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History Pub: Eyes of the Totem

June 4, 2019 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm


McMenamins Elks Temple, the Washington State Historical Society and the Tacoma Historical Society bring you Eyes of the Totem. This 1926 visual masterpiece was filmed in Tacoma and Steilacoom, when Tacoma housed a Hollywood-quality film studio!
Hear the story of how Tacoma became the home of a major motion picture studio during the 1920s. See a screening of Eyes of the Totem and enjoy a presentation about the nearby locations used in the film, the backstory of director W.S. Van Dyke ( who went on to be nominated for Academy Awards for films like The Thin Man and San Francisco with Clark Gable, Jeanette McDonald and Spencer Tracy), and the unlikely events leading to the rediscovery of the lost Eyes of the Totem film just a few years ago.

It will also be a chance to learn about the history of Tacoma in the movies, including the lost Weaver Studio films that were made nearby, other major and minor productions shot in the area. Learn about how film and the movies have shaped Tacoma’s theatre district and visual arts.
Presented by Michael Sullivan, Pacific Northwest historian, and Bill Baarsma, Tacoma Historical Society President. Guests are welcome to purchase food and beverages at any of the restaurants/bars within the Elks Temple, and bring it into the beautiful Spanish Ballroom for History Pub. There will also be a bar in the Ballroom before and during the program.
Why not stay the night too? Mention you’re attending the History Pub and receive 15% off your hotel room that night.


June 4, 2019
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm


Washington State History Museum
1911 Pacific Ave
Tacoma, 98402
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