This letterbook covers the period May-September 1914. Most of the correspondence is by Edison and William H. Meadowcroft. Included are letters to Percival S. Hill of the American Tobacco Co. and others regarding Edison's widely reported opinions about the deleterious effects of cigarette smoking. One letter remarks that "this cigarette controversy has aroused such wide attention that . . . I cannot spare the time from my other work to answer all the letters that come in." Also included are letters to American statesmen and politicians William Jennings Bryan, Edward W. Townsend, and William Hughes concerning the disruption of trade during World War I, its effects upon the American chemical industry, and Edison's experiments toward producing synthetic phenol as a substitute for the imported carbolic acid used in the manufacture of phonograph records. In a letter to Samuel Hill of the Home Telephone and Telegraph Co. of Portland, Oregon, Edison expresses concern that "some of the boundary lines" on the globe Hill gave him "will have to be changed as a result of the present conflict." Other documents relate to the commercial and technical development of Edison's storage battery, phonograph, and motion picture businesses, as well as the market conditions for electric vehicles.
The front cover is marked "T. A. E. May 20, 14. To Sept 23." The spine is marked with similar information, along with the number "37." The book contains 694 numbered pages and an index. Approximately 20 percent of the book has been selected. Courtesy of Thomas Edison National Historical Park.