This letterbook covers the period August 1891-February 1892. Most of the letters were written by Alfred O. Tate from his office at the Edison Building in New York City. Many are addressed to Thomas Maguire, John F. Randolph, and other individuals at the West Orange laboratory. Some of the letters for October-December were written to Edison while he was inspecting iron mines in western New Jersey. There are also numerous confirmations of telephone messages, written on message forms of the Edison General Electric Co.
Many of the documents relate to the business of the Edison Manufacturing Co. and to the production and promotion of the Edison-Lalande battery. There are also numerous letters pertaining to the manufacture and marketing of phonographs and cylinder recordings and to legal and financial dealings among the various phonograph companies. Some of the legal correspondence concerns the suit brought against Edison and Edison Phonograph Toy Manufacturing Co. by D. M. Yeomans. Included also are several letters about the phonograph exhibit at the Montreal Electrical Exhibition. Beginning on page 779 is a long letter from Tate to Edison regarding their plans to take control of the North American Phonograph Co. and to liquidate the business of the local phonograph companies. Other documents relate to electric lighting, the Edison phonoplex system, and electric traction systems. There are also many letters regarding the settlement of the estate of Frank McGowan and the payment of bills for experiments conducted at the West Orange laboratory. Some of the documents concern Edison's personal finances, including the liquidation of his stock in the Edison General Electric Co.
The front cover is marked "l89l l892." The spine is stamped "Letters" and "T.A.E. N.Y." The book contains 994 numbered pages and an index. Pages 951-994 are unused. Approximately 20 percent of the documents have been selected. Related documents for this time period can be found in LB-052 through LB-055. Courtesy of Thomas Edison National Historical Park.