NAME: Thomas Alva Edison
BORN: February 11, 1847
PARENTS: Samuel Edison, Jr. and Nancy Elliot Edison
COMMUNITY AFFILIATIONS: born...Milan, Ohio (Erie County)
DIED: October 18, 1931
Edison set up his first laboratory in the basement of the family home...at the insistance of his mother. Eventually, he was permitted to move his work into an empty railcar.
Edison worked as a roving telegrapher from 1862 until 1868. During 1869, while employed by the Western Union Telegraph Company in New York, he started working on his own inventions. Western Union commissioned him to create an improved stock ticker, and the result was the "Edison Universal Stock Printer."
With profits from the sales of tickers and printing telegraphs, he set up a research laboratory at Menlo Park, New Jersey in 1876. In 1877, Edison invented the phonograph. In 1879, he first demonstrated his incandescent light bulb.
In all, he held 1093 patents for various inventions. Here is just a sample:
Vote-Recorder 1868 (his first patent)
Printing Telegraph 1869
Stock Ticker 1869
Telegraph Transmitter 1870
Telegraphic Recorder 1871
Automatic Telegraph 1872
Phonograph or Speaking Machine 1877
Carbon Button Microphone 1878
Incandescent Electric Lamp 1879
Phonograph Recorder 1888