This undated pocket notebook, originally believed to date from 1910, is probably the "new memo book," referred to in PN-11-05-15, which Edison planned to bring with him to Europe during the summer of 1911. Although some of the entries appear to have been made while the inventor was traveling abroad with his family in August and September, most pertain to experimental work and other tasks performed at the laboratory in West Orange. Many of the experiments relate to improvements in storage batteries, phonographs, and phonograph records. Other entries deal with Edison's kinetophone, concrete cabinets for phonographs, educational films, and stereoscopic effects and color photography for motion pictures. Among the employees mentioned in connection with individual experiments are Ralph Arbogast, Jonas Walter Aylsworth, Pursell Eggleston, Ignacy Goldstein, Walter E. Holland, Miller Reese Hutchison, and Alexander N. Pierman. The battery-related entries include notes on the composition and performance of cells and a list of sixty-nine items, entitled "uses for battery," describing applications in electric vehicles, tricycles, and submarines; in automobile and home lighting; in sailing vessels, with windmill power; and in other devices such as miners' lamps, burglar alarms, and dentist drills. Also included are entries pertaining to the manufacture of nickel hydroxide and to clutch devices for trucks.
In addition, there are plans for making phonograph records out of condensite, shellac, hard rubber, and celluloid; proposals for recording popular songs and the sounds of naval gunnery; and ideas about marketing phonograph records. Among the individuals mentioned in relation to Edison's business affairs are Henry H. Harjes in Paris; Etienne de Fodor in Budapest; and his European representatives, Paul H. Cromelin, Maurice E. Fox, Thomas Graf, and John F. Monnot. There are also entries pertaining to personal and family matters, including references to the estate of John Kruesi and a draft telegram, probably to Edison's daughter, Marion Edison Oeser, regarding a rendezvous with his son-in-law, Oscar Oeser, in Switzerland. The front flyleaf bears a list of famous Frenchmen and a list of French cities. The pages are unnumbered. Approximately 140 pages have been used.
Courtesy of Thomas Edison National Historical Park.