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Phyllis Birkby papers

Identifier: SSC-MS-00283

Scope and Contents

The Noel Phyllis Birkby Papers consist of 50 linear feet of correspondence, films, memorabilia, photographs, sketchbooks, research files, subject files, videotapes, and writings. They date from 1932 to 1994 with the bulk of the material dating from the mid 1960s to Birkby's death in 1994. The papers provide significant information about Birkby's life and work, the women's movement and lesbian feminism in New York City in the 1970s and 80s, New York City lesbian culture from the 1950s to 1990s, and the establishment of a number of organizations of women architects.

Throughout the papers, there is more visual than written documentation. Nearly half of the total footage is made up of photographs, films, and videotapes. Birkby described herself as "always more interested in pictures than words." In addition, much of Birkby's research and documentation did not result in finished products leaving the Papers rich in raw materials that were not extensively sifted and digested.

Information about Birkby's personal life is available in SERIES I. BIOGRAPHICAL AND FINANCIAL MATERIAL, which contains general biographical materials particularly about her education and finances. The autobiographical writings (1970s- ) in SERIES IV. RESEARCH, SPEAKING, AND WRITING are a rich source for reflections on both her personal and professional life. Tape recordings and transcriptions of Consciousness Raising Group One sessions in SERIES VI. SUBJECT FILES (transcriptions) and SERIES IX. TAPE RECORDINGS contain a wealth of personal anecdotes. The tape recorded therapy sessions in the latter series are restricted until January 1, 2033.

Throughout her life, Birkby used a variety of visual and verbal media to express herself artistically. Drawings, prints, and paintings are located in SERIES I. BIOGRAPHICAL AND FINANCIAL MATERIAL; artistic photographs and films are housed in SERIES VII. PHOTOGRAPHS and SERIES VIII. FILMS AND VIDEOTAPES; and a few poems and other written pieces are filed in SERIES I and SERIES IV. RESEARCH, SPEAKING, AND WRITING.

Birkby's work as an architect is well-documented through Project Files in SERIES III: ARCHITECTURE which contains drawings, elevations, plans, sections, renderings, correspondence with clients, and job meeting minutes. These materials are more extensive for projects she designed in private practice (1972- ) and particularly for projects undertaken in the 1980s and 1990s for the New York State Facilities Development Corporation. Extensive files on one FDC project, the Pilgrim Psychiatric Center's community residence at 3531 Oceanside Drive, were retained as a sample of the extensive paperwork maintained on such projects. Other FDC project files were weeded to leave only those materials which directly reflect Birkby's contributions to the project. Sketchbooks in SERIES I. BIOGRAPHICAL AND FINANCIAL MATERIAL contain early sketches of architectural projects intermingled with all manner of notes and sketches such as journal entries, creative writing, artistic sketches, personal notes, lists, etc. The professional portfolio materials in SERIES I also document Birkby's architectural projects. Buildings designed by her are documented visually in SERIES VII. PHOTOGRAPHS.

Birkby's introduction to consciousness raising in 1970 brought about changes in every facet of her life. Changes in the nature of her architectural work can be seen in the different types of buildings she designed, most on a smaller scale. Materials about her various projects aimed at documenting and articulating the unique perspective women could bring to the built environment are available in SERIES IV. RESEARCH, SPEAKING, AND WRITING and in the related photographs, slides, and tape recordings.

Other professional interests are reflected in materials related to Birkby's work for the Two Bridges Neighborhood Council (in SERIES III) and her research and teaching related to housing for the elderly (in SERIES IV and SERIES V), particularly notes and photographs from a research trip to Scandinavia in 1981, and Pratt Institute student projects. Other materials on Birkby's educational techniques can be found in SERIES V, in the portfolio materials in SERIES I, in SERIES VII. PHOTOGRAPHS, SERIES VIII. FILMS AND VIDEOTAPES, and in the tape recordings of workshops in SERIES IX.

Birkby began to use film as a tool in architecture in the early 1960s because it allowed three- dimensional documentation of the built environment. Enamored of the medium, she soon came to use film to create "a notebook of events around me--a kind of journal," initially documenting the private activities of friends and family. These private films are peopled with the lesbian feminist theorists and activists who were Birkby's friends. Once she became involved in the women's movement, she also used film, audiotape, and still photography to document political actions and demonstrations.

Materials which document lesbian culture in 1950s and 1960s New York are available in the correspondence and in some of the earlier personal films. Autobiographical writings and consciousness raising group transcripts offer a retrospective view of the period.

In addition to her active visual and audio recording of events, Birkby documented the 1970s Women's Movement, lesbian feminism, and the flourishing women's culture by collecting written materials and memorabilia at meetings, rallies, conferences, etc., and by saving articles and issues of periodicals that were of interest to her. Most of these materials are filed in SERIES VI. SUBJECT FILES. Organized primarily by subject, the lively contents of these files vary widely, showing, among other things, the humor, energy, and optimism of the times.

In the late 1970s, Birkby began work toward a film on the "second wave" of the women's movement. She planned to use footage shot in the early 1970s combined with later interviews of leading figures in the movement such as June Arnold, Charlotte Bunch, and Robin Morgan. Tapes and transcripts of these interviews survive in SERIES VIII. FILMS AND VIDEOTAPES and SERIES IX. TAPE RECORDINGS. The film footage and oral history interviews provide rich documentation of early 1970s activities as well as the lives of the interviewees before the advent of the movement.

Personal reflection about her status as a woman in a male-dominated field led Birkby to join with other women architects in forming the Alliance of Women in Architecture in New York City to participate in the Archive of Women in Architecture at the Architectural League of New York, as well as the Association of Women Architects, the Organization of Women Architects, and the Union Internationale des Femmes Architectes. Materials about the founding and growing pains of these organizations are in SERIES III. ARCHITECTURE. Alliance of Women in Architecture materials include videotapes of members recounting the early history of the group as well as consciousness raising groups with women architects (in SERIES VIII. FILMS AND VIDEOTAPES). Birkby's own perspective on women in architecture can be found in the texts and slides (in SERIES IV. RESEARCH, SPEAKING, AND WRITING and SERIES VII. PHOTOGRAPHS) from presentations she gave on the subject.

Related materials in the Sophia Smith Collection are in the records of the Women's School of Planning and Architecture, the Women's Liberation Collection, the papers of various activists in Women's Liberation, and the oral histories and videotapes of participants in "'Amazonian Activity': A Celebration of the Life of Noel Phyllis Birkby", held at the SSC in the fall of 1997. A number of Birkby's friends have committed to placing their papers in the SSC and some have begun to send materials. See the reference staff for more information.

Select film clips from this collection have been digitized and are available to view online.

Dates of Materials

  • Creation: 1932-1994
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1960-1994


Language of Materials


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research use with the following restrictions on access: At the direction of the donor, selected incoming personal correspondence is restricted: Dubnoff until 1 Jan 2048; Hammer (including audio letter) until 1 Jan 2038; Weisman until 1 Jan 2028. Tape recorded therapy sessions restricted until 1 Jan 2033

Conditions Governing Use

To the extent that they own copyright, the estate of Noel Phyllis Birkby has assigned the copyright of Noel Phyllis Birkby's works to Smith College; however, copyright in other items in this collection may be held by their respective creators. For reproductions of materials that are governed by fair use as defined under U. S. Copyright Law, no permission to cite or publish is required. For instances which may regard materials in the collection not created by Noel Phyllis Birkby, researchers are responsible for determining who may hold materials' copyrights and obtaining approval from them. Researchers do not need anything further from Smith College Special Collections to move forward with their use.

To the extent that she owns copyright, Barbara Hammer has assigned the copyright in her works to Smith College; however, copyright in other items in this collection may be held by their respective creators. For reproductions of materials that are governed by fair use as defined under U. S. Copyright Law, no permission to cite or publish is required. For instances which may regard materials in the collection not created by Barbara Hammer, researchers are responsible for determining who may hold materials' copyrights and obtaining approval from them. Researchers do not need anything further from Smith College Special Collections to move forward with their use.

Biographical / Historical

"I have not by any means been a linear oriented professional person." --Noel Phyllis Birkby

Noel Phyllis Birkby was born on December 16, 1932 in Nutley, New Jersey, to Harold S. and Alice Green Birkby. As a child, she showed an interest in architecture and environmental design making drawings of cities and towns and constructing them in miniature in her mother's garden. When she was in high school, career counselors discouraged her desire to study architecture while noting her aptitude for that pursuit, "Well, Miss Birkby, it appears that if you were a man, you should be studying architecture." As a 16 year old in 1949, she "swallowed the implication that there just weren't any women architects" and elected to study art instead, entering the Women's College of the University of North Carolina in 1950.

In college she earned the reputation of rabble rouser and was expelled in her senior year after an incident involving beer drinking. By this time, Birkby had come to see herself as bisexual. Though drinking was the official reason given for the expulsion, Birkby believed that was an excuse to rid the college of a student who too publicly showed her love for a classmate. "I wasn't hiding my love for another woman, didn't think there was anything 'wrong' with it."

After a brief time at home in New Jersey in "numbing misery," Birkby went to New York City where she worked as a technical illustrator and "carried on in the bars." She went to Mexico in 1955 with the American Friends Service Committee where she worked on development projects with the Otomi people. She returned to New York in 1956.

In 1958, a chance meeting with a woman architect convinced Birkby that she could indeed pursue her chosen profession. The next five years were spent studying architecture at night at Cooper Union and working in the offices of architects Henry L. Horowitz (1960-61) and Seth Hiller (1961-63). After earning her certificate in architecture in 1963, Birkby, tired of being relegated to secretarial duties, moved on to graduate work at Yale University.

One of only six women in a student body of about 200, Birkby struggled to "rise above the female role" and prove her capabilities. "[M]y solutions were be as good or better than the men." She completed a Masters in Architecture in 1966.

From 1966 to 1972 Birkby worked as a designer for the growing New York architectural firm Davis Brody and Associates, where she gained experience in all aspects of design. Two of the most prominent projects she helped to design and see through construction were Waterside Houses, a residential development on the Hudson River, and the Long Island University Library-Learning Center in Brooklyn.

Despite professional success, Birkby was unhappy living a closeted bisexual existence and sank into depression in the years following graduate school. Though she had been introduced to the ideas behind the emerging women's movement, she had dismissed their relevance for her as a professional woman, believing the movement was "mostly about housewives in the suburbs." In May 1970, her lover returned from the Second Congress to Unite Women with a report of how a group of lesbian feminists called the Lavender Menace had disrupted the Congress with a presentation about discrimination against lesbians in the women's movement. "Finally feminism had some meaning for me. I was no longer invisible. I was part of a bona fide feminist issue."

