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Media Studies

Major Film and Television Archives - US and International

  • British Pathe
    Claiming to be the "world’s first digital news archive," this site allows you to preview selections from the entire 3500 hour British Pathe Film Archive, covering news, sport, social history, and entertainment from 1896 to 1970..
  • The Museum of Broadcast Communications
    The site for the Chicago’s famous Museum of Broadcast Communications, this site provides information on the Museum’s holdings of more than 85,000 hours of radio and television programs and commercials.
  • Moving Image Collections
    MIC lets you discover, locate, and even (in some cases) view moving images from around the world. MIC’s two databases can be searched from anywhere on the site.
  • National Film Registry
    Overseen by the National Film Preservation Board, the registry is the list of films that have been deemed most important and have been preserved. Each year, 25 new films are preserved and added to the list.
  • Public Moving Image Archives and Research Centers
    Links from the National Film Preservation Board to websites of international film and TV archives
  • Vanderbilt TV News Archive
    An extensive archive of U.S. television news, recording, preserving and providing access to television news broadcasts since August 5, 1968. You can search by subject, date, or news reporter. Searching is free (but you need to register as a user to begin) and you can order  copies of an individual program for a $50 fee. Compilations (of segments from several different broadcasts) can also be ordered, again for a fee.

Web sites in American Advertising

  • AdViews: a digital archive of vintage television commercials   Thousands of vintage television commercials dating from the 1950s to the 1980s from The Duke University Archives
  • Ad*Access Presents images and database information for over 7,000 advertisements printed in U.S. and Canadian newspapers and magazines between 1911 and 1955. Concentrates on five main subject areas: radio; television; transportation; beauty and hygiene; and World War II.
  • All Politics Ad Archive, CNN Online   A video collection of 11 television presidential campaign advertisements from 1952 to 1988. Includes three from the 1952 Dwight D. Eisenhower-Adlai Stevenson election and three from the 1988 battle between George H. W. Bush and Michael Dukakis, including the infamous “Willie Horton” ad. Also offers such memorable classics as the “Daisy” ad used in Lyndon B. Johnson’s 1964 campaign against Barry Goldwater and the Ronald Reagan 1984 “Morning in America” creation. Limited but useful for studying communications and postwar American politics trends in the effective use of the media for selling presidents to the American public.
  • Ad Flip   Private archive of more than 6,000 print advertisements published from 1940 to the present. Products advertised, including everything from dog food to DeSotos, are divided into 17 search categories, from automotive to travel, and eight themed categories such as comic books and obsolete products. The site may be searched by year, product type, and brand name.
  • Commercial Closet Advertised as “the world’s largest collection of gay advertising,” this site provides video clips, still photo storyboards, descriptive critiques, and indexing to more than 600 television and print media ad representations of gay men, lesbians, bisexuals, and the transgendered. Users can access ads by year; brand; company; business category; themes; region; agency; target group (gays or mainstream); and portrayals (“what the imagery/narrative conveys about gayness”) categorized as vague, neutral, positive, or negative. Although the earliest ad is from 1958, the majority are drawn from the 1990s. Creator Michael Wilke, a business journalist, notes that “the project is also creating a historic document that charts the burlesquing of the gay community and the move toward more positive and inclusive portrayals.”
  • Philip Morris Tobacco Advertising   More than 55,000 color images of tobacco advertisements, dating back to 1909, are now available on this site, created as a stipulation of the Master Settlement Agreement with the tobacco industry. In addition, more than 26 million pages of documents concerning “research, manufacturing, marketing, advertising and sales of cigarettes, among other topics” are provided in linked sites to the four tobacco companies involved (Philip Morris, R. J. Reynolds, Lorillard, and Brown and Williamson) and to two industry organizations (the Tobacco Institute and the Council for Tobacco Research). Ads and documents are accessible by date, brand name, title words, and individuals mentioned, among other searchable fields.