THOMAS ALVA EDISON (February 11, 1847 – October 18, 1931) was an American inventor and businessman, who has been described as America's greatest inventor. He developed many devices that greatly influenced life around the world, including the phonograph , the motion picture camera , and the long-lasting, practical electric light bulb . Dubbed "The Wizard of Menlo Park", he was one of the first inventors to apply the principles of mass production and large-scale teamwork to the process of invention, and because of that, he is often credited with the creation of the first industrial research laboratory .
Edison was a prolific inventor , holding 1,093 US patents in his name
, as well as many patents in the United Kingdom, France, and Germany.
More significant than the number of Edison's patents was the
widespread impact of his inventions: electric light and power
utilities , sound recording , and motion pictures all established
major new industries worldwide. Edison's inventions contributed to
mass communication and, in particular, telecommunications. These
included a stock ticker , a mechanical vote recorder , a battery for
an electric car , electrical power, recorded music and motion pictures
. His advanced work in these fields was an outgrowth of his early
career as a telegraph operator . Edison developed a system of
electric-power generation and distribution to homes, businesses, and
factories – a crucial development in the modern industrialized
world. His first power station was on Pearl Street in
* 1 Early life * 2 Telegrapher * 3 Marriages and children * 4 Beginning his career
* 5 Menlo Park
* 6 Electric power distribution
* 6.1 War of currents
* 7 Other inventions and projects
* 8 West Orange and Fort Myers (1886–1931) * 9 Final years * 10 Death * 11 Views on politics, religion, and metaphysics * 12 Views on money * 13 Awards
* 14 Tributes
* 14.1 Places and people named for Edison * 14.2 Museums and memorials * 14.3 Companies bearing Edison\'s name * 14.4 Awards named in honor of Edison * 14.5 Other items named after Edison * 14.6 In popular culture
* 15 List of people who worked for Edison * 16 See also * 17 References * 18 Bibliography * 19 External links
Edison as a boy
Edison only attended school for a few months and was instead taught by his mother. Much of his education came from reading R.G. Parker's School of Natural Philosophy and The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art .
Edison developed hearing problems at an early age. The cause of his
deafness has been attributed to a bout of scarlet fever during
childhood and recurring untreated middle-ear infections. Around the
middle of his career, Edison attributed the hearing impairment to
being struck on the ears by a train conductor when his chemical
laboratory in a boxcar caught fire and he was thrown off the train in
Edison's family moved to
Port Huron, Michigan , after the railroad
bypassed Milan in 1854 and business declined. Edison sold candy and
newspapers on trains running from Port Huron to Detroit, and sold
vegetables. He briefly worked as a telegraph operator in 1863 for the
Grand Trunk Railway
Edison obtained the exclusive right to sell newspapers on the road,
and, with the aid of four assistants, he set in type and printed the
Grand Trunk Herald, which he sold with his other papers. This began
Edison's long streak of entrepreneurial ventures, as he discovered his
talents as a businessman. These talents eventually led him to found 14
Edison became a telegraph operator after he saved three-year-old
Jimmie MacKenzie from being struck by a runaway train. Jimmie's
father, station agent J.U. MacKenzie of Mount Clemens,
In 1866, at the age of 19, Edison moved to
One of his mentors during those early years was a fellow telegrapher and inventor named Franklin Leonard Pope , who allowed the impoverished youth to live and work in the basement of his Elizabeth, New Jersey , home. Some of Edison's earliest inventions were related to telegraphy, including a stock ticker. His first patent was for the electric vote recorder, (U.S. Patent 90,646), which was granted on June 1, 1869.
MARRIAGES AND CHILDREN
On December 25, 1871, Edison married 16-year-old Mary Stilwell (1855–1884), whom he had met two months earlier; she was an employee at one of his shops. They had three children:
* Marion Estelle Edison (1873–1965), nicknamed "Dot" * Thomas Alva Edison, Jr. (1876–1935), nicknamed "Dash" * William Leslie Edison (1878–1937) Inventor, graduate of the Sheffield Scientific School at Yale, 1900.
Mary Edison died at age 29 on August 9, 1884, of unknown causes: possibly from a brain tumor or a morphine overdose . Doctors frequently prescribed morphine to women in those years to treat a variety of causes, and researchers believe that her symptoms could have been from morphine poisoning.
