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Thomas Alva Edison

Thomas Alva Edison – born February 11, 1847, Milan, Ohio, U. S. d. Oct. 18, 1931, West Orange, N. J. American inventor who, singly or jointly, held a world record 1,093 patents. In addition, he created the world’s first industrial research laboratory. Edison was the quintessential American inventor in the era of Yankee ingenuity. He began his career in 1863, in the adolescence of the telegraph industry, when virtually the only source of electricity was primitive batteries putting out a low-voltage current. Before he died, in 1931, he had played a critical role in introducing the modern age of electricity.

From his laboratories and workshops emanated the phonograph, the carbon-button transmitter for the telephone speaker and microphone, the incandescent lamp, a revolutionary generator of unprecedented efficiency, the first commercial electric light and power system, an experimental electric railroad, and key elements of motion-picture apparatus, as well as a host of other inventions. Edison was the seventh and last child–the fourth surviving–of Samuel Edison, Jr. , and Nancy Elliot Edison. At an early age he developed hearing problems, which have been variously attributed but were most likely due to a familial tendency to mastoiditis.

Whatever the cause, Edison’s deafness strongly influenced his behaviour and career, providing the motivation for many of his inventions. Early years In 1854 Samuel Edison became the lighthouse keeper and carpenter on the Fort Gratiot military post near Port Huron, Mich. , where the family lived in a substantial home. Alva, as the inventor was known until his second marriage, entered school there and attended sporadically for five years. He was imaginative and inquisitive, but because much instruction was by rote and he had difficulty hearing, he was bored and was labeled a misfit.

To compensate, he became an avid and omnivorous reader. Edison’s lack of formal schooling was not unusual. At the time of the Civil War the average American had attended school a total of 434 days–little more than two years’ schooling by today’s standards. In 1859 Edison quit school and began working as a trainboy on the railroad between Detroit and Port Huron. Four years earlier, the Michigan Central had initiated the commercial application of the telegraph by using it to control the movement of its trains, and the Civil War brought a vast expansion of transportation and communication.

Edison took advantage of the opportunity to learn telegraphy and in 1863 became an apprentice telegrapher. Messages received on the initial Morse telegraph were inscribed as a series of dots and dashes on a strip of paper that was decoded and read, so Edison’s partial deafness was no handicap. Receivers were increasingly being equipped with a sounding key, however, enabling telegraphers to “read” messages by the clicks. The transformation of telegraphy to an auditory art left Edison more and more disadvantaged during his six-year career as an itinerant telegrapher in the Midwest, the South, Canada, and New England.

Amply supplied with ingenuity and insight, he devoted much of his energy toward improving the inchoate equipment and inventing devices to facilitate some of the tasks that his physical limitations made difficult. By January 1869 he had made enough progress with a duplex telegraph (a device capable of transmitting two messages simultaneously on one wire) and a printer, which converted electrical signals to letters, that he abandoned telegraphy for full-time invention and entrepreneurship.

Edison moved to New York City, where he initially went into partnership with Frank L. Pope, a noted electrical expert, to produce the Edison Universal Stock Printer and other printing telegraphs. Between 1870 and 1875 he worked out of Newark, N. J. , and was involved in a variety of partnerships and complex transactions in the fiercely competitive and convoluted telegraph industry, which was dominated by the Western Union Telegraph Company. As an independent entrepreneur he was available to the highest bidder and played both sides against the middle.

During this period he worked on improving an automatic telegraph system for Western Union’s rivals. The automatic telegraph, which recorded messages by means of a chemical reaction engendered by the electrical transmissions, proved of limited commercial success, but the work advanced Edison’s knowledge of chemistry and laid the basis for his development of the electric pen and mimeograph, both important devices in the early office machine industry, and indirectly led to the discovery of the phonograph.

Under the aegis of Western Union he devised the quadruplex, capable of transmitting four messages simultaneously over one wire, but railroad baron and Wall Street financier Jay Gould, Western Union’s bitter rival, snatched the quadruplex from the telegraph company’s grasp in December 1874 by paying Edison more than $100,000 in cash, bonds, and stock, one of the larger payments for any invention up to that time. Years of litigation followed.

