[D0326AAK], Letter from Ludwig Albert Stollwerck to Thomas Alva Edison, April 13th, 1903


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[D0326AAK], Letter from Ludwig Albert Stollwerck to Thomas Alva Edison, April 13th, 1903





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Thomas A. Edison Papers, School of Arts and Sciences, Rutgers University


Letterhead of Ludwig Stollwerck.
April 13th 1903.
Thomas Alva Edison Esq.
Orange N. J.
Dear Mr. Edison,
Just one day sailing with the new steamer "Kaiser Wilhelm II" the largest fastest steamer to New-York, I send you with kindest regards these lines.
I am sorry to inform you that the Phonographs and records ordered November last have arrived only last week in Cologne and I got the first samples from the custom house only yesterday. To-day before leaving for New-York, I took nevertheless several hours to examine them and having the principle to study every matter as thoroughly and objectively as possible, I am sorry that I did not like the effect of the records as much as the new concert-disk of the Gramophone Company. I know that for such disks the Gramophone Company ask retail M. 5 - or Dollar 1,25 and the price of our respectively should be 2.- or 50 cents. I am however of the opinion that with our experiences and with our energic we ought to do as well as any other Maker and Inventor to get the highest degree of development and progress and this ought also to be possible. I invited numerous musical friends to judge about the matter, and I came with this friends to the following decision:
1. The Edison moulded record is a great improvement above the old system, giving now to us an object of commercial value All records are equal and they are better as the old ones. This progress of an article of commercial value - - - 10000 and more good copies made after one original has however also the Grammophone Company.
2. The new Edison moulded records is very loud, louder than the Grammophoone bu the musical Gentleman say that the tune seems to be too loud on account of its tune quality. It seems to everyone that the singers sing in a kind of crying way into the tromptete and therefore gives us in a small room the same effect.
Now, dear Mr. Edison, not to cross with me that I give you this judgment in a sincere and open way. If I take the matter in Germany in hand, in this land where musical judgement is the highest in the world, I like to give to the German public in any way the best. We ought to have number Ia.
I hope to have soon after my arrival the great pleasure to see you again and to hear your opinion if it is possible to fulfill my wish, to make special records for the German taste. I am willing to devote special time to the business development of Edison records in Germany but I ought to be supported by you. I know that you make an enormous business in America but to have the same result in Germany, we must meet the German taste. In any way I made arrangements to begin the business but to fulfill every wish of your ambition and my ambition we ought to work hand in hand - - manufacturer and merchant.
Since my last New-York trip I have had several times the pleasure to see Mr. Sigmund Bergmann in Berlin and I was quite delighted to make his acquaintance and to have a chat about diffe- rent questions. Yesterday again I have had a long letter from him about your electrical storage battery and we are both of the opinion, having a good experience in financial questions that by the proposed solid way it will be possible to make a good success out of this great invention.
About this matter I wish also to speak with you.
On this trip to New-York my wife will accompany me for the first time and she hopes very much to have also the pleasure to make your acquaintance
Believe me to be in the meantime
Yours very sincerely:
Ludwig Stollwerck
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