[This folder was re-edited in April 2010. Many of the undated letters were assigned more precise conjectured dates, and dates that had been incorrectly conjectured were corrected. These changes have necessitated numerous changes in the arrangement of the letters and in the Document IDs. To find the current Document ID if you know the old one, click here and enter the old ID in the "Find New ID" box.]
[The following note covers all of the Marion E. Edison correspondence folders in Part III.]
This folder contains letters by Marion Estelle Edison (1873-1965), the daughter of Thomas Edison and his first wife, Mary Stilwell. The earliest letters, dating from 1887-1888, relate to Marion's education at the Bradford Academy in Massachusetts. Numerous other letters were written during her tour of Europe in 1889-1892. In addition to letters from Marion to her father and stepmother, there is correspondence by Sarah W. Brigham, her tutor and traveling companion in 1889, and by Elizabeth F. Earl, who replaced Miss Brigham in 1890. There are also references to the sisters of Mina Miller EdisonJennie, Mary, and Gracewho initially accompanied Marion on her travels. Among the topics discussed in the letters are Marion's impressions of the various countries she visited; her strained relations with Jennie Miller; her contraction of smallpox in Dresden at the beginning of 1890; her self-consciousness about the scars left by the disease; her encounter with explorer Henry Stanley and Edward, Price of Wales in Cannes in the spring of 1890; and her desire that her brothers Tom Jr. and Will join her in Europe so that she can "make amends" for having been "most cold and selfish towards them." The letters from 1891-1892 include numerous references to Charlie Levison (Charles Horace Granville Levison of Norfolk County), a wealthy Englishman to whom Marion was briefly engaged. A July 1894 letter from German army officer Oscar Oeser formally seeks Edison's permission to marry his daughter.
Additional letters by Marion Edison can be found in the Charles Edison Fund Collection. One other item from 1894 can be found the David E. E. Sloane Collection. Courtesy of Thomas Edison National Historical Park.