Although Edison was a sharp bargainer, he was a poor financial manager, often spending and giving away money more rapidly than he earned it. In 1871 he married 16-year-old Mary Stilwell, who was as improvident in household matters as he was in business, and before the end of 1875 they were in financial difficulties. To reduce his costs and the temptation to spend money, Edison brought his now-widowed father from Port Huron to build a 2 1/2-story laboratory and machine shop in the rural environs of Menlo Park, N. J. –12 miles south of Newark–where he moved in March 1876. Accompanying him were two key associates, Charles Batchelor and John Kruesi. Batchelor, born in Manchester in 1845, was a master mechanic and draftsman who complemented Edison perfectly and served as his “ears” on such projects as the phonograph and telephone. He was also responsible for fashioning the drawings that Kruesi, a Swiss-born machinist, translated into models.

Edison experienced his finest hours at Menlo Park. While experimenting on an underwater cable for the automatic telegraph, he found that the electrical resistance and conductivity of carbon (then called plumbago) varied according to the pressure it was under. This was a major theoretical discovery, which enabled Edison to devise a “pressure relay” using carbon rather than the usual magnets to vary and balance electric currents.

In February 1877 Edison began experiments designed to produce a pressure relay that would amplify and improve the audibility of the telephone, a device that Edison and others had studied but which Alexander Graham Bell was the first to patent, in 1876. By the end of 1877 Edison had developed the carbon-button transmitter that is still used in telephone speakers and microphones. The phonograph Edison invented many items, including the carbon transmitter, in response to specific demands for new products or improvements.

But he also had the gift of serendipity: when some unexpected phenomenon was observed, he did not hesitate to halt work in progress and turn off course in a new direction. This was how, in 1877, he achieved his most original discovery, the phonograph. Because the telephone was considered a variation of acoustic telegraphy, Edison during the summer of 1877 was attempting to devise for it, as he had for the automatic telegraph, a machine that would transcribe signals as they were received, in this instance in the form of the human voice, so that they could then be delivered as telegraph messages.

The telephone was not yet conceived as a general, person-to-person means of communication. ) Some earlier researchers, notably the French inventor Lon Scott, had theorized that each sound, if it could be graphically recorded, would produce a distinct shape resembling shorthand, or phonography (“sound writing”), as it was then known. Edison hoped to reify this concept by employing a stylus-tipped carbon transmitter to make impressions on a strip of paraffined paper.

To his astonishment, the scarcely visible indentations generated a vague reproduction of sound when the paper was pulled back beneath the stylus. Edison unveiled the tinfoil phonograph, which replaced the strip of paper with a cylinder wrapped in tinfoil, in December 1877. It was greeted with incredulity. Indeed, a leading French scientist declared it to be the trick device of a clever ventriloquist. The public’s amazement was quickly followed by universal acclaim.

Edison was projected into worldwide prominence and was dubbed the Wizard of Menlo Park, although a decade passed before the phonograph was transformed from a laboratory curiosity into a commercial product. The electric light Another offshoot of the carbon experiments reached fruition sooner. Samuel Langley, Henry Draper, and other American scientists needed a highly sensitive instrument that could be used to measure minute temperature changes in heat emitted from the Sun’s corona during a solar eclipse along the Rocky Mountains on July 29, 1878.

To satisfy those needs Edison devised a “microtasimeter” employing a carbon button. This was a time when great advances were being made in electric arc lighting, and during the expedition, which Edison accompanied, the men discussed the practicality of “subdividing” the intense arc lights so that electricity could be used for lighting in the same fashion as with small, individual gas “burners. ” The basic problem seemed to be to keep the burner, or bulb, from being consumed by preventing it from overheating.

Edison thought he would be able to solve this by fashioning a microtasimeter-like device to control the current. He boldly announced that he would invent a safe, mild, and inexpensive electric light that would replace the gaslight. The incandescent electric light had been the despair of inventors for 50 years, but Edison’s past achievements commanded respect for his boastful prophecy. Thus, a syndicate of leading financiers, including J. P.

Morgan and the Vanderbilts, established the Edison Electric Light Company and advanced him $30,000 for research and development. Edison proposed to connect his lights in a parallel circuit by subdividing the current, so that, unlike arc lights, which were connected in a series circuit, the failure of one light bulb would not cause a whole circuit to fail. Some eminent scientists predicted that such a circuit could never be feasible, but their findings were based on systems of lamps with low resistance–the only successful type of electric light at the time.

