Memorial Day 1918 – Edwin G. Lutz, author of the book Animated Cartoons, made a 300-foot animated feature cartoon called The Story of Old Glory. This film was presented 100 years ago at the Strand Theater in New York City during the week of May 26, 1918, to commemorate Memorial Day.
The film showed the various iterations of the American flag from colonial times to 1918, when the flag had 48 stars. Each state entering the Union was shown on a map as the new flag was displayed with a star added. The production ended with the music of the “StarSpangled Banner” and a scene of the British fleet bombarding Fort McHenry while Old Glory waved in the background.
In 1939 this film was included in a Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) cartoon film festival, along with films from Emil Cohl, Winsor McCay, Bud Fisher, Walt Disney, Charley Bowers, Walter Lantz, and others.
Mr. Lutz was associated with Max Fleischer at the Pathe Studio in Jersey City in 1916. He also worked with Barre & Bowers Studio in Fordam and Mr. Jacob Frank Leventhal (often known as J. F. Leventhal) prior to June 1918. The Story of Old Glory appears to be the only film Mr. Lutz produced himself.
Both MoMA and the Library of Congress have been contacted to see if they have a copy of the film, but neither has any information on it. If you have any information about this film or know of a surviving copy, please contact the Illustrating Edwin website at: eglutz.com/contact/.
Memorial Day – May 28, 2018
100 Years Later