BURTON HOLMES HANDWRITTEN QUOTE SIGNED, "To travel is to possess the world, Burton Holmes, 1923", on 4 x 2.25 card, by travelogue lecturer and film maker.
Elias Burton Holmes (1870–1958) was an American traveler, photographer and filmmaker, who coined the term "travelogue". Travel stories, slide shows, and motion pictures were all in existence before Holmes began his career, as was the profession of travel lecturer; but Holmes was the first person to put all of these elements together into documentary travel lectures. In 1893, after sending out 2000 invitations to a select group of Chicagoans, Holmes gave two sold-out talks about a recent trip to Japan. Around the same time, Holmes began to supplement his hand-colored glass slides with the then excitingly new technology of moving pictures. As the years went on, film came increasingly to dominate his lectures. With the rise of Hollywood, Holmes began to make short travel films for Paramount and later Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Holmes's talks—which totaled over 8000 by the end of his life—drew their largest audiences in cosmopolitan cities like New York, Boston, and Philadelphia. He catered especially to the armchair traveler with escapist fantasies, and for this reason he consciously focused his lectures on the most agreeable and scenic aspects of the places he lectured about. He avoided all discussion of politics, poverty, and other social ills. Burton Holmes has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.