Thomas Edison



Fred Ott Sneeze

On February 1, 1893, Thomas Edison completed construction of his first motion picture studio. Edison referred to the studio as “the Black Maria” because it resembled a police wagon. The studio was mounted on a pivot, so it could be rotated to align with the sun at any time during the day. Edison continued to use the studio until he built a glass-enclosed studio in 1901. The earliest copyrighted film from the studio that still survives is Fred Ott’s Sneeze. The film is actually a series of positive photographic prints of Edison’s Employee, Fred Ott, sneezing. The accompanying picture is the series of photographs that, when strung together, produced “Fred Ott’s Sneeze”.