Thomas Alva Edison - inventor of the lightbulb, phonograph
Thomas Alva Edison Biography
Claim to Fame: Inventor of the lightbulb, phonograph
Date of Death: 1931
Diabetes Type: 2
Edison was an American inventor and businessman who developed many important devices. "The Wizard of Menlo Park" was one of the first inventors to apply the principles of mass production to the process of invention. In 1880 Edison founded the journal Science, which in 1900 became the journal of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Edison is considered one of the most prolific inventors, holding a record 1,093 patents in his name. Most of these inventions were not completely original but improvements of earlier patents, and were actually made by his numerous employees. Edison was frequently criticized for not sharing the credits. Nevertheless, Edison received patents worldwide, including the United States, United Kingdom, France, and Germany. Edison started the Motion Picture Patents Company, which was a conglomerate of nine major film studios (commonly known as the Edison Trust).
The Edison Trust was the leading distributor and the biggest supplier of raw film. The conglomeration of companies within the Trust created a monopoly that independent filmmakers found difficult to fight, but fight they did, causing a mass exodus to Hollywood in order to get away from the Trust's NJ-based authority. The war between the Independents and the Trust yielded changes we see today, such as the crediting of film workers and the recognition of actors, something the Trust was against. Eventually changes instituted by Independent filmmakers led to the demise of Edison's Trust.
In the early 1900s, Thomas Edison bought a house in Fort Myers, Florida (Seminole Lodge) as a winter retreat. Henry Ford, the automobile magnate lived across the street at his winter retreat (The Mangoes). Edison contributed technology to the automobile and he and Ford were friends until Edison died. The Edison and Ford Winter Estates are now open to the public.Find more scientists with diabetes.
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