[LB035164], Letter from Thomas Alva Edison to New England Mutual Life Insurance Co, Benjamin F Stevens, December 19th, 1889


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[LB035164], Letter from Thomas Alva Edison to New England Mutual Life Insurance Co, Benjamin F Stevens, December 19th, 1889

Editor's Notes

I have received your letter under date 15th inst., in regard to the second section in the manufacturing contract between your Company and myself of August 6th, 1889. You will doubtless recollect that when I was requested to name a maximum price for the movements before we had commenced the manufacture of the same –in fact, before we had ordered any of our special machinery, it was with great reluctance that I named an amount, for the reason that at that time it was impossible to make an estimate with safety. As your Company was very anxious, however, to have me name a maximum price, I took the risk of doing so, in the full belief that if my estimate should prove too low, a satisfactory adjustment could be arrived at between us. Your interpretation of the second section of the contract above referred to is an entire second with the spirit of our agreement, and I am very much pleased that the this spirit has been officially recognized by your Executive Committee, whose views are communicated to me through your letter under reply. I am satisfied that we understand each other thoroughly. The work of manufacture will be proceeded with with all possible rapidity, and while we will take advantage of every circumstance which will promote the early delivery of movements, we will at the same time use our very best judgment where economy is to be considered, our desire being to furnish you with an article which will stand the test of criticism by the trade and which will be lasting. We appreciate the supreme importance of putting on the market as perfect on article as can be made, and we are leaving nothing undone to secure this end. The delays, such as have occurred, are all incident to the development of a new industry, but these troubles will disappear as our organization becomes more perfect. It is not practicable in this letter to acquaint you with the amount which the movements will cost in excess of the maximum price already named, but we hope to be able to give you this information in the course of a few days. Yours very truly, [signed] TAE




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