Birkby, who now saw a connection between her life and the movement, joined a consciousness raising group and began reading everything she could find on women's liberation. She came to define herself as a lesbian and was invited to join a lesbian consciousness raising group, known as CR Group One, made up of influential feminist theorists and writers. In the company of Kate Millett, Sidney Abbott, Barbara Love, Alma Routsong (better known by her pseudonym Isabel Miller), and others, Birkby found herself in the thick of the movement.

By 1972, Birkby felt that her work life was at too great a variance with the rest of her life. Her training had been "male defined and dominated." She came out publicly, quit her job with Davis Brody, and started on a variety of pursuits including teaching, private architectural practice, writing, and documenting the thriving women's culture of the 1970s through film, video, photography, oral history, and the collection and preservation of pamphlets, posters, manifestos, clippings, and memorabilia.

In a range of architectural projects taken on privately and in collaboration with other firms, Birkby emphasized the needs and wants of the user. She designed private residences, an artist's studio, retrospective conversions of a variety of facilities for the disabled, low-income housing units, and community residences for patients after hospitalization. In 1973, she went to Vietnam with a team from the firm Dober, Paddock & Upton to devise a reconstruction plan for Thu Duc Polytechnic University in Bien Hoa. In the late 1970s, Birkby worked with Gary Scherquist and Roland Tso in California. Back in New York in the early 1980s, she worked with the Gruzen Partnership and Lloyd Goldfarb.

Birkby taught at a variety of institutions in the early 1970s, notably architectural design courses at the Pratt Institute School of Architecture and City College of New York. Later that decade, she taught various architectural and environmental design courses at Southern California Institute of Architecture, California State Polytechnic, and the University of Southern California. In the 1980s, she taught design fundamentals, building construction, and architectural design at the New York Institute of Technology.

Birkby used her teaching as a form of "environmental activism" combining the concept of consciousness raising with an approach to architecture learned in a course with Serge Chermayeff at Yale. Creative teaching techniques such as "buglisting" (making lists of aspects of an environment that are annoying), conceptual blockbusting, and fantasy projection were used to emphasize the "social implications of building form" and to focus her students' attention on the user.

In 1973, as a way to discover the unique perspective women could bring to the built environment, Birkby initiated a program of environmental fantasy workshops held with women of diverse backgrounds across the country. She was later joined in this work by Leslie Kanes Weisman. In the workshops, women were asked to imagine their ideal living environment by abandoning all constraints and preconceptions. Birkby and Weisman published a number of articles on feminist fantasy architecture in the mid 1970s.

Birkby followed the fantasy project with research on women's vernacular architecture. She visited communities and structures built by women who were not trained as architects or builders to document the connections between women's fantasies and the actual form of their creations.

Birkby was a founding member in 1972 of the New York organization for women architects, the Alliance of Women in Architecture and an early participant in the Archive of Women in Architecture. In 1974 she was a co-founder (with Katrin Adam, Ellen Perry Berkeley, Bobbie Sue Hood, Marie I. Kennedy, Joan Forrester Sprague, and Leslie Kanes Weisman) of the Women's School of Planning and Architecture (WSPA), an influential experimental summer school for women in environmental design professions and trades.

As the 1970s came to an end, the great flourishing of women's culture slowed and Birkby, along with many other activists became personally burned out. Her unorthodox career path and radical politics combined with the economic and political realities of the 1980s, caused her struggle for economic survival to consume increasing amounts of her time and energy. Her teaching positions were always "adjunct," WSPA folded, her private practice was part-time and less than fulfilling, she was unable to find a publisher for her research, and she was diagnosed with breast cancer.

In her last months, a group of friends from the early years of the women's movement, lovingly dubbed the SOB (Sisters of Birkby), banded together to care for Birkby who had moved to Great Barrington, MA. Noel Phyllis Birkby died of cancer on April 13, 1994 at age 61.

For more information see the file of materials from the 1997 Sophia Smith Collection exhibit "'Amazonian Activity': The Life and Work of Noel Phyllis Birkby, 1932-94".


111.524 linear feet (187 containers)


Architect; film maker; lesbian activist; feminist; founder, Women's School of Planning and Architecture; and professor. The Birkby papers include her own documentation of women's activities through various forms of documentation. Materials include films, photographs, journals, writings, and correspondence with several notable feminists.


This collection is organized into nine series:

  1. I. Biographical and Financial Material
  2. II. Correspondence
  3. III. Architecture
  4. IV. Research, Speaking, and Writing
  5. V. Teaching
  6. VI. Subject Files
  7. VII. Photographs
  8. VIII. Films and Video
  9. IX. Tape Recordings

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The Noel Phyllis Birkby Papers papers were the gift of the estate of Noel Phyllis Birkby through co-executors Jan Roby and Jane O'Wyatt in 1994.

Additional Formats

A selection of films from this collection have been digitized and are available to view online. Some audiovisual recordings have been converted to digital format for research use. Playlist available online:

Related Material

See also Women's School of Planning and Architecture Records; Diana Davies Papers; Barbara Love Papers, Eve Hinderer Papers and Isabel Miller Papers in the Sophia Smith Collection.

Descriptive List of Birkby's Films, Part 1

The following list was made primarily by Birkby friend, the filmmaker Barbara Hammer in 1996. Films located after that time were described by student assistants Erin Zolkosky and Crystal Daugherty using Barbara Hammer's list as a model. The few films with no description were considered self explanatory or have not been viewed.

Titles that were written on the film or the box in which the film was stored are in quotes. Other titles were assigned by Barbara Hammer.

A selection of films from this collection have been digitized and are available to view online.


1. BRONX HOUSE, DAVIS BRODY. 3 min. Sup. 8

2. CHICAGO. Sup. 8, B&W, good condition.

Shot of a man, another man, three men.

Abstract B&W of just hair and white background.

Interesting architectural space they're in. Some important Wright building. Architectural details, well exposed. Exterior has statues at rooftop.

Next reel in color. Probably looking at Wright again. Residence. W.S. Sherman home, 148 Coonely Road. Looks like the whole film is an exploration of those two spaces. Leaded glass.

Downtown Chicago skyline, then the Sears Tower, then Lake Michigan. Her Chicago experience.

Beach at Lake Michigan. Sunset over city. Water, sunset reflected on the water.


Whole film has red cast, light flare along one edge and is of different people, men and women. It might be architectural students or colleagues of hers, definitely architectural. Drawing table.

Second part is B&W. Shots of different men, one woman, same group of people in architectural school or they're colleagues. Book in the background "Yale". She attended Yale.

****Very early image of Phyllis, kind of gray, cute, smiling, talking, long hair and no scratches on film. Looks pretty young.

People working at their desks in architectural space. Office space of architects. Probably 1962.


Construction workers repairing building site, first minute and half.

Second minute not exposed - all black.


Nearly complete. One shot of Naomi Fatt at head of reel. Film in good condition, pristine.


Driving in snow to Hampshire; bldgs., etc. pretty good. slightly over-exposed.


7A. HAMPSHIRE COLLEGE [?]. Approx. 3 min.

Building--Hampshire College? on snowy day. Trees, stand of birches. Camera pans building. Paths on campus. Building. Young people walking around campus. People walking under building passageway. Shots of small bus-stop(?) building. Several quick shots of campus and people walking around.

8. LAUNDR0MATS. A Film by Arc 2 A . Filmed at SCI-ARC, 1978. Phyllis Birkby, Instructor. A study of physical and social space of Laundromats.

Star Wash. Clothes going round. Woman walking into Laundry cleaners. Series of Wash House signs. Some stop action sections.

Lots of signs. Sense of humor shows in choice of signs. People engaged in talking, sorting clothes, putting in coins, etc. Empty chairs. Machine bubbling over. Tide box in trash. Kids. Shots of woman's ass. Obviously from an admiring viewpoint. Beautiful sense of emptiness of space in early morning, slightly overexposed shots. Diagram, cartoon of how to do laundry.

Excellent shots of laundromat model design. Was this film a study to see the needs of people in a laundromat then followed by the model made to fit the needs? Many different creative models. Very colorful and interesting designs!

Stop action of people going in and out of laundromat doors. Overexposed but interesting. Loading clothes into car trunk.


Silhouette of guy, soft focus of woman and library model. Men working at models at desks w/glue and brushes, modelbuilding. Some in focus, some soft focus.

10. "LIU. One minute.


Some construction. A woman working mixing cement, and men. Laying foundation, looks like. May be a house she designed.

1923 S.P. is the way tower is signed. Film damaged, broken splices and film almost broken at end. Film damaged at end. Watts towers, looks like.


Well exposed, no scratches. Very interesting architectural space people are fixing up. Looks like women, one man. Really wild, wonderful architecture.

Fantastic gate, curved wooden roof.

Second section - pouring foundation.


Architectural model w/group of people around it. Rounded architectural space of cement, in a desert setting. Very interesting. Walkways that are jagged and diagonal.

Outside, cement mixer after chimes. A man and women working with the cement. You see forms.

14. "Soleri, Sandy(?).

Man working on a lathe. More of the cement chimes or bells, different from film 13 - beautiful - hung on strings. Another set of them, different kind.

Film in good shape, no scratches, well exposed. Ceiling w/red in between the cement rafters. Open space w/cement between, makes it look very light. More hanging bells in a new configuration. Spikes of the building.

Now in a car. She's in back seat, so we see driver's face in rearview mirror, and a woman sitting next to driver. Now beautiful abstract shot CU of rearview mirror which is reflecting natural scenes as car goes forward. Blurred countryside. Back to Canyonlands [see film 134]. She must have visited this place first and then gone on this trip.


Flintstones comic of construction in desert setting similar to redrock.


Shots of trees and roadside moving past with Space Center Assembly Building in background. Unexposed strip. Driving onto center grounds; stopped at a guard booth. Descending upon the building, driving closer. Shot of building out window of car. Interior of building--greenish, a sign says "cell 3--cell 4." Interior shots, of structural elements, start close up, zoom out. Also panning across room. Shot of glass wall. Wide shot of hanger (?), workers walking past. close up of sign: "hard hat area." Wide shot of ceiling and track lighting glowing greenly. Another pan across the glass wall. Dark interior shots. More pans up and down the glass wall, in succession. Jump cuts between shots of darkly exposed interior. Shot of backlit interior structure: beams, supports. More zooms and pans through the interior. Med. shot of missile, panning it up and down. Jump cuts of between sticker of American flag, group walking out, interior of mission control. Interior landscape shot. Airstrip? Jump cuts of shots of mission control. Close up of digital counter.