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Home » Biography » Thomas Alva Edison

Thomas Alva Edison

Thomas Alva Edison is considered one of the greatest inventors in history. He was born in Milan, Ohio on February 11, 1847 and died in 1931. During his life he patented 1,093 inventions. Many of these inventions are in use today and changed the world forever. Some of his inventions include telegraphy, phonography, electric lighting and photography. His most famous inventions were the phonograph and the incandescent light bulb. Edison did some of his greatest work at Menlo Park.

While experimenting on an underwater cable for the automatic telegraph, he found that the electrical resistance and conductivity of carbon varied accordingly to the pressure it was under. This was a major theoretical discovery, which enabled Edison to invent a “pressure relay” using carbon rather than magnets, which was the usual way to vary and balance electrical currents. In February of 1877 Edison began experiments designed to produce a pressure relay that would amplify and improve the audibility of the telephone, a device that Edison and others had studied but which Alexander Graham Bell was the first to patent, in 1876.

By the end of 1877 Edison had developed the carbon-button transmitter that is still used today in telephone speakers and microphones. Many of Thomas Edisons inventions including the carbon transmitter were in response to demands for new products and improvements. In 1877, he achieved his most unique discovery, the phonograph. During the summer of 1877 Edison was attempting to devise for the automatic telegraph a machine that would transcribe a signals as they were received into a form of the human voice so that they could then be delivered as telegraph messages.

Some researchers had theorized that each sound, if it could be graphically recorded, would produce a distinct shape resembling short hand, or phonography, as it was known then. Edison hoped to make this concept real by employing a stylus-tipped carbon transmitter to make impressions on a strip of paraffined paper. To his amazement, the barley visible indentations generated a vague sound when the paper was pulled back beneath the stylus. In December 1877 Edison unveiled the tinfoil phonograph, which replaced the strip of paper wrapped in tinfoil.

Many people would not believe what they were hearing including a leading French scientist who declared it to be a trick device of a ventriloquist. The publics amazement was quickly followed by universal approval. Edison became famous all around the world and was dubbed the Wizard of Menlo Park, although ten years passed before the phonograph was transformed form a laboratory curiosity into a commercial product. His most famous and most commonly used invention is the incandescent light bulb.

American scientists including Samuel Langley needed a highly sensitive instrument that could be used to measure minute temperature changes in heat emitted from the Suns corona during a solar eclipse along the rocky mountains on July 29,1878. To please those needs Edison invented a “microtasimeter” employing a carbon button. This was a time when great advances were being made in arc lights so that electricity could be used for lighting in the same fashion as with small, individual gas “burners”.

The basic problem seemed to be to keep the burner, or the bulb, from being consumed by preventing it from overheating. Edison thought he would be able to solve this by coming up with a microtasimeter-like device to control the current. He proclaimed that he would invent a safe, mild, and inexpensive electric light that would replace the gaslight. Inventors had been attempting to devise the incandescent light bulb for fifty years, but Edisons reputation and past achievements commanded respect for his bold prediction.

As a result, a group of leading financiers, including J. P. Morgan and the Vanderbilts, established the Edison Electric Light Company, and advanced him $30,000 for his research and development. Edisons idea was to connect his lights in a parallel circuit by subdividing the current so that the failure of one light bulb would not cause the whole circuit to fail. Some well-known scientists predicted that such a circuit could never be possible, but their findings were based on systems of lamps with low resistance (the only successful type of electrical light at the time).

Edison, however, determined that a bulb with high resistance would serve his purpose, and he began his search for a suitable one. By the summer of 1879 Ediso….. n and Francis Upton had made enough progress on a generator that considered offering a system of electric distribution for power, not light. By October Edison and his staff had achieved encouraging results with a complex, regulator-controlled vacuum bulb with a platinum filament, but the cost of the platinum would have made the incandescent light bulb to costly.

While experimenting with an insulator for the platinum wire, they discovered that, in the greatly improved vacuum they were now achieving through advances made in the vacuum pump, carbon could be maintained for a longer amount time without complicated devices. Edison found that a carbon filament provided a good light with the simultaneous high resistance required for subdivision. Steady progress ensued from the first breakthrough in mid-October until the initial demonstration for the backers of the Edison Electric Light Company on December 3.

