It’s long been a dream of mine to archive my Uncle Joe’s work. He was a photographer and a filmmaker during a time and in a place where photographers and filmmakers were few and far between. It was the Dustbowl, central Iowa. My grandmother told me stories of her brothers and sisters eating from trash my great grandfather collected. My uncle Philip Duffy (who I always knew as “Uncle Joe”) went to film school in Baltimore on the GI Bill after serving in the army. He learned to use cameras and even shot a documentary in Ireland, which today continues to receive critical praise.
My second cousin in Minnesota had been holding on to a number of films, scripts, and audio cartridges in his attic. Now that I’m old enough (and stable enough), I’ve finally been bestowed the stewardship of Uncle Joe’s films and have added it to my collection.