Edison generally preferred spending time in the laboratory to being with his family. Mina Miller Edison in 1906
On February 24, 1886, at the age of thirty-nine, Edison married the
20-year-old Mina Miller (1865–1947) in Akron,
* Madeleine Edison (1888–1979), who married John Eyre Sloane . * Charles Edison (1890–1969), Governor of New Jersey (1941–1944), who took over his father's company and experimental laboratories upon his father's death. * Theodore Miller Edison (1898–1992), (MIT Physics 1923), credited with more than 80 patents.
Mina outlived Thomas Edison, dying on August 24, 1947.
BEGINNING HIS CAREER
Photograph of Edison with his phonograph (2nd model), taken in
Mary Had a Little Lamb
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Edison began his career as an inventor in Newark, New Jersey , with the automatic repeater and his other improved telegraphic devices, but the invention that first gained him wider notice was the phonograph in 1877. This accomplishment was so unexpected by the public at large as to appear almost magical. Edison became known as "The Wizard of Menlo Park," New Jersey.
His first phonograph recorded on tinfoil around a grooved cylinder.
Despite its limited sound quality and that the recordings could be
played only a few times, the phonograph made Edison a celebrity.
Joseph Henry, president of the
National Academy of Sciences and one of
the most renowned electrical scientists in the US, described Edison as
"the most ingenious inventor in this country... or in any other". In
April 1878, Edison traveled to Washington to demonstrate the
phonograph before the National Academy of Sciences, Congressmen,
Senators and US President Hayes. The
Washington Post described Edison
as a "genius " and his presentation as "a scene... that will live in
history". Although Edison obtained a patent for the phonograph in
1878, he did little to develop it until
Alexander Graham Bell
RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT FACILITY
Edison's Menlo Park Laboratory, reconstructed at Greenfield
Henry Ford Museum
Edison's major innovation was the first industrial research lab, which was built in Menlo Park , a part of Raritan Township, Middlesex County, New Jersey (today named Edison in his honor). It was built with the funds from the sale of Edison's quadruplex telegraph . After his demonstration of the telegraph, Edison was not sure that his original plan to sell it for $4,000 to $5,000 was right, so he asked Western Union to make a bid. He was surprised to hear them offer $10,000 ($211,700 in today's dollars. ), which he gratefully accepted. The quadruplex telegraph was Edison's first big financial success, and Menlo Park became the first institution set up with the specific purpose of producing constant technological innovation and improvement. Edison was legally attributed with most of the inventions produced there, though many employees carried out research and development under his direction. His staff was generally told to carry out his directions in conducting research, and he drove them hard to produce results.
William Joseph Hammer , a consulting electrical engineer, started working for Edison and began his duties as a laboratory assistant in December 1879. He assisted in experiments on the telephone, phonograph, electric railway, iron ore separator , electric lighting , and other developing inventions. However, Hammer worked primarily on the incandescent electric lamp and was put in charge of tests and records on that device (see Hammer Historical Collection of Incandescent Electric Lamps ). In 1880, he was appointed chief engineer of the Edison Lamp Works. In his first year, the plant under General Manager Francis Robbins Upton turned out 50,000 lamps. According to Edison, Hammer was "a pioneer of incandescent electric lighting". Frank J. Sprague , a competent mathematician and former naval officer , was recruited by Edward H. Johnson and joined the Edison organization in 1883. One of Sprague's contributions to the Edison Laboratory at Menlo Park was to expand Edison's mathematical methods. Despite the common belief that Edison did not use mathematics, analysis of his notebooks reveal that he was an astute user of mathematical analysis conducted by his assistants such as Francis Robbins Upton, for example, determining the critical parameters of his electric lighting system including lamp resistance by an analysis of Ohm\'s Law , Joule\'s Law and economics.
Nearly all of Edison's patents were utility patents, which were protected for a 17-year period and included inventions or processes that are electrical, mechanical, or chemical in nature. About a dozen were design patents , which protect an ornamental design for up to a 14-year period. As in most patents, the inventions he described were improvements over prior art . The phonograph patent, in contrast, was unprecedented as describing the first device to record and reproduce sounds.
