Boys Town | 1938
Spencer Tracy pulls out all the stops (he had really wanted to be a priest) as Father “There’s no such thing as a bad boy” Flanagan, in this inspiring true-life biopic. Surprisingly for the time, the film was made on location in the real Boys Town, West Dodge Road at 137th Street, in the western suburbs of Omaha, Nebraska. His performance won Tracy the Best Actor Oscar, which he gave to the real Father Flanagan.
The village of Boys Town was established as the headquarters of the Boys Town organization, founded by Father Edward Flanagan, and dedicated to the care, treatment, and education of at-risk children.
In 1921, Father Flanagan purchased Overlook Farm on the outskirts of Omaha and established a boys’ home, which became known as the Village of Boys Town. By the 1930s, hundreds of boys lived at the Village, electing their own government which included a mayor, council and commissioners. In 1936, the community became an official village in the state of Nebraska.