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The Patent Series for 1879-1886 consists primarily of material relating to Edison's domestic and foreign patent applications. The material is organized into three categories: (1) Patent Application Files, (2) Patent Application Casebooks, (3) Patent Application Drawings.
The archives of the ENHP also holds a small number of case files relating to Edison's foreign patent applications for the period 1880-1886. Most of this material concerns Canadian applications, but there are also files dealing with the patenting of inventions in Great Britain, France, Germany, and Sweden. In addition, there are a few other patent-related documents, primarily patent assignments, in Italian, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish, and Swedish. Some of these assignments involve the transfer of rights from Edison to the Edison Electric Light Co. of Europe, Ltd. These documents have not been selected.
Patent-related materials for 1879-1886 can be found in most of the other series in this edition. Applications and caveats (preliminary patent applications) relating to the electric light occasionally appear as exhibits in the civil court records and the patent interference cases presented in the Litigation Series. Several volumes in the Notebook Series contain drafts of applications and caveats, while notes that were made preparatory to the filing of patent applications can be found in the technical scrapbooks and among the unbound notes and drawings in the Notebook Series. The various "Patents" folders in the Document File Series contain patent assignments and patent-related correspondence, as well as a few unbound applications and caveats. A set of Edison's English patents for the period 1872-1880 can be found in the Charles Batchelor Collection (Special Collections Series). An extensive collection of caveats for this period can be found at the National Archives. Courtesy of Thomas Edison National Historical Park.