The dates for Mostly Lost 4 have been set for June 11-13, 2015. The workshop will again take place at the Library of Congress in Culpeper, Virginia. We have received very positive feedback about the past three years and would love to have you at next year’s event so please mark your calendars.

More details and calls for submissions will be emailed out in a few months. To get on the distribution lists for Mostly Lost please send an email to Rachel Parker at Information will be updated here as it becomes solidified.





Photo courtesy of Bill Dragga


The Library of Congress National Audio-Visual Conservation Center, Packard Campus presents “Mostly Lost 3: A Film Identification Workshop” on July 17-19, 2014 in Culpeper, Virginia. “Mostly Lost” will feature the screenings of unidentified, under-identified or misidentified silent and early sound films.

Early film experts and archivists are encouraged to attend, but the workshop is also open to anyone willing to actively help identify and research the films showcased at the workshop. In addition to films from the Library of Congress’s collections, “Mostly Lost” features material from other film archives around the world. Throughout the event there will also be presentations about the history of specific film formats, Technicolor, and silent film accompaniment, as well as insights to films that were previously thought to be lost. Live musical accompaniment during the workshop and evening presentations of newly preserved silent films will also be featured.

For more information contact:
Rachel Parker (
and please cc:
Rob Stone (


Photo courtesy of Rob Arkus

Who may attend?

Attendees range from students interested in film industry careers in fields such as film preservation to writers, scholars, archivists, filmmakers and just film buffs. Keep in mind that this is not a “sit back and enjoy the show” type of experience. We ask for your continual and enthusiastic engagement during the screenings as you and other attendees shout out things as you recognize them. Anything from car models, city landmarks, actors, production companies or even the title of the film if you happen to know it—the more the better!

Photo courtesy of Bill Dragga



The Accompanists

While “Mostly Lost” is an interactive screening of unidentified films, most of which are silent, our theater is anything but silent. The unknown films are accompanied by three amazing musicians, who are sometimes so amazing that they can play and identify at the same time. Our regular “Mostly Lost” musical accompanists are once again Andrew Simpson, Ben Model and Phillip Carli.




The workshop itself is free.  However, you must be registered for the workshop and have received a confirmation to attend. We cannot accommodate unregistered guests. The last day to register for “Mostly Lost 3” is Tuesday, July 1st.  Click here to register.

The only events that cost money are the lunches held at the Packard Campus ($10 per person each day) as well as the Saturday night screening which will be held at The State Theatre ($6 per person). You are not required to purchase the lunch provided by the workshop. You can bring your own lunch or visit one of the restaurants in town. All attendees are required to pay admission to the Saturday evening screening should you choose to attend (which we hope you do!).




The workshop will consist of two days of unidentified film screenings: Friday, July 18th and Saturday, July 19th from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm at the Packard Campus.  Additionally, there will be evening screenings that are open to the public on Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:30 pm.  This year we will also be offering an early bird tour of the Packard Campus on Thursday, July 17th at 8:30 am, and several presentations throughout Thursday and following lunch on Friday and Saturday.  We do ask that those who have toured the facility in the past to refrain from signing up for a tour this year. As in life, the schedule is subject to change without notice.

Thursday, July 17th

8:30am-11:30am – Tour of the Packard Campus
11:30-12:30 – Lunch
12:30-2 – Failed Film Formats – presented by Dino Everett
2:15-3:45 – Bringing Color to the Screen – presented by David Pierce & James Layton
4-6 – Retour de Flamme – presented by Serge Bromberg
7:30 – Silent film screening “Linda” (1929) accompanied by Ben Model

Friday, July 18th

9am-12pm – Unidentified film screenings
12-1 – Lunch
1-2:15 – Where the Music Comes From – presented by Andrew Simpson, Phillip Carli & Ben Model
2:30-5 – Unidentified film screenings
7:30pm – Silent film screening “The Good Bad Man” (1916) accompanied by Phillip Carli

Saturday, July 19th

9am-12pm – Unidentified film screenings
12-1 – Lunch
1-1:45 – History and Preservation of the Paper Print Collection – presented by Alexis Ainsworth
2-5 – Unidentified film screenings
7:30pm – Silent film comedy shorts accompanied by The Snark Ensemble at The State Theatre




The unidentified films will not be announced before Mostly Lost but here is a description of all of the other events that will be taking place:

Thursday, July 17th

8:30 a.m. Tour of the Packard Campus for Audio Visual Conservation – 19053 Mount Pony Road, Culpeper, VA 22701

11:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m. – Lunch catered by local restaurant “Luigi’s”. Cost: $10 per person. Lunch will be buffet style with the following options:

