FOUND: Historical Films of National Retriever Field Trial Championships
Apparently the National Amateur Retriever Club had a professional film made of the very first National Amateur Retriever Field Trial Championship in 1957. The winner was NFC Major VI, making him the very first NFC-NAFC. 2xNFC King Buck was a finalist. Other notable dogs competing include NFC Cork of Oakwood Lane and the Chesapeake Rip.
I have located and purchased a copy of the film. To the best of my knowledge no one around today even knew it existed. It is 16mm and runs for approximately ninety minutes. It is in color, no soundtrack, very professionally produced. It has descriptions of the tests, and the names and background information of the dogs on the screen before they run.
I found out the seller also had copies of the 1956 National Open, and 1963 National Open. I have purchased those copies too.
The 1957 NAFTC has been converted to DVD. The copyright is owned by the NARC, and discussions have begun how to make it available to the retriever community. The films for the 1956 NFTC and 1963 NFTC were just sent off for conversion, I do not know the copyright status of those yet. The 1963 film is black and white, is shorter, and appears to lack the incredible production values that are on the 1956 and 1957 films. I suspect the 1963 film is a private film John Olin had made, whereas the National Clubs own the 1956 and 1957 films. But time will tell.
I was doing some further research from the seller making sure there were no others, inquiring where he got them? He was very open, one of the things he does is dumpster dive for things to sell. He found these films in "a pile of scrap metal and trash." Think about that.