Shot from a car driving by Yale U. When she gets to Yale, nicely shot architectural studies, all of different buildings. Window details, roof details. Good shape, no scratches. Only drive part is overexposed.


18. "A&P BROOME ST./ICE SKATE". 1962 1.5 min. on Market St. at night. 1.5 min. ice skating in the country.

Night shooting of store fronts and signs. DeSantis Prime Meats in bright red. Chubby's Restaurant. Daytime, looks like near her home in Chinatown. Maybe her street. Bridge or subway trestles. She's shooting out of her loft window at people walking by on the street. Store was across the street.

Second part - Man w/mustache ice skating. Person in yellow rainhat. Snow on ground. Old-fashioned ice skate - close up of. Another guy ice skating. Abstract study of ice. Would be beautiful projected. Shooting television set. Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In, Goldie Hawn, etc.

19. "A&P" MARKET ST. 8/6/60. 8 mm color, Overexposed.

Across the street from her home.

20. "ANN AND SUE. SUMMER 1970. Color Sup. 8.

Sweet little study. Interesting architectural house on ocean at the beach. A woman waving from the stairs. Looks like Long Island. Woman lying in the sand, CU of another woman reading Novel Perspectives. Two women, Ann and Sue, in the sand together, CU of their feet crossed, touching. Good exposure. Lot of foot study. Slightly scratched. Still feet. Major feet study, more feet. CU of one of them. Medium shot of same rolling in the sand and out of the picture. Same woman by the ocean.

21. "AUTO SHOW".

Perfect condition, details and features of cars in an auto show. Beautifully shot for design and light. Alfa-Romeo, Ferrari Spitfire, Land Rover, Austin Healey.

22. BACKYARD 1979. 8 mm. color.

Looks like an urban backyard - TV antenna, clothes on lines. Probably shot from her living space, out window. It's a pun on backyard, potted plants and laundry and other buildings directly facing your own. Footage is good, slightly green. Manhattan skyscrapers shot sideways, city hall as well as vertical. Nice shot of white laundry, with city hall in background. Looks like a creative piece. 1979. Potted plants. Slightly scratched. A lot of cables and ropes, beautifully shot, great color, pulleys. Looks like boat mast, ropes and pulleys, it is. River is right there in back yard.

23. "BACKYARD". Approx. 5 min. (color)

Fairly dark exposures: Shot of NYC skyline. Shots of buildings. Shots of buildings out of focus, focusing. Shot of side of building taken through a window; pans up through frame. shot of twilight sky, fading light. Jump cuts between quick shots of buildings, TV antenna.

24. "BEACH". (color)

Close up of women's faces. Side close up of woman's face, she's driving. Series of close ups and extreme close ups of female faces, possibly inside car. Close up of a woman's neck, mouth in side profile. Arrival at the beach: 3 women walk into the frame, into the distance. Shot of hazy beach. Med. long shot of woman holding shark skeleton up to the camera. Another woman spreads a blanket. Another walks away to a dune. Med. shot of reclining woman's midsection from back. Jump cut to front shot. Close up of woman's face. Another woman's face. Splice. Shot of three women running away from the camera toward the water. One woman runs back and forth along the shoreline. Two women link arms and twirl around. Woman in bikini stands dead shark upright in sand. Shot of woman in the bikini and woman in yellow shirt jesting with each other. Wide shot of women standing with backs to camera, looking at the water. More shots of goofing around. Wide shots of women walking, running down the beach. The woman in red walks toward the camera, into an extreme close up. Splice. Med. shot of dunes. Shot of woman sitting on the dunes. More shots of the woman on the dunes from various angles. Med. long shot of two women cuddling. More shots of women on dunes: walking around, linking arms. Pan across dunes to shoreline. Long shot of woman walking over dune toward camera. Stops, lies down, disappears, sits up again. Rear long shots of women at shoreline, looking out at water.

25. "BEACH--FOOTPRINTS. FLOTSAM 8/66. 8 mm. color

Woman at beach w/dog. Wonderful third shot of two foot prints in sand merged. Exposure good, color good. First part of first shot in leader is damaged. Footprints in the sand. Ocean. Shot footprints so they look 3-dimensional in bas relief in shadow on them. Small doll in seaweed, flotsam, washed up by the waves. Coughdrops in seaweed. Interesting junk in seaweed. Then a lone sandal. A milk carton, etc. Dead bird. Sea grasses.

26. BEACH HOUSE, 7/69. 8mm Color.

All pink cast. Just flotsam, crabs, rocks. Do not see a beach house at all. Sand is pink, water is pink. Skeleton. Sailboat. A face of Louise Fishman. Overexposed Louise F. in pink water. Not worth much.

27. "BEACH WALK, B.H.?. BEACH WALK. Short Roll, Super 8, 2 min.

Possibly Barbara Hammer. Back of woman walking, running at beach. Ocean.


Woman w/afghan dog, running by beach. Woman sunning. CUs of different women sunning and dogs, more dogs, different dogs, CUs of their dog hair, interesting texture of CUs. Many minutes. CU of woman's laughing face. Goggles in the sun. Doghair w/ocean behind. Face of the Afghan. Tail of Afghan. Japanese multi-colored umbrellas, creatively shot piece. Two dogs sniffing each other. Scottish terrier. Women playing frisbee. Slightly scratched, good exposure

29. "BICI'S DIVORCE". B&W Super 8

Bici [Forbes] on one side, line separates paper, other side says Jeff [Hendricks, Fluxus artist]. Seems to be pasted on a wall in a house w/barbed wire between, in interior of a home. Zoom on a person but dark, can't tell who it is. Maybe Jeff. Woman - also dark footage. Tangle of barbed wire w/somebody's hands touching it. Looks like a divorce ritual. Woman enmeshing herself in barbed wire. Dark. Door w/light bulb hanging by and a bouquet of flowers. Something wrapped in bubble wrap.

30. "BMT [Brooklyn Mass Transit]//BRIDGE". B&W Super 8. 3 minutes.

Shot at night. Looks like white lights in a dark space. Probably a subway car going by. Probably would look good projected. She lived under the Manhattan Bridge. Would like to see it projected. Pristine condition. Five shots of Louise Fishman and another woman at the beach picking up shells.

31. "CITY ISLAND WOMEN". Super 8 color. 8/71.

Mannequin of a woman's head then cuts to a woman in the street. CUs of women in street walking by. No scratches, good color. Policewoman, all different ages of women, gray haired, long brown hair. Women sitting down, studying, Playboy bunny in B&W. Drawing of a woman w/mustache on her. Interior shots. Shot of Phyllis w/aviator glasses and hair pulled back. Shots of a man and other women, CUs. Probably an architectural group. CUs of hands slicing wood, building models. A photo or postcard of Psyche kissing a woman, statue of woman's head looking down, infant sucking breast on statue. Photo of two women who look like mother and sister or sisters, ancient photo. Photo of two women w/shawls, sign that says SISTERS. Looks like a photographic show of sisters.

Exterior shot of a blonde woman CU. Long shot of her as she turns head and looks at traffic. Shot of another woman very tan and also slightly blonde and smiling towards camera. Shot of water w/sailboat on it. Might be Catalina or ?

Back to same woman, lying down, CU of her face w/hand shading her eyes, smiling, laughing, good shot but intermittent scratch but much of it not scratched. Feels very intimate.

32. "CLARK FEREBEE HOUSE.. Color. Super 8

Trees on the beach. Brief shot of a man walking. House, wood shingle, wood patterns, light on wood, graphic shooting of shingles. Probably Clark at the beach. Tractor at the beach. Clark in rearview mirror of tractor and driving it on the sand at the beach and it's some dirt shovel or tractor. Only thing on the house is the shingles.

33. "CLARK/FEREBEE, PIGEONS NEAR MACY'S". 8 mm color, 5/70

Trees, bay window reflecting the ocean, more flotsam, junk floating in the water. Pigeons near Macy's in second part. Statue in the Macy's area. People dining outdoors. Good focus, not scratched. Large red X sculpture w/pigeons and people dining around it. Lots of pigeons being fed and statue of man w/NY buildings behind it. Maybe Herald Square.

34. DOGS.

Two German Shepherds playing in hallway. Interesting brown tones. Night footage, distant lights. Back to dogs again in living room. Colors nice, playful, fill up most of frame. Person wearing a Samuel Gompers sweatshirt in picture, a guy, seems to be his dog. Out the window dark again back again, out the window.

35. "DRIVE. (color)

Shots of driving down twisting country roads in winter. A bit of snow is on the ground. Shot through the windshield. Camera is very jumpy. Shots of driving through country roads through rain globules on the windshield. The rain has turned to ice. Quick shots of passing cars. The ice has melted, blurring the windshield. Leader. Medium shots of the roadside, the camera is being moved back and forth. More shots of driving down country roads through windshield, but camera is zoomed in slightly on road. Shaking camera shots of same: roadside, trees, snow. Camera straightens out to stretch of road again. Windshield wipers pass across screen. The corner of the windshield appears in the frame. More winding roads. No more rain or snow.


Some hand colored footage. In a violet scene she cuts from B&W to color and then back. Does that several times and intercuts a woman's breast being revealed w/ a man's glaring eyes. Hands on breasts, cut to man's eyes. Violet scene seems to be two women in sexual wrestling intercut w/men looking and w/ the breast. The woman is looking back. Two men behind table watching. Men in sepia. Women in color, rolling on the floor. Circle vignette around two men, cut to a circle mirror of the breast, cut to circle of two women, black all around, hole in balloon. Her creative work.


Dark. Nature footage, man shot like an hour before sunset, footage looks reddish. CU of a woman. Man and woman at the seaside. Beautifully lit little kid going up a small hillock with the light catching her orange jacket. Everything dark but the orange jacket. Everything dark but the orange light of a person's face. Kid being held by a person. Wildweeds.

Perfect exposure of a fall day on second half. Child in fall colored coat surrounded by beautiful fall foliage. Mom in bellbottoms walks up tree limb barefoot while child looks. Yellow-leafed trees around. Kid follows in foliage colored jacket. Out of focus trees. Another woman below looks up at beautiful red-leaved tree. Lake w/fall trees around. Beautiful two leaves floating in water w/lily pads. Dock into water w/two women and a child. More foliage relfected in the water. Footage is in good condition.

38. FLOWERS STAMFORD. Color, 1 min.

Various short shots of flowers. Good shape.