  • Baked ziti  (vegetarian)
  • Lasagna
  • Chicken with sautéed vegetables (no pasta)
  • Garlic bread
  • Salad with various dressings

12:30 p.m. – 6 p.m. Silent Film Presentations

Failed Film Formats – presented by Dino Everett. Whether it was bad technology, bad marketing, bad timing, or just plain bad luck, dozens of film formats launched with high hopes have failed completely. This presentation will showcase such formats using original, restored equipment. Some of the formats that may be screened are: 9.5mm, 16mm Vitaphone sound-on-disc, a non-theatrical/home version of the Vitaphone system that revolutionized the motion picture industry; as well as 28mm. 28mm was the first film gauge to gain wide acceptance as a nonflammable stock for home use, and although its lifespan as a viable format was short (beginning in the 1910s and fading in the 1920s), it continues to reappear in archival collections, often perplexing those who are unfamiliar with its history. Being that the format was introduced in 1912, some physically 100 year old film will be screened. Additional film nerdy goodness may be added as well.

Bringing Color to the Screen – the Early Years of Technicolor. Technicolor was founded nearly 100 years ago to bring color to the movies. Technicolor engineers worked tirelessly to develop a commercially successful two-color process. James Layton and David Pierce have written the first history of two-color Technicolor for publication in 2015. This presentation uses rare stills and digital video clips to highlight the company’s history, including behind-the-scenes production accounts of the Technicolor photography on Ben-HurThe Black Pirate and The Mysterious Island.

Retour de Flamme – presented by Serge Bromberg. Illustrating some of the wonderful films that have been recently rediscovered, Serge will reveal surprises and show films one would never have expected to survive. With live piano accompaniment for the silent films, amazing stories about how the films were found and identified will make this a very fun and memorable program.

7:30 p.m. Screening of “Linda” (1929) at the Packard Campus

Silent film screening with live accompaniment showcasing the newly preserved film “Linda” (1929) from the Packard Campus archives. Directed by Dorothy Davenport. Starring Helen Foster, Warner Baxter and Noah Beery. A late silent film directed by Mrs. Wallace Reid about a young lady who is forced into a relationship by her family although she craves a different life of education and the love of another man. This film is beautiful and poignant while illustrating the difficulties that women were subjected to and how little of a say they had in their own lives. The film will be accompanied on the Walker theater organ by Ben Model. The event is free and open to the public.

Friday, July 18th

9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Screening unidentified films from archives around the world with breaks in between including those noted below:

12 p.m. – 1 p.m – Lunch catered by local restaurant “El Jaripeo”. Cost: $10 per person. Lunch will be buffet style fajita bar with the following offerings: tortillas, rice, beans, lettuce, tomatoes, beef, chicken,  yellow squash, zucchini, onions, etc. Also some chips and salsa to make things more festive!

Following the lunch break: Where the Music Comes From: a Talk/Demo on Silent Film Accompaniment. Attendees of “Mostly Lost: 3” will have the opportunity to find out what goes on inside the heads and hands of the conference’s “Pep Boys” of silent film accompaniment in this session. Philip Carli, Ben Model, and Andrew Simpson will discuss their approaches to accompanying silent film, with special emphasis on accompanying previously-unseen films.  The musicians will demonstrate their techniques utilizing the theater’s piano and Walker theater organ.

7:30 p.m. “The Good Bad Man” (1916)

Join us for the east coast premiere of this new restoration, the result of a three-way partnership between the  San Francisco Silent Film Festival, Cinémathèque Française, and the Film Preservation Society. Douglas Fairbanks produced, wrote and starred in this western that also features Bessie Love and Pomeroy Cannon. Doug plays a bandit who steals from the rich and gives to the children who, like him, are orphans. Board President of the San Francisco Silent Film Festival, Robert Byrne, will introduce the film and discuss the history and restoration of this early Fairbanks classic. This film will be accompanied by Phillip Carli on the Walker theater organ. The event is free and open to the public.


Saturday, July 19th

9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Screening unidentified films from archives around the world with breaks in between including those noted below:

12 p.m. – 1 p.m – Lunch catered by “Tropical Smoothie Cafe”. Cost: $10 per person. Lunch will include trays of halved sandwiches and wraps (a few without dressing/sauce of any kind), chips, cookies and smoothies. There is no need to indicate now or at a later date what you would like since this will be served buffet style with the following offerings:

