We invite you to enjoy part 11 of the 12 part Distant Arabia video series. The majority of the film clips are comprised of films taken in Saudi Arabia between 1937 and 1940 by Tom Barger, Les Snyder and Jerry Harriss. They are among the few moving pictures that record that critical and brief moment in the country's history when an ancient pastoral way of life was coming to an abrupt end, to be replaced by an industrial society. Many of the Bedouin depicted had never seen an automobile let alone a movie camera before these men arrived. The herds of camels, once the lifeblood of Bedouin life, would become irrelevant. The dhows of the Gulf replaced by motor launches, the date oases, the very anchor of the Al Hasa economy, would become all but insignificant. All that remains of those days are these flickering images from a time before oil.

Distant Arabia part 11 - Dhahran in the Summer of 1965 Filmed by Peter Benjamin, this film shows the familiar landmarks of Dhahran beginning with the Gateway to Safety. The Mail Center is seen at 0:33, the commissary at 0:48, followed by the Ad Building and the Dining Hall. At 1:11 the scene cuts to the Swimming Pool and the returning students lounging in the sun. The skinny blonde-haired kid is the late Charlie Armstrong zoologist and champion board diver. Gayle Miller and Lee Baumgartner are seen in the pool at 2:38, followed by Kit Milam and Diane Sherman modeling their swimwear at 2:55. In a case of turnabout is fair play, Charlie is pushed into the pool by a young girl. At 3:23 a truckload of girl scouts pass in parade, followed by riders from the Hobby Farm and the video concludes with the traditional 4th of July pie eating contest.

More Stories – Tim Barger
ISBN: 978-0988205017
246 pages, $14.95

part 10