Tourists who take a steamer along the Harlem River from New York, have recently found an additional soectacle to enjoy as they pass the Bronx area of Manhatten.
GV Boys jumping off cliff (2 shots)
SV Boy jumping off cliff TILT UP TO steamer passing on river below (2 shots)
GV Boy jumps off cliff
SV Boys preparing to jump
GV Boy jumping off cliff marked with a blue "C"
SV Boy s using running start to jump (2 shots)
SV Boy jumping from safer part of cliff
SV Boys being interviewed ZOOM IN TO one boy speaking
SV Steamers with tourists on board passing rock
GV & LV Boys jump off cliff (3 shots)
NARRATOR: "It's Manhatten's answer to Acapulco where native divers amaze the tourists and one another, by hurling themselves off a hundred foot cliff. But here there are no crashing waves, only the opaque waters of the Harlem River below, and the cliff is a sheer drop. But the tourists are impressed. The spielers on the scenic boat ride accustomed to pointing out the Empire State Building, the Brooklyn Bridge and Grant's home, have added a line to their narration, and the boats slow down new, passing the high cliff of Spighton (phon.) ... where the Hudson and the Harlem rivers meet, to watch the youngsters of twelve or fourteen scramble to the top, hang for a moment, then flail past the rock with a whoop. Like all city kids the Spighton (Divor) (Phon.) jumpers are bold, and cool and unafraid. There are some take-off spots on the cliff where it takes a running start to clear the rocks below. Even the impact on the water can stain the soles of the feet. But they look each other in the eye and laugh and leap."
REPORTER: "How long you been doing it?"
BOY: "Oh, about...I'd say altogether I came out here about twenty-two weeks. It's not that bad. Like when I first came down, they told me there were whirlpools and everything. It's not that scary at all. There's no whirlpools."
REPORTER: "Are you ever scared you'll hit the rocks on the way down?"
BOY: "No. I don't do those jumps where you got to clear the rocks. I do the easy ones. The ones that are high, but easy."
REPORTER: "How about you. Does your mother know you're out here today?"
BOY: "No. She thinks I'm swimming in the pool. When she knows I'm here. I'm dead."
NARRATOR: "Once in a wile boat passengers throw quarters, but the river water's too dirty for the jumpers to follow them. They take the risk only for applause. And if there isn't enough, they let the boats pass by with no show. Then leap out into space for the private joy and terror that combine while skimming the rocks to the river a hundred feet below. I'm Andy MacMillan in New York.
Initials BB/0024 NPJ/MC/BB/0043
EDITORS NOTE: This film is serviced with sound narration and interviews by Andy MacMillan of Television News Inc., intended for use. A transcript is provided on page two.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Tourists who take a steamer along the Harlem River from New York, have recently found an additional soectacle to enjoy as they pass the Bronx area of Manhatten. Dare-devil young boys from the city have found they can mimic the natives of Acapulco, Mexico by diving from the top of hundred-foot high cliffs into the river where the Harlem joins Hudson.
Most of the spots where they jump, the cliff is a sheer drop and the danger is minimal. But in other places the rock bulges out, and the lads can only pass it safely by taking a running leap into the water. The tourists on the passing steamers are impressed, and the guides now mention the in their narration as they pass the cliffs.
Some of the passengers are even moved to throw coins from the boats into the river, but, unlike Acapulco, the water is too mirky for the boys to find them. The only reward they expect for their stunt, is a round of applause. If this sounds too thin, they stop jumping until the boats have passed by, and then resume for their own private kicks.
These budding stuntmen are generally aged between twelve and fourteen. Like most city kids from the Bronx, they are bold, cool and unafraid. Unafraid, that is, about heights. Parents are a different matter. One youngster told TVN reporter, Andy MacMillan, that his mother thought he was at the swimming pool. "When she knows I'm here", he said, "I'm dead."