1971 — 1975
From pageants and minstrel shows at the State Hospital in the early 1900s to the locally famous Independence Day parades in the 1970s, theatrics and celebrations were as much a part of the Ladd School's history as the rigmarole of daily life on a farm.
At nearly an hour in length, this silent film collection was recorded at the Ladd School between 1972 and 1975. Digitized from eleven 8mm reels, there are scenes from a carnival at the pool, a 'clown hootenany' at the school, a kite derby and picnic in the fields outside, a visiting day at one of the dormitories, and two Independence Day parades.
Highlights include multiple exterior shots of Ladd School buildings, residents, and staff; employees and residents constructing a parade float depicting the institution's history; a chorus line of Shriner clowns; psychedelic and stop-motion animated title cards; and appearances by Little Miss Rhode Island, the Quonset Seabees, the Exeter and Ladd School Fire Departments, the Ladd School band, The Flintstones, Smokey the Bear, and famed Rhode Island radio and TV personality Salty Brine.