In just over a decade, Edison's Menlo Park laboratory had expanded to occupy two city blocks. Edison said he wanted the lab to have "a stock of almost every conceivable material". A newspaper article printed in 1887 reveals the seriousness of his claim, stating the lab contained "eight thousand kinds of chemicals, every kind of screw made, every size of needle, every kind of cord or wire, hair of humans, horses, hogs, cows, rabbits, goats, minx, camels ... silk in every texture, cocoons, various kinds of hoofs, shark's teeth, deer horns, tortoise shell ... cork, resin, varnish and oil, ostrich feathers, a peacock's tail, jet, amber, rubber, all ores ..." and the list goes on.
Over his desk, Edison displayed a placard with
Sir Joshua Reynolds
With Menlo Park, Edison had created the first industrial laboratory concerned with creating knowledge and then controlling its application. Edison's name is registered on 1,093 patents.
CARBON TELEPHONE TRANSMITTER
In 1876, Edison began work to improve the microphone for telephones
(at that time called a "transmitter") by developing a carbon
microphone that used a button of carbon that would change resistance
with the pressure of sound waves. Up to that point, microphones, such
as the ones developed by
Johann Philipp Reis
Edison used the carbon microphone concept in 1877 to create an improved telephone for Western Union . In 1886, Edison found a way to improve a Bell Telephone microphone, one that used loose-contact ground carbon, with his discovery that it worked far better if the carbon was roasted . This type was put in use in 1890 and was used in all telephones along with the Bell receiver until the 1980s.
Main article: Incandescent light bulb Thomas Edison's first successful light bulb model, used in public demonstration at Menlo Park, December 1879
In 1878, Edison began working on a system of electrical illumination,
something he hoped could compete with gas and oil based lighting. He
began by tackling the problem of creating a long-lasting incandescent
lamp, something that would be needed for indoor use. Many earlier
inventors had previously devised incandescent lamps, including
After many experiments, first with carbon filaments and then with platinum and other metals, Edison returned to a carbon filament. The first successful test was on October 22, 1879; :186 it lasted 13.5 hours. Edison continued to improve this design and on November 4, 1879, filed for U.S. patent 223,898 (granted on January 27, 1880) for an electric lamp using "a carbon filament or strip coiled and connected to platina contact wires". This was the first commercially practical incandescent light.
Although the patent described several ways of creating the carbon filament including "cotton and linen thread, wood splints, papers coiled in various ways", it was not until several months after the patent was granted that Edison and his team discovered a carbonized bamboo filament that could last over 1,200 hours. The idea of using this particular raw material originated from Edison's recalling his examination of a few threads from a bamboo fishing pole while relaxing on the shore of Battle Lake in the present-day state of Wyoming , where he and other members of a scientific team had traveled so that they could clearly observe a total eclipse of the sun on July 29, 1878, from the Continental Divide . U.S. Patent#223898: Electric-Lamp. Issued January 27, 1880.
In 1878, Edison formed the
Edison Electric Light Company in New York
City with several financiers, including
J. P. Morgan ,
Spencer Trask ,
and the members of the
Vanderbilt family . Edison made the first
public demonstration of his incandescent light bulb on December 31,
1879, in Menlo Park. It was during this time that he said: "We will
make electricity so cheap that only the rich will burn candles."
Oregon Railroad and Navigation Company
Henry Villard , president of the Oregon Railroad and Navigation
Company , attended Edison's 1879 demonstration. Villard was impressed
and requested Edison install his electric lighting system aboard
Villard's company's new steamer, the Columbia . Although hesitant at
first, Edison agreed to Villard's request. Most of the work was
completed in May 1880, and the Columbia went to
New York City
Lewis Latimer joined the Edison Electric Light Company in 1884. Latimer had received a patent in January 1881 for the "Process of Manufacturing Carbons", an improved method for the production of carbon filaments for light bulbs. Latimer worked as an engineer, a draftsman and an expert witness in patent litigation on electric lights.
On October 8, 1883, the US patent office ruled that Edison's patent was based on the work of William E. Sawyer and was, therefore, invalid. Litigation continued for nearly six years, until October 6, 1889, when a judge ruled that Edison's electric light improvement claim for "a filament of carbon of high resistance" was valid. To avoid a possible court battle with Joseph Swan, whose British patent had been awarded a year before Edison's, he and Swan formed a joint company called Ediswan to manufacture and market the invention in Britain.
