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This Week in Universal News: A Homemade Submarine, 1934

by on June 16, 2014


What are you doing with your summer? Ever thought of building your own submarine? This week, we’re featuring a homemade submarine, built by amateur inventor Byron Connett in the early 1930s. The underwater vessel was only ten feet long and 34 inches high. The inaugural voyage lasted 45 minutes and covered one mile.

From the release sheet:

HOME-MADE SUBMARINE TESTED. Wolf Lake Ind.- A queer fish-like underwater boat, capable of traveling 15 miles an hour and remaining under water  for forty-five minutes, is put through its trial runs by its builder, Byron Connett, who worked three years to complete it.

submarine3

Amateur inventor Byron Connett launches his homemade submarine.

You may view the rest of the incomplete newsreel, which also includes footage of the funeral of Japan’s Admiral Togo and a devastating fire, here.

About the Universal Newsreel Collection at NARA:

The Universal Newsreel Collection is one of the most used motion picture collections at the National Archives and Records Administration. Universal Newsreels were shown in movie theaters twice a week, from 1929 until 1967, and covered a wide range of American life and history during that time period. Each release usually contained five to seven stories averaging two minutes in length.

In 1974, Universal deeded its edited newsreel and outtake collection to the United States through the National Archives (NARA), and did not place any copyright restrictions on its use (some stories may contain other underlying intellectual property or proprietary use rights).

While Universal disposed of many of the soundtracks, leaving the newsreels incomplete, supplementary material like scripts, shot lists, and event programs can be found in the production files, available for research at Archives II in College Park, Maryland.

Learn more about the Universal Newsreel Collection in this post and in this Prologue article. Watch other Universal Newsreels in our research room, in OPA, and on this playlist.


Comments

Phil Stewart June 19, 2014 at 4:26 am

This story was released on June 20, 1934.

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