This folder contains correspondence and other documents concerning Edison's charitable contributions, financial assistance, and donations of equipment. Several of the selected letters for 1917, including a telegram from Edison to President Woodrow Wilson, relate to the Liberty Loan drive and to war relief efforts. Also included are requests pertaining to education and youth services. In addition, there is an account of Edison's personal donations between December 1916 and April 1917. A summary sheet preceding the itemized entries indicates that his monthly contributions during that period averaged $862.35. The correspondents include Ida Clarke of the Brooklyn Bureau of Charities; Guy Emerson, director of publicity of the Liberty Loan Committee; and Nathaniel M. Pratt, general secretary of the American Institute of Social Service. There are also letters from John M. Clarke of the New York State Museum in regard to a planned statute of nineteenth-century physicist and longtime Smithsonian secretary Joseph Henry.
Approximately 5 percent of the documents have been selected. Most of the unselected items are unanswered or declined requests for money or free phonographs, replies stating that Edison was too busy to read his mail or was making his donations overseas this year, and routine letters of thanks for past gifts. Also unselected are printed documents describing various relief projects, such buying cigarettes for Belgian soldiers, aiding Armenian orphans, and providing job training to rehabilitate fallen women. Courtesy of Thomas Edison National Historical Park.