Most people tend to associate films from national and public archives with important historical events, such as national celebrations, war footage, or visits by world leaders and celebrities. If you asked them to think back to particular events, many would recall the same iconic scenes they saw many times on TV or online.
Nevertheless, archives like those at PBS also offer personal glimpses into the daily lives of citizens throughout the decades. These videos capture the life and times of Maltese people as they go about doing their jobs, relaxing with family and friends, and engaging in various activities related to their interests and talents.
Going for a passiġġata in Valletta and lapping the sun at the Upper Barrakka Gardens.
Triq Ġlormu Cassar in Floriana was known as Duke of Edinburgh Avenue in the 1960s.
Across the Grand Harbour, people do their daily shopping and others ply their trades in the streets of Birgu.
A look back at these historical streets in 1978. Do you recognise any of them?
Meanwhile, workers at the Malta Drydocks work on military and commercial vessels.
For generations, the Drydocks were the country’s largest employer. This footage shows a medley of scenes from the 1960s and 1990s.
People gather to watch athletes compete in St Julian’s, which a lot quieter compared to today
This footage spans the decade between 1960 and 1970.
Not far from there, families take their young children on a play date at the swings and adults sunbathe along the Sliema promenade
These candid scenes show the childhood memories of another time.
Teenage students take a break from their lessons at school and do volunteer work cleaning public grounds and fields
These clean-ups aimed to instil an environmental consciousness among Maltese youth in 1964.
These youths play netball; perhaps it’s a competition or after school practice
This footage was recorded in 1978. Can you recognise any of the people shown here and where they are playing?