Image of letter from Thomas A. Edison to the Librarian of Congress, stamped January 9, 1894, requesting a copyright for his film titled 'The Sneeze' , which depicts a man named Fred Ott sneezing in the United States. View of a still image containing 45 individual frames of the film 'The Sneeze' along with explanation of their creation and preservation at the Library of Congress. Thomas A. Edison and associates seated at a table containing photographic equipment. The film 'Fred Ott's Sneeze' (proper title, filmed January, 1894) is shown at the end of the clip.
Telephone facility construction in the United States. A picture showing a man digging a hole for a telephone pole in 1894. A picture shows several men raising a telephone pole in 1895. Men using a tractor to pull telephone lines in the later years. A tractor with auger drilling holes for the telephone posts. A derrick (out of sight) placing a post in the hole. A man standing beside the post guiding it into the hole. In 19th Century, crews of men are seen manually digging trenches on the sides of the road in a city street for laying telephone lines. In contrast , a man operates a powered trenching machine along a street, while helpers watch, Houses in view along the side of the road.
View of a book entitled "Builders of Hawaii." A hand opens it to several different places, revealing photos of persons who played roles in the early development of Hawaii. Also revealed are pages from the newspaper "Commercial Advertiser" reporting that flags changed as "Hawaii becomes the first outpost of Greater America" and "Old Glory is the new flag of the Hawaiian Islands." (This refers to the establishment of the Territory of Hawaii, under the U.S. Hawaiian Organic Act of 1900.) A portrait of Sanford Ballard Dole is shown. (He was the President of the Republic of Hawaii, 1894-1900, and its first Territorial Governor, 1900-1903.) Views of the Hawaiian State Archives Building, on the grounds of the Iolani Palace, in Honolulu. A plaque honoring Captain James Cook. Views of visitors inside an exhibit that includes a reproduction of an early Hawaiian cottage.
Film opens showing reenactment of Japanese attack ostensibly against Formosa, in 1894. Japanese troops and artillery are shown. The event is depicted in a critical political cartoon. Next, Japanese Admiral Heihachiro Togo is seen in 1904, standing with other naval officers. Then, Japanese warships are shown, firing barrages of naval gunfire at the Russian fleet in Port Arthur, Manchuria. Huge black clouds arise from burning ships. Scenes of Japanese people celebrating their naval victory. Date shifts to 1910. Cartoon depicts Japanese annexation of Korea. Cartoon illustrates Japanese actions in World War I when, siding with the Allies, Japan acquired the German-held Shandong (Shantung) Peninsula of China, as well as German-held Marianas, Carolines, and Marshalls islands in the Pacific. Japanese representatives are seen participating in Post World War 1 international activities. They signed the so-called Five-Power,Four-Power, and Nine-Power treaties, and participated in the League of Nations. Glimpse of two Japanese officers, followed by cartoon depiction of the Mariana, Caroline, and Marshall Islands, that Japan insisted on keeping. Cartoon shows them being fortified. A Japanese military marching band parades down a city street while being cheered by spectators on the sidewalks. Next, Japanese military General, Baron Tanaka Giichi, is seen in uniform with other officers. Cartoon illustrates the so-called Tanaka Memorial document that Baron Tanaka allegedly presented to the Emperor, in 1927, outlining a strategy to conquer the world. Cartoon then illustrates plan of conquest by acquiring Chinese manpower; Manchurian iron and coal; Siberian timber, coal, wheat, and metals; Tin,oil and rubber from Malaysia and the East Indies. The United States is shown as the last conquest. Views of ordinary farm and factory activities in the U.S. Cars parked in the Ford Motor Company factory lot. Japanese officials and legislators meeting in the Diet (Parliament). Japanese theater-goers and a Japanese woman singing with an American-style band, are shown as examples of activities the Japanese Government sought to discourage. A Japanese female ensemble in traditional dress, playing traditional instruments, is shown as more desirable. Western dancing and movies are shown and narrator states they were forbidden. Japese movie scene depicts ancient martial arts. A musical production displays German swastika flag and that of the Kingdom of Italy. Japanese men are shown playing the ancient game of Chu Shogi, instead of playing Western card games. People are shown in a library, where Western books are replaced by more militaristic tomes, such as: "If we fight" by Admiral Shinsaku Hirata, March 15, 1930 (shown on film slate). Slate goes on to quote about attack on Hawaii as the first battle in war of the Pacific. Film cites another approved Japanese publication: "Arguments Against American Policies" by Kawashima Seichiro, Christmas Day, 1924. It discusses distruction of the American fleet and subsequent landing on the U.S. West Coast.
Conditions in Japan in 1927-1928. An animated map of the Pacific Ocean depicts the growth of Japanese military might since 1894. The map depicts areas under Japanese empire in 1894, the Chinese Japanese War of 1894-1895, the Russian Japanese War Of 1904-1905, the territory under Japanese influence and World War I from 1914-1918. Officers watch as Japanese soldiers march. Japanese cavalry units. Soldiers run forward. Japanese Emperor Hirohito looks at the maneuvers at the Imperial Japanese Military Academy in Tokyo. He salutes standing at a dais. The soldiers parade. A naval smoke screen is laid to shield the army at a river crossing. The Emperor looks on as soldiers in a barge land at a shore. Two vessels in a water body. Japanese sailors march. Emperor Hirohito in conversation with military officials. From the deck of his flagship 'Katori', he watches as naval guns are fired.
A performance on the flying rings, by Gymnast and contortionist, Luis Martinetti of the Martinetti Brothers. Filmed on October 11, 1894, in Edison's Black Maria studio, West Orange, New Jersey, United States.