1937 Fox vault fire

1937 fire1937 Fox Studios vault fire1937 New Jersey vault fireFox vault firestorage vault fire in 1937
On July 9, 1937, a major fire broke out in a 20th Century Fox film storage facility in Little Ferry, New Jersey, United States.wikipedia
222 Related Articles

Lost film

lostsurviveslost films
One death and two injuries resulted from the fire, which also destroyed all of the archived film in the vaults, resulting in the complete loss of most of the silent films produced by Fox Film Corporation before 1932.
For example, a storage vault fire in 1937 destroyed all the original negatives of Fox Pictures' pre-1935 films.

Fox Film

Fox Film CorporationFoxFox studios
One death and two injuries resulted from the fire, which also destroyed all of the archived film in the vaults, resulting in the complete loss of most of the silent films produced by Fox Film Corporation before 1932.
A 1937 fire in a Fox film storage facility destroyed over 40,000 reels of negatives and prints, including the best-quality copies of every Fox feature produced prior to 1932; although copies located elsewhere allowed many to survive in some form, over 75% of Fox's feature films from before 1930 are completely lost.

Spontaneous combustion

spontaneously combustspontaneously igniteself ignition
In Little Ferry, gases produced by decaying film, combined with high temperatures and inadequate ventilation, resulted in spontaneous combustion.
Nitrate film, when improperly stored, can deteriorate into an extremely flammable condition and combust. The 1937 Fox vault fire was caused by spontaneously combusting nitrate film.

Little Ferry, New Jersey

Little FerryLittle Ferry BoroughLittle Ferry, N.J.
On July 9, 1937, a major fire broke out in a 20th Century Fox film storage facility in Little Ferry, New Jersey, United States.

Silent film

silentsilent erasilent films
One death and two injuries resulted from the fire, which also destroyed all of the archived film in the vaults, resulting in the complete loss of most of the silent films produced by Fox Film Corporation before 1932.
Examples of prominent incidents include the 1965 MGM vault fire and the 1937 Fox vault fire, both of which incited catastrophic losses of films.

Theda Bara

Lori Bara
Films lost to the fire include pictures starring Theda Bara, Shirley Mason, William Farnum, and many others.
Bara made more than 40 films between 1914 and 1926, but most were lost in the 1937 Fox vault fire.

20th Century Fox

20th Century-FoxFoxFox Film Corporation
On July 9, 1937, a major fire broke out in a 20th Century Fox film storage facility in Little Ferry, New Jersey, United States.

Educational Pictures

EducationalEducational FilmsEducational Film Corp. of America
Also destroyed were Educational Pictures negatives and films of several other studios.

Negative (photography)

negativenegativesphotographic negative
Also destroyed were Educational Pictures negatives and films of several other studios.

Film studio

movie studiostudiofilm studios
Also destroyed were Educational Pictures negatives and films of several other studios.

Film preservation

restorationrestoredfilm restoration
The fire brought attention to the potential for decaying nitrate film to spontaneously ignite, and changed the focus of film preservation efforts to include a greater focus on fire safety.

Nitrocellulose

nitrate filmguncottoncellulose nitrate
Flammable nitrate film had previously contributed to several high-profile fires in film industry laboratories, studios, and vaults, although the precise causes were often unknown. The early motion-picture industry primarily used nitrocellulose film stock, commonly called nitrate film.

Film stock

filmmotion picture filmstock
The early motion-picture industry primarily used nitrocellulose film stock, commonly called nitrate film.

Thermal decomposition

thermolysisthermal degradationdecomposition temperature
Nitrocellulose is also subject to thermal decomposition and hydrolysis, breaking down over time in the presence of high temperatures and moisture.

Hydrolysis

hydrolyzedhydrolysehydrolyze
Nitrocellulose is also subject to thermal decomposition and hydrolysis, breaking down over time in the presence of high temperatures and moisture.

Polymer degradation

degradationagingbreaking down
Nitrocellulose is also subject to thermal decomposition and hydrolysis, breaking down over time in the presence of high temperatures and moisture.

Nitrogen oxide

nitrogen oxidesoxides of nitrogenNO x
This decaying film stock releases nitrogen oxides that themselves contribute to the decay and make the damaged film burn more easily.

Autocatalysis

autocatalyticauto-catalyticautocatalytic reaction
This decaying film stock releases nitrogen oxides that themselves contribute to the decay and make the damaged film burn more easily.

Heat wave

heat wavesheatwaveheatwaves
Most such fires in film archives have taken place in heat waves during summer months, in closed facilities with limited ventilation, compounding several of these variables.

Auguste and Louis Lumière

Lumière brothersLumièreLouis Lumière
On May 4, 1897, one of the first major fires involving nitrate film began when a Lumière projector caught fire at the Bazar de la Charité in Paris; the resulting blaze caused 126 deaths.

Bazar de la Charité

Bazar de la Charité FireNotre-Dame-de-Consolation Chapel
On May 4, 1897, one of the first major fires involving nitrate film began when a Lumière projector caught fire at the Bazar de la Charité in Paris; the resulting blaze caused 126 deaths.

Lubin Manufacturing Company

LubinLubin CompanyLubin film company
The Lubin Manufacturing Company's vault in Philadelphia exploded on June 13, 1914, followed on December 9 by a fire that destroyed Thomas Edison's laboratory complex in West Orange, New Jersey.

Philadelphia

Philadelphia, PennsylvaniaPhiladelphia, PACity of Philadelphia
The Lubin Manufacturing Company's vault in Philadelphia exploded on June 13, 1914, followed on December 9 by a fire that destroyed Thomas Edison's laboratory complex in West Orange, New Jersey.

Thomas Edison

EdisonThomas Alva EdisonThomas A. Edison
The Lubin Manufacturing Company's vault in Philadelphia exploded on June 13, 1914, followed on December 9 by a fire that destroyed Thomas Edison's laboratory complex in West Orange, New Jersey.

West Orange, New Jersey

West OrangeWest Orange TownshipWest Orange, NJ
The Lubin Manufacturing Company's vault in Philadelphia exploded on June 13, 1914, followed on December 9 by a fire that destroyed Thomas Edison's laboratory complex in West Orange, New Jersey.