Ice Diving in Tucker Lake, c.1960
Conservation & Caputre
Original format: 8mm film, silent.
Digital format: Footage captured at 2k resolution of 2048 x 1080.
Length/feet or running time: Approx. 125ft
Circa: Winter 1959-60
Status: Conservation & scan completed by Pro8mm. Internet Archive upload completed 2017.
Internet Archive: ThomasLSchmittHomeMoviesClipR8
The Filson Historical Society is Kentucky’s oldest privately supported historical society, founded in 1884. The organization has been collecting and preserving Kentucky and the Ohio Valley region’s significant stories for over 130 years.
The film’s creator is Thomas L. Schmitt, a member of the Kentuckiana Scuba-Diving Club (founded in 1959). In the winter of 1960, he and other members of the club, wishing to experiment with cold-water diving and underwater photography, cut through the ice in Tucker Lake and made the film now in the Filson’s collection. The lake, a former quarry located in southeastern Jefferson County, Kentucky, was at that time a summertime destination for swimming and recreation. The recreational facilities have since been removed, and a housing development now encircles the lake. The film captures scenes above and under the ice, the divers excitedly exploring the lakebed and locating unusual objects.