[The following note describes a series of folders and has no documents attached to it. For that reason, a "no Documents found" message will appear if the "List Documents" button at the bottom of the note is used. To see the documents in the folders described here, use the "Which Series Notes?" button to enter the Series Notes. Use the "Next Text" button to move to a contents list for the entire collection.]
These documents consist primarily of letters addressed to Edison's second wife, Mina Miller Edison, along with some letters written by Mrs. Edison. Although some letters are addressed jointly to Mina and Thomas Edison, there are only a few letters to or from Thomas Edison. The correspondents include Mina's parents, siblings, and in-laws; her children, Madeleine, Charles, and Theodore; and her stepchildren from Edison's first marriage to Mary Stilwell Marion Estelle, Thomas Alva, Jr., and William Leslie. The selected items contain numerous references to Thomas Edison's health, travel, and work; his homes in West Orange, New Jersey (Glenmont), and Fort Myers, Florida (Seminole Lodge); his parental and spousal roles; and the roles of his sons in his companies. The letters are also revelatory of the personalities of the six Edison children and their attitudes toward their parents and siblings.
Approximately 2,275 letters are now available in the digital edition of the Charles Edison Fund (CEF) Collection, including 1,425 letters added between Fall 2009 and Summer 2010. Most are from a 14-reel microfilm set owned by CEF. The set consists of thirty-six correspondence books numbered from 1 to 37 (Book #33 is either missing or does not exist). For a contents list, click here or use the "Next Text" button at the top of this note. Numerous additional letters owned by CEF that do not appear on the microfilm are also included; click here for a list of boxes in which those letters appear. The letters in each correspondence book are arranged in rough chronological order, but there are numerous deviations from the chronological sequence and many of the letters are undated. The editors have rearranged the letters in strict chronological order and, whenever possible, assigned conjectured dates to the undated letters. In addition, letters by a family member that appear in multiple books on the microfilm have been arranged in one continuous sequence.
A substantial number of the letters on the CEF microfilm were donated to the Edison National Historical Park during the early 1990s. Selections from those letters can be found in the Family Records Series in Part III of the digital edition and in Part IV and Part V of the microfilm edition. Correspondence by family members can also be found at the Edison-Ford Winter Estates, in the David E. E. Sloane Collection, and in the various "Family" folders in the Document File (Parts I-IV) and the Edison General File (Part V). Courtesy of the Charles Edison Fund.