The Story of Thomas Alva Edison
Thomas Alva Edison was born on February 11th, 1847 in Milan, Ohio, but grew up in Port Huron, Michigan. As a young boy, Edison took a job selling candy and newspapers to those on trains from Port Huron to Detroit. Eventually, Edison would go on to create many items we use today such as the phonograph and the modern light bulb. Edison’s career as an inventor was quite a prolific one with, at the time of his death, 1,903 US patents in his name. Not all of these inventions were from him personally with many of them coming from his company “think-tank” of talented young inventors.
Edison led a very interesting and unique life, becoming a local legend to those living in or around Port Huron; however, not everything with Edison was so positive. In an attempt to prove the alleged dangers of Nikola Tesla’s Alternating Current (AC) electrical system versus his own Direct Current (DC) system, Edison used scare tactics such as public electrocution of animals, including dogs, horses, and even an elephant. These tactics still would eventually fail, and at the end of the day the superior technology of Alternating Current would win, and are actually what we still use to this day. Ironically, Edison was always critical of his hometown of Port Huron.