Charles W. and Elizabeth "Libby" Schwartz made a series of 24 remarkable nature films, most of which were produced for the Missouri Department of Conservation. From 1949 through 1978, Charlie and Libby Schwartz wandered through much of North America, Hawaii, and the Caribbean on arduous expeditions, carrying cumbersome camera, sound, and blind gear, filming birds, mammals, and reptiles.
Charles Schwartz (b. June 2, 1914), who grew up in St. Louis, was the son of a prominent ophthalmologist, and studied biology and zoology at the University of Missouri. There, he met Elizabeth Reeder (b. September 13, 1912), originally from Columbus, Ohio, who was an instructor on the U of Mo. faculty, and the daughter of a professor at Ohio State University. After receiving her doctorate, she taught at Sweetbriar College in Virginia, and at Stephens College, Missouri. She and Charles married in 1938.
In addition to making films, Charles was a well-regarded wildlife illustrator and author, whose best known books are “Wild Mammals of Missouri” and “Wildlife Drawings.” Charles passed away in 1991, and Libby lives in retirement in Idaho. We encourage you to read Libby’s outstanding memoir of her life in films, discussing the life of an itinerant husband-and-wife team filming subjects in the wild, often in arduous conditions.
1949. The Prairie Chicken in Missouri
1950. Snakes, Friends and Foes
1950. Sunrise Serenade
1951. Better Pond Fishing
1953. Bobwhite through the year
1957. A Way of Life
1959. The Story of the Mourning Dove
1961. Community Lake
1962. University of Missouri
1963. This is the Mallard
1963. The Rhesus Monkeys of Santiago Island
1964. The Family Life of Birds
1964. A Place to Live
1968. A Prairie Should be Forever
1969. The Return of the Wild Turkey
1971. The Show-me Hunter
1972. Design for Conservation
1973. Wild Chorus
1976. More Than Trees
1977. Ozark Rainbows
1978. Our Wild Inheritance