EDISON DOES HIS BIT TO SAVE THE COUNTRY
West Orange, New Jersey (JFK+50) One hundred years ago this evening, May 24, 1917, the world's greatest inventor, Thomas Alva Edison*, spoke to employees of his plant here in West Orange telling them that he was in the process of working "in a certain direction" to save the country.
Mr. Edison said...
"It is not something I can talk about but I am trying to do my 'bit' for Uncle Sam."
Vice President of the Edison Company William Maxwell said that since Mr. Edison had to cancel his Florida vacation in February 1917, he had been working "day & night" for the government. Mr. Maxwell said that he expected whatever the inventor was working on would be a success because "he had never failed in anything he undertook."
*Thomas A. Edison founded the Naval Research Laboratories & brought in leading scientists throughout the nation. TAE made himself & his laboratories available for the U.S. government.
His contributions during WWI included sonar (detecting submarines by sound), locating positions of guns by sound ranging, faster turning of ships, sailing lights for convoys & airplane detection.
*Thomas Alva Edison (1947-1931) was born in Milan, Ohio but grew up in Port Huron, Michigan. He had only 3 months of formal education but was home-schooled by his mother. TAE became a telegraph operator for Western Union before beginning his career as an inventor in Newark, NJ.
His "invention factory" at Menlo Park was the first industrial research laboratory in the world. It was there that he invented the electric lamp and phonograph.
"Edison Works On "Something" To Save Nation", The Chicago Daily Tribune, May 25, 1917.
"Thomas Edison and World War I", www.edison.me.uk/