Frances Doughty--one good shot at head of roll; rest water reflections, leaves, sunlight; another woman soft focus, Lynda?

40. "HEAD CHANGE.. 5 min. 16 mm. color sound film. Completed work.

Love obsession w/woman named Leslie [Ena whom she met at WSPA?] with whom she ran WSPA conferences with. Shot from slides and television footage. Slide of Phyllis w/long hair, halfway through. Soundtrack is popular song "She's That Kind Of Woman" sung by Jade and Sassaparilla. [Ena] Leslie? gets her hair cut. Not dated. Tech. advisor Alida Walsh. In can and mailing carton.

41. "HEAD CHANGE. 16mm. elements film, AB roll, 16 mm. magrack for "Head Change."

42. Slide outtakes from "Head Change".. 16mm

43. Video outtakes from "Head Change". color 16 mm., 30 seconds.

44. "Head Change.

Original footage that was optically printed, 16 mm. of photographs and slides. The WSPA, of Phyllis that were used in Head Change.

45. Outtakes from "Head Change". 16 mm.

red filter used on slides used in Head Change. Video footage. Slides of haircut. Slides of WSPA group.

46. Title roll for "Head Change"..16mm

47. More outtakes, slides from "Head Change".. 16mm

48. Titles for "Head Change".. 16mm

52. Extra video for "Head Change".. 16mm

53. More titles for "Head Change"..16mm

54. "KITE" aka GETTING IT UP. Super 8, 15 minutes. Print.

Sweet Film. Two women lovers at the beach flying kites, lying in sand, holding hands. Nice close ups of sandy levi crotch; shoes with sand, (showing two women together). Kite abstracted to form. Orange and black on white beach. 4 women. One with camera. All in same kite scene. Shot of Phyllis, CU. With aviator clear glasses, eyes closed, throws her head back. CU of Phyllis's face with someone else's fingers in her mouth (or her own). Nice CU's of P.B. Group shots with women and kite. Medium CU of tying kite. Kite flying. Phyllis and others in same shot watch kite. Phyllis holding kite string looks at Louise Fishman? Passing string back and forth. Phyllis with hands up as if lost kite.

55. "KITE" 11/19/71. Sup. 8. Original

56. LONE WOMAN ON BEACH 5/70. Overexposed Reg. 8,

Woman on the beach 5/70. At very end, woman walks away down beach, good exposure. Shots of ocean.

57. LOUISE FISHMAN AT THE BEACH. One and one-half minutes.

Paper spliced. Do not project until splice repaired. Nice creative shooting of two women at the beach, shooting from behind, she shot in a way that they jump from side to side. Image in good shape.

58. LOVE LETTER. 16mm

Pan down a slide of Phyllis to a life size outline drawing of her body. Second shot of drawing, inside body are written things, in the head a fried egg with tears dripping from it and a smile and it said around the outside "a new head." Second shot of legs w/bellbottoms. Left leg says "say acting drawing speaking" right legs says "do something working hearing." One leg says pain one leg says love. Drawing of another person in the class. Dissolve from one figure into another. Could be same person, two different drawings. A slide of one woman, Leslie maybe, different one than we've seen. Three or four photos of another woman, shots short so that they're animated. Looks like Leslie? Graphic like a computer printout Phyllis imprinted over the slide of another woman. Completed film.

59. MIME. Workprint, Super 8, 2 min. (Tails Out)


First shot of a woman's hand by a yellow structure. Shot mostly from a TV screen, possibly. Second part - an outake from "Tractor." Do not project, paper splice. Not very interesting.


Man w/sunglasses CU. Woman w/sunglasses CU. Extreme CUs showing eyepiece, creatively shot, mouth, nose, camera turned. Long shots of people around a swimming pool in LA. Creekwater, dim shot of a man sitting on a rock in a cave, actually not so bad. Then in another position, doing a shoulder stand on same rock and water going around. Now he's nude. She zooms in on his penis and now there's a rear shot. Another nude shot of him lounging on the rocks. At the beach and same man is lying in sand nude between rocks, kind of crawling on hands and knees as if coming out of the ocean. Another shot of him walking into this cave. CUs of him w/sky behind. Ocean looks Carribean. Ocean is turquoise. CU of him, has a beard. Woman at the beach holding up seeds from a tree or something. Same woman w/camera and looks like her hands are on her bra? or underwear?

62. ROOFTOP SHOOTING. 1.5 minutes

Good shape, nicely exposed. Texaco station at night. New York(?) rooftop, water towers. Could be shot from her roof. Store that says Ernest Chandler's Goods, Tarpaulins, Tents and Bags on its brick building side. Circular pan shot, light is nice, last hour of the day. Manhattan bridge in background, or Brooklyn behind the projects. Next day, Texaco sign in daylight.

63. SCENERY. Super 8, Color, 1972. 1 minute.

A few miscellaneous shots of trees.

64. SEASHELLS BY THE SEASHORE. Super 8, color, 3 minutes.

Carribean or South Seas or ?.

65. SHIRLEY WALTON. Super 8. Black/White. Approx. 12 min.

Unedited footage gets good at end. Mostly dark, too dark to read. Woman in doorway or room posing. Sections of patterned cloth and woman lying down. Has hands crossed on stomach, zoom out, she appears to be pregnant. CU of woman's face without glasses. Nude, swollen breasts, she is pregnant! Beautiful nude long shot, well exposed of pregnant Shirley in interior. Shirley poses erotically while pregnant! Holds stomach. Tummy full frame. Zoom out to LS frontal, side, other side. Same shot from behind. Series of hands on tummy. Shirley dancing? and sitting.


Long Island beaches, has drift fences. Group of men and women on the beach, CUs. She's shooting the way the fences keep at the sand. Looks like Long Island. CU of smiling face of either Ann or Sue, refers back to Beachhouse Film #20?. Beach grasses. Ocean and another woman at the beach. Sue? Hand holding up a rock w/piece of seaweed growing out of it. Hand and foot, hand is going through seaweed, shot from one side of the frame and then the other. A toy cow on the beach.

67. "STAMFORD" II. 8/68 8 mm.

Red and White sailboat. She shoots it very expressively w/graphic design using the shape and color of the sails for a design pattern in part.


Ocean, sailboat being set up, Sunfish sailboat on the beach. Red and white sail. Not scratched. Woman and child looking for seashells. Lots of the boat putting out to sea. Man and woman in boat. Hulls of boats on racks. Sunfish sailing. Don't know who people are. Older heterosexual couple.

68. "Sun on Water, Sky, Rough Cut(?). BEACH SUNSET.

Shots of ocean, sunset, ocean, beach foam, foam on sand, lot of soft focus. Waves coming in and out at sunset. Nice cloud shots. Sunset behind clouds. Quite beautiful. Film has a big scratch in it. Looks like she shot a sunset in real time. That's the end of it.

69. "TRACTOR". Original.

70. "TRACTOR". Super 8, color print, approx. 4-5 min.

This is an edited completed Super 8 Film titled TRACTOR. Good Condition. Completed: 11/19/1971 by Noel Phyllis Birkby. The tractor woman is Frederica Leser.

Shots of woman driving tiny tractor. Scenery shots of background. Slightly overexposed. Camera point of view of ground; dark shot of woman driving towards you. Side shot through bushes of woman driving. Frame through interior of home window zoom to tractor. Second shot through corner of barn? window. Side ways with camera turned to the side! of woman driving. Upside down shot of woman driving. Series of camera turned sideways or upside down. Afghan hound CU. Short shots of side ways, upside down. Tractor is mowing lawn. (I remember Phyllis telling me about this film. She considered it complete and a work in itself which it is.) Sunset shots.


Brooklyn Bridge, beautifully shot, some scratches, some perfect. The Golden Hour, hour before sunset. East River and buildings around the bridge. Last part is overexposed. Very last is good exposure again.

72. 2 BRIDGES MANHATTAN. Reg. 8, color.

Good color. Shot from rooftop. Rather beautiful. Some light flares. Car Carey's in. Crowds gathered on New York sidewalk. Shots from down in the crowd. Tuba and woman in red, white and blue dress, back to camera, turns. Shots from behind stage. Man in suit turns toward the camera. Men's handshakes w/mens suits. Carey shaking hands, CU of hands. Carey from stage w/microphone. Crowd shots very good. Wonderful character shots of crowd members. A lot of gesturing by Carey, hand gesturing. Series of his hands in frame. Color good, looks great.


Half is black. Her location where she lived. Date of '69 on film. Market Street - One Way. Manhattan Bridge. Beautiful sepia cast to the film. Architectural details of railing. Sign - Community Control is Beautiful and Workable. Sign in Chinese. A shot of the anchorage of the Manhattan bridge. Film is not scratched. Street lights, a shot underneath the subway or bridge looking up. Long shot of Manhattan Bridge with the towers. Architectural details of cement. Snow on fences. Bridge scene through houses. Bridge scene from sidewalk w/community members, different ethnic groups. Then she shoots an abstract, may be the bridge, then darker buildings and a building where bridge was. Sign - Mobilization For Youth. Sign in Hebrew - 22 Rutgers Street. Jewish Daily Forward, huge sign. Important Lower East side footage. Sign - Lower East Side Information Servicecenter. Great roll. Beautiful shots of everything. Snow on trees, camera steady, people walking by. Incredibly beautiful.

74. UNTITLED. Approx. 3 minutes (color)

Darkly exposed shots of woman; zoom in on her face. Woman balances vase on her head. Woman sits with vase in front of her. Close up of her face, she's saying something, and blocks the camera with her hand. Camera zooms out. Another person surprises her by joining her. They bat at each other, then stand together at end.

75. WASHINGTON SQUARE PARK. Sup. 8, good condition, color, one minor scratch. Well exposed.

People in the park, in the arch, crowd gathered below arch. Kids in costume - Halloween? Lots of kids in costume below arch, walking, nicely shot.

Woman in clown costume. Kid w/great orange mask as devil, devil's tail, all by himself. A fake plant. CU of kid's face with paint smudges. Kid wrapped in white swaddling and turban. Crowd shots of kids and adults. In a playground section of park w/ropes, kids climbing ropes. Spinning platform. Football game. Seems to be just people in the park, documentation of how people use the park, that's what she'd be interested in. Dark footage. Hare Krishnas - well exposed. Hare Krishnas chanting, dancing w/signs. People using the park. That's it.


