This folder contains correspondence and other documents concerning Edison's life story, his response to erroneous newspaper reports about him, his opinions regarding a variety of subjects, and numerous other matters. The letters consist primarily of unsolicited inquiries, but there are also exchanges with friends and business associates. Among the documents for 1916 are reminiscences concerning Edisonâ€™s reading of The Penny Encyclopedia during boyhood, his early career as a telegrapher in Boston and New York, and his relationship with Joseph T. Murray, his electrical manufacturing partner in Newark. Also included is a series of letters to and from Paul J. Kruesi, son of machinist and longtime Edison associate John Kruesi, pertaining to a newspaper account that Edison had once worked as a telegrapher in Chattanooga.
In addition, there are comments by Edison in regard to prohibition and the consumption of alcohol, along with a letter denying that he was the originator of the phrase "everything comes to him who hustles while he waits." The correspondents include student and future diplomat Gerhard Gade; Elbert Hubbard, II, son of author and Edison acquaintance Elbert Hubbard who went down with the Lusitania in May 1915; Edward L. Morse, youngest son of inventor Samuel F. B. Morse; and former President Theodore Roosevelt.
Less than 10 percent of the documents have been selected, including all items bearing substantive marginalia by Edison. The following categories of documents have not been selected: unsolicited requests for donations, employment opportunities, and interviews; routine requests for biographical and other information, including Edison's advice and opinion. Courtesy of Thomas Edison National Historical Park.