  • Wasabi Caesar Roast Beef Sandwich – Roast Beef, Pepper Jack cheese, Romaine & Wasabi Caesar Dressing on Ciabatta
  • Chipotle Turkey Sandwich – Turkey, Pepper Jack cheese, Tomatoes, Romaine & Chipotle Mayo on Ciabatta
  • Ham & Swiss Sandwich – Ham, Swiss cheese, Tomatoes & Romaine on Ciabatta. Mayo and Mustard on-the-side
  • Cranberry Walnut Chicken Salad Sandwich – Cranberry Walnut Chicken Salad, Tomatoes & Field Greens on Nine-Grain Wheat Bread
  • Hummus Veggie Wrap – Hummus, Pepper Jack cheese, Southwestern Rice with Corn, Black Beans & Asparagus, Romaine, Salsa in a Garlic Herb Tortilla
  • King Caesar Wrap – Chicken, Parmesan cheese, Tomatoes, Romaine & Caesar Dressing in a Garlic Herb Tortilla

Smoothies that will be available:

  • Kiwi Quencher – Kiwi, Strawberries & Non-Fat Yogurt
  • Mango Magic – Mango, Pineapples & Non-Fat Yogurt
  • Paradise Point – Strawberries, Banana & Pineapple
  • Strawberry Lemonade – Strawberries & Lemonade
  • Sunny Day – Mango, Banana, Orange & Kiwi

Following the lunch break: History and Preservation of the Paper Print Collection presented by Alexis Ainsworth. The paper print collection is exclusive to the Library of Congress and has ensured the survival of an important part of our country’s cinematic history. This presentation will include an overview of the 100-year-old collection, including how early copyright laws led to the creation of the paper print. The complications of handling motion pictures printed on paper and the related preservation challenges will also be discussed.

7:30 p.m. Joint program between the Library and the newly restored State Theatre of an evening of silent film comedy shorts with musical accompaniment by The Snark Ensemble. Cost: $6 per person

Films to be screened include “There It Is” (1928) an odd film starring Charlie Bowers, “Hansom Cabman” (1924) with Harry Langdon, “Married to Order” (1920) directed by and starring Charlie Chase, and “Behind the Screen” (1916) featuring Charlie Chaplin. The screening will be held in downtown Culpeper, Va., at the State Theater. This is a ticketed event that is open to the public.

Directly following the screening there will be a closing night reception held in The State’s Black Box Theatre. This is for registered Mostly Lost 3 attendees only.


Unidentified Distressed Woman Melodrama – click here to see more images from this film.

Do you have unidentified material?

Mostly Lost is a collaborative effort. Not only do we include material from archives around the world, but we also feature unknown items from collectors.


There will be a session dedicated just to unidentified films that collectors possess. Do you want to know the original title of your Castle cut-down? Or did you come to possess reel 2 of a feature? Feel free to submit your film to be screened at Mostly Lost.

Our theater is only capable of screening 35mm safety and video. 16mm and 8mm items will need to be transferred to a digital file or disc to be included in the workshop.

Deadlines: All film submissions must arrive at the Packard Campus no later than June 5th. If you need items transferred, we can digitize them at the Packard Campus, but they must arrive no later than May 22nd. Please contact Rachel Parker to arrange this.


We will also set up a table with binders full of unidentified stills and photos for attendees to help identify. If you have any that you would like to submit, please email digital copies of the stills to Rachel Parker no later than June 19th. Please include any information already known about the still as well as a descriptive title for each image that can be used to relay information back to you.


Unlike past years, the hotels are not holding rooms for us but will still provide the government rate for attendees of “Mostly Lost”. We strongly suggest that you make your hotel reservations sooner rather than later. You must mention that you are visiting for the Library of Congress event in order to get the government rate. Your mentioning of this also helps us to hit the numbers we promised the hotels which is mutually beneficial so please mention the words “Library of Congress event” when making your reservation.

Our hotel of choice is:

The Microtel – 540-829-0330
885 Willis Lane – Culpeper, VA 22701
Our rate: $70 + tax.
Included are rooms with: a single (1 queen bed), a double (2 queen beds) or a suite (1 queen bed and 1 queen sofa pull-out)
If there are any issues, ask to speak with Francis

Our overflow hotel of choice is:

The Comfort Inn – 540-825-4900
890 Willis Road – Culpeper, VA 22701
Our rate: $83 + tax
If there are any issues, ask to speak with Mildred

Although we have no agreement with them, if everything else is booked then we suggest:

The Best Western – 540-825-1253
791 Madison Road – Culpeper, VA 22701
Our rate: $83 + tax – you must show them a copy of your receipt to prove that you are attending a Library of Congress event to procure this rate.

Best Western, Holiday Inn Express, Comfort Inn and Rodeway Inn are all within walking distance of Microtel.  Carpooling will be from the Microtel.  Other Culpeper motels will make carpooling difficult so please keep that in mind when making a reservation.  Should there not be any Culpeper lodging available we suggest you explore the town of Warrenton first.

