The museum collection documents the life and work of Thomas A. Edison (1847-1931), with an emphasis on his West Orange, New Jersey laboratory years (1887-1931). Holdings comprise both artifacts and archival materials. Artifacts include prototype and commercial Edison products, laboratory furnishings and equipment, and the personal items used by the Edison family at their home, Glenmont. The archival collection contains notebooks; Edison's business and personal correspondence; blueprints for his company's numerous products; historical photographs; sound recordings on both cylinders and discs from Edison's phonograph record company; and library materials, including Edison's technical and scientific serials, trade journals, booklets, and sheet music.
The collections are unusual in that, having remained on site, the documents can often be closely correlated to the artifacts that they describe and are invaluable for research in all areas of production at the Edison company. Apart from their associative value, many elements of the collections are unique. Significant elements of the collection include: Sound Recording Collection
The Technological Research Collection
Glenmont Decorative Arts Collection
Laboratory Furnishings Collection
Motion Picture Collection
Theodore Edison Collection