"The Keefers" Showing in Idaho Falls

“Newcomers to Idaho Falls are often captivated by its namesake falls on the Snake River. They also may learn of the small, historic cabin located on an island half a mile upstream known as Keefer’s Island. What they don’t always hear about is the rich history that connects these two locations. It’s the story of a pioneer family.”

Thus, begins The Keefers, a one-hour documentary from Eagle Rock Films that will be shown Wednesday, April 20th at 7:30pm at The Colonial Theater in Idaho Falls. Admission is free. Donations are accepted. Click here for the trailer

Beginning in 1875, the film chronicles the westward journey of 23-year old William W. Keefer from his ancestral home in Pennsylvania to a new life in the railroad boomtown of Eagle Rock, Idaho Territory. The sprawling saga encompasses a transcontinental love story, a tumultuous railroad strike and violent windstorm, cowboys shooting up the town and native tribes facing starvation. But at the heart of the film are the exploits of William Keefer’s eccentric, notorious sons--twins, Fred and Frank.

Artfully blending historic photographs, family letters, memoirs, and interviews with local residents, the film provides a colorful glimpse into the early history of Idaho Falls and Eastern Idaho. The rich soundtrack combines original and traditional folk music by local husband and wife team, Bruce Stanger and Jennifer Korenke Stanger, as well as Native American flute, drumming, and chanting by Hovia Edwards and Robert Tree Cody.

Producer/director of the film, Bill McMillin, from Seattle, WA, grew up in Idaho Falls. He has spent the last forty plus years as a news and documentary cameraman, traveling the nation and the globe in search of a good story. This one brought him home.