[D8905AGC], Letter from Sherburne Blake Eaton to Thomas Alva Edison, September 18th, 1889


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[D8905AGC], Letter from Sherburne Blake Eaton to Thomas Alva Edison, September 18th, 1889

Editor's Notes

Eaton sends letters to Edison and Mrs, E, and gives the latest news: ## 1) Mr. L has asked Insull for consent to have the phonograph marked with Edison's patents. Insull will stave off a decision until Edison returns. He thinks that if L insists, they are obliged under section 8 of the August 1 1888 agreement to place the numbers of the patents on the phonographs. ## 2) Messrs. Witter & Kenyon have given Lippincott their opinion that the article in "La Nature" does not affect his rights to the inventions of Bell and Tainter. ## 3) The United Co. has adopted the Sperry Arc Light, and Eaton is drawing up the contract. The United Co. gets the exclusive right to manufacture and sell, with the exception of the Sperry Co., pays a 7 1/2 per cent royalty on the shop prie of fynamos, and 10 per cent on regulators, lamps and other apparatus. They can terminate the agreement on short notice. ## 4) Bliss, who turns up a processor of a large interest in the Sperry Co., tells Eaton that he has made much money out of this and other inentions. He wears the same. Eaton is amused at the success of early associates in the Light business. Eaton thinks he is the only man in the business from the start who has never made more than his salary and the shares Edison gave him, since he has never made any inventions or invested in any outside entity, since he thinks it is disloyal. "Self praise goes but a little ways. The fact that this goes way to Havre contradicts that maxim." ## 5) Mr Insull is in chicago on business for the United Co. He says he is running nearly all the executive business at No. 44 Wall St. Mr. Herrick relies upon him absolutely, because the business is so complicated. Insull is worried beause he could not get away from No. $$ to the phonograph factory, etc. when needed. The business has grown so large and the different branches of the Light Co. business so enormous that they cannot be attended by one man. ## 6) Eaton is gradually getting a hold of the patent business after Tomlinson's utter neglect for order and business methods. Dyer has done some good, difficult work in litigation but also lacks organization and executive ability. Eaton plans to supervise the work of other lawyer, and give Dyer his pick of opportunities. ## 7) The Westeinghouse experts are getting up an attack on Edison's record as an inventor in electric light. Dyer is at work on a reply. Probably nothing will come to a head before Edison returns. He asks Edison not to mention it, it is confidential, for reasons he better not state in writing. ## 8) The Boston Toy people are complaining of delays in getting their devices from the factory. They claim they gave an order August 6 for 500 mechanisms per day, to be delivered not less than 60 days, but Eaton believes they did not actually make such an order. ## 9) The Western Electric Co. of Chicago is becoming a strong competitor in the incandescent business. He believes they wish to acquire the Sperry Arc light syste,, which is why Edison's people acted so promptly in his absence. ## 10) The stock of the General Co. has been selling very low, though the business is growing. Eaton thinks the trouble is that a profitable business will grow faster than their ability to do it grows. ## He wishes Edison a safe and pleasant voyage,




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