Edison Book Summary By Edmund Morris

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Book Name: Edison (A look into the unknown stories of Thomas Edison's life)

Author(s): Edmund Morris

Rating: 4.8/5

Reading Time: 32 Minutes

Categories: Book Summaries

Author Bio

Edmund Morris (1940-2019) was an esteemed and much-admired author.

He had a tremendous impact on the literary world, with his first book, The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt, winning him a Pulitzer Prize in 1980.

His most famous work is Dutch; a comprehensive biography on Ronald Reagan that sparked critical praise and significant controversy.

His last published work was Edison in 2019 - the year he passed away - and it served as fitting tribute to his life's achievements and accomplishments.

Discover The Remarkable Life Of Thomas Edison – The Visionary Inventor Who Changed The World

Thomas Edison is one of the most influential inventors of all time and his accomplishments remain iconic to this day.

Born in 1847, he saw a world vastly different from ours today- one without electric light, recorded music, or moving pictures.

By the time of his passing in 1931, that world has changed drastically due to inventions patented by Thomas Edison every ten days of his adult life – including the highest achievement: the incandescent bulb.

But more than just that, who was this creative genius? What drove him to create the phonograph, power grid and X-ray? How did he keep coming up with new ideas and inventions?

Bedtime Biographies provides an informative introduction into who Edison was as a person and what made him tick through engaging stories.

So dim your lights and get set for an inspirational summary on what it means to be “Edison: inventor of the modern world”.

The Making Of An Inventor: How Thomas Edison Became A Master Of Innovation

The story of Thomas Alva Edison begins in 1847 when he was born in the small town of Milan, Ohio, the youngest of seven children.

His father, Samuel, was a lumber trader and when Alva was just seven years old, the family relocated to Port Huron, Michigan.

Unfortunately, his school teachers there did not have high hopes for him and even suggested he may be “addled” due to his inability to pay attention and focus.

It wasn’t until second grade that his parents decided to pull him out of school and bring home education under Nancy – his mother and former schoolteacher.

Under her guidance Alva began to flourish as he read books such as Robert Burton and Richard Green Parker’s ‘Natural Philosophy’.

It was through reading this book that Alva gained a greater understanding of science including topics like electricity, electro-magnetism, chemistry and optics – fields which Edison would then revolutionise.

To keep himself enthralled on new experiments, Alva’s parents allowed him to take over the downstairs basement as a personal laboratory where he spent every spare minute tinkering with the many bottles of chemicals he had collected – these were all labelled “poison” with an intent of keeping neighbor kids away!

This allowed him to innovate further by creating a telegraph system between his house and a friend’s at the mere age of 11 years.

Thomas Alva Edison Leverages His Precociousness And Entrepreneurial Drive To Succeed Even In The Face Of Adversity

In Chapter 2 of Edison, readers are introduced to a precocious young Thomas Alva Edison.

Seeking to support his family’s finances after their business collapsed during the economic Panic of 1857, teenage Edison is hired on as a newsboy on the Grand Trunk Railway, selling newspapers and other goods up and down the train line between Port Huron and Detroit.

Rather than spend his time in Detroit wasting opportunities, Edison uses it to stock up on all manner of chemicals and electrical parts for his basement laboratory.

He even demonstrates an early form of entrepreneurship by buying fresh produce from local grocers, bakers and market vendors, then reselling them at a mark-up during his ride back to Port Huron.

When the Civil War breaks out in 1861, Edison capitalizes further on this opportunity by commandeering an empty baggage car and turning it into a mobile printing shop producing The Weekly Herald – “Published by A.

Edison.” His shrewd marketing tactics also include using telegraph lines running alongside the train tracks to announce major news stories ahead of time and build anticipation among customers.

Thomas Edison’S Resolve: How A Young Inventor Turned Tragedy Into Triumph

In the third chapter of Thomas Edison’s book, the focus shifts to his inventing career.

After teaching himself Morse code and becoming one of America’s fastest telegraph operators, Edison was hired by Western Union and began taking detailed notes about improving the country’s telegraph circuits.

He then moved to Boston, Massachusetts, where he worked in one of the main branches of Western Union and launched his career as an inventor.

His first patent was for an electric vote recorder that unfortunately did not have much commercial success.

But this didn’t stop Edison from quitting his job at Western Union and embarking on a journey to pursue a full-time career in inventing with a focus on developing stock tickers.

He moved to New York City and quickly drew attention from investors encouraging him to create his own lab so he could further pursue his inventions.

After marrying Mary Sitwell in 1871, Edison applied for thirty-nine new patents, focused on improving telegraph technology with inventions like an automatic telegraph printer and the multi-plex system.

Edison’S Revolutionary Invention: The Phonograph And Electric Lightbulb

In Chapter 4, we see Edison’s determination pay off.

After months of trial and error, Edison successfully invents a practical and efficient lightbulb.

The key to his invention was the use of a carbon filament instead of titanium.

With this new bulb, Edison was able to make his grand vision a reality – by providing enough power to illuminate the bottom part of New York City with just 500 horsepower!

We see how truly revolutionary Edison’s invention was – it made gas lamps obsolete overnight, prompting financiers such as J.P Morgan and Western Union to invest in Edison’s new company.

This invention also held immense potential for powering mechanical contrivances such as elevators and sewing machines – something that had been impossible before.

In the end, Edison was able to prove his doubters wrong – that he could deliver on his promise and produce a working electric light system.

Herein lies the genius of Thomas Alva Edison – his drive to explore even when faced with multiple failures.

It was this drive that enabled him to become one of history’s greatest inventors!

If you’re heading off to bed, I wish for your restful sleep and sweet dreams!

Arturo Miller

Hi, I am Arturo Miller, the Chief Editor of this blog. I'm a passionate reader, learner and blogger. Motivated by the desire to help others reach their fullest potential, I draw from my own experiences and insights to curate blogs.

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