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329 West 18th Street Suite #610
Chicago, Illinois 60616
(312) 243-1808

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Carl L. Godman Collection

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Collection Identifier: C.2013-09
Extent of collection
95 reels of 8mm film totaling 9,050 feet
Inclusive Dates
1951 - 1978
Bulk Dates
1959 - 1978
A collection of home movies documenting the Godman family of Chicago and Evanston, Illinois. The patriarch of the family, Carl Lawrence Godman, shot the majority of the collection. The films primarily feature his wife, Fay F. Godman, and their three sons, David, Andrew, and James. Collection highlights include a 1968 Chicago River boat tour, a trip to the Lincoln Park Zoo as well as home movies Carl shot while serving in the Korean War.
Godman, Carl Lawrence (was created by)
Carl Lawrence Godman was born in Chicago on April 28, 1930. After graduating from South Shore High School in 1948, he was awarded a scholarship to Northwestern University where he entered the School of Business and the Naval ROTC program. He graduated with a B.S. Degree, and a commission in the U.S. Navy. His three year tour of duty began shortly before the Korean Armistice was signed. His longest assignment was aboard an LST (Landing Ship, Tank). He left the Navy with the rank of Lieutenant.

Carl began working at age nine, using his wagon or bicycle to deliver jugs of filtered water (from a nearby experimental water filtration plant) to his neighbors. Once he returned home to Chicago from the Navy, Carl worked four years at the large commercial printing company, RR Donnelly & Sons. He began learning about investing by putting a portion of his earnings into the stock market. He soon went to work for Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner and Smith. Carl retired from Merrill Lynch in November, 1999, after thirty-nine years.

Carl L. Godman shot all of the footage in the Carl L Godman Home Movie Collection, except for those instances where he is in the footage, and then it was either his wife, Fay F. Godman, or other family or friends holding the camera. In addition to developing an interest in photography, Carl created in his sons (David, Andrew, and James) an interest in building things and learning how things work. Setting up the slide and/or movie projector and putting up the screen always signaled a night of family fun. Carl's wife Fay was the designated person to turn out the lights once the film started to roll or the slides were ready to go.
Custodial History
The films traveled in boxes with Carl L. Godman, from residence to residence. For the years before 1962, he lived on the south side of Chicago (South Shore), after which he moved to Evanston, Illinois with his wife Fay. The films were donated to CFA in 2013 and 2014 by Fay F. Godman and her sons, David, Andrew, and James Godman.
Language of Materials
Access Restrictions
This collection is open to on-site access. Appointments must be made with Chicago Film Archives. Due to the fragile nature of the films, only video copies will be provided for on-site viewing.
Use Restrictions
Chicago Film Archives holds the copyright for the films in this collection
1967 Fall: Expo 67 Montreal
1967: Godmans at Home and in Canada
1968 Fall: Uncle Dave - H. Melody Farm - Ball State
1968 Fall: Yard & Ball State
1968 Spring: Yard & Zoo