Be sure to get your picture taken at the LOVE sculpture across from the depot crafted from 35mm film reels provided by the Library of Congress.


What else is there to do in Culpeper?

Want to know what other attractions and events are happening in the Culpeper, Virginia area? Visit the tourism website at or visit their office, which is located in the train depot. They are very nice, don’t bite and appreciate treats.

Also nearby are delicious wineries, cute shops and Civil War battlefields a plenty. A few antique malls, beautiful mountain hiking trails and some great restaurants make this area full of options if you want to extend your Virginia visit.



VIA CAR= Culpeper is about an hour to 90 minutes from D.C. depending on where you start from.  It is easiest to do a Goggle Map search.  The Packard Campus is located at: 19053 Mt. Pony Road, Culpeper, VA  22701.

VIA TRAIN= Culpeper is easily accessed via Amtrak from Washington, DC Union Station.  If you fly into Reagan National (DCA) you can take the Metro over to Union Station. Flying into Baltimore (BWI) and you can take the MARC train ($5 or so) to Union Station. Dulles (IAD) would require a shuttle but they run often and are fairly inexpensive.  We can pick you up at the Culpeper Amtrak Station on Thursday or Friday and return you there on Sunday.  It is important that you let us know if you need a ride by sending an email to Rachel at at least a week before the conference. If you are looking to carpool, then we suggest that you “like” the Facebook page “Friends of Mostly Lost” and chat with other attendees there.

LOCAL TRANSPORTATION= There is no public transportation between the Packard Campus and town (including where the motels are located).  It would be best for you to either have a car or organize a carpool with an attendee that does. We will pass along contact information to enable you to do this prior to arrival.  We will run a van between the Packard Campus and town but space will be very limited. If you are looking to carpool, then we suggest that you “like” the Facebook page “Friends of Mostly Lost” and chat with other attendees there.


This unidentified film screened at Mostly Lost 1 and has yet to be identified. See more images of this conundrum here.

If you want to begin the identifying fun or if you are (gasp!) unable to attend this year’s Mostly Lost workshop then please visit the flickr page that is dedicated to film identification.

The flickr site also contains films there were screened at past Mostly Lost workshops but have yet to be identified. Want to chat with other Mostly Lost attendees? Need to arrange carpooling or roomshare? Like the “Friends of Mostly Lost” Facebook page and discuss away!




While most of the events are free, everything is ticketed which allows us to keep better track of space available. Please add each event that you plan on attending to your cart and once you have everything selected then View Cart and Checkout. During the checkout process, be sure to select “Will Call” as your delivery option. Tickets will not be mailed. Each event (ticket) has a limit of one per cart so that we can gather the name and email address of each attendee. If you are registering for more than one person then you will have to create a cart and checkout for one person at a time. The last day to register for “Mostly Lost 3” is Tuesday July 1st. If for any reason you are unable to attend Mostly Lost (and really why would you not?) then please let us know.

Thursday, July 17th

Tour of the Packard Campus – 8:30 a.m. – Free

Thursday Lunch provided by Luigi’s – $10

Presentations and Panels  – 12:30 p.m.-6 p.m. – Free

Failed Film Formats – presented by Dino Everett

Bringing Color to the Screen – The Early Years of Technicolor – presented by David Pierce and James Layton

Retour de Flamme – presented by Serge Bromberg

Evening Screening of “Linda” (1929) at the Packard Campus – 7:30 p.m. – Free


Friday, July 18th

Unidentified Screenings Day 1  – 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. – Free

This Friday program runs from 9am-5pm with several 15 minute breaks scheduled. There will be a presentation by Ben Model, Phillip Carli and Andrew Simpson at 1 p.m. on Silent Film Accompaniment.

Friday Lunch provided by El Jaripeo – $10

Evening Screening of “The Good Bad Man” (1916)  at the Packard Campus – 7:30 p.m. – Free


Saturday, July 19th

Unidentified Screenings Day 2 – 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. – Free

This Saturday program runs from 9am-5pm with several 15 minute breaks scheduled. There will be a presentation by Alexis Ainsworth on The History and Preservation of the Paper Print Collection.

Saturday Lunch provided by Tropical Smoothie Café – $10

Evening Screening & Reception at The State Theatre – 7:30pm – $6

The Snark Ensemble will provide accompaniment to silent comedy shorts. Films to be screened include “There It Is” (1928) an odd film starring Charlie Bowers, “Hansom Cabman” (1924) with Harry Langdon, “Married to Order” (1920) directed by and starring Charlie Chase, and “Behind the Screen” (1916) featuring Charlie Chaplin. Please note that this event is taking place at The State Theatre in downtown Culpeper. Following the screening will be a reception in The State Theatre’s Black Box.