Archival Services Awarded NFPF Grant


U.S.S. Akron in flight

The National Film Preservation Foundation (NFPF) recently awarded The University of Akron Archival Services, a division of University Libraries, a $13,440 grant.  The NFPF, located in San Francisco, California, is a non-profit organization created by Congress to help save America's film heritage. It supports activities nationwide that preserve American films and improve film access for study, education, and exhibition. 

The grant will be used to transfer volatile nitrate-based 35mm motion picture film from the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company onto polyester safety film and to provide access copies for public viewing. The work will be performed by a vendor in Hollywood. 

Four one-of-a-kind films were chosen for this initial project, all of which document the history of the USS Akron (ZR-4), a helium-filled U.S. Navy rigid-airship and one of the largest flying objects in the world.  Its crash in a thunderstorm off the coast of New Jersey in April 1933 was the largest loss of life for any known airship crash and spelled the beginning of the end for the rigid airship in the United States Navy.  Although its career was short-lived the USS Akron was one of the most significant airships in the history of lighter-than-air flight, and its construction, christening, maiden flight, test trials, and operations are captured in these rare films. 

These and other films on the history of Goodyear and the rubber and polymer industry are available by visiting Archival Services located in Room LL10 of the Polsky Building in downtown Akron.  Business hours are Monday thru Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.  Additional information about Archival Services and its collections can be found on the department’s website at

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