Mahen Theatre in
ELECTRIC POWER DISTRIBUTION
After devising a commercially viable electric light bulb on October
21, 1879, Edison developed an electric "utility " to compete with the
existing gas light utilities. On December 17, 1880, he founded the
Edison Illuminating Company , and during the 1880s, he patented a
system for electricity distribution . The company established the
first investor-owned electric utility in 1882 on Pearl Street Station
, New York City. On September 4, 1882, Edison switched on his Pearl
Street generating station's electrical power distribution system,
which provided 110 volts direct current (DC) to 59 customers in lower
In January 1882, Edison switched on the first steam-generating power station at Holborn Viaduct in London. The DC supply system provided electricity supplies to street lamps and several private dwellings within a short distance of the station. On January 19, 1883, the first standardized incandescent electric lighting system employing overhead wires began service in Roselle, New Jersey .
WAR OF CURRENTS
As Edison expanded his direct current (DC) power delivery system, he received stiff competition from companies installing alternating current (AC) systems. From the early 1880s AC arc lighting systems for streets and large spaces had been an expanding business in the US. With the development of transformers in Europe and by Westinghouse Electric in the US in 1885–1886, it became possible to transmit AC long distances over thinner and cheaper wires, and "step down" the voltage at the destination for distribution to users. This allowed AC to be used in street lighting and in lighting for small business and domestic customers, the market Edison's patented low voltage DC incandescent lamp system was designed to supply. Edison's DC empire suffered from one of its chief drawbacks: it was suitable only for the high density of customers found in large cities. Edison's DC plants could not deliver electricity to customers more than one mile from the plant, and left a patchwork of unsupplied customers between plants. Small cities and rural areas could not afford an Edison style system at all, leaving a large part of the market without electrical service. AC companies expanded into this gap.
Edison expressed views that AC was unworkable and the high voltages
used were dangerous. As
Parallel to expanding competition between Edison and the AC companies was rising public furor over a series of deaths in the spring of 1888 caused by pole mounted high voltage alternating current lines. This turned into a media frenzy against high voltage alternating current and the seemingly greedy and callous lighting companies that used it. Edison took advantage of the public perception of AC as dangerous, and joined with self-styled New York anti-AC crusader Harold P. Brown in a propaganda campaign, aiding Brown in the public electrocution of animals with AC, and supported legislation to control and severely limit AC installations and voltages (to the point of making it an ineffective power delivery system) in what was now being referred to as a "battle of currents" . The development of the electric chair was used in an attempt to portray AC as having a greater lethal potential than DC and smear Westinghouse at the same time via Edison colluding with Brown and Westinghouse's chief AC rival, the Thomson-Houston Electric Company, to make sure the first electric chair was powered by a Westinghouse AC generator.
Thomas Edison's staunch anti-AC tactics were not sitting well with
his own stockholders. By the early 1890s, Edison's company was
generating much smaller profits than its AC rivals, and the War of
Currents would come to an end in 1892 with Edison forced out of
controlling his own company. That year, the financier J.P. Morgan
engineered a merger of Edison
OTHER INVENTIONS AND PROJECTS
Edison is credited with designing and producing the first
commercially available fluoroscope , a machine that uses
The fundamental design of Edison's fluoroscope is still in use today, although Edison abandoned the project after nearly losing his own eyesight and seriously injuring his assistant, Clarence Dally . Dally made himself an enthusiastic human guinea pig for the fluoroscopy project and was exposed to a poisonous dose of radiation. He later died of injuries related to the exposure. In 1903, a shaken Edison said: "Don't talk to me about X-rays, I am afraid of them."
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The key to Edison's fortunes was telegraphy. With knowledge gained from years of working as a telegraph operator, he learned the basics of electricity. This allowed him to make his early fortune with the stock ticker , the first electricity-based broadcast system. On August 9, 1892, Edison received a patent for a two-way telegraph.
Play media The June 1894 Leonard–Cushing bout. Each of the
six one-minute rounds recorded by the
Edison was also granted a patent for the motion picture camera or
"Kinetograph". He did the electromechanical design while his employee
W. K. L. Dickson , a photographer, worked on the photographic and
optical development. Much of the credit for the invention belongs to
Dickson. In 1891,
In April 1896, Thomas Armat 's Vitascope , manufactured by the Edison factory and marketed in Edison's name, was used to project motion pictures in public screenings in New York City. Later, he exhibited motion pictures with voice soundtrack on cylinder recordings, mechanically synchronized with the film.