Man w/guitar in civic space. Two African-American men singing and playing guitar in New York. Footage good, not scratched. Street scene of VW red bus painted w/ "LOVE" in big white letters. Could be Washington Square. Hot dog stand, footage looks good, not scratched, minor anyway. Crowd in demonstration or someone's famous, huge crowd. It is Washington Square Park. Long shot. General long shot of people in park, child by pool, volleyball game at Washington Square Park. Red bus is in frame, may have carried the women into the park. Dark shot of game.

Next reel: Back to singers from first reel, strung together, good looking heterosexual older couple in their seventies. Series of shots of people sitting around circle w/fountain in middle in Washington Square Park. People dog walking in Washington Square Park. People sitting around a bench in the park. People gathering in small groups, crowd probably watching entertainers. Two women playing the viola, small group of musicians people watching. Two people (women?) under tree. Photographers, man and woman, sitting at tripod. Man w/sign on his back, ice cream stand. People sitting in small group w/ guitar. General Washington Square Park study.


Mainly of kids playing. A guy in a suit on a podium, kids playing tag, semi-soft focus.


Dog running, fall day, beautiful, no scratches. Pigeons, dogs, people in the street around the park. People walking dogs, squirrel.


Mainly of the arch and buildings surrounding the park, dogs, fountain.


People in park kissing w/green film. Man filming, woman taking light reading, shooting a kid in a tree. Green filter, trees and sky. Then yellow filter. People reading w/yellow filter.


Small patch of snow in fall leaves. People around pond. Mounds in park. Twilight. Beautiful filter rainbow light coming down into park. Refraction of light through trees - very pretty. Pigeons on cement bricks. Pigeons in trees. Park bench empty, w/pigeons.


10/25/70. Dark. Kid on bicycle. The arch. Looks like twilight. Fountain without water. Kids in the rain. Troubador area - sign on post.

83. WASHINGTON SQUARE PARK. (color and black and white)

Pan around stone steps or enclosure. Crowd shots from the back and side, panning around. Jump cuts between medium shots of people in crowd. Medium shot, pan out of man dancing. Wide shot, zoom in on child in fountain. Jump cuts between shots of black inverted cap-things on ground.

Cut to black and white footage. Children playing on jungle gym in med. long shot, their truncated limbs pass in and out of the spaces between the beams. Med. shot of parents or older children, from back. Med. long shot of children crawling on top of structure. Wide shot, of merry-go-round, zoom into child in center. Med. shot, framed by beams, of child smoking (?).

Cut to color footage. Med. shots of people in Washington Square.

Cut to black and white. Activities in W. Square: woman buys a glass pipe, woman combs hair, shots of people passing by. Elderly couple walzes in midst of passers by. Med. shot of their legs, knees-down, dancing. Zooms out to wide shot. Head shots of passers-by moving in and out of frame.

Cut to color. Shot of the upper half of arch in W. Square. Shots of people in Square, camera zooming in and out. Toddler chases ball.

Descriptive List of Birkby's Films, Part 2

84. WHOLEO. Original footage, 16 mm, 1751, unscratched, unprojected, perfect condition, tails out on reel.

Hammer's archive has similar footage shot by Hammer of Birkby at same time and in same place. Footage of stained glass Buckminster Fuller-type dome w/aluminum or metal struts. 1978 or 79. Good shape, no scratches, Barbara Hammer is in it. Circle pan of the dome, still shots of different configurations of the stained glass. Circular movement spinning you around the dome. At the Russian River in California. Camera pans by Barbara Hammer, nude shot of Hammer. Another one of Hammer showing necklace to someone and taking a coffee cup and putting a medallion in it. Hammer dramatically pouring tea. Colored reflection of glass on nude body. Hammer standing on head w/breasts sagging. Colored light playing over her body. Another circle spin of the stained glass.

One of the Tatami mats w/colored light reflected on it. Coffee cup is picked by woman who was living in the Dome [Caroling]. Beautiful outdoor shot of the dome going down to the entranceway. Shot looking in through the entranceway into the Dome. Shot of B. Hammer in the dome, talking, scratching back, gesturing. New interior space of wooden structure, The Pyramid [of Amaratasu], on top of hill in northern side of the mouth of the Russian River. Lived in and constructed by women. CU of a fuschia.

B. Hammer overexposed walking on a cliff by the beach, undressing, posing. Long shot of Hammer on cliffs w/water below. Ocean then back up to Hammer, stretching, on the cliff top. Dark footage. Ocean sunset, pinkish. Closeup of hand and flower and second shot is sideview of Hammer's face. A shot of Phyllis in same position, very intimate, camera moves into her eye and quickly down her body. CU of two hands and flower - more than a dozen short shots of Hammer's hands in different positions ending up w/camera movement, making the hands turn in a circle. Lovely.

85. WIND CHIMES. 11/71 8 mm.

Strips of different colored clay that look like pieces of cloth on a clothesline blowing in the wind. First shots are good, later overexposed, then good again. Second group of chimes made of glass jars w/little pieces of ceramic inside them to jangle with them. Don't know location. Good condition, no scratches.

86. WINDSOR PRINT. Approx. 15 min.

(Some dykes in nature.) Woman reading, eating. Overexposed badly, waterfall and Louise Fishman. Nicely exposed light reflection on water. More overexposed. Soft focus woman/lipstick- Frances Doughty? Foot in water. Nice black and white flicker abstraction. Dark. More abstraction. Back of woman in underpants - Louise Fishman- at waterfall; later front view. Out of focus and overexposed water. Is that Frances in profile? Water skeeter/nice radiating circles like moire patterns! Overexposed leaves. Some branches good, especially cutting. Louise Fishman drinking tea. Other dykes close ups. Same woman eating chips that film started with.

87. WINDSOR. Sup. 8 Color.

Woman eating potato chips reading typed papers like newspapers. Then a long shot of her in chair w/ portable typewriter. It's a well-known writer. Shot of dog w/ curly hair. Color shot of woman cut to same woman in B&W, sharp focus. Another woman w/dogs at creek. Next shot overexposed shots of creek. She edited this, no idea why she kept that in. Water shot of creek, good exposure. Again overexposed. Soft focus of Frances Doughty. Feet in water. Again, a lot of overexposed. (I think this is an edited film where she wanted to go between light and dark - doing this on purpose). Lots of water shots. Section of woman in nude except for red underpants whose holding up a rock in the water. Looks like it's Louise Fishman, it is. Camera zooms in to Louise Fishman laughing. Again more overexposed. Some beautiful CU abstractions of water. CU of a redhead from behind and then zoom out to woman in clothes in water, turns looks at camera, and zoom in on her. Long curly brown hair. Another woman drinking from a plastic cup. It's Lousie Fishman. That's soft focus. Then a real cute CU of Louise Fishman smiling, drinking from the cup in focus. Another woman who has a red bandana around her neck w/green cup. Another woman and back to the woman with the potato chips. Footage has one scratch going all the way through. It's a finished film, signed NP Birkby.


88. "AMAZON WEEKEND". Completed Film, needs head leader. Aprox. 20 min. Super 8 mm.

Women at lake nude, washing hair, swimming. Beautiful exposure. Two scratches. Jill Johnston. Counter Revolution and Revolt. Sidney Abbott? Great CU JJ/freckles. Woman on float in water. Nicely lit. Stop Action overexposed. Long shot woman on float. Loving shot of two women topless with floats, hugging, kissing. Nice! Nude woman jumps onto float. and again but misses. It is Sidney Abbott or Phyllis Birkby. Or each. Jill. African American woman. Jane O'Wyatt. Jill with pen. Volleyball. Film Break.

Wine drinking. African American woman dancing, acting silly. More rafting. Two rafts. Smoking on raft. Film Break and crinkle.


90. CR VOLLEYBALL. Super 8. Approx. 15 min.

Jane O'Wyatt. Kate Millett. All the women in the Consciousness Raising Group playing volleyball.


Kate Millett, a blond curly-haired woman [Linda Clarke] she had her arms around in the '71 womens march, Jane O'Wyatt, Sidney Abbott and others. Looks good, some scratches. She did a nice section of women's hands, nice section, while they were playing a game. Soft focus shot, long, long shot of Kate Millett laughing. Really nice shot of overall game. Long shot. Getting firewood, looks like Jane O'Wyatt is chopping wood, with an ax. Two shots of that.


Dark, very dark, again a lot of close ups of women's faces but not well exposed. Not much useful. Maybe a party or a CR group, again very dark, maybe Barbara Love. A woman with a hand by her face. Is it too dark to tell. Nice shot of a woman's hand on a kitchen counter or table with glasses, wine glass, plate. That's Barbara Love. Good shot with hands on face. Nice shot of hand with cup. But, mainly too dark.


Turntable, outdoor street light. Jennifer's birthday party in B&W? Birthday cake. Kids blowing out candles. Kids outside w/ man. Birthday girl turning around, going over to her maybe little sister, holding her hand, two dance together, very, very cute CU of their faces.


Lesbian Gathering, In woods & house at Jill Johnston's upstate New York [Accord, NY?]. Unedited. Dark footage of faces. Good ball Game. Louise Fishman and others. In woods. Darker footage. Jill Johnston with Gay tee shirt and others. CU darker Jill. MS Jill.

Leader. Backlit. Looks like Jill dancing, acting up. Nice shots of dark figures of women backlit playing ball. Good outdoor shots of Jill. Jill hugging Jane O'Wyatt. Jill standing by V.W. bus wearing huge Peace symbol. slightly soft focus. Jacket hanging on bus, zoom out to Jill. CU's good of Jill.

Leader. Group inside house, Jane, and others. Sitting in circle. Dark. Someone sitting under desk lamp. (a few burnt frames) Jill outside by bus/van. (color in this reel looks sepia.) Good shot Louise Fishman with big hair!. Film broke and taped (repair before projecting next) at very end.

95. "ESTHER, LOUISE, ROBERTA, MARTHA: AUG. '71". 3 min. [Esther Newton, Louise Fishman, Roberta Kosse, Martha Shelley]

Women in nature. At creek. First part well exposed, middle black, end of feet CU well exposed.

96. FRIENDSHIP CIRCLE AT BEACH HOUSE A. Super 8, magnetic soundstripe film. May be sound.

Women in nature reading, another woman at a house. Looks like the same women in other films we've seen before. At a beach house. Goes w/something else. Some women are lying on beach towels. Woman who wrote Lover [Bertha Harris]?

