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The documents in this file cover the years 1870-1929, but the major portion dates from the nineteenth century. Most of the material relates to legal matters with which Edison was concerned. The documents were originally filed in 122 envelopes. The envelopes were not arranged in chronological or topical order, and the documents within an individual envelope also lacked chronological or topical organization. Prior to editing, the documents were rearranged in chronological order.
The documents for the years 1879-1886 consist primarily of agreements, powers of attorney, and other legal documents, often in the form of drafts or fair copies. Included also are financial documents, such as bills, receipts, promissory notes, accounts, and stock transfers; some correspondence; and miscellaneous company records, such as memoranda, reports, and lists of stockholders.
The documents relate primarily to electric lighting, electric traction, ore milling, phonoplex telegraphy, and telephony. Many of the items refer to the establishment and operations of the Edison Electric Light Co., the Edison Ore Milling Co., Ltd., the Edison Telephone Co. of London, Ltd., and other Edison companies.
All of the documents for the years 1879-1886 have been selected except for duplicate copies, the brief summary sheets accompanying each envelope, and the envelopes themselves. Courtesy of Thomas Edison National Historical Park.