Cinecraft Productions collections

About this collection

    Cinécraft Productions was founded in 1939 by Ray Culley (1904-1983) and Betty (Buehner) Culley (1914-2016) in Cleveland, Ohio. The firm specialized in commercial productions for business, industry, trade organizations, and, in some cases, government agencies and social service organizations. The company has been in continuous operation since then, making it the “country's longest-standing corporate film & video production house”.
    Hagley Library's collections of material generated by, or in association with, Cinécraft Productions include The Cinecraft, Inc. films (Accession 2019.227) collection, the , Cinecraft oral histories (Accession 2021.206) collection, Robert A. Schneider collection of Cinecraft Production audiovisual materials (Accession 2018.202), the Frank Siedel papers (Accession 2022.215), and scattered items in our Sponsored and industrial motion picture film collection (Accession 2018.222).
    Read articles about Cinecraft in the Hagley Research and Collections News.
    The collections that have been digitized appear below. None of them have been digitized in their entirety, and new additions continue to be made to some collections.
    Image: Employee caricatures, 1945

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Cinecraft, Inc. Videos
    Cinecraft Productions was founded in 1939 by Ray Culley (1904-1983) and Betty (Buehner) Culley (1914-2016) in Cleveland, Ohio. Cinecraft specializes in commercial productions for business, industry, trade organizations, and, in some cases, government agencies and social service organizations. Cinecraft is still in business and rightfully claims itself the “country's longest-standing corporate film & video production house.”
    The Cinecraft, Inc. Videos (Accession 2019.227.003) collection consists of digitized moving images produced by Cinecraft between 1979 and 1999, the majority being from the 1990s. The collection has not been processed in its entirety.
    For additional Cinecraft material, see our Culley Family Cinecraft Productions Collection, Cinecraft oral histories, Cinecraft Productions Films, and Frank Siedel papersdigital collections.
    Image: Screen shot from the 1998 video "Let's Sell Cinecraft"
Culley Family Cinecraft Productions Collection
    Cinecraft Productions was founded in 1939 by Ray Culley (1904-1983) and Betty (Buehner) Culley (1914-2016) in Cleveland, Ohio. Ray Culley served as president of the company and producer on many Cinecraft films until his retirement in 1970. During his tenure, Cinecraft specialized in commercial productions for business, industry, trade organizations, and, in some cases, government agencies and social service organizations.
    Cinecraft was one among hundreds of production houses in the U.S. during the middle decades of the 20th century that specialized in motion pictures commonly referred to as non-theatrical, industrial, business and/or sponsored films. While ownership has changed twice since its founding, Cinecraft is still in business and rightfully claims itself the “country's longest-standing corporate film & video production house.”
    The Culley family collection of Cinecraft Productions audiovisual materials (Accession 2018.201) has not been digitized in its entirety. For more Cinecraft content, visit our Cinecraft Productions Films and Cinecraft oral histories digital collections.
    Image: Cinecraft Founders Ray Culley (behind the camera) and Betty Culley (holding script). Circa 1940
Cinecraft Productions Films
    Cinecraft Productions was founded in 1939 by Ray Culley (1904-1983) and Betty (Buehner) Culley (1914-2016) in Cleveland, Ohio. Cinecraft specializes in commercial productions for business, industry, trade organizations, and, in some cases, government agencies and social service organizations. Cinecraft is still in business and rightfully claims itself the “country's longest-standing corporate film & video production house.”
    The Cinecraft, Inc. films (Accession 2019.227) collection includes motion pictures, still images, scripts and related production documents from the company's founding into the early 1980s with the bulk covering the 1950s to the 1970s. The collection has not been digitized in its entirety but we are currently making frequent additions.
    Read articles about Cinecraft in the Hagley Research and Collections News.
    For additional Cinecraft material, see our Culley Family Cinecraft Productions Collection and Cinecraft oral histories digital collections.
    Image: Production still from making of The Miracle on Mulberry Street, 1948.
Cinecraft Oral Histories
    Cinecraft, Inc. is a corporate film and video production house. The company was founded in 1939 by Ray Culley (1904-1983) and Betty Culley (1914-2016) in Cleveland, Ohio. The company was one among hundreds of production houses in the U.S. during the middle decades of the twentieth century that specialized in a motion pictures commonly referred to as non-theatrical, industrial, commercial, business and/or sponsored films.
    The Cinecraft oral histories (Accession 2021.206) collection documents the history of Cinecraft Productions. The collection includes interviews with former employees as well as relatives of Cinecraft employees. In addition, an interview conducted in 1999 with Paul Culley (former owners) and Bob Haviland (former Executive Producer) is included in this collection.
    For additional Cinecraft material, see our Culley Family Cinecraft Productions Collection and Cinecraft Productions Films digital collections.
    Image: Still from video of Paul Culley and Jim Haviland in 1999. Watch the interview here.
Frank Siedel papers
    Frank Siedel (1914-1988) was a writer, educator, and broadcaster. In 1947, he founded the firm Storycraft, Inc., an industrial writing company, where he worked until his death in 1988.
    The Frank Siedel papers (Accession 2022.215) collection has not been digitized in its entirety. This small digital collection documents a sample of Siedel's work from the collection, particularly 'The Ohio Story' series, which he originated, and the "In the Ohio Heritage" educational series.
    'The Ohio Story' began as a radio show and later developed into a television series presented by Ohio Bell Telephone, running from 1947 to 1961. The television shows were directed by Ray Culley (1904-1983) of Cinecraft Productions. "In the Ohio Heritage" was an educational series for students sponsored by the Standard Oil Company (SOHIO).
    Frank Siedel and Stuart Buchanan, producer and director of 'The Ohio Story'. Undated. Click here to view in the collection.