A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (1945)
Indian Head cents turn up in early 1900's Brooklyn
The 1945 Twentieth Century Fox film "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn" was based on the best-selling
1943 novel by Betty Smith.
She lives with her family in a low-rent tenement apartment.
and her father Johnny, who is a part-time waiter and alcoholic.
Her aunt Sissy lives nearby; Sissy likes men and has been "married" several times.
Francie gets ten cents in pennies which she takes home and leaves on a table.
It is Saturday in Brooklyn, streetcars are running and children are out of school playing or working.
2. Saturday in Brooklyn
For childhood, Saturday - free from school - is the most changeless of institutions -
whether it is in city or village, or main street, or in those vital teeming streets
which were the Brooklyn of a few decades ago.
Francie and her brother are taking junk to Mr. Carney, the junkman.
3. Taking junk to the junk dealer
Francie is to sell the goods because Mr. Carney likes little girls and pays them more than he pays boys.
4. Francie gets her nine cents
She gets another "pinch penny" for allowing Mr. Carney to pinch her.
5. Indian Head cents on table
An Indian Head cent obverse and reverse are shown.
The cent under the upper right cent is a Lincoln cent which has a different reverse wreath.
An Indian Head cent:
6. Indian Head cent 1906
Francie notices that a neighbor is cutting down a tree.
7. Cutting down the tree
Francie's mother tells her that these trees are strong and another one will start up.
The "tree" of the title is supposedly a Chinese "Tree of Heaven" or Ailanthus tree.
8. The insurance man collects the policy premium
He gets ten cents a month for each adult and five cents for a child.
Burial insurance was a form of life insurance designed to pay for funeral costs.
is "married" again and pregnant.
9. Aunt Sissy, Officer McShane, and Katie Nolan
Aunt Sissy befriends McShane the policeman who soon becomes a friend of the family.
10. Johnny Nolan gets his coffee
Time passes, Katie becomes pregnant, Johnny enrolls Francie in a better school in a different district
and then dies of pneumonia.
11. Francie graduates
Officer McShane arrives at the apartment for a visit.
12. Officer McShane proposes
Katie accepts McShane's proposal with the approval of Francie.
They wonder what is in store for their little sister Annie.
Peggy Ann Garner as Francie Nolan
Dorothy McGuire as Katie Nolan
James Dunn as Johnny Nolan
Ted Donaldson as Neeley Nolan
Joan Blondell as Aunt Sissy
Lloyd Nolan as Officer McShane
Writers: Tess Slesinger, Frank Davis, Betty Smith (novel)
Notice to Theater Patrons:
The film was released in the US in March of 1945 while World War II was still going on.
The 1943 novel was a best-seller and a special free edition became popular with servicemen overseas.
13. Notice to theater patrons
TO FAMILIES AND FRIENDS OF SERVICEMEN AND WOMEN:
Pictures exhibited in this theatre are given to the armed forces
for showing in combat areas around the world.
WAR ACTIVITIES COMMITTEE
MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY