In honor of Memorial Day, above is shown a living (or formation) photograph circa 1918 depicting the service flag of the U.S. Armed Forces. It was produced by Arthur Mole and John Thomas with the assistance of hundreds if not thousands of troops of the 164th Depot Brigade stationed at Camp Funston in Fort Riley, Kansas. Technically complex to stage, the pair created around 30 such photographs on patriotic themes at various military camps during World War I.
As defined in the U.S. Code at 36 USC § 901:
A service flag approved by the Secretary of Defense may be displayed in a window of the place of residence of individuals who are members of the immediate family of an individual serving in the Armed Forces of the United States during any period of war or hostilities in which the Armed Forces of the United States are engaged.Service flags are also known as service banners, and Blue Star Service Banners depict a blue star for each family member who is serving during war or hostilities. Gold Star Service Banners depict a gold star (with a thin blue border) for each family member killed during wartime service.
Further information on the work of Mole & Thomas and other photographers who created similar large-scale images can be found at the Library of Congress' Picture This blog in the post: Formation Photographs: Lining Up to Salute the Flag. The original photograph above is held in the Library of Congress' Prints & Photographs Division.