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Hydro (International, circa 1940)
Hydro-Poster-Web.jpg
​“Hydro,” made in 1939, was the first film created by BPA's Motion Picture Information Division. Written and produced by Stephen Kahn, who coined the phrase “America’s greatest power stream,” it was made to educate the people of the Pacific Northwest about the benefits of the Columbia River system. But at the request of business groups, BPA made an alternate version, which removed about eight minutes of electricity rate and other local information from the original 33-minute film. This shorter version came in handy when Vice President Henry Wallace took it on his goodwill visit to Russia, Mongolia and China in the spring of 1944. Unfortunately, BPA’s copy of this version was lost. In 2014, a BPA employee purchased a reel of film in an antique store in Vancouver, Wash., which turned out to be the missing international version of “Hydro.” This digital transfer was made from this original 16 mm black-and-white film print.