In the summer of 1880 Edison determined that carbonized bamboo fiber made a satisfactory material for the filament. The first commercial land-based “isolated” incandescent system was placed in the New York printing firm of Hinds and Ketcham in January 1881. In the fall a temporary, demonstration central power system was installed at the Holborn Viaduct in London, in conjunction with an exhibition at the Crystal Palace.

Edison supervised the laying of the mains and installation of the worlds first permanent, commercial central power system in lower Manhattan, which became operative in September 1882. Although the early systems had problems and years passed before incandescent lighting powered by electricity from central stations began to replace gas lighting. Isolated lighting plants for such enterprises as hotels, theatres, and stores flourished, so did Edisons reputation as the worlds greatest inventor. Edisons inventions were often discovered by chance while working on practical experiments and problem solving.

This resulted in 380 patents for electric light and power, 195 for the phonograph, 150 for the telegraph, 141 for storage batteries, and 34 for the telephone. Until that point scientists had primarily been involved in pure research. Edisons approach was to find useful and helpful ways of applying his inventions. Today you can walk into a store and find light bulbs that can last for two years. In 1991 Philips developed a light bulb that uses magnetic induction to excite a gas to emit light.

There are no parts to wear out in this design, so the expected lifetime is 60,000 hours. In the future there will probably be light bulbs that never burn out. Edisons role as a machine shop operator and small manufacturer was crucial to his success as an inventor. Unlike other scientists and inventors of the time, who had limited means and lacked a support organization, Edison ran an inventive establishment. He was the antithesis of the lone inventive genius, although his deafness enforced on him isolation conductive to conception.

His lack of managerial ability was, in an odd way, also a stimulant. As his own boss, he plunged ahead on projects more prudent men would have shunned, then tended to dissipate the fruits of his own inventiveness, so that he was both free and forced to develop new ideas. Few men have matched him in the positiveness of his thinking. Edison never questioned whether something might be done, only how. Edisons career, the fulfillment of the American dream of rags-to-riches through hard work and intelligence, made him a folk hero to his countrymen.

In temperament he was an uninhibited egotist, at once a tyrant to his employees and their most entertaining companion, so that there was never a dull moment with him. He was charismatic and courted publicity, but he had difficulty socializing and neglected his family. His shafts at the expense of the “long-haired” fraternity of theorists sometimes led formally trained scientists to depreciate him as anti-intellectual; yet he employed as his aides, at various times a number of eminent mathematical physicists, such as Nicole Tesla and A. E. Kennelly.

The contradictory nature of his forceful personality, as well as such eccentricities as his ability to catnap anywhere, contributed to his legendary status. By the time he was in his middle 30s Edison was said to be the best-known American in the world. When he died he was the venerated and mourned as the man who, more than any other, had laid the basis for the technological and social revolution of the modern electrical world.

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Home » Biography » Thomas Alva Edison

Thomas Alva Edison

Thomas Alva Edison Thomas Edison could probably be properly called Mr. Electricity because of the many inventions and millions of dollars that he used and invested with electricity. From the invention of the light bulb, to the invention of the phonograph Thomas Edison made electricity a reality for the masses. And one of his greatest influences was from his Father a very positive man. A long with the great influence he had upon Americans and the world. He sparked the movement of todays computer ran world. Thomas Edison was born February 11, 1847 in Milan, Ohio.

He was the seventh and last child of Samuel Edison, Jr. and Nancy Elliot Edison. His parents had no special mechanical background. His mother was a former schoolteacher; his father was a jack-of-all-trades – from running a grocery store to real estate. When Thomas was seven years old, his family moved to Port Huron, Michigan. He was a very curious child who asked a lot of questions. “Edison began school in Port Huron, Michigan when he was seven. His teacher, the Reverend G. B. Engle considered Thomas to be a dull student. “(Allen pg. 22) Thomas especially did not like math.

And he asked too many questions. The story goes that the teacher whipped students who asked questions. After three months of school, the teacher called Thomas, “addled”. Thomas was pissed. The next day, Nancy Edison brought Thomas back to school to talk with Reverend Engle. The teacher told his mother that Thomas couldn’t learn. Nancy also became angry at the teacher’s strict ways. “She took Thomas out of school and decided to home-school him. “(Allen pg. 34) It appears he briefly attended two more schools. However, his school attendance was not very good.