Officially the kinetoscope entered Europe when the rich American
Irving T. Bush (1869–1948) bought from the Continental
Commerce Company of Frank Z. Maguire and Joseph D. Baucus a dozen
machines. Bush placed from October 17, 1894, the first kinetoscopes in
London. At the same time, the French company Kinétoscope Edison
Michel et Alexis Werner bought these machines for the market in
France. In the last three months of 1894, the Continental Commerce
Company sold hundreds of kinetoscopes in Europe (i.e. the Netherlands
and Italy). In Germany and in
Austria-Hungary , the kinetoscope was
introduced by the Deutsche-österreichische-Edison-Kinetoscop
Gesellschaft, founded by the Ludwig Stollwerck of the
Schokoladen-Süsswarenfabrik Stollwerck "> Play media A Day with
As the film business expanded, competing exhibitors routinely copied
and exhibited each other's films. To better protect the copyrights on
his films, Edison deposited prints of them on long strips of
photographic paper with the
U.S. copyright office
In 1908, Edison started the
Motion Picture Patents Company , which
was a conglomerate of nine major film studios (commonly known as the
Edison said his favorite movie was The Birth of a Nation . He thought that talkies had "spoiled everything" for him. "There isn't any good acting on the screen. They concentrate on the voice now and have forgotten how to act. I can sense it more than you because I am deaf." His favorite stars were Mary Pickford and Clara Bow .
Starting in the late 1870s,
In 1901, Edison visited an industrial exhibition in the Sudbury area in Ontario, Canada and thought nickel and cobalt deposits there could be used in his production of electrical equipment. He returned as a mining prospector and is credited with the original discovery of the Falconbridge ore body. His attempts to mine the ore body were not successful, and he abandoned his mining claim in 1903. A street in Falconbridge, as well as the Edison Building , which served as the head office of Falconbridge Mines , are named for him.
Share of the Edison Storage Battery Company, issued 19. October 1903
The Edison Storage Battery Company was founded in 1901. With this company Edison exploited his invention of the accumulator. In 1904 already 450 people worked at the company. The first accumulators were produced for electric cars. But there were several defects. Several Customers were complaining about the products. When the capital of the company was spent Edison paid for the company with his private money. Not until 1910 Edison showed a mature product: A Nickel-Iron-Battery with Lye as liquid.
From Left to Right: Henry Ford, Thomas Edison, and Harvey Firestone, the three partners of the Edison Botanic Research Corporation.
Edison became concerned with America's reliance on foreign supply of
rubber and was determined to find a native supply of rubber. He joined
WEST ORANGE AND FORT MYERS (1886–1931)
Thomas A. Edison Industries Exhibit, Primary Battery section, 1915
Edison moved from Menlo Park after the death of his first wife, Mary,
in 1884, and purchased a home known as "Glenmont " in 1886 as a
wedding gift for his second wife, Mina, in
Llewellyn Park in West
Orange, New Jersey . In 1885,
Due to the security concerns around
World War I
Edison's work on rubber took place largely at his botanic research
laboratory in Fort Myers, which has been designated as a National
Historic Chemical Landmark. The laboratory was built after Thomas
Edison, Henry Ford, and
Henry Ford , the automobile magnate, later lived a few hundred feet
away from Edison at his winter retreat in Fort Myers. Ford once worked
as an engineer for the
Edison Illuminating Company of Detroit and met
Edison at a convention of affiliated Edison illuminating companies in
Brooklyn, NY in 1896. Edison was impressed with Ford's internal
combustion engine automobile and encouraged its developments. They
were friends until Edison's death. Edison and Ford undertook annual
motor camping trips from 1914 to 1924.
In 1928, Edison joined the Fort Myers Civitan Club . He believed strongly in the organization, writing that "The Civitan Club is doing things—big things—for the community, state, and nation, and I certainly consider it an honor to be numbered in its ranks." He was an active member in the club until his death, sometimes bringing Henry Ford to the club's meetings.
Edison was active in business right up to the end. Just months before his death, the Lackawanna Railroad inaugurated suburban electric train service from Hoboken to Montclair , Dover , and Gladstone, New Jersey . Electrical transmission for this service was by means of an overhead catenary system using direct current, which Edison had championed. Despite his frail condition, Edison was at the throttle of the first electric MU (Multiple-Unit) train to depart Lackawanna Terminal in Hoboken in September 1930, driving the train the first mile through Hoboken yard on its way to South Orange .
