Stay safe , healthy and social distance !
Good news! Governor Mike DeWine announced that museums can re-open on Wednesday, June 10th, 2020. The Thomas Edison Birthplace museum will start to welcome visitors back on Thursday, June 25th, 2020 with the following guidelines in place:

  • Face masks: All visitors must have a face mask on during the time of the visit to protect themselves, along with other visitors and employees.

  • Social Distancing: Guided Tours will now have a limit of 3 individuals to practice social distancing, although family groups who live together may have up to 8 members.

  • By-Appointment Only: To avoid congestion in the office, we have implemented a “By-Appointment Only” policy. We have launched a new booking option online as well as the option to call us.

  • Restrooms: We have closed our restrooms until further notice to decrease the spread of germs. 

Stay up-to-date with our official COVID-19 page .
Happy Father's Day!
For all the dads out there, the Edison Birthplace Museum would like to congratulate and honor you on Father’s Day. You are appreciated.
Thomas Edison's Father
Samuel Ogden Edison Jr., Thomas Edison’s father, was born in Nova Scotia
 and was a man of many talents: skilled carpenter, tavern owner, businessman, manufacturer, tailor. He was a man of fertile resources and great energy of character. He was a tall man (6’2”) of much intelligence. He built the deceptively small-looking home for his family in Milan, on the side of the hill, which afforded it three stories as seen from the back, not the one story seen from the street side and beautifully done in the Greek Revival style, unusual for that size home.
In Milan, Samuel entered into the shingle-making business around the bustling Milan Canal. 

Tom was always asking questions of his father and when, after Tom pursued his father with endless demands for information, his father, giving up, said he didn’t know the answer. And Tom replied, “Well, why DON’T you know?? His father always encouraged his reading and paid him a small sum for each book he mastered. When Samuel was much older, he remembered his son Tom as mischievous and exasperatingly inquisitive; not as a child prodigy who would develop into the greatest inventor of the 19th and 20th centuries. The older Tom was softer on his father and helped him plant a ten-acre garden at their home in Port Huron, Michigan and helped him sell the produce in town. Tom became an entrepreneur himself when he was 12 years old; perhaps because of the model he saw in his father. When the much older Thomas Edison was building his first laboratory at Menlo Park in NJ in the 1870’s, he had his father supervise the lab’s construction. Samuel was visiting his niece in Norwalk, Ohio, south of Milan, in 1896 when he died. His son, Thomas traveled back to the home of his boyhood to attend his father’s funeral.

There are several stories about Tom and his father. Perhaps the most notorious (but not true) of the time spent in Milan, (1847-1854) is the story as put forth in Mickey Rooney movie, Young Tom Edison, when Samuel felt compelled to take young Tom to the center square in Milan to give him a spanking when he and a friend had set fire to a barn. This version of the story is not verified and 2 clues will show that it is false. The first is both the Authorized Biography  Edison His Life and Inventions  Dyer, Martin and Meadowcroft (1928. p. 18) and the Meadowcroft biography The Boys Life of Edison (1921 p.17) mentions "Fire also had it’s peril. He built a fire in a barn, but the flames spread so rapidly that, although he escaped himself, the barn was wholly destroyed. He was publicly whipped in the village square as a warning to other youths.” - no mention of his father. If Meadowcraft was sure or Edison wanted it mentioned it would be there. The second clue is from the Paul Israel Biography  Edison A Life of Invention  (1998 pp. 13-14) Edison himself related how after pulling the prank on the Fort Gratiot Michigan sentries he "received a good switching on the legs from my father,   the first and only one I ever received from him, although my mother kept a switch behind the old Seth Thomas clock that had the bark worn off. My mother's ideas and mine differed at times, especially when I got experimenting and mussed up things.”  The quote comes from Edison's reminiscences from the Dyer and Martin biography that was published in Volume 2 of the The Papers of Thomas A. Edison  (p. 784).

In June of 1875, Thomas Edison conceives the electric pen and autographic press copying system.
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Last Month's Question:
Madeleine was the only one of TAE’s six children who had children of her own. How many children did Madeleine have?

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