These records consist of interoffice communications, technical notes, and other documents pertaining to the operations of the Edison Chemical Works in Silver Lake, New Jersey. Formally established around 1905, the Works manufactured chemical compounds used in Edison's products, such as iron and nickel compositions for storage batteries and wax for recordable phonograph cylinders. It became a division of the Edison Storage Battery Co. around 1916.
Documents relating to the Edison Chemical Works can be found in both subgroups of the archival record group at the Edison National Historical Park: (1) Plant Records [intermixed with the organic plant records]; and (2) Exide Corporation Gift, Accession #495. As in the case of the records for the organic chemical plants, these documents do not constitute the complete business records of the Edison Chemical Works. The material in the Exide gift subgroup appears to represent items relating to Edison personally among the papers of the senior engineers and managers at the Works.
All of the selected documents are from the Exide gift subgroup. The folders are arranged according to the individual experimenter or unit with whom Edison was corresponding: (1) J. V. Miller Papers; (2) C. F. Hunter Papers; (3) W. J. O'Dair Papers; (4) Other Experimenters; (5) Wax Division Papers.
Related material can be found in the Edison Chemical Works folders in the Edison General File Series; in Notebooks by Experimenters Other Than Edison -- Chemical Experiments in the Notebook Series; and in Edison Storage Battery Company -- Plant Operations and Research Records in Thomas A. Edison Papers: A Selective Microfilm Edition, Part IV (1899-1910).
Edison Chemical Works. These folders contain business records, production reports, interoffice correspondence, and financial material relating to the prewar chemical business.
Central Laboratory, TAE Industries. These records consist of a detailed series of research requests and assignments relating to problems in battery and wax production, 1918-1920. This work was conducted at the Silver Lake laboratory, rather than at West Orange, and there is no evidence of any substantial Edison involvement.
Phenol Resin and Wax Dept. These folders contain internal correspondence and weekly reports dating from 1916-1917 and 1924. Courtesy of Thomas Edison National Historical Park.