97. FRIENDSHIP CIRCLE B. 1972, color Super 8

Phyllis in film. Starts w/shot of Phyllis Birkby. In good shape, looks like it's her group again, her friends. A shot of Phyllis in bellbottoms, 7/72. She has long hair, aviator glasses. Back of her head w/this other friend who we've seen in many movies, then of her w/light meter. She's holding a still camera. She's walking by the other woman, touches her, adjusts her hair. Slightly overexposed w/intermittent scratch, not bad, wearing red bellbottoms. Shows her in relationship to her group of friends at this beach house. Terrier dog w/red bandana around neck. Another shot of Phyllis w/hands on chest sticking out her tongue, turning and going into the house. Another shot of her outside the house, making hand gestures. Short bit of really nice exposure of her medium CU.

Another woman at door of the house in long shot. Same woman w/car in background, seated in the grass by the road. Another woman in lounge chair, lying on the beach. Lighting cigarette. CU of Bertha Harris, I think, nicely shot through the grasses, CU of her w/house in background.


Woman w/Polaroid camera. Another woman in beach chair talking. Image is not scratched, nicely exposed, soft colors. Louise Fishman with red scarf sleeping on the ground. Somebody else reading on a blanket on the grass. Same group that was in # 33? at the potato chip eating. Sidney Abbott, I think. Study of women's hands, like she cut off their heads and just shot their hands. Colors are pastel. Woman smoking at end.

99. "GROUP" . Super 8, 3 min.

Phyllis at beach with curly headed woman; looks like Provincetown beach or Long Island with snow on sand. Group of women walking, running. Cute group shot at end/Phyllis holding uprooted tree. Playful, well-exposed, 1 intermittent scratch, not bad.

100. GROUP. Sup.8, 3 min.

CU of group interior. well exposed. Then out at same beach as Reel #26. One does handstand.

101. "JANE AND JILL". Super 8. 3 minutes.

Much of closeups out of focus. Good infocus shots of Jane drawing; Jill exercising; Jill Johnston doing backbends. Outside in snow with bus in background, Jill's feet in the air. Jane nicely lit, sitting. Jill hugging Jane inside at table. Ouside in snow with bus looks like it's Jane's feet in air with Jill helping her do a headstand.

102. JILL JOHNSTON AND JANE O'WYATT. B&W 16 mm. original.

About a stop overerxposed. Person raking leaves [Huntington, MA]. Jane O'Wyatt and Jill Johnston. Cute of Jane raking leaves on the lawn. Fast funny action of Jill Johnston. No scratches, perfect condition and a shot with two of them raking in the same frame. Still shot of them standing posed w/rakes looking at each other.

Pan of Jill sitting on the ground next to Jane, quite overexposed. Interior almost perfect. Two frames of Jill w/pen, interior, and then whole shot is good exposure of Jill, posed to write, talking and Jane at side, talking back and forth. Jane scratching her arm while talking. Jill w/head in her hands and the book on the table is Women And Film, magazine. Graphic saying Oh, Wow! Shot of a stool w/someone's hand on it.


Jennifer looks to be about 6 years old. Opens w/ her Happy Birthday song. Just a birthday party.


Jill Johnston, soft focus. Really nice shot as camera pulls back, not scratched, nice light, looks like she's in a cabin. Date 3/72 on film. Shot out window, scratches on film. Snow on trees. Some shot she's trying to shoot that's dark lit. Jill's VW bus in the snow, shoots from different angles. Soft focus trees.

105. MARYLAND II. Reg. 8, color.

Good shape, good color. Reeds at ocean. A pier, reeds, white boathouse, pier leading back to big white mansion house. Family home? Horses. Kid on the beach. Cute woman posing in doorway. Light struck. Wonder if it's her sister.

Walking down steps. Showing off. Holding a coat. Same woman as on first Maryland tape. Has Phyllis' broad face.

Asian American woman. [Ming-Chi Wang??] Half is Maryland. Other half is Asian American woman, really cute, she's smoking, light is nice on her face. She's in a park. She's standing with an African American woman on the sidewalk and Phyllis has stocking cap and pea coat on. ***Great shot of Phyllis in a coat, in the park in fall, has a yellow lining to the scarf or to the coat. Brown hair, walks by the camera. It might be Central Park. Somebody lying on the grass, can't tell who. Asian woman again is dancing in the park and she's acting like she's behind the bars of a gate, putting her lips through as if she were blowing a kiss. Framed by the gate. New location, sort of like, don't know where, like Canal Street. Second story held up by wood pillars, row of 50 doors acting as wall on second floor. Very interesting. Pans doors.

106. OLD PEEKSILL CALENDAR. Super 8 mm. 1976. 20 seconds.

3 shots of Phyllis and other women nude on a lawn. Good exposure. Date on package reads 1975.


Dark, group of women undressing, CU of two women's faces that are correctly exposed. Two women on beach towel. Beautifully lit shot of badminton player, black background w/face and arms lit by the sun and companion. Playing badminton in the nude. Really great. With beachball behind. Looks like a two-woman badminton game. Perfect condition. Game over. Two women have arms around each other. As they bend over. One has silver chain above her ass. Other has levis on. New game. More than two people. Nude twosome. Playing topless. Overexposed shot of lawn and woman w/badminton racket. Then a nicely exposed one. Croquet in the nude, now leapfrog or wrestle. I would like to work w/this footage. Very idyllic, very 70s.

108. "PT. PLEASANT" 12/67. Super 8 color.

Architects around a model. Color looks really good. No scratches at all. Outside at a boat shed. Looking at the casement that holds back the sand. Boathouse on piers. Older woman w/mink collar and Christmas wreath at door. Older man (could be her parents). Nicely shot, he is smiling. Next section is black.

109. "R, K, W, CATS". B&W Sup. 8

Mysterious shot of woman's head going back and forth by cabinet. Woman w/bottle. Soft exposure. Woman pouring wine, think it's a woman, dark. African-American woman head shot and same other person. Cats are well exposed. Couple of cats on a wooden floor. Partial scratch in the film. More and more cats. Head shots of cats. Cats playing, rolling together on the floor.

110. SELF-PORTRAIT: HELLO, HELLO, HELLO, HELLO. Super 8. Approx. 2 min.

This is absolutely precious. Phyllis with short bob; with glasses, without, with hair back; with nun's cowl; with nun's cowl and prayer pose; hiding face; masked; side hat; smiling.

111. "SOFTBALL. (color)

Close up of woman smoking, zoom out. Softball game, in long shot, camera is along first base line. Shot of women in park benches, behind fence. Camera pans across. The pitcher confers with the catcher. Camera is behind plate, woman gets hit and runs to first base. Zoom in to close up of slip of paper with score. Med. long shot of three women conferring. Med. long shot of one woman helping another with practice swing. Goes blurry. More softball. One run, one strike. Tracking shot of pitcher throwing ball. Long shot of woman waiting at base. Another hit, pan shot between pitcher's mound and home base. Long shot of players walking off of field, hugging. Close up of women, talking. Medium shots of women embracing. Med. long shot of woman (Kate Millett?), arms extended, moving side to side. Another game, possibly soccer, in background. Long shot of women horsing around.

112. STREET FAIR. With woman (Leslie?). 3 min. Super 8.

Edited in camera. Nice shot of people walking past metal store shutters. Well exposed. Phyllis Birkby herself right after the shutters. Nice shot. More shutters. Long shot of Birkby by booth. Phyllis walks by loading dock. Leslie (?) walks by shutters; then in midst of fair. This short film looks edited.

113. "TOWER, ESTHER, LOUISE". Sup. 8 , 3 min. 2 scratches in middle.

Louise Fishman. Phyllis (out of focus CU's) Good of Louise in bathing suit. At beach. Phyllis with 35mm camera. Phyllis in bathing suit. Esther, too. Tower must be the dog

114. "WOODSTOCK POOL; DANA'S BASEBALL TEAM.. [Dana Birkby, nephew]

Begins w/baseball game. Looks like a little league game, maybe women, no kids. Young boys' baseball team. No scratches, nicely exposed. Woodstock Pool: girl swimming in pool, fly in pool, girl on lounge, boy on lounge, adolescent boy walking, water splashing, guy diving, guys in pool, standing on shoulders, three guys making a tower on shoulders.


115. "ABORTION ST. PAT'S. Protest ABORTION RIGHTS: ST. PATRICKS PROTEST. 3 min. good exposure.

116. "ABORTION. ABORTION RIGHTS: ST. PATS, REEL #2. 3 min. good exp.

117. ALBANY MARCH.(color) Either slightly out of focus, or the projector was having problems.

Shots of people walking together--from back. Medium shot of women; two more of these. Shot of banner. Blurry shots of women walking hand in hand, marching. Camera zooms in on faces, then pulls back for a wide shot. Wide shot of 3 or so people sitting on trunk of car, parade passes between them and the camera. Short strip of unexposed film. Wide shot from back, of marcher's heads and the banner flying overhead. Close up of linked hands and arms. Very dark exposure: front shot of marchers moving forward, close ups of individual faces. shot of Dyke banner. More blurry faces, linked hands. Side shot of marchers moving across the screen. Shots of two banners. Wide shot of marchers from slightly overhead.


Woman with FBI sign taking pictures. Man wearing pig mask and sign saying "Macho Pig." Fairly good but overexposed one stop and slightly scratched. Groups of people at rally. A photo enlarged of a man with graphics "Kidnapper" below. Peace icon flag. Woman with woman's lib symbol painted on cheek. Out of focus stuff. Woman with Asian Woman Photograph, woman has hand clasped. Cadets in uniform marching from behind. Colorful ragtag hippy looking marchers with colored flags walking toward camera. "Free Erika" Poster. Women with arms around one another protesting. Camera notes clothing. Women wear headbands of different colors. "Sisters Unite, You've nothing to Lose" signs. Cherry Blossom Festival signs indicates protest to free political prisoners is in Washington, D.C. Sisterhood banner. Guards at White House? Red graffiti on official walls: "Power to the underground sisters". "Support Sisters in Asia" banner. Lots of crowd, protester shots. All a little overexposed, but not too bad and slightly scratched, often one scratch through side or middle.


Well Exposed. Free 24 Hour Childcare banner; women's lib poster/demands; CU of faces, pins, Ti-Grace Atkinson (?), some dark & out of focus.

