[LB021364A], Letter from Samuel Insull to Edison and Swan United Electric Light Co Ltd, Samuel Flood Page, March 8th, 1886


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[LB021364A], Letter from Samuel Insull to Edison and Swan United Electric Light Co Ltd, Samuel Flood Page, March 8th, 1886

Editor's Notes

You will remember when I was in London, I had some talk with you with relation to Mr. Edison's Light Patents, taken out by him since the formation of the Edison Electric Light Company of London. I made the proposition to you that if your company would pay Mr. Edison the amount he had disbursed in connection with the taking out of these patents, he would transfer the patents to your company and would waive his right to reimbursement of experimental expenses, etc. I also suggested that some new arrangement should be made with Mr. Edison by which your company should receive copies of all applications for new patents and then you could yourselves decide whether you desired to take out patents, and if so, you could do it at your own expense and thus acquire his patents on future inventions at a much less cost to your company than under the arrangement in the contract. ##Your company never took any action in the matter and as a consequence, they are losing the benefit of Mr. Edison's work as, naturally, he has left off taking out patents inasmuch as he can get no satisfactory arrangement with either as to those he has already taken out and as to future cases. ##Mr. Edison has spent between $10,000 and $12,000 already on various cases since the formation of the Edison English company. The fees on these patents are now falling due and some arrangement should be made with relation to them or else the patents will be allowed to lapse. Mr. Edison is away on his Wedding Tour and will not be back for at least two months, so I have cabled our patent attorney today to pay the fees falling due in March. I have done this on my own responsibility, hoping to come to some arrangement with you before the April fees fall due. ##I had some talk with Mr. Edison just as he was leaving New York and he told me that if I found it impossible to make some arrangement with you, I was to let the patents lapse, so that in paying the March fees, I have stretched my instructions considerably. ##If your company desires to acquire the patents referred {to}, I think Mr. Edison would be willing to assign them to your company, providing your company will assign to him the Central Station dynamos now held by the Edison Machine Works for your office{?}. This, I should think, would be a very good arrangement for all concerned and certainly for yourselves, as the dynamos are to a certain extent obsolete, and the chances of your making a sale remote. ##It is essential that something should be done in this matter immediately, as Mr. Handford has only received instructions to pay the March fees, and some are due early in April and these patents will most certainly be allowed to lapse unless something definite is arrived at. ##Please cable your reply to "Edison, New York."




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