'Retrospect' about the events that led to the present pattern of life in the United States. Host Douglas Edwards, an American television anchor speaks about the past events in America. Crowd of unemployed men gathering in bread lines after the 1929 crash and subsequent Great Depression. A man near a box of apples. The U.S. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt addresses a gathering. The kidnapping of Charles Augustus Lindbergh, Jr., the son of the aviator Charles Lindbergh in 1932. Bruno Richard Hauptmann, a German carpenter who abducted the child during the trial. The congressmen at the formation of the Lindbergh Law. Newspapers describe the apprehension or death of notorious gangster criminals, such as Dutch Schultz and Baby Face Nelson. Huey Pierce Long, Jr. a American politician addresses people. Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia appeals to the League of Nations, after his country is attacked by Italy under Mussolini. Adolf Hitler stands. Troops of the German army parade. Scenes from the Spanish Civil War in 1936-1937 as Spanish national forces battle against fascist rebel forces. Spanish Troops fire 75mm field artillery pieces. Bombs being dropped on the buildings. Spanish soldiers marching during the civil war. The Hindenburg disaster takes place on May 6th 1937: The German airship LZ 129 Hindenburg catches fire over the Lakehurst Naval Air Station in Manchester, New Jersey. Amelia Earhart the first woman aviator to fly solo holds flowers and is surrounded by people. She went missing in 1937. Cowboy philosopher Will Rogers, alone and with U.S. Vice President John Nance Garner and with aviator Wiley Post (who had patch over one eye). King Edward VIII of Great Britain, abdicating the throne for "the woman I love." People at the German-American Bund Nazi sympathizing gathering including the subduing of objectors on stage, in Madison Square Garden, New York. British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, returning from meeting with Adolf Hitler in Munich in 1938. View of Adolf Hitler. German tanks on parade in World War II. an array of artillery guns on display. Railway guns being fired in WW2.
People undertaking measures to beat the heat in the United States during the 1937 heat wave. People gather in a large number near the swimming pools. Children dive in the water and swim. Fountains erected in city streets where children gather to play. People pass through the street as water being sprinkled with the help of fountains. A female secretary wearing a bathing suit sits at a desk and takes dictation from a man. Inventor Horatio Casterbilt (or Casterbuilt) shows and wears a hat with a fan motor attached to it to keep his head cool. From a August 1962 newsreel depicting events 25 years earlier.
Damage caused by 1937 flood in the Ohio Valley area of the United States. A heavy loss of property due to a flood. Supplies being unloaded from trucks for the people. People being rescued from the areas affected by flood. Men aboard boats moving through buildings on the edge of the Ohio River that are submerged in water. Men moving a wooden casket. Destroyed houses and buildings in the areas. Flooded streets. A weather vane blowing briskly in wind. Narrator details how the weather bureau forecasts the weather and offers the information to help prevent losses from such disasters. Automatic typing machine records weather instrument readings. View of newspapers being printed at a printing press. A radio tower. People gather near injured flood victims. People lined up on the street to get supplies. Scenes of floodwaters below Memphis where flooding was effectively contained. Water rushing under the then new Bonnet Carre spillway of Lake Pontchartrain near New Orleans. Man opens a book published in Lisbon in 1605, now in the Library of Congress, written by Gabriel Lobo Lasso de la Vega, reporting on the exploration team of De Soto on leaf 300 of the book. De Soto's group, in 1543, reported on the flood they saw below current day Memphis, extending over 20 leagues of land, covering the tops of trees, but not overrunning the homes of the Native Americans who build shelter atop high poles. A view of submerged homes in the 1937 flood are shown as the narrator laments that more modern people did worse than the Native Americans.
In 1937 an "air flivver" airplane from inventor Hayden Campbell, costing $1500, ready for take off as pilot sits in the cockpit in United States. Plane takes off.
Large crowd gathers to celebrate the New Year (1937) in Times Square, New York City, United States. Numerous neon signs are seen. Examples include a "Planters Peanuts" sign that shows peanuts pouring from a package, and signs advertising product names such as: "Camels"and"Coca-Cola." A blinking "Vaudeville" sign is seen. The Criterion movie theater advertises a James Cagney film. Loews theater marquee announces Joan Crawford and Clark Gable appearing in the film "Love on the Run."
Large crowd gathers to celebrate the New Year, 1937, in Times Square, New York City, United States. People shouting and blowing horns. Neon signs advertise products such as "Coca-Cola." The Criterion movie theater (cinema) advertises a movie called "Great Guy" starring James Cagney. Loews State movie theater marquee announces the film "Love on the Run" starring Joan Crawford and Clark Gable.