120. "FIFTH STREET". Sup. B&W, approx. 10 min. Well preserved. [5th St. Women's Bldg takeover, Jan 1970]

Opens w/CU of women's faces. "Adelante Las Hermanas En La Lucha," then there's a French sign - "You Are Welcome" then in English "Lesbian and Straight Together"; beautiful, hand-drawn graphics. Sisters Unite, hand drawn sign. Another hand drawn sign: Our Hands, Feet, Bodies, Minds Are Tools For Change. Architectural details of the loft, it looks like they're in a loft. Fifth St. may have been an old women's center? Meeting - Welfare Mothers At Noon - another sign. Women's Building - another sign; Women's Interart Center; Gay Pride sign; Food Co-op; This Building Is Ours. The Price? Our Commitment (Jane O'Wyatt told me about this - take over of the Fifth St. building) Sign says "We Shall Not Be Moved." "Lesbians Unite" "Health Care" signs. Early comic drawing "Keep On Trucking, Sisters" "Never Underestimate The Power Of A Woman" another sign beautifully done, good contrast, B&W. Babytalk Magazine, dated material. Old falling apart interior structure of loft, interesting looking. "Our Small Group Is Fixing This Room To Be Used By All Sisters As A Lounge - Donations Accepted" hand drawn sign. Dark footage. Great shot of women's gathering in the space. Medium shots of some of the women, soft focus, didn't have enough light. Sharp focus of a woman in crochet hat, Buffy Johnson, the painter? Great shot of whoever it is. Women singing or performing, girl child, aluminum paper background. This is a good film. Children holding on to parents' hands - nice shot. Long shot of the group holding hands in a circle. Nicely lit and good exposure. Older woman, 60s or 70s, looks like a skit is being performed.

121. "FIRST 1/2 OF MARCH '71?. WOMEN'S MARCH '71?.

Well exposed, no scratches. Looks like historic women holding large banners in NY. "New York Radical Feminists" banner goes all the way across the street on sheets. "Lesbians For Nixon" woman w/big smile carrying sign, then waves. Shots of crowd and shots of back of woman wearing a motorcycle helmet. Interesting closeups of men who I don't know if they're marching or not. Another banner "Equality" - equals sign. CU of woman in dark glasses smiling. Beautiful shot of Frances Doughty and woman in CU, dark glasses, long hair. Another big banner "Brooklyn NOW" Women wearing the fist in the circle. Women's lib sign. Great shot with radical banner behind. Lots of reds and whites in the image. Policemen, newscasters. Sappho? Was A Woman banner. Good shots of people in the street. A sign saying "One to One Committee NOW". More newscaster. Abortion Is A Woman's Right sign. Historical woman photo. Huge comic book-like billboard sign on a building. Soft focus of march. Sign - Smash Sexism, Women's Libertion NOW t-shirt. Crush Phallic Imerialism - nice shot showing a lot of women holding sign. Kate Millett is in crowd w/Betty Friedan right after sign (maybe) soft focus, anyway, not great. Bystanders. Another banner "Lesbian (something)" Women marching by shoe shop - "Shoes For Women" Woman reading as she marches, may be changing. Kate Millet in red - soft focus. CU of other women. Back to Kate. Dog w/sign on it - can't read. CU woman's face - pull out to medium shot. Jan Oxenberg possibly w/purple blouse w/white trim? Street scene. Angela Davis sign - large B&W photo. Good shot of Kate w/arm around somebody [Linda Clarke?], w/historic woman photo in background and a woman of color, finally, next to her. CU of Louise Fishman w/short hair. Woman's hand holding pamphlet saying Woman's World. Shot of another woman, don't know who, several. Sign - "Gay Male Feminist" CU of another woman. Button - "Sister" Angry woman yelling, holding a banner, very dramatic, pretty good not scratched. Shot - "Sisterhood Is Powerful" sign. More banners. Back of Kate w/arms around someone from behind. "Lesbians Unite" in focus. GAA embrodiered on hip pocket of dungarees. A lot of women all together. "Women's Liberation Is A Lesbian Plot." Policemen walking in front of sign. Soft focus on police. Women's Lib sign seen through a bus. Woman marching alone down street w/gusto. Women straggling down the street w/"Plot" sign. Nice CU of holding hands, arms around each other. Two women in white shirts arms around each other. Kate Millett again, in red, w/blonde woman also in red. Men marching. Women in dresses marching. "Unity" banner. "Phallic Imperialism" sign of New York Radical Feminists. Crowd shot, really good, around "Lesbians Unite" sign. Lots of nice crowd shots now, very seventies, good exposure, good color. More of Kate w/girlfriend and a third woman, smiling at camera. Westchester Coalition sign. Quality Child Care Service For Working Mothers sign. Chick Is A Dirty Word handwritten sign. Woman w/hand over mouth. Now, microphones at space where rally will be. A woman at microphones. We Are With You - French women's liberation sign. Then, B&W - good shot of microphones in B&W and some of the speakers. African-American woman in crowd, CU. I think Ti-Grace Atkinson(?) CUs of people, African-American man, Euro-Am. women. March For Equality banner behind speakers, big camera. Huge rally, now, shot of thousands in crowd. Great crowd shots. Not scratched. Soft focus CU. Betty Friedan, soft focus. Dark footage at end.

122. GAY MARCH 7/71.

Jill Johnston. Louise Fishman. Slightly overexposed. Then, out of focus. Good exposure - woman waving under Burlington House. Site of march sign - We Are Everywhere. Two women holding hands, arms around each other. Slightly overexposed. CU of Kate Millett eating, overexposed. Two woman kissing, out of focus, overexposed. Women's Lib button. Lots of overexposure. Not useable. Then, shot I think of Kate from behind. Maybe Kate and Jill - two longhaired women w/arms around each other -don't know who. Two other women, laughing. Some good, some scratched. More over exposed. Gay love, God's love - overexposed sign.

122A. GAY MARCH, 1977. Approx. 3 min.

Woman with sign "Gay Pride '77." Woman with hands raised above head forming triangle shape with thumbs and pointer fingers. Marchers. Band of police officers in march. Marchers. "Lesbian Feminist Liberation" banner. "Lesbian Seperatists Love Women" banner. "Dykes Tykes" banner and float. Women marching. 3 women with cameras. 2 women--one could be Louise Fishman. Too fast to tell. Close-up of woman with dark curly hair. Placard with Anita Bryant's face in center of swastika. Marchers. "Dykes Tykes" float. "National Organization for Women" banner. Marchers.

122B. GAY MARCH, 1977. Approx. 3 min.

"Lesbian Feminist Liberation" banner. "Anita Bryant is garbage" placard. Woman sitting on ground. Seems to be post-march. Banners are hung on fence, placards on ground. Crowds of people sitting around talking in a park?


Poster - Change For My Sisters poster, title and woman's face illustration. Cuts to a woman. Looks like 1986. Dark. Some shots of women's faces. Much is too dark to use. Another poster - graphic illustration of a hand carrying a cup, then a little cage around a brick, a woman w/a scrub brush and foot, pregnant woman, a drawing shot in CU, no scratches, useable, looks like a gallery in the theatre w/various drawings hung on walls. Kind of gray but useable. Sojourner Truth poster, woman. Emma Goldman. Poster w/a lot of women's names, more drawings from the exhibition. Very good.


Soft focus of woman's face, slightly soft focus of another one. Looks like a women's theatre group. Some clear shots nicely lit of this group. Pull back to showing the group together sitting in a circle w/guitar. Nicely lit well exposed. CU of guitar is out of focus. A woman listening, in focus, well lit, several women. Action of one woman holding another while laughing and trying to pull away. Well lit and clear. Another woman yelling, a larger older woman, fairly okay. Another woman seems to be crying, close up of very dramatically gesturing hands. Two hands holding, again dramatic gestures, well lit and clear. Interaction between two women, their hands and a face. Nicely lit, interesting shot - a very good roll of women's theatre group. Women pointing at one another


Dark, mostly; some shots of women's faces. A woman with a prop.


Drawing of a stick figure called "Me", big feet. All Right To Be Women Theatre. CU of Me, looks like a Phyllis Birkby self-portrait. My friends, stick figures holding hands "My Friends" Looks like title of show is The Popular Crowd. Drawing of a boy I had a crush on. He was in the Popular Crowd. The saga of my hairy legs or how my heart hurt. The boy is saying to the two girls, "Did you see her hairy legs?" Little stick figure drawings. "Did you see Sue's hairy legs?" Drawing of a heart w/lightning bolt through it. Line drawing of a lot of feet and shoes and a sign, "How My Mother Saved The Day, I Thought" "Can I shave my legs?" Bunch of hairy legs w/mother w/hairy legs and me w/hairy legs. My Fantasy. Ronson shaver plugged. THE END sign, then a woman walking through so you see these were on the wall. Women's Theatre - very good exposure. Back to realistic photography. In production, one sticks her tongue out, one w/mouth open. Beautifully lit and shot well. Good roll. One medium long shot showing a circle of women sitting together. Zoom up to a woman who is talking. Shows how group circle. Very well exposed sign of the play "A Chant For My Sisters." Shot of a ladder, woman listening. Best exposed of the theatre rolls.


42nd Street: Night. Dark exposure. Close up of man's face, zoom out: standing in doorway. Close up of movie marquee. Head shot of woman with cigarette. Full shot of movie marquee. Close up of bottom edge of marquee, zoom in. Blinking marquee lights reflected in chrome. Woman lights cigarette. Med. shot of two men shaking hands. Zoom to close up of faces, zoom out. Splice. Shot of movie marquees. Close up of woman staring into camera. Zoom from long shot of couple standing to close up, zoom out. Medium shot of man with cigarette. Marquee. Close up of words on marquee, "Butch" & "Maggie". Side close up of man. Shot of car headlights moving past. Close up of red blinking taillight. Another. Daytime--American flag waving in the wind. Nighttime--close up of (cop car?) lights flashing, yellow and blue. Interior(?) extreme long shot of person on stage or other elevated surface. Exterior full-length shot of lighted window display w/female mannequin. Close up of glowing "Don't Walk" traffic sign. Med. shot of Hare Krishna couple dancing, zoom out. Same, from back. Close up of banner, zoom out, zoom back in.

Peace Demo: Long shot of barricade, two women climbing over it. Crowd shot: faces, woman with blonde bouffant. Close up of police officer. Crowd shot. Woman standing on barrier. Med. closeups of people's heads and shoulders as they walk by. Quick shots of people's faces. More crowd shots: people walking down stairs. Long shot two people on an elevated surface, red flag in back. Long shot of side of building, crowd. Long shot of people dancing on roof of entrance porch of large building. Zoom out. Man holding newspaper torch. Med. shot of man laughing in crowd. Extreme long shot of people dancing on roof, zoom in. Blue flash. Med. shot, zoom out of large paper skull hung from man's neck. Another shot of people on roof. Close up of back of news camera person's head, camera. Zoom out and pan down to reporter interviewing protestor, zoom in on her face. Long shot of crowd, banner above says "Pig Press...." Shot of red banner, says "Free Bobby." Man leaning against speakers. Crowd shot. Two red flags, crossed. Shot of protestors on roof. Long shot of banner. Individual close ups of men in uniforms. Military? Marchers walking toward camera. Med. shot of riot cop juxtaposed against street. Head shot of man shouting. Mounted policemen seen fr. below. Backlit. Med. long shot cops in riot gear lined up in front of street. Close up of bullhorn. Long shot of moon, framed betw. buildings.

