This bibliography has three sections. We begin with Edison’s Published Articles and Select Interviews (listed by year) in American magazines and journals. Early in his career Edison published extensively in telegraph industry journals The Telegrapher, Journal of the Telegraph, and the Operator, and for a time he was science editor of the latter. He also contributed articles (some as letters to the editor) in Scientific American and reported his chemical research in the American Chemist and Chemical News. Between 1878 and 1888 he prepared papers for annual meetings of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, which published them in its Proceedings. After the phonograph made Edison famous in 1878, North American Review and other American periodicals occasionally solicited contributions from him. During the 1890s he published in Electrical Engineer, particularly about his X-ray research. Beginning in the 1890s and especially in the 1910s and 1920s, several periodicals ran extensive interviews with him (some even under his byline). Because these interviews provide depth to Edison’s views on a range of subjects, including broader social issues, we have chosen to include them with his publications. Newspaper interviews are generally excluded because of the special problems they present. American papers printed innumerable interviews and articles based on conversations with him. Other papers often picked up these stories, reprinting them whole or in part, sometimes months later, making the modern bibliographer’s job that much harder without a commensurate payoff. Many of these can be found in our digital image edition by searching the document type Interview. In addition, a collection of Edison interviews was published together with a transcription of his 1885 diary in Dagobert Runes, ed. The Diary and Sundry Reminiscences of Thomas Alva Edison. New York: Philosophical Library, 1948).
The second section covers Biographies and is divided into three subsections: 1) Modern Biographies, 2) Contemporaneous Biographies and Sketches, and 3) Select Juvenile Works.
The third—and largest—section is Subject Areas Related to Edison’s Work and Influence and includes thirteen categories: 1) Electric Light and Power; 2) Phonograph and Sound Recording; 3) Motion Pictures; 4) Telecommunications; 5) Batteries and Electric Automobiles; 6) Materials Processing (Ore Milling, Cement, Chemicals, Rubber); 7) World War I; 8) Miscellaneous Topics; 9) Laboratories, Patents, and Research Methods; 10) Entrepreneurship and Economic Ideas; 11) Edison Myth and Reputation; 12) Edison Family and Fort Myers; and 13) Edison Associates and Rivals.