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Now It Can Be Told

Accession number: 


Directors of Photography:



Production Years: 
1940 to 1945


Film Properties: 
Length (feet): 
938 (16mm)
Holding Institutions: 

Library and Archives Canada: 16mm, digibeta, VHS.
"The war effort of the Electrolux Company of Canada. This shows the staff of the Factory Division and the Home Office of Electrolux (Canada) Limited in Montreal and the war-related work it did during 1940 to 1945. There are visuals of: the stafff; workers outside one of the Electrolux buildings; and Electrolux vacuum cleaner dealer and a female customer; soldiers, sailors, and women in the military; the office stafff; managers; stock room stafff; repairmen; the labour-management committee and the manufacturing department. The narration talks about the changes in the Electrolux workforce because of the war, with Electrolux employees (men and 'girls') serving in the armed forces. The narration states that 'women have taken the place of men to a marked degree'. The government order of 1942 which suspended the manufacture of non-essential goods in order to devote more resources to manufacturing equipment and other goods needed by the military, had an impact on Electrolux because it had to stop making vacuum cleaners for home use and switched over to making equipment and parts needed by the military. Footage of: women in the fuse department operating drill presses to make fuses for hand grenades; various parts for the striker in hand grenades; women inspecting fuse parts for plasticf hand grenades; a worker talking to a nurse in the factory's health centre; a woman selecting a record to play over the gramophone which piped music over a loudspeaker to the factory workers; company workers doing paperwork for a tender for the Department of Munitions and Supply; women making parts for small motors used by the Canadian navy and the Royal Canadian Air Force; the company's chief engineer talking about some of the problems of manufacturing such motors; the use of the motors, originally designed for motion picture cameras to take gun camera footage; the making of a cable contact for the firing mechanism for naval guns; the Basin Street factory in Montreal; the making of two-stage high pressure pumps for 25-pounder guns and auxiliary units on tank-buster guns; the staff lunch room; the adaptation of the blower unit of Electrolux vacuum cleaners for use in cooling vacuum tubes in stationary radio locators that signal the approach of planes; the use of Electrolux motors as antenna motors for portable radar units; troops in action as the narrtion talks about the use of such equipment during the Sicily landings; officials on a Trans-Canada Airlines plane, delivering equipment made by Electrolux; the making of step-by-step motors, square motors and tank parts; the adapting of vacuum cleaners for use in purifying the air inside tanks, neutralizing gunfire recoil fumes; the use of vacuum cleaners in military and civilian hospitals; Electrolux staff, particularly sales staff, helping in the Victory Loans campaigns; salesmen going door to door to get Victory Loan contributions; staff working for Red Cross charity campaigns; and staff volunteers compiling ration books. Also shown are Electrolux staff playing in the Montreal Industrial Softball League, at a horseshoe pitch, bowling, engaging in other sports, and dancing."