Shhhhh! Silents in the Library

Event detail

Explore the silent film era through displays of rare books, ephemera and photographs. The Silent Screen in the City looks at the Bay Area’s role in silent film production, while Downtown Movie Palaces of the 1920s evokes a visit to San Francisco's lost theater landmarksReading the Stars showcases vintage books about the movies published during the era.  Included is a nod to The San Francisco Silent Film Festival, one of the world’s largest silent film festivals, now in its sixteenth year.

Main, Fourth Floor & Sixth Floor History Center Exhibit Space

Related Events

Son of the Sheik
     Sunday, July 10th at 2 p.m.
     Main Library, Koret Auditorium

An Afternoon with Silent Film Star 'Baby Peggy'
     Sunday, August 7th at 2 p.m.
     Main Library, Koret Auditorium

More about the Individual displays:
Reading the Stars: The Silent Era
Just like today, the movie going public of the Teens and Twenties had an insatiable appetite for reading material about their favorite actors and films. Reading the Stars looks at some of the books published about the movies during the silent film era, including vintage biographies, pictorials, how-to titles and even novels, poetry and self-help works written by some of the biggest names in Hollywood.
Main Library, Steve Silver Room – 4th floor (curator –Thomas Gladysz)

The Silent Screen in the City
From the earliest days of movies, San Francisco was a star attraction and attracted stars.  From the Golden Gate Park to Pacific Heights and Chinatown, the city served as the backdrop for hundreds of silent films drawing famous stars like Charlie Chaplin, Mary Pickford, Lon Chaney and Buster Keaton.  The Silent Screen in the City explores these actors and some of the scenes, studios and scandals that occurred in San Francisco and nearby towns such as San Mateo, San Rafael and Niles.
Main Library – 4th floor (curator – Rory J. O’Connor)

Downtown Movie Palaces of the 1920s
Follow the crowds! Follow the stars! Experience the lost landmarks of San Francisco's splendorous theaters built for and devoted to motion pictures, where a program entailed music, vaudeville, news views, and the feature silent photoplay (film) with live organ accompaniment.  This mini-exhibit features portraits of silent film stars and ephemera documenting such theaters as the Loew's Warfield, Pantages Theatre and Granada.
Main Library, San Francisco History Center – 6th floor

Take our survey