So nearly all his childhood learning took place at home. Edison’s parents loved to read. They read to him works of good literature and history. They had many books that young Tom eagerly devoured. Before he was 12, he had read works by Dickens and Shakespeare, Edward Gibbon’s Fall of the Roman Empire and Decline, and more. Nancy Edison encouraged her curious son to learn things for himself. His parents were dedicated to teaching their children. They did not force him to learn about things he didn’t enjoy. So he learned about things that interested him the most.

When Thomas was nine Nancy Edison gave him an elementary science book. It explained how to do chemistry experiments at home. Edison did every experiment in the book. Then Nancy gave him more books on science. He soon loved chemistry and spent all his spare money buying chemicals from a local pharmacy. He collected bottles, wires, and other items for experiments. Abbott Pg. 2 At age 10, Thomas built his first science laboratory in the basement of the family’s home. His father disapproved of all the time Thomas spent in the basement. Sometimes Sam offered a penny to Thomas if he would go back to reading books.

But Thomas often used his pennies to buy more chemicals for experiments. “He labeled all his bottles “Poison”. “(Denmark pg. 25) Edison had many ear problems throughout his childhood. When he was 15, a train accident injured his ears more. When he tried to jump on a moving train, a conductor grabbed the boy’s ears to help pull him up. “Thomas said he felt something snap inside his head. He soon began to lose much of his hearing. ” (Swanson pg. 34) Thomas never became deaf, but from then on he was hard of hearing. His deafness could have been cured by an operation. But Thomas refused the operation.

He said being deaf helped him concentrate. When Edison was 21, he got a job in Boston as an expert night telegraph operator. Even though he worked nights, he slept little during the day. He was too busy experimenting with electrical currents. Edison worked to improve a telegraph machine that would send many messages at the same time over the same wire. He borrowed money from a friend, and soon quit his job. Now he could spend all his time inventing. The first invention that he tried to sell was an electric vote recorder.

It made voting faster and more accurate. But no one wanted to buy it. Today it is used in many states to record votes of legislators. ” (Allen pg. 45) He moved to New York City in the summer of 1869. He had no money. A friend let him sleep in a basement office below Wall Street. Edison spent a lot of time studying the stock market ticker. That was the machine that gave information about stock market prices. It was a spin-off of the Morse telegraph device. Once, Edison fixed a broken stock ticker so well that that the owners hired him to build a better one. Within a year he made the Edison Universal Stock Printer. Edison sold the rights for the stock ticker.

He thought he might get paid around $4,000 for it. He got $40,000! With all this money, Edison started a business in Newark, New Jersey. He built stock tickers and high-speed printing telegraphs. At this shop he improved on the typewriter. Until Edison improved it, you could write faster than you could type. Edison was a poor financial manager. In his late 20’s, he began to have money problems. After six years at his workshop in Newark, New Jersey, Edison asked his father to help build a new “invention factory”. Edison built his new science laboratory at the village of Menlo Park, NJ.

Now he and his two business partners could devote their full attention to inventing. Edison promised that he would build a small invention every ten days and a big invention every six months! He also said he would “take orders” for inventions. Abbott Pg. 3 They moved into the new building in March 1876. His first invention was an improvement on the telephone. Before Edison’s improvement, people had to shout when they used the telephone. The new lab had around 60 workers. It didn’t matter to Edison what a person’s background was. If he thought someone had talent, that was enough.

Edison achieved his greatest successes in this laboratory. Soon he had 40 different projects going at the same time. “He applied for as many as 400 patents a year. ” (Denmark pg. 54) His ideas and inventions ranged from the practical to the crazy. Edison worked at Menlo Park for over 10 years. Edison became a business partner with some of New York’s richest people, J. P. Morgan and the Vanderbilts. Together they formed the Edison Electric Light Company. They made this company before electric light bulbs had been invented. Today this company is called General Electric. The phonograph was Edison’s favorite invention.

He invented the “talking machine” by accident while working on telegraphs and telephones. But the phonograph didn’t go on sale to the public for another 10 years. It was a tinfoil phonograph. “Edison called it a “talking machine” and a “sound writing” machine. ” (Allen pg. 54) This was no improvement of existing technology. It was not something he planned to invent. This was something brand new and Edison’s most original invention. And it happened by accident. He was working on ways to record telegraph messages automatically. The first words he recorded were “Mary Had A Little Lamb”. He was 30 years old.

