a website collaboration between Science Service and the Smithsonian Institution

no date - an artist's rendition of the Edison Tower




no date

an artist's rendition







Original Caption by Science Service


The Thomas Alva Edison Memorial Tower was built in 1937 and dedicated February 11, 1938, to commemorate Thomas Edison's 91st birthday. The 131-foot tall tower is at the exact spot where the Menlo Park laboratory was located. After Edison and his staff left in 1884, the original buildings deteriorated until by 1925 all the buildings had either collapsed or burned. The tower's pinnacle is meant to represent an incandescent light bulb. The building, presently serving as the Museum, was built in 1941, as a gatehouse and reception area for people visiting the Tower.

Located at 37 Christie Street in the Menlo Park section of Edison Township, the Tower is situated where Thomas Edison had his laboratory, the first modern research-and-development center in the world.

While in Menlo Park, Edison received approximately 400 patents on inventions, including the incandescent light bulb, the phonograph, and the electric railroad car. His innovations at the site included wireless transmissions, the carbon button transmitter, and the discovery of the Edison Effect, the foundation for the field of electronics. Thomas Edison remarked that some of his greatest triumphs were accomplished at Menlo Park.

Menlo Park Museum < http://www.menloparkmuseum.com >

National Museum of American History


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