This film is part of Free

Beijing / Shantou c.1932

Home movie snapshots take in a visit to a rock-face, a Beijing temple and skilled Shantou seamstresses hard at work in Guangdong Province, South China.

Amateur film 1932 2 mins Silent


These home movie snapshots take in an amateur photographer's trip to a rock face and a Beijing temple, as well as footage of the filmmaker's own family business in Shantou. We see women working expertly with linen and embroidery inside the workshop. While the cameraman clearly struggled with the light-levels inside, there's an intimacy about the footage which makes it both unique and charming.

The Eng family moved to the UK in the 1920s; this footage was shot on one of their many return visits to the family business in Shantou, which continued to produce silks and embroideries for export until Japan's occupation of China eventually put a stop to all shipments abroad. More footage of the workshop can be seen in Shantou Extract 1 - Eng Personal Film and Shantou, China - Eng Personal Film.