• Short Summary

    Educational film detailing the building of railways in West Africa.

  • Description

    Produced by British Instructional Films Ltd. Documentary about building railways in West Africa.

    Map of Africa. Footage of African people playing indigenous musical instruments and performing traditional dances. A large group of "slaves" dig in synchronicity with a "conductor" indicating when they should raise and lower their tools. "Slave trails" in West Africa replaced by iron rails. British and Portuguese building a railway from Benguela to Angola, Elizabethville then on to British South Africa and link up with the Cape to Cairo railway in Rhodesia. Terminus of railway at Lobito Bay. Shots of the docks. Bags of Maize being loaded along with livestock. New carriages for railway unloaded from steamer. Shot of a busy railway station. Shot of steam train. Train running through sugar cane growing district. Three women eating sugar cane and laughing. Sacks of mealies piled high, shot of train carrying the sacks.

    Landscape shots. Brick works. Young boys carrying bricks. Ox pull wagons of bricks. Luanda the capital of Angola - street scene. Building railway yards. Kwango River will provide hydroelectric power. Child drinks from the river. Wheat field, Orange groves. Young boy holds bowl of oranges. Silva Porto Woman gets water from an unusual well in the shape of a woman. The water pours out of a jug she is holding. Herds of cattle. Kwango River Bridge. Moving shot from the front of a vehicle over bridge. Work in the coffee and sisal fields. Waterfalls of Koemba (sp?). Belgian Congo. Gang working on the railway laying the metal sleepers. The rails are carried on the heads of the workers. Cars driving through very uneven roads and fields. Crossing river by car ferry (very rickety looking raft construction). Elizabethville. Factories and copper mines.

    Sound is very poor on this print.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    Media URN:
    British Pathé
    Issue Date:
    1930 - 1939
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Black & White
    Time in/Out:
    01:50:26:00 / 02:01:09:00

Comments (2)

  1. Unknown user says

    "mealies" at the end of Para 2 IS the correct word, it refers to corn or maize.

    "Silverporto" should read Silva Porto (an Angolan town now known as Kuito).

    Final line - its Kwango River, not Kwando. (Kwando also needs changing on Line 6 of third Para).

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  2. Unknown user says

    Thanks for these - can anyone confirm the spelling of "Koemba".

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