He worked on and off for more than twenty years to perfect the record player. Scientists had been working to invent electric light for many years. Back then people used candles and gaslights to light their homes. But gaslights were smelly and smoky. After two years in his new laboratory, Edison boasted he would invent a safe, mild, and inexpensive electric light. Edison searched for the proper “filament” or wire, which would give good light when electricity flowed through it. He sent people to the jungles of the Amazon and forests of Japan in his search for a perfect filament material.

He tested over 6,000 vegetable growths (baywood, boxwood, hickory, cedar, flax, and bamboo) as filament material. In 1879, after spending $40,000, and performing 1,200 experiments, he succeeded. He made a light bulb using carbonized filaments from cotton thread. Carbonized thread is ordinary cotton sewing thread that has been burned to an ash. The light bulb burned for two days. The electric light took the greatest amount of time and required the most complicated experiments of all his experiments. Abbott Pg. 4 One of Edison’s engineers, William J. Hammer, made a discovery, which later led to the electron tube.

The electron tube led to the electric signal, which led to electronics. Electronics is a branch of science that is related to electricity. Without electronics we might not have radio, TV, CDs, computers, x-ray machines or space travel. The discovery of electrons was patented as the “Edison effect” which is the basis of electronics. In 1887 Edison built a bigger invention factory in West Orange, New Jersey. This Edison Laboratory was 10 times larger than his first lab in Menlo Park. It is now a national monument. This Laboratory Unit had fourteen buildings.

Six of these buildings were devoted to the “business of inventing. ” “The main building alone was the size of three football fields. ” (Denmark pg. 75) It had space for machine shops, glass-blowing operations, electrical testing rooms, chemical stockrooms, electrical power generation, and other functions. At the Edison Laboratory they made new products and improved old products. Over 5,000 people worked there. Edison attempted to personally manage this large staff. The story goes that when a new employee once asked about lab rules, Edison said, “there ain’t no rules around here! We’re tryin’ to accomplish somep’n. Every day Edison toured this huge facility to see what was going on. But he spent most of his time doing paperwork instead of experiments. He did his paperwork in the library. The research library was an office and trophy room. Edison received many, many awards throughout his life. In the center of his office, Edison sat at a desk with three dozen pigeonholes, surrounded by over 10,000 books. At West Orange, Edison improved the phonograph using wax records. Now he could build phonographs to sell to the public. Out of the West Orange laboratories came the motion picture camera and silent and sound movies.

His factory improved the alkaline storage battery, the electric pen, the copy machine, and the dictating machine. Other inventions and improvements included a cement mixer, the microphone, and a magnetic process to separate iron ore. Edison invented the concept of film reels for motion-picture cameras. He also connected a motion picture camera to a phonograph. Now he could put sound with motion pictures! In 1913, Edison introduced the first talking moving pictures. Before photocopying machines were invented, Edison invented an electric “pen” which was really a puncturing device that rapidly punched holes in a sheet of waxed paper.

A historian suggested this “pen” looked like a sewing machine. There were silly moments in the lab also. “Sometimes they tried mixing chemicals that seemed foolish – coffee, eggs, sugaring, and milking. ” (Allen pg. 45) His Abbott Pg. 5 lab held everything for experimenting – whalebone, tortoise shell, elephant hide, and even the hair of a person, a native Amazonian. “It is rumored that one of Edison’s friends said the lab storeroom even had the eyeballs of a US senator. ” (Denmark pg. 54) Most of these lab substances had no practical use, but a few did.

Edison used rain-forest nuts to make phonograph needles. Japanese bamboo was used to make filament (wire) for his light bulb. The hair of the Amazon was used for a wig for the first talking doll. In the doll’s chest was hidden a tiny phonograph speaker. In 1915, Edison was appointed president of the U. S. Navy Consulting Board. He believed that electricity would make weapons more powerful. He claimed to have made an explosive that would explode if yelled at. He invented an electric torpedo. “Edison urged Congress to establish the Naval Research Laboratory in 1920. ” (Allen pg. 8) This was the first military research laboratory. For more than forty years, the laboratory created by Thomas Alva Edison in West Orange, NJ, had enormous impact on the lives of millions of people around the world. Edison’s last patented invention was a way to make manmade rubber. The lab continued to invent things even after Edison died in 1931. So to create a rough summary of Thomas Alva Edisons life would be simple. He was raised in a positive environment with lots of encouragement from his father. And he made it possible for electronics to become an everyday part of our lives.

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