Today in Media History: A copyrighted 1894 sneeze and the beginning of the film industry

A sneeze made history in 1894.

According to the Library of Congress, a Thomas Edison movie of Fred Ott’s sneeze is the first copyrighted U.S. film.

This was one of the early steps for a film industry that soon learned how to make money off of moving image technology.

The film took place sometime during the first week of 1894, but the Library of Congress likes to remember January 7, 1894 as the day Fred Ott sneezed. (The official copyright date came two days later.)

Here is a copy of the historic sneeze:

“Thomas A. Edison began thinking about the development of motion pictures in 1888….To turn his new invention into reality, Edison assigned responsibility for day-to-day development to one of his best assistants, a young Englishman named W. K. L. Dickson. By June of 1891, Dickson produced a series of successful experimental motion pictures that were shown to visiting groups at the Edison laboratory in New Jersey.

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from Poynter. http://ift.tt/1s4UVrk



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