[D8964ABC], Letter from Albert Blake Dick to Thomas Alva Edison, June 3rd, 1889


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[D8964ABC], Letter from Albert Blake Dick to Thomas Alva Edison, June 3rd, 1889

Editor's Notes

"I have been greatly disappointed at the result of my investigation of the doll business in this city for I was informed from various sources that the largest doll manufacturing business in the Continent was conducted here Nurnberg, while I find it to be a jobbing center only and a place where dolls are dressed. Quite a large quantity of the small and inexpensive dolls are made near and about this city, but none such as would be suited to the Phono. At Sonneberg, about four hours to the north of Nurnberg, all kinds of dolls and mechanical figures are made. I am going up tonight to look into the matter. Doll dealers and jobbers here state that they get their whole supply of best goods from Sonneberg, but none go to the general market from that point, consequently the place is quite unknown outside of Germany as a center of manufacture.##I have had an introduction to and a very satisfatory interview with Mr. Bing of this city, who is supposed to be the largest maker of cheap model toys of all kinds (including mechanical toys of lower grades). He was extremly well impressed with the Phono and the idea of putting them into different Kinds of Toys, and desires to negotiate with you as soon as you are ready. I find that the idea of speaking toys is looked upon generally with great favor by manufacturers as they see in it an opportunity for offering a talking novelty to the trade, which will be of permanent value. All look upon the speaking dolls as simply marvelous. By the way all of the small reproducing needles (or whatever they are called) have finally become detached from the glass diaphragm, and yesterday I bought some porcelain glue and repaired two of them very successfully indeed. They are very much better now than when I first received them, giving forth fully twice the volume of sound, and perfect articulation. I have been wondering whether the glue I used has had anything to do with the noticeable improvement.##The more I go into this buiness the greater seem its possibilities, and I think a large business can be done from the outset, alltho' no one seems to talk of large purchases to commence with. I fully expect to be able to give you something more satisfactory from Sonneberg and Vienna.##I have just heard of the terrible catastrophe at Johnston, and can scarcely believe that from 15,0000 to 20,000 people have perished. Much sympathy is expressed in this city for the suffers and a subscription list has been started to aid the homeless.##Hoping to have some news from you at an early day I am Yours Very truly"




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