This fleet of cars would serve commuters in northern New Jersey for
the next 54 years until their retirement in 1984. A plaque
commemorating Edison's inaugural ride can be seen today in the waiting
room of Lackawanna Terminal in Hoboken, which is presently operated by
New Jersey Transit
Edison was said to have been influenced by a popular fad diet in his last few years; "the only liquid he consumed was a pint of milk every three hours". He is reported to have believed this diet would restore his health. However, this tale is doubtful. In 1930, the year before Edison died, Mina said in an interview about him, "correct eating is one of his greatest hobbies." She also said that during one of his periodic "great scientific adventures", Edison would be up at 7:00, have breakfast at 8:00, and be rarely home for lunch or dinner, implying that he continued to have all three.
Edison became the owner of his Milan, Ohio , birthplace in 1906. On his last visit, in 1923, he was reportedly shocked to find his old home still lit by lamps and candles.
Edison died of complications of diabetes on October 18, 1931, in his
home, "Glenmont" in
Llewellyn Park in
West Orange, New Jersey
Edison's last breath is reportedly contained in a test tube at The Henry Ford museum near Detroit. Ford reportedly convinced Charles Edison to seal a test tube of air in the inventor's room shortly after his death, as a memento. A plaster death mask and casts of Edison's hands were also made. Mina died in 1947.
VIEWS ON POLITICS, RELIGION, AND METAPHYSICS
Paul Israel has characterized Edison as a "freethinker ".
Edison was heavily influenced by
Nature is what we know. We do not know the gods of religions. And nature is not kind, or merciful, or loving. If God made me — the fabled God of the three qualities of which I spoke: mercy, kindness, love — He also made the fish I catch and eat. And where do His mercy, kindness, and love for that fish come in? No; nature made us — nature did it all — not the gods of the religions.
Edison was accused of being an atheist for those remarks, and although he did not allow himself to be drawn into the controversy publicly, he clarified himself in a private letter:
You have misunderstood the whole article, because you jumped to the conclusion that it denies the existence of God. There is no such denial, what you call God I call Nature, the Supreme intelligence that rules matter. All the article states is that it is doubtful in my opinion if our intelligence or soul or whatever one may call it lives hereafter as an entity or disperses back again from whence it came, scattered amongst the cells of which we are made.
He also stated, "I do not believe in the God of the theologians; but that there is a Supreme Intelligence I do not doubt."
In 1920, Edison set off a media sensation when he told B. C. Forbes of American Magazine that he was working on a "spirit phone" to allow communication with the dead, a story which other newspapers and magazines repeated. Edison later disclaimed the idea, telling the New York Times in 1926 that "I really had nothing to tell him, but I hated to disappoint him so I thought up this story about communicating with spirits, but it was all a joke."
VIEWS ON MONEY
In the same article, he expounded upon the absurdity of a monetary system in which the taxpayer of the United States, in need of a loan, can be compelled to pay in return perhaps double the principal, or even greater sums, due to interest. His basic point was that, if the Government can produce debt-based money, it could equally as well produce money that was a credit to the taxpayer.
He thought at length about the subject of money in 1921 and 1922. In May 1922, he published a proposal, entitled "A Proposed Amendment to the Federal Reserve Banking System". In it, he detailed an explanation of a commodity-backed currency, in which the Federal Reserve would issue interest-free currency to farmers, based on the value of commodities they produced. During a publicity tour that he took with friend and fellow inventor, Henry Ford , he spoke publicly about his desire for monetary reform. For insight, he corresponded with prominent academic and banking professionals. In the end, however, Edison's proposals failed to find support and were eventually abandoned.
Portrait of Edison by
Abraham Archibald Anderson
The President of the Third French Republic , Jules Grévy , on the recommendation of his Minister of Foreign Affairs , Jules Barthélemy-Saint-Hilaire , and with the presentations of the Minister of Posts and Telegraphs , Louis Cochery , designated Edison with the distinction of an Officer of the Legion of Honour (Légion d\'honneur ) by decree on November 10, 1881; Edison was also named a Chevalier in the Legion in 1879, and a Commander in 1889.
Philadelphia City Council
He was named an Honorable Consulting Engineer at the Louisiana Purchase Exposition World\'s fair in 1904.
In 1908, Edison received the American Association of Engineering Societies John Fritz Medal .
In 1915, Edison was awarded Franklin Medal of The Franklin Institute for discoveries contributing to the foundation of industries and the well-being of the human race.
