are known to survive.  One of the missions of the Selig Polyscope Company is to educate and bring awareness to the world of the rich history of the Selig Polyscope Company and early film history in general.  Below are Selig films that are in the public domain and available on the internet.  We have assembled them in one place for generations to come to enjoy.

The Films

President Roosevelt at the Dedication Ceremonies at the St. Louis Exposition (1903)

His First Ride (1907)

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1910)

Riley with Kids on Lockerbie Street (1916)

The Heart Of Texas Ryan (1917)

All films are in the public domain.


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