128. WOMEN'S LIB. MARCH, A. 16mm

Looks like rephotography of Super 8 that she has on Women's Lib March. Looks like Kate Millett, Angela Davis. Small freezes on women's faces. Only optical printing that changes is a few short freezes of faces. Refer to Film #39. Blow up of Super 8.


130. WOMEN'S LIB 26 AUG 1970

131. WOMEN'S STRIKE FOR PEACE AND EQUALITY. 16mm Early '70s. [26 Aug 1970]

Roll of 7252 optically printed, 16 mm. color. Live action of a women's lib demonstration, TV news cameras, crowds, camera follows policeman doing crowd control. "No peace for a peace" - women's sign, "Male Chauvinists You Better Start Shaking." Women marching, news cameras set on high above the crowd. People giving peace sign from cafes to marchers. More TV news. People watching from windows. "Don't Iron While The Strike Is Hot" - Women's Strike August, Strike Headquarters 229 Lexington Ave. High School Feminism Is Alive and Growing. Power To The Women. Women's Strike For Peace and Equality. Women's fists in the air. Female Disc Jockey Wants Liberation And Job. Nicely exposed shot of the march in front of sign saying Fieldcrest. Nice overview of a long march. A freezeframe on a face - Rita Mae Brown? Equal Jobs sign. Playboy Club, Bunny flag flying. Freezeframe of the bunny flag. Good condition, not scratched at all.



133. "BAHAMAS". (color)

Shot of foamy water crashing on grainy beach, panning around. Again. Still water. Tiny fish swimming around in water. Close up of plant life in water. Close up tracking shot of small fish. Unexposed strip.

Med. shot of shells in water. Tracking shot (right to left) of waves rolling onto beach, to where a woman and a man are piling sand. Shot of man's legs, with water washing over his feet. Med. shot of man making sandcastle. Close up of limbs carving castle. Med. shot of the woman, man in foreground. More shots of castle building. Close ups of sandcastle towers. Close ups of finished sandcastle. Unexposed strip. Jump cuts between close ups of sandcastle and wide shot of ocean and dunes. Nice visual juxtaposition. Black strip of film.

Interior shot, dimly lit, of woman lying in bed under covers, being fed by man slightly offscreen. New angle of same. Close up of woman's face. Close up of woman's arm hanging over side of bed. Med. side shot of woman. Close up of her face. Exterior shot of two people on hill overlooking sea. Closer shot of same. Med. long shot of woman walking into camera. Med. long shot of man fishing. Med. shot of man w/fishing pole walking to camera. Long and medium shots of waves crashing on rocky shore. Unexposed strip. Med. shot of person fishing, zoom out and then in. Shot of ocean, person swims into frame. Med. shot of man standing in water. Close up of woman taking off her snorkling mask. Med. shot, from side, of man looking out of frame. Med. shot of woman bent over. Close up of man's face. Long shot of 5 people walking down street to docks where all the boats are, zoom out. Extra long shot of same, zoom in. Subjects wave to camera, dance around. Black strip of film.

Close up of man's face. Close up of woman's face. Wide shot of water, shoreline in distance, zoom out. Camera pans horizon. Long shot of horizon, edge of boat in bottom of frame.

134. "CANYON DE CHELLY. 8mm. Color.

Looks like shot in Utah or Canyonlands. I think she is referring to the architect, but the forms are all natural, not manmade. Beautiful red caves, red rocks, looks like poured cement, but poured by nature. Unscratched, good shape, good color, good focus. Canyon de Chelley, the White House, Indian ruins. Red water, very expansive filming. Series of four frames at a time, then one of them says "The End" on it but really isn't. Then an arrow going different ways. Then footprints that rangers make for tours. One little scratch goes through the film. Shot in true Birkby style. From dusk, night to morning, same location. Rest is all black.

135. "MARYLAND JULY 4TH. (color)

Close up of man's head. Close up of him squeezing a pimple? Red haired man reading, another man. Pan through the interior of house. Lots of windows, zoom in on chandelier. Long shot of boat sailing by on lake. Exterior shot of boathouse. Zoom out wide, to boats sailing past. Long shots of men urinating in garden. Head shot of redheaded man. Shot of abstract reflections in water, undulating on surface. Pretty. Two backlit shots through branches. More abstract light patterns in pool. Close up of corner of pool from overhead. Shot of more light abstractions in pool. Med. shot zoom to close up from inside house through windows of lake view. Backlit shot of trees swaying in wind. Close up of windowpanes: raining outside. close up of light fixture. Close up of top of chair back. Very dark shots of foxes in a pen. Exterior long shot of men on a lawn, pan to stately white house. Again. Jump cuts between med. shots of white flowers. Shot of facade of house. Med. shot of men on lawn with water in the background. Long shot of shoreline, pan across. Med. shot of men walking, from behind. Backlit leaves against sky. Long shots of gardens: a statue from three sides. Under the arbor. Jump cut to statue. Med. shot of flower. Head shot of other statue. Long shot of road going out of gardens. Long shot of statue, head shot from either side. Setting sun through tree branches.

136. "MARYLAND".

Horseback riding in Maryland. Well established white wood house on lawn. Man sitting in tree jumps from tree. Woman goofing off. Everyone is goofing off. Kid. Point of view driving a car. Beagle in the woods. Hiking in the woods. By the seashore w/dog. Beagle and two other dogs.

137. MISCELLANEOUS ROAD FOOTAGE A.Super 8 color. 7244

Looks like more trees at the beach, soft focus, blue haze. Street scene in some city. Capitol dome? Rocky River Ranch gates. Cute woman smiling and CU of her through a windshield, driving a truck. Next shot, nicely shot of woman w/baseball cap on that reads, "Smilers". Looks like a mixed sports team, baseball game, focus is soft except for those two CUs of the woman's face.

138. MISC. ROAD FOOTAGE B. Super 8 color. [1984, Los Angeles]

Looks like Olympic sports event. Swimming or diving, XXIII, Games of the 23rd Olympics Los Angeles. Focus is all soft. Except for the swimming lanes. Judges and swimming lanes and long shots are nice color is good and look like they've never been projected. Perfect. Overview of the street around the Olympics, w/palm trees, people on diving platforms.


Highway shot at different angles stretching off into sky. Film gave blue haze to everything. Turns camera upside down and to either side. Intermittent scratch later in the film. Landscape shot from car. Buttes, beautiful stormy sky at dusk, rainbow, no scratches. Ends up at Olympics at L.A.


More highway - blurred of vegetation, buildings and building details, iron grill fence, soft focus. Parts are good focus, part soft.


Peacock. Ferris wheel. Some Fantasyland. Maybe Disneyland. Crowd scenes are soft focus. Children's playground is good. Louisiana journey - probably a boatride. Scandanavia, gondola entrance. Dark footage. Then daylight, soft focus. Inflated balloons, soft focus.


Same soft focus, details of a house w/horsedrawn carriage in front, saying Carriage Tours Savannah. Confederate flag. Looks like Savannah, w/southern homes, porches and wooden grillwork around the porches. Could be 1965, there is a 65 between the sprocket holes. Road, highway, then park - woman in bathing suit w/baseball cap walking toward camera, waving to Phyllis, big smile. (Might be Louise Fishman). Horse's head over a fence.


Sunlight through the trees, intermittent scratch, same hazy, soft focus highway, water, street lamp by the beach, window frames of the beach. Motel, something Alvin's Island, either a motel or restaurant. More highway - road trip. Buildings, southern again, trees, southern mansion.

144. OLYMPICS OUT OF FOCUS FIELD HOCKEY. Sports stadium. [1984]

Out of focus game. Field hockey. Bad roll.


Outdoor women's swim and diving meet. Perfect shape. Shot with an eye for design. Full stadium - looks like L.A. Could be olympics. 23rd Olympics. refer to #104.

146. OLYMPICS II. [1984]

Track meets, flags, huge crowds, five rings. Focus not always good on CUs, good on long crowd shots. Colors are great. Wheelchair event, but focus is not good. Pretty good of men in yellow suits, a band, carrying instruments, walking on the track. Most out of focus.

147. OLYMPICS III. [1984]

Women in straw hat with pins on it w/track behind. Crowd scene. Track again, focus is good. Wheelchair, disabled, special olympics. Regular Olympic flag flying. Running - soft focus. Nice long shot of the stadium.

148. PATCHAPINES.(color)

Close up of man's face. Camera pans faces of people on porch, to extreme close up of hands. Patchapines sign. Close up of woman holding camera up to face. Jumps cuts between shots of flora, people. Jump cut to the beach. Long shot of a woman in the water. A woman gets up off the sand and moves to the water, a man goes with her. Ends in longshot. Med. long shot, parallel to shoreline, of waves rolling onto beach; truncated headless bodies of people pass by. Unexposed strip. Shot of people clustered together, lying on beach. Camera moves around them in a circle. They wave, are obviously enjoying themselves. Zoom in and out of the people, more circling of them as they perform synchronized movements with their legs and arms. Camera zooms in, then out as they disperse. More shots of rolling waves and truncated bodies walking past. Same, camera turned on side. Same, camera turned upside down, Same, camera turned on other side. Now camera right side up. Cycle repeats. Shots of rolling waves, kid playing in sand, truncated bodies walking past.

149. SAIGON.

Dark street scenes of Saigon. Too dark to use. Good exposure of man w/pink rickshaw, pedalling. Street scenes w/bicycles. People on bicycles. Second reel - all black.

150. SAIGON [?]. Approx. 3 min.

Many scenes of people, cars, bicycles, motocycles on busy street. View of building facade, "Continental Palace." More people, bicycles, cars and motorcycles. Lighting much darker. People getting out of car. So dark, you can barely tell what this is. White man and woman walking toward camera, then they greet camera operator. More people, bikes, cars and motorcycles in street. People walking down street.

Processing Information

Processed by Maida Goodwin, 1998.

Finding Aid to the Phyllis Birkby papers
Legacy Finding Aid (Updated)
Maida Goodwin, Scott Biddle
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Encoding funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Revision Statements

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Repository Details

Part of the Sophia Smith Collection of Women's History Repository

Neilson Library
7 Neilson Drive
Northampton MA 01063