[D8239ZBU1], Letter from Edward Hibberd Johnson to Thomas Alva Edison, May 21st, 1882


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[D8239ZBU1], Letter from Edward Hibberd Johnson to Thomas Alva Edison, May 21st, 1882

Editor's Notes

[25 pgs] "since writing to you last we have had plenty of excitement. Telephone fight, Parliamentary committee investigation, tremendous excitement on the stock exchange in electrical matters, daily sittings of our own board to bring things to a focus so as to bring out edison Companys and a total collapse of the No. 3 dynamo. These are some of the interesting features of the past fortnight." Dynamo: disassembled; mica in commutator completely burned. Repaired, then series of bad connections. Light continued without interruption. General problems are 1) great difficulty in locating a fault; 2) difficulty getting to guts of commutator; 3) don't overload in testing there; 4) secure bars with something other than wire winding? Hood has trained 2 1st class engineers; Hood will return, Holloway to remain. Holborn street lighting inadequAte--32cp lamps met with disaster (broken by lamp cleaners), plus high operational breakage. Hopkinson recommended arc light but I argued against it. Give this problem immediate attn as Swan has 60 to 100 cp lamp. [TAE marg: "Of course the 32 are not so good as the 16. They were made by hand. When we are rigged up tho 32 50 & 100 candlepower lamps will be just exactly the same as the 16."] Parliamentary committee. Siemens, others already testified and I may tomorrow. Puleston, who's on committee, pressing case to me of your 2,000 debt to him on Automatic; what should I do? Will ask Lubbock to help reach compromise. Gouraud's settlement with Pender is bad precedent. All telephone stock shares way up. Batch & I to sell some of our shares, also some of yours? [TAE marg: "Yes."] Judgment in telephone case that insufficient descrpton of phonograph in provisional makes your patent bad. Will appeal. Electric Light. negotiating district cos. Big holdup for Manchester was impossibility of getting machinery for 6 mos but agreement signed and down payment made. Will begin floating stock of Light cos. this week. Discusses valuation of A and B shares of parent Co, also stocks of rival cos. Expects a surrender "or the biggest patent fight you ever heard of." Expert concensus is your lamp pat OK without disclaiming. Handford drawing up patent on my new lamp socket; he's very competent. How do you like Bergmann's latest version of this socket; Batch loves it. In reply to your cable about 100 "B" lamp dynamo, want only 110 volt machines so as to have single standard. Hear that Swan's latest lamp will beat our in economy for Crystal Palace jury unless we get some of the latest lamps. Make lamp go lower in socket for better symmetry. Gouraud finally got strong board for Colonial cos. Discusses attempts of Husbands to float stock through Arthur Anderson (p. 21) & conflict over name of his SA Co. with Brush pats. Think all the profits in light will come from US and England (and bought some US stock). Talked it over thoroughly with Batch and think "no great profit will ever reach your pockets from that concern. It is too complicatd and in the hands of men who are themselves personally too grasping." Some Insull shorthand marg at end.## p 6 describes Sprague as "an enthusiastic advocate of everything that is Edisonian"




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