World War II-Era Dutch Film Thanking Albany for Aid Found


ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — A long-lost World War II-era film produced to thank the residents of Albany for sending aid to a war-torn Dutch city has been found, according to a researcher who has spent years looking for the movie.

Dutch scholar Anja Adriaans told the Times Union of Albany ( ) that a private collector in the Netherlands has a copy of "This is Nijmegen," an 11-minute black-and-white film commissioned by the Netherlands in the late 1940s after Albany sent 300 tons of relief supplies.

"It's exciting that the film was located, but I'm a little disappointed I didn't find it myself. Luckily, it's in excellent shape," said Adriaans, who lives in Nijmegen.

The city on the Waal River was devastated in September 1944 by heavy fighting between Allied and Nazi forces. British and American troops were able to secure the Nijmegen Bridge, one of several German-held spans that were the objective of the Allied operation later depicted in the 1977 film "A Bridge Too Far."

Albany, settled by the Dutch in the early 17th century, adopted Nijmegen as a sister city after the war. New Yorkers gathered 300 tons of food, medical supplies, clothing, household goods, building materials and other items. The humanitarian aid was loaded onto a cargo ship at the Port of Albany in July 1947 for the overseas voyage.

The post-war film was shown in Albany theaters in 1950 to generate more donations for Nijmegen's reconstruction.

Adriaans spent years searching for a copy of the film, traveling to Albany three times to scour the city's museums and archives.

The discovered copy of "This is Nijmegen" is silent and doesn't include the soundtrack. Adriaans plans to screen the movie Monday during a film festival in Nijmegen.


Information from: Times Union,

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