• Heavy Machine Shop

    Thomas Edison

    National Historical Park New Jersey

Edison's Electric Lighting System

YEAR OF INNOVATION SERIES:
January 2014 – Edison’s Electric Lighting System

WEST ORANGE, NJ – Edison did more than invent a practical incandescent electric lamp; he introduced an entire system of electric lighting. From his first central stations in London and New York’s Pearl Street to his display at the 1889 Paris Exposition, Edison’s companies pioneered the electric utility industry. During the month of January, programs at Thomas Edison National Historical Park will look at the early experiments in electrical lighting as well as new lighting technology. The programs will be held at the Thomas Edison National Historical Park (NHP) Laboratory Complex at 211 Main Street in West Orange.

1st Friday – January 3rd at 2:30 p.m.
Thomas Edison and the Paris Exposition of 1889
At the 1889 Exposition Universelle, a World’s Fair in Paris, officials and attendees greeted Thomas Edison as a celebrity. Edison’s exhibits occupied more than a third of the space allocated to all United States companies at the event and featured the introduction of mass-market versions of his phonograph. Join Museum Curator Joan Harris-Rico in this presentation about Edison in Paris.

2nd Saturday - January 11th at 10:00 a.m. (especially for children)
How does a light bulb work?
Edison tried over 3000 different things as the filament for the electric light. Try an experiment and see if you can make a bulb light.

3rd Thursday – January 16th at 6:30 p.m.

The Incandescent Bulb: From 1880s to the 1920s

Mr. Robert Rosenzweig, President of Aamsco Lighting Company and the Ferrowatt brand of antique reproduction bulbs, will speak on the technical and business history of the incandescent bulb from the 1880s to the 1920s. His presentation will also feature a display of historic advertising and period light bulbs. The program will be held at the Thomas Edison National Historical Park Laboratory Complex at 211 Main Street. Seating is limited and reservations are recommended. Reservations can be made by calling 973-736-0550 ext. 89. There is no fee for the program.



These programs are part of THE YEAR OF INNOVATION celebrating the New Jersey 350th Anniversary in 2014. Since 1664 New Jersey has provided a welcome home for inventors and entrepreneurs like Thomas Edison and there is no better place to learn about the history of innovation than Thomas Edison National Historical Park in West Orange. Special programs each month will explore the themes in EDISON AND THE RISE OF INNOVATION a new book written by National Park Service archivist Leonard DeGraaf and published by Sterling Signature in October 2013. Another famous innovator – Bill Gates – has written the foreword to this fresh look at Thomas Edison. New programs for all ages will be offered monthly. For more information and updates about THE YEAR OF INNOVATION - First Friday, Second Saturday and Third Thursday events, please visit www.nps.gov/edis monthly. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.
-NPS-


Did You Know?

Photograph of Thomas Edison at the age of fourteen years.

There is a rumor that Edison was actually born in Mexico, based on his middle name Alva. However, Alva was the name of a family friend, Captain Bradley. When he was young, Edison's nickname was "Al," from his middle name Alva.