The first version of “The Silver Horde” was a silent movie released in 1920. Part of the movie was filmed here on Lummi Island and featured tens of thousands of salmon stacked knee deep on the cannery floors.
A decade later, in 1930, the movie was re-produced as a “talkie” – also partly produced here on Lummi Island using some local talent as “extras”. Jack Miller had a part in a fight scene on the traps. Anyway, here is a news item from a 1920 Bellingham Bay newspaper about Lummi Islanders enjoying the marvel of actual moving pictures in a Bellingham theater: The boat Carlisle II docked of course in Bellingham, so it was walking distance to the theater.
May, 1920 …. About 100 Lummi Islanders attended The Silver Horde at American Theater last week, the steamer Carlisle II making a special trip Friday evening. Also several young people had opportunity to dance at letter carriers ball at armory, the boat not leaving until 12:30 AM through courtesy of Manager Flynn and Capt. Haines.
As far as we can determine, no copy of the 1920 film still exists. However the 1930 talkie is still in circulation and several copies are recorded here on Lummi Island. It is historically important to Lummi Island, but it otherwise is really a pretty bad movie.
See if you can guess what scenes were shot on Lummi Island and where. If you can, let us know!
Updated: 2021/10/19 @ 12:17 pm Gayle Lurenz