In 1920, the
United States Navy
In 1927, he was granted membership in the National Academy of Sciences .
On May 29, 1928, Edison received the Congressional Gold Medal .
In 1983, the
United States Congress
Life magazine (USA), in a special double issue in 1997, placed Edison first in the list of the "100 Most Important People in the Last 1000 Years", noting that the light bulb he promoted "lit up the world". In the 2005 television series The Greatest American , he was voted by viewers as the fifteenth greatest.
In 2008, Edison was inducted in the New Jersey Hall of Fame .
In 2010, Edison was honored with a Technical Grammy Award .
PLACES AND PEOPLE NAMED FOR EDISON
Several places have been named after Edison, most notably the town of
Edison, New Jersey
The small town of Alva just east of Fort Myers took Edison's middle name.
In 1883, the City Hotel in
Edison was on hand to turn on the lights at the Hotel Edison in New York City when it opened in 1931.
In space, his name is commemorated in asteroid 742 Edisona .
MUSEUMS AND MEMORIALS
Statue of young
In West Orange, New Jersey, the 13.5 acres (5.5 hectares) Glenmont
estate is maintained and operated by the
National Park Service as the
Edison National Historic Site , as is his nearby laboratory and
workshops including the reconstructed Black Maria- the world's first
movie studio. The
Thomas Alva Edison Memorial Tower and Museum is in
the town of Edison, New Jersey. In
In Detroit, the Edison Memorial Fountain in Grand Circus Park was created to honor his achievements. The limestone fountain was dedicated October 21, 1929, the fiftieth anniversary of the creation of the lightbulb. On the same night, The Edison Institute was dedicated in nearby Dearborn .
He was inducted into the Automotive Hall of Fame in 1969.
A bronze statue of Edison was placed in the National Statuary Hall
Collection at the
COMPANIES BEARING EDISON\'S NAME
Edison in 1915
* Edison General Electric, merged with Thomson-Houston Electric
Company to form
AWARDS NAMED IN HONOR OF EDISON
Edison Medal was created on February 11, 1904, by a group of
Edison's friends and associates. Four years later the American
Institute of Electrical Engineers (AIEE), later IEEE , entered into an
agreement with the group to present the medal as its highest award.
The first medal was presented in 1909 to
In the Netherlands, the major music awards are named the Edison Award after him. The award is an annual Dutch music prize, awarded for outstanding achievements in the music industry, and is one of the oldest music awards in the world, having been presented since 1960.
American Society of Mechanical Engineers
OTHER ITEMS NAMED AFTER EDISON
United States Navy
IN POPULAR CULTURE
Main article: Thomas Edison in popular culture
"Camping with Henry and Tom", a fictional play based on Edison's camping trips with Henry Ford, written by Mark St.Gemain. First presented at Lucille Lortel Theatre, New York, February 20, 1995.
LIST OF PEOPLE WHO WORKED FOR EDISON
The following is a list of people who worked for
Edward Goodrich Acheson – chemist, worked at Menlo Park
William Symes Andrews – started at the Menlo Park machine shop
Charles Batchelor – "chief experimental assistant"
John I. Beggs – manager of
Edison Illuminating Company in New
William Kennedy Dickson
List of Edison patents
Thomas Alva Edison Birthplace
Thomas Edison National Historical Park
* ^ "The Religious Affiliation of
Inventor Thomas Edison". Archived
from the original on November 25, 2013.
Adrian Wooldridge (September 15, 2016). "The alphabet of
The Economist . Retrieved September 16, 2016.
* ^ A B "The Wizard of Menlo Park". The Franklin Institute.
Archived from the original on March 5, 2013. Retrieved February 24,
* ^ Walsh, Bryan (July 15, 2009). "The Electrifying Edison".
Time.com. Retrieved December 31, 2013.
* ^ A B "Con Edison: A Brief History of Con Edison –
electricity". Coned.com. January 1, 1998. Archived from the original
on October 30, 2012. Retrieved October 11, 2012.
* ^ "National Historic Landmarks Program (NHL)". Tps.cr.nps.gov.
January 12, 1965. Retrieved December 31, 2013.
* ^ "Samuel and Nancy Elliott Edison". National Park Service.
Retrieved February 24, 2013.
* ^ Baldwin, Neal (1995). Edison: Inventing the Century. Hyperion .
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