Thomas Alva Edison Memorial Tower


While in Menlo Park, Edison received more than 400 patents, including the incandescent light bulb, the phonograph, and the electric railroad car. His Menlo Park Laboratory, which was used until 1884, is considered the first engineering R&D lab in the world. After it was abandoned (he moved to West Orange after his wife died), the lab was used as a theater, dance hall, and chicken farm, before collapsing in 1913. The Edison Memorial Tower and Museum were built in 1937 on the spot where Edison had his laboratory. Here visitors can see some of his inventions and products from the Thomas A. Edison Company, including a 1929 'Light-O-Matic' Radio.

Activity Details

Activity Type:Trips and Destinations
Discipline:Electrical
Topic(s):Electricity
Grade:K-2, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12
Time:Full day

Fun Fact:Contrary to popular belief, Menlo Park isn't a town in N.J. Menlo Park actually was the name of a planned housing development, but, after building a model home, the developers went broke. Edison bought the model home and built his lab complex on the surrounding farmland. When his lab became famous, people